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Personal profile


One of four Senior Lecturers at the School of Business, SETU and Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Shanghai University. Prof. Kelliher lectures in management practice, leadership, change and innovation. An experienced principal investigator (PI), research supervisor and mentor, Prof. Kelliher specialises in action research and longitudinal interpretive case methods. Prof. Kelliher studies management capability development in small and medium sized enterprise (SME) with a particular interest in rural business and has engaged with over 1200 SMEs through her research. She is chair of the RIKON research group, who have secured over €10m in research funding since 2007, enabling significant longitudinal research projects. A Fulbright alum, Prof. Kelliher works closely with colleagues in Ireland, UK, Canada and USA on a number of funded research projects. She regularly contributes to management theory through publication in top tier international journals and contributes to the wider academic and practice communities.

CO-FOUNDER/ CHAIR, Research in Innovation, Knowledge, Organisations and Networks (RIKON)

As Co-chair of RIKON, Prof. Kelliher studies management capability development in SMEs with a particular interest in rural business. Prof. Kelliher specialises in action research and longitudinal interpretive case methods. Identified as a key research group in the innovation in services and business processes (IOT Ireland website, 2013), RIKON has developed significant working partnerships with industry, government agencies, chambers of commerce and over 1600 individual companies. RIKON has secured over €10m in research funding since 2007 and has completed 880 innovation projects through Enterprise Ireland's Innovation Voucher Scheme; helping enterprises develop their innovation capabilities, growth strategies and enhancing management practice.


As Professor of Management Practice, Prof. Kelliher lectures in leadership, management practice, innovation and change at postgraduate and executive level at SETU and Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Shanghai University China. As visiting professor, she delivered management practice modules and master classes at the University of Missouri and Michigan State University (USA), Memorial University Newfoundland and the Universities of Guelph, Wilfrid Laurier, and Waterloo (Canada), Grand École (France), SDA Bocconi School of Management (Italy), University of Ulster (UK) and at Trinity College, Dublin City University and National University of Ireland Galway (Ireland).


Prof. Kelliher led the development of three key programs at the SETU School of Business; the Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA), the MBS in Change Management and the BSc in Retail Management. Each program was the first of its kind in Ireland, adopting the principles of best international practice and two were shortlisted at the gradireland annual program awards in 2010 (MBS in Change Management) and 2016 (DBA). Prof. Kelliher designed and co-manage the MBA organisational change program wherein executives are engaged in work-based action research projects to help embed new knowledge in their organisations; guided 60+ MBA and MBS in Change action research projects to successful completion. Prof. Kelliher is a program development board member responsible for management practice and methodology modules on 18 separate undergraduate and postgraduate programs across the University.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, An analysis of the impact on employee learning of a critical incident in the micro-firm retail environment, Queen's University Belfast

Award Date: 01 Sep 2006

Executive MBA, Executive MBA (Hons), Smurfit Graduate Business School, Smurfit Graduate Business School, University College Dublin

Award Date: 30 Sep 1999

Prince 2 (Project Management) Accreditation, Prince 2 - Office of Government Commerce

Award Date: 01 Sep 1999

Bachelors Degree, Bachelor of Business Accounting (2.1 Hons)

Award Date: 01 Sep 1993

External positions

Scholar, Prix de la Délégation générale du Québec à Londres, Québec Government Office, London


Ireland Canada University Foundation Dobbin Scholar, Memorial University of Newfoundland


Fulbright Scholar, University of Missouri


Royal Irish Academy Charlemont Scholar, Wilfrid Laurier University


Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Shanghai University

2001 → …


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