Academy of Management Annual Meeting Proceedings includes abstracts of all papers and symposia presented at the annual conference, plus 6-page abridged versions of the “Best Papers” accepted for inclusion in the program (approximately 10%). Papers published in the Proceedings are abridged because presenting papers at their full length could preclude subsequent journal publication. Please contact the author(s) directly for the full papers.

The Interactive Dynamics of International Actors Before and During a Global Pandemic

    The rapid spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues to claim lives worldwide and has become a global pandemic, a distinctive type of societal grand challenge that entails instantaneous, but persisting, catastrophe. This paper sets out to explore the interorganizational network of international actors—comprising multinational companies, intergovernmental organizations, and nongovernmental organizations—by disentangling their interactive dynamics whilst a global pandemic unfolds. Using a unique GDELT big dataset, we draw on the theory of networks to analyze the interorganizational interactions of international actors before and after the World Health Organization announced that the COVID-19 outbreak was a public health emergency of international concern. Due to the immediate and large-scale impact of COVID-19, prevailing theories would expect concerned actors to build a goal-directed network and facilitate more cooperation. However, we find that international actors continuously have a serendipitous interorganizational network and generally have greater conflictive interactions with one another during a global pandemic. Our findings provide novel insights from big data, and we discuss the implications of our discoveries to understand the network of international actors during an ongoing global health crisis.

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