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Dr Ioana Lupu


Lecturer in Management Control

Telephone: +44(0) 20 7882 3986
Room Number: Room 4.13C, Bancroft Building, Mile End campus


Student drop-in and feedback hours

Wednesday 10:00 am – 12:00 noon


Outreach and Widening Participation Lead

Prior to joining Queen Mary, Ioana was a Marie Curie Senior Research Fellow at Cass Business School, working on a European Commission funded project "Professional Identity Construction and Parenthood in Professional Service Firms (PSFs)". She was also a Lecturer at NEOMA Business School, France and CNAM Paris.

Ioana is particularly interested in how professionals cope with long working hours in professional settings as well as the role of temporality and epiphany in identity work. She takes a qualitative, sociological and critical perspective in her research.

Dr Lupu’s doctoral dissertation was published in 2014 as: “Carrières de femmes. Identité, socialisation et vie familiale dans les cabinets d’audit et d’expertise” [Women’s Careers. Identiy, Socialization and Family Life in Accounting Firms], Vuibert Editions: Paris.

Her work received commendations such as: Faculty Transnational Research Best Conference Paper Award (Academy of Management, 2013), Best Conference Paper Based on a Dissertation Award, and Best Paper by a Transnational Student Award (Academy of Management, 2012).


Lupu, I CV (pdf)


Research Interests:

  • Work, socialization & identity of professional workers (accounting, law, investment banks etc.)
  • Gender and diversity issues in professional settings
  • Sociology of calculation (esp. how financialization reflects in work and leisure settings)
  • Time/temporality in organizations

Ongoing research:

Anticipatory socialization: the influence of early formative experiences on professional parents’ work-family decisions

Previous work-life balance and socialization research has focused more on the organizational context or on individual’s psychological traits to explain work and career decisions. Both of these broad approaches can be criticized for ignoring insights from the wider social science literature on anticipatory socialization, which highlights the crucial role that early formative experiences - in the home and school - play in shaping subsequent career and family decisions. We contribute to these two literatures (professional socialization and work-family balance decisions) via an empirical study exploring how family socialization shapes the work-family balance decisions of professional working parents. By exploring these aspects, our study looks at more deep rooted causes of work-family conflict in professional service firms than has previously been assumed. We find that the enduring influence of anticipatory socialization goes some way towards explaining why the careers of individuals, both male and female, are differentially affected following parenthood, even when those individuals possess broadly equivalent levels of cultural capital and have hitherto pursued very similar career paths.

Misaligned Timeflows: How Overworked Professionals Manage Intersecting Home-Work Temporalities (with Joonas Rokka)

We adopt a practice perspective to conceptualize the temporal experience of professionals in parenting roles as an effect of performing work and family practices through the notion of timeflow. Drawing on 148 interviews with 81 professionals in two professional service firms, we advance prior research on temporality in organizations by theorizing how the co-existing timeflows of work and family practices intersect, relate, and often misalign. Moreover, we identify and explain how overworked professionals manage misaligned timeflows through strategies of temporal reflexivity, taking control, and time forgetting. We discuss how our practice-theoretical approach opens up new perspectives for assessing and managing the alignment of home-work temporalities.

Transcending the socialization of long working hours: reflexivity and resistance in the accounting field

The purpose of this project is to explore how and why professionals become motivated and enabled to resist working long hours. Excessive working hours are widespread in accounting firms, thereby making this occupation a particularly rich setting for studying these phenomena. Based on 60 semi-structured interviews conducted in Big 4 firms in France and UK, we aim to answer the question: How can knowledge professionals resist overwork when it has penetrated their very mode of being? By exploring this issue, this research focuses on understanding the circumstances that motivate some professionals to resist organizational pressures to overwork. These fall into three broad categories: competing devotions, events that break the routine such as maternity and divorce, and disillusionment with the stakes of the accounting field are likely to increase awareness and reflection thus helping people to transcend the illusio that prompted them to overwork. Moreover, the findings suggest that marginalized actors (less-embedded into organizational culture and de-socialized) as well as those disadvantaged by the prevailing culture are more likely to resist injunctions to overwork.


Journal Articles

2016 (forthcoming) "Intertextuality in corporate narratives: a discursive analysis of a contested privatization in Romania", Accounting, Auditing, Accountability Journal (with Sandu, R.).

2016 "Publishing without Editors or Authors? Competing Logics, Circulation, and Cultural Creation in a Publishing Firm", Critical Perspectives on Accounting, vol. 38, July 2016, pp. 14–33 (with Le Theule, M.-A.).

2015 "Illusio and overwork: Playing the game in the accounting field", Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, vol. 28, no. 8, pp. 1310-1340 (with Empson, L.).

2012 "Approved routes and alternative paths: the construction of women’s careers in large accounting firms. Evidence from the French Big Four", Critical Perspectives on Accounting, vol. 23, no. 4-5, pp. 351-369.

2008  “Beyond the balance sheet: Intellectual Capital disclosure in transition economies. A Case Study from the Oil Industry”, Journal of Accounting and Management Information Systems, no. 24, pp. 88-100, (with Sandu, R.), ISSN 1583-4387 (indexed in ULRICHs Periodical Directory).

2007  “Les rapports narratifs du management, sont-ils équilibrés ? Etude de cas sur la reconnaissance du capital intellectuel dans les rapports annuels”, Journal of Accounting and Management Information Systems, no. 20, pp. 98-111, (with Bogdan, A. & Sandu, R.), ISSN 1583-4387 (indexed in ULRICHs Periodical Directory).


2014 "Carrières de femmes. Identité, socialisation et vie familiale dans les cabinets d’audit et d’expertise" [Women’s careers. Identiy, Socialization and family life in the accounting firms], Vuibert Editions, Paris.

Book Chapters and Edited Volumes

2014 "Multinationals as vectors of corporate governance improvement in emerging economies in Eastern Europe – a case study" (with Albu, N. and Sandu, R.), in Boubaker, S. & Nguyen, D. K. (eds.) "Corporate Governance in Emerging Markets: Theories, Practices and Cases", Springer Verlag.

Awards and Grants

2016 Mary Parker Follett Award Outstanding Paper 2015.

2014 Intra-European Marie Curie Fellowship (2 years), € 232,000.

2013 "Faculty Transnational Research Best Conference Paper Award", Gender, Diversity and Organization Division (GDO) and "William H. Newman Award Nominee", 73rd Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (AOM) Conference, Orlando, USA.

2012 "Best Conference Paper Based on a Dissertation Award", Sage Publications and "Best Paper by a Transnational Student Award", AOM Conference, Boston, USA.

2012 PhD. dissertation publication award, Fédération Nationale de l’Enseignement de la Gestion des Entreprises (FNEGE) France.

2009-2011 Research grants, French Accounting Association (AFC), € 4,400.

2006 Doctoral scholarship granted by the United Nations Development Program and the Romanian Government (two years), € 20,000.

PhD Supervision

Dr Lupu welcomes enquiries from prospective doctoral students with an interest in:

  • Identity
  • Socialization
  • Performance measurement
  • Work-life balance
  • Temporal experiences in professional service firms
  • Qualitative approaches (interview, ethnography, diary analysis etc.)
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