Broken 'two-way windows'? An exploration of professional hybrids

Charlotte Croft, Graeme Currie, Andy Lockett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


Professional hybrids are situated between managerial and professional groups, potentially enabling them to move between different organizational groups. Extant research assumes that professional hybrids undergo identity transition to overcome the conflicts associated with influencing two distinct organizational realms. However, how these identity conflicts are managed remains unclear. To explore how professional hybrids manage such identity conflicts we consider the experience of nurse hybrids. Drawing on the concept of liminality we argue that influence across multiple groups relies on the construction of a positive liminal space. In contrast, we demonstrate how nurse hybrids occupy a perverse liminal space, perpetuating identity conflict, preventing identity transition, and undermining their effectiveness as hybrids. Our work calls into question the reliance on professional hybrids as an organizational panacea for reform and develops our understanding of individual hybrids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)380-394
Number of pages15
JournalPublic Administration
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes

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