Suresh Srviastva

We will miss our friend and colleague Suresh Srivastva who died May 8, 2010 while at home with his family in Florida.

Suresh Srivastva was a founding member of the Taos Institute and an instrumental figure in the creation and development of Appreciative Inquiry. Suresh was professor emeritus of Organizational Behavior at Weatherhead School of Management and was David Cooperrider’s mentor.

Srivastva was chair of the Department of Organizational Behavior for 13 years beginning in 1970. In a 2008 letter announcing a celebratory event in Srivastva’s honor, Professors David Cooperrider (Taos founder) and Ronald Fry (Taos Associate) 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,” Ron 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”.

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.