Kristian Braekkan


I have been teaching and conducting research at Gustavus since the fall of 2010 after having earned my Ph.D. from Virginia Tech. My research seeks to elucidate the employment relationship by way of psychological contracts. Recent publications have focused on perceptions of breach/violations, implications of content differences upon employment expectations and perceived obligations, and the impact of third-party representation.

I am interested in the changing notions of labor rights under neoliberalism and I also examine issues of alienation and exploitation in the employment relationship - an area in which I have recently published conceptual articles and an empirical study of exploitation by economic necessity. Additionally, I work on projects that examine the role of extra-parliamentary opposition in modern industrialized states. I typically have two student research positions available at any given time.

My teaching is to a great extent influenced by dialectic inquiries. Consistent with the writings of one of my main intellectual influences, Joseph Dietzgen, my teaching methods emphasize that reality is a single entity embracing all observable phenomena, past, present and future, where reality is infinite, having no beginning or end, and constantly changing. This philosophy assumes that the universe and all things in it consist of transformations of matter, which take place simultaneously and consecutively in space and time. I therefore emphasize through my own intellectual development and through my pedagogical endeavors that to solve for “the answer” is a futile and even harmful effort. Instead, I try to focus on mechanisms, processes, and change as opposed to rigid laws and predictions when working with students on issues relating to social behaviors.

When not working, I enjoy reading, spending time with my pets (1 dog and 4 cats), being outdoors, and listening to music. I spend quite a bit of time reading historical and philosophical books, particularly relating to economic systems, post-WWII events, and international relations. I particularly enjoy Norwegian authors Knut Hamsun, Jens Bjørneboe, Dag Solstad, and Ingvar Ambjørnsen. Additionally, I spend more time than necessary reading mystery novels and other literature of no particular merit.


Ph