MICHALLE E. MOR BARAK is in the vanguard of a new breed of social work and management experts focusing on global workforce diversity. In her award-winning book, Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive Workplace (SAGE, 4th edition, 2017), she proposed an original model for creating an "inclusive workplace"– one that helps businesses, as well as public nonprofit organizations integrate with society via expanding circles of inclusion at the organizational, community, state/national and international levels. The book has won the CHOICE award from the Association of College and University Libraries and the Academy of Management's Terry Book Award for "the most significant contribution to management knowledge."
Her scholarly publications were among the first to introduce the construct of inclusion to the discourse about global diversity management through groundbreaking research. Two measurement scales that Mor Barak and her research team established and validated — the Mor Barak Inclusion-Exclusion Scale and the Diversity Climate Scale — have been widely used in for-profit and nonprofit research and in corporate employee surveys.
Her current research projects focus on diversity, work-family balance, social support and corporate social responsibility. They examine the impact of organizational culture on job satisfaction, organizational commitment and retention. Her studies test theoretically based models in both nonprofit and for-profit organizations nationally and internationally.
Mor Barak's research demonstrates that diversity management and inclusion, when adopted as key business strategies, represent more than just doing the right and moral thing. They also constitute good business. Diversity management is essential if corporations are to adapt to an increasingly diverse workforce, and it gives them a competitive advantage in recruitment, retention, customer relations, marketing and developing a positive corporate image. All of this, in turn, translates into profits and, more importantly, adds to the common good for employees, their families and their communities.
An internationally renowned scholar, Mor Barak has led conferences on diversity at the Rockefeller Foundation's Bellagio Study and Conference Center in Italy, as well as at the Borchard Foundation's Chateau de la Bretesche in France. She received numerous awards of distinction, including the Fulbright award, Lady Davis award for international exchange scholars, University of California Regents Award, and Sterling C. Franklin Distinguished Faculty Award for Research and Scholarship.
Ranked No. 4 among the top 100 authors of the most influential articles in the social work discipline over the past decade based on overall and yearly citations, Mor Barak conducted a meta-analysis study (in collaboration with former doctoral students Amy Levin and Jan Nissly) that examined retention in the child welfare and social work workforce. She has conducted several longitudinal studies examining the effects of diversity and quality of supervision on retention among child welfare workers.
Mor Barak mentors and works closely with doctoral and master's students who are active participants in her research projects and co-authors of many of her publications. In recognition of her contributions as a mentor to students, she won the Mellon Award for Excellence in Mentoring. As department chair, she also provides leadership for the Community, Organization, and Business Innovation department, as well as the university's joint MBA/MSW dual-degree program. The program aims to create a new breed of boundary-crossing professionals with joint social work and business education who can initiate programs to help workers, families and communities while improving organizational effectiveness of both nonprofit and for-profit organizations and contributing to increased harmony in the wider society.
Dr. Michàlle Mor Barak opens her award-winning book, Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive Workplace (Sage, 2005), with a simple question: what makes a successful manager? She embodies many of the qualities herself: creative vision, an ethical outlook, and the ability to work with individuals of different backgrounds. Even as a student, Mor Barak saw potential where few others did, at the intersection between social work and business. Today, she is an international scholar in both fields whose wide-ranging research in global workforce diversity has revolutionized social work and business practices worldwide.
Mor Barak has been fascinated with cross-cultural collaboration since first being exposed to workforce diversity in her native Israel, where she started her career as a social worker for an international seafaring company. Multiethnic crews, often a medley of nationalities such as Italian, Norwegian and American, faced issues of communication, collaboration and teamwork, and it was Mor Barak’s responsibility to guide them through any cross-cultural misunderstandings. As her ambition grew beyond individual therapy to diversity management, work-family balance and corporate responsibility, she traveled to the United States to pursue a master’s degree and doctorate at the University of California, Berkeley.
After graduating, Mor Barak joined the USC School of Social Work, where she has developed her reputation as a visionary, cross-disciplinary scholar in the areas of global workforce diversity, social work practice in the workplace, and inclusion. Her aforementioned book on these topics won the prestigious Academy of Management’s George R. Terry Book Award—the first time any social worker or USC faculty member received the prize.
