Dr Helen Louise Delaney

PhD, BCom (Hons) First Class, BCom and BA Conjoint


Helen Delaney (nee Nicholson) completed her PhD at the University of Auckland then undertook a Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship at the Department of Business Administration, Lund University, Sweden. She is now a senior lecturer in the Department of Management and International Business at the University of Auckland. 

Research | Current

Helen’s research centres on the critical study of work and organisations. She is interested in workplace democracy; global labour governance; power and politics in organisations; gender and identity; and academic labour. Alongside Professor Catherine Casey (Loughborough University, UK) and Dr Antje Fielder (University of Auckland), she is working on a project that investigates worker voice and rights in Asia-Pacific subsidiaries of European headquartered multinational corporations (funded by a Hans-Böckler Stiftung research grant).

Forthcoming publications:

Casey, C., Delaney, H and Fiedler, A (forthcoming) 'Recalling the moral dimension: Transnational labour interests and corporate social responsibilities'. Industrial Relations Journal. https://doi.org/10.1111/irj.12341

Casey, C and Delaney, H (forthcoming) 'Keeping it quiet? The micro-politics of employee voice in company strategic decision-making'. Work, Employment and Society. https://doi.org/10.1177/09500170211011340

Delaney, H and Casey, C (forthcoming) 'The promise of a four-day week? A critical appraisal of a management-led initiative'. Employee Relationshttps://doi.org/10.1108/ER-02-2021-0056

Delaney, H and Sullivan, K (forthcoming) 'The political is personal: Postfeminism and the construction of the ideal working mother'. Gender, Work and Organization. https://doi.org/10.1111/gwao.12702

Butler, N., Delaney, H., Hesselbo, E., Spoelstra (2020) 'Beyond measure'. ephemera: theory & politics in organization. 1-16. http://www.ephemerajournal.org/sites/default/files/pdfs/contribution/20-3Butler.pdf

Teaching | Current

Helen teaches on a range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses focused on the critical study of work and organisations, including:

MGMT 223 Understanding work and people

GLMI 706 Working in an age of uncertainty

BUSINESS 712 Advanced qualitative research methods

Postgraduate supervision

Current PhD supervision

Lydia Martin, PhD thesis entitled 'The feminist literary mode in leadership studies: Imagining alternatives and enacting resistance through feminist speculative fiction'

Nicola Russell, PhD thesis entitled 'Exploring the social construction of employee engagement through discourse analysis'

Alexandra Tod, PhD thesis entitled 'The Social Construction of Leadership by the Media: The Myth of Leadership'


Completed PhD supervision

Laura Harvey, PhD thesis entitled 'Learning from failure in labour-management partnership'

Elena Obushenkova, PhD thesis entitled, 'Shifting subjectivities: Experiences of agency and well-being in connected organisations'

Betty Ofe-Grant, PhD thesis entitled 'Smashing through the ‘brown glass ceiling’: Exploring perceived barriers of career advancement for Sāmoans working in Aotearoa, New Zealand'

Majoreen Amankwah, PhD thesis entitled 'Job quality: The perceptions and strategies of New Zealand workers'



  • 2014 Recipient of Marsden Fast-Start Research Grant (2015-2017)
  • 2014 Research Excellence Award, University of Auckland Business School
  • 2012 Recipient of Wallander Post-Doctoral Research Grant, Sweden
  • 2011 PhD thesis awarded place on Dean's List
  • 2008 New Zealand Postgraduate Study Abroad Scholarship
  • 2008 Universitas 21 Doctoral Mobility Scholarship
  • 2008 University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship
  • 2007 Enterprise Scholarship (Tertiary Education Commission)
  • 2005 Senior prize in English
  • 2005 Senior prize in Management Studies


Director of PhD programme, Department of Management and International Business (2021-)

Areas of expertise

  • Sociology of work and organisations
  • Gender, power, and identity at work
  • Critical organisation theory
  • Critical approaches to leadership and leadership development
  • Qualitative research methods

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Affiliate of the journal ephemera: theory & politics of organization

Member of the Lund University Management and Organisation Studies Group

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Spoelstra, S., Butler, N., & Delaney, H. (2020). Measures of Faith: Science and Belief in Leadership Studies. Journal of Management Inquiry, online first10.1177/1056492620901793
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/50360
  • Casey, C., & Delaney, H. (2019). The effort of partnership: Capacity development and moral capital in partnership for mutual gains. ECONOMIC AND INDUSTRIAL DEMOCRACY10.1177/0143831X19883007
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/49442
  • Butler, N., Delaney, H. L., & Spoelstra, S. (2018). Risky business: Reflections on critical performativity in practice. Organization, 25 (3), 428-445. 10.1177/1350508417749737
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/40654
  • Sullivan, K., & Delaney, H. (2017). Does God want female entrepreneurs to have it all?. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/businessreview/2017/10/23/does-god-want-female-entrepreneurs-to-have-it-all/. Related URL.
  • Sullivan, K. R., & Delaney, H. (2017). A femininity that 'giveth and taketh away': The prosperity gospel and postfeminism in the neoliberal economy. Human Relations, 70 (7), 836-859. 10.1177/0018726716676322
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/34873
  • Butler, N., Delaney, H., & Sliwa, M. (2017). The labour of academia. Ephemera : Theory and Politics in Organization, 17 (3), 467-480. Related URL.
  • Butler, N., Delaney, H., & Spoelstra, S. (2017). The Gray Zone: Questionable Research Practices in the Business School. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 16 (1), 94-109. 10.5465/amle.2015.0201
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/33276
  • Butler, N., Delaney, H. L., & Spoelstra, S. (2016). The grey zone: How questionable research practices are blurring the boundary between science and misconduct. https://www.timeshighereducation.com/blog/grey-zone-how-questionable-research-practices-are-blurring-boundary-between-science-and. Related URL.

Contact details

Primary office location

Level 4, Room 4113
New Zealand

Web links