Hello! I'm Minjie

I'm a Ph.D. Fellow at Cass Business School's Management Faculty. My research interests centre on exploring individual and organizational issues triggered by change and their consequence for business and entrepreneurship. This is anchored in a commitment towards phenomenon-driven qualitative analysis, based on an appreciation for classical organization theory. For my Ph.D. dissertation, I conducted a two-year ethnography at an English hospital, investigating issues triggered by digital innovation.

My longstanding research interests are also reflected in my teaching experiences. During my graduate training at Cass, I have coordinated course design and engaged in lecturing and tutoring activities in a variety of courses at undergraduate master’s and MBA levels. Some of these courses include: Strategy, Organisational Behaviour, System Thinking, Technology and Innovation Management. I have also worked as visiting and guest lecturers, independently designed and delivered courses such as Management of Innovation Process and sessions on digital strategy and digital leadership.


Minjie Gao

Ph.D Candidate in Management


Cass Business School,

City, University of London



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Digital Innovation
Organisation Change
Organisation Routine
Qualitative Methodology
Community of Practice

My research broadly falls into two interrelated streams. The first spans the fields of organization studies and innovation through a focus on change and its implication on individuals, organizations and organizing. This is manifested in my Ph.D. research, which investigates the digitalization process in hospitals and its implications. In a second stream, I study the evolution of informal forms of organization and its actors. Empirically, I look at the running industry and how individual runners as entrepreneurs and running groups as communities of practice are affected by societal changes.

Ph.D. Research

For my Ph.D. dissertation, I conducted a two-year ethnography at an English hospital, investigating issues triggered by digital innovation. My job market paper focuses on the application of aspects of narrative to the study of organizational change and employee engagement. My second paper looks at organizational and individual implications of digital innovation in the workplace by engaging with literature on organization change-fatigue and emotion.

The last paper of my dissertation looks at how work and organizing is changed by innovation by empirically examine the critical care bed management process. 

Beyond Ph.D.

I am profoundly intrigued by the evolution of the running industry, in particular on issues related to individual runners as entrepreneurs and running groups as communities of practice. Taking a sociological approach, I have developed a research project examining the evolution of the running industry. This project aims to uncover the historical evolution of the running industry, how running, as a hobby, creates a new wave of entrepreneurs, running communities as informal types of organizations and the sociology of runners, to name but a few. I have negotiated with and obtained access for data collection from running crews in London, New York and Los Angeles.


Cass Business School, London



​Critical Thinking for Business (UG)

  • Coordinated course design, taught and evaluated full module 

  • Student evaluations: 4.4/5 (2018); 4.3/5 (2019)

Advanced Strategic Management (UG)

  • Independently designed and taught two sessions on digital strategy and digital leadership


Vives University College, Belgium


Management of Innovation Process  (UG)

  • Designed and taught full module, prepared course materials such as lectures, case studies and practice problems 

  • Developed exams and paper topics; provided feedback on students’ communication skills and graded assignments

  • Student evaluations: 4.6 (2017 Bruges); 4.5/5 (2017 Kortrijk); 4.6 (2018 Kortrijk)


Cass Business School, London



Coordinated course design and management, prepared course material, led weekly tutorial, supervised and graded assignment for different modules ranging in size from 20 – 250 students. Topics included:​

  • Organisational Behaviour (MBA)

  • Leadership (Exec MBA)

  • Business & Society (UG)

  • Strategy (MSC & MBA)

  • Strategy for Business (UG)

  • System Thinking (UG)

  • Coporate Social Responsibility (UG)

  • Technology and Innovation Management (UG)


Cass Business School

Doctor of Philosophy in Management

Expected completion: Winter 2020 

Awarded City University Doctoral Studentship (£85,000)


City, University of London

Postgraduate Certifacte in Academic Practice

Grade: Distinction

Awarded Fellowship of the British Academy of Higher Education


Durham University Business School

Master of Science in Management

Grade: Distinction


Beijing University of Chemical Technology

Bachelor of Art in English

GPA: 88.81/100, top 2%

Awarded National Scholarship of China


Microsoft Office - Advanced

Nvivo - Advanced

Mandarin - Native

English - Fluent

Minjie Gao

Faculty of Management

Cass Business School

City, University of London




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