Mor Barak recently partnered with two colleagues in the USC Marshall School of Business to carry out an innovative study at a factory in Mexico, pairing factory remodeling techniques with a five-part cross-cultural intervention. As a result, the Korean managers and Mexican workers were able to collaborate and contribute to their mutual goal of ensuring productivity and profitability for the factory. In Mor Barak’s mind, this is a basic component of social work—guaranteeing employment and ensuring well-being. She also conducts longitudinal research on the child welfare system, whose workers have notably high rates of turnover.
In addition to directing the doctoral program and chairing the Work & Life concentration at the School of Social Work, Mor Barak is also involved in the new military social work program and teaches courses on social work practice in work settings, research, diversity management from a global perspective, and statistics. Many of her students have the opportunity to participate in teleconference seminars with distinguished guests, and in 2005, she received the Mellon Award for Excellence in Mentorship.
Mor Barak, M.E. (forthcoming in 2017). Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive Workplace. 4th edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Mor Barak, M.E., Lizano, E.L., Kim, A., Duan, L., Hsiao, H.Y., Rhee, M.K. & Brimhall, K.A. (2016). The Promise of Diversity Management for Climate of Inclusion: A State-of-the-Art Review and Meta-Analysis. Human Service Organizations: Management, Leadership & Governance. doi: 10.1080/23303131.2016.1138915
Rhee, M.K., Gallo, W.T. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2016). Mechanisms of the Effect of Involuntary Retirement on Older Adults’ Self-Rated Health and Mental Health. Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 59(1), 35-55. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01634372.2015.1128504
Mor Barak, M.E. (2015). Inclusion is the Key to Diversity Management, But What is Inclusion? Human Service Organizations: Management Leadership & Governance. 39, 83-88. doi: 10.1080/23303131.2015.1035599
Kim, A & Mor Barak, M.E. (2015). The mediating roles of leader-member exchange and perceived organizational support in role stress-turnover intention relationship among child welfare workers: Longitudinal analyses. Children and Youth Services Review, 52, 135-143. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2014.11.009
Lizano, E.L. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2015). Job burnout and affective wellbeing: A longitudinal study of burnout and job satisfaction among public child welfare workers. Children and Youth Services Review, 55, 18-28. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2015.05.005
Travis, D., Lizano, E.L. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2015). “I’m so stressed”: A longitudinal model of stress-related determinants of employee engagement in Child Welfare Settings. British Journal of Social Work. doi:10.1093/bjsw/bct205
Mor Barak, M.E. (2014). Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive Workplace. 3rd edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Daya, P. (2014). Fostering inclusion from the inside out to create an inclusive workplace: Corporate/organizational efforts in society and the community. In B.M. Ferdman and B. Deane (Eds.) Diversity at Work: The Practice of Inclusion. Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology Press.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Brekke, J.S. (2014). Social Work Science and Identity Formation for Doctoral Scholars within Intellectual Communities. Research on Social Work Practice, 25(5), 616-624. doi: 10.1177/1049731514528047
Rhee, M., Park, S. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2014). Job Stress and Mental Health among Nonregular Workers in Korea: What Dimensions of Job Stress are Associated with Mental Health? Archives of Environmental & Occupational Health.
Brimhall, K.C., Lizano, E.L. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2014). The mediating the role of inclusion: A longitudinal study of the effects of leader-member exchange and diversity climate on job satisfaction and intention to leave amount child welfare workers. Children and Youth Services Review, 4, 79-88.
Kim, A. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2014). Role stress, turnover intention, and the mediating roles of leader-member exchange and perceived organizational support of child welfare workers: Longitudinal analyses. Children and Youth Services Review.
Travis, D., Lizano, E.L. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2014). I’m so stressed: A longitudinal model of stress-related determinants of employee engagement in child welfare settings. British Journal of Social Work.
Hsiao, H.Y. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2014). Job-Related Stress, Social Support, and Work-Family Conflict Among Mexican Workers in a Multinational Company: A Case Study of a Korean-owned, US-branded Former “Sweatshop” in Mexico. International Journal of Social Welfare, 23(3), 309-320. doi: 10.1111/ijsw.12065
Lizano, E.L., Hsiao, H., Mor Barak, M.E. & Casper, L. (2014). Support in the workplace: Buffering the deleterious effects of work family conflict on child welfare workers job burnout and well-being. Journal of Social Service Research, 40(2), 178-188. doi:10.1080/01488376.2013.875093
Mor Barak, M.E. & Travis, D. (2013). Socioeconomic Trends: Broadening the Diversity Ecosystem. (pp. 393-418). In Q.M. Robertson (Ed.) Handbook of Diversity in the Workplace. London, UK: Oxford.
Mor Barak, M.E. (2013). Instructor’s Manual for Managing Diversity. 3rd edition. Includes lecture notes, PPT files for each chapter, discussion questions and test bank.
Lizano, E.L. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2012). Workplace Demands and Resources as Antecedents of Job Burnout among Public Child Welfare Workers: A Longitudinal Study. Children and Youth Services Review, 34, 1769-1776. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.childyouth.2012.02.006
Mor Barak, M.E. (2011). Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive Workplace. 2nd edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Lizano, E.E. (2011). Instructor’s Manual for Managing Diversity. 2nd edition. Includes lecture notes, PPT files for each chapter, discussion questions and test bank.
Travis, D.J., Gomez, R.J. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2011). Speaking Up and Stepping Back: Examining the Link between Employee Voice and Job Neglect. Children and Youth Services Review, 33, 1831-1841.
Travis, D.J. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2010). Factors influencing child welfare workers’ propensity to seek positive change or disengage from their jobs. Journal of Social Service Research, (36)3, 188-205.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Travis, D. (2009). Diversity and Organizational Performance. In Y. Hasenfeld (Eds.) Human Services as Complex Organizations. 2nd edition. (pp. 341-378). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Mor Barak, M.E., Travis, D.J., Pyun, H. & Xie, B. (2009). A Meta-analysis of the Role of Supervision in Child Welfare Service Provision. Social Service Review, 83(1), 3-32.
Mor Barak, M.E. (2008). Social Psychological Perspectives of Workforce Diversity and Inclusion in National and Global Contexts. In R. Patti (Ed). Handbook of Human Service Management. (pp. 239-254). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Cho, S. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2008). Understanding Diversity and Inclusion in a Perceived Homogeneous Culture: A Study of Organizational Commitment and Job Performance Among Korean Employees. Administration in Social Work, 32(4).
Mor Barak, M.E. & Travis, D.J. (2008). Management: Human Resources. Encyclopedia of Social Work. 20th edition. Oxford, U.K.: Oxford Academic Press.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Travis, D.J. (2007). Employee Assistance and Counseling. Encyclopedia of Stress. 2nd edition, Vol. 1. (pp. 922-926). Oxford, U.K.: Oxford Academic Press.
Findler, L., Wind, L. & Mor Barak, M.E. (2007). The Challenge of Workforce Management in a Global Society: Modeling the Relationship between Diversity, Organizational Culture, and Employee Well-being, Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment. Administration in Social Work, 31(3), 63-94.
Mor Barak, M.E., Levin, A., Nissly, J.A. & Lane, C.J. (2006). Why do they leave? Modeling turnover intentions from child welfare workers’ perceptions of their organizational climate. Children and Youth Services Review, 28(5), 548-577.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Travis, D. (2006). Instructor’s Manual for Managing Diversity. Includes lecture notes, PPT files for each chapter, discussion questions and test bank.
Mor Barak, M.E. (2005). Managing Diversity: Toward a Globally Inclusive Workplace. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Mor Barak, M.E., Schwartz-Nuttman, O. & Findler, L. (2005). Workforce Diversity and the Inclusive Workplace Model: Implications for Israel. Work Society and Law, 306-321.
Nissly, J.A., Mor Barak, M.E. & Levin, A. (2005). Stress, social support, and workers’ intentions to leave their jobs in public child welfare. Administration in Social Work, 29(1), 79-100.
Mor Barak, M.E., Schwartz-Nuttman, O. & Findler, L. (2005). Workforce Diversity and the Inclusive Workplace Model: Implications for Israel. Work Society and Law (Hebrew), 306-321.
Mor Barak, M.E. & Wilson, S. (2005). Labor force participation of older adults: Implications for the social work profession. In L. Kay (Ed.) Perspectives on Productive Aging: Social Work with the New Aged. New York: NASW.