May 11, 2010

Campus Community Mourns Death of Suresh Srivastva

Suresh Srivastva, professor emeritus of organizational behavior, died May 8.

In an email to the Weatherhead School of Management announcing Srivastva’s death, Dean Mohan Reddy wrote: “He was a vital force in the department and the school, and is widely credited with enhancing the stature of the PhD program in organizational behavior. Many of us here have known him as a teacher and a colleague, and as one who was always game for a challenging discussion.”

Srivastva began his 13-year tenure as chair of the Department of Organizational Behavior in 1970.

In a 2008 letter announcing a celebratory event in Srivastva’s honor, Professors David Cooperrider and Ronald Fry wrote that he brought to the department and to the field “a towering sense of purpose for the creation of a humanly significant science devoted to changing the human condition of the world.” They added that he “left an unmistakable signature-legacy” on his students and colleagues, the department and the discipline.”

"Suresh was one of the very early founders of the Department of Organizational Behavior at CWRU. He served as the chairman from 1970-1983 and was the primary driver in attaining academic credibility for our doctorate degree in organizational behavior. His leadership, scholarship and mentoring significantly shaped the identity we enjoy today as a place for novel and provocative ideas, research of consequence, and a developmental approach to educating and preparing future scholars and institution builders. For myself, the learning, self discovery, and appreciation I experienced in relationship with Suresh was life changing and I am forever grateful to have known him and to have called him mentor and friend," Fry said.

"Suresh Srivastva was a towering intellectual force in the creation of the field of organizational behavior," Cooperrider said. "His PhD students have gone on to be leading scholars in the field at places such as Stanford Business School, Harvard and the Indian Institute of Management. The groundwork he forged while chairman of the program helped propel the Department of Organizational Behavior to the #1 ranked program in the world."

Srivastva was the author or co-author of dozens of books, reports and articles related to the topic of organizational behavior. His first major article, “Toward a Social Psychology in Management: Some Neglected Variables in Management Thinking,” was published in 1967. He concluded organizations are centers of human relatedness—where people come together to learn to care and to grow, to love and develop, to cooperate and to co-create.

Services will be held Saturday, May 15, in Sarasota, Fla.

For those wishing to honor his memory, the family suggests a donation in Srivastva's name to the Suresh Srivastva Scholarship Fund, which supports doctoral students in the Department of Organizational Behavior at Case Western Reserve.

Posted by: Kimyette Finley, May 11, 2010 08:25 AM | News Topics: Faculty, Weatherhead School of Management

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