Authors’ Response: If Anything, We Should Stigmatize Unhealthy Organizations

Julia M. Kensbock, Lars Alkærsig, Carina Lomberg

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


We appreciate the important academic discussions that our article (Kensbock, Alkærsig, and Lomberg, 2022) has initiated. Replying to the commentaries by Keyes and Shaman (2022) and Pierce and Rider (2022), we reiterate the goal and purpose of our research questions, including the use of a metaphor. We address theoretical arguments that a “normalization” or “matching” mechanism might account for our findings, and we present additional empirical evidence against these arguments. We address concerns about methodological decisions made and demonstrate that altering those decisions would have little or no effect on our findings and conclusions. In doing so, we reaffirm that the contagion mechanism that we proposed based on a large strand of prior research is the most likely one. Finally, we discuss how and why our study results can prevent (rather than increase) stigmatization of individuals with mental disorders. We encourage future scholarly and societal discussions to bring unhealthy organizations into focus and to develop interventions that prevent the accumulation of mental disorders in organizations.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAdministrative Science Quarterly
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)70-81
Publication statusPublished - 2022


Dive into the research topics of 'Authors’ Response: If Anything, We Should Stigmatize Unhealthy Organizations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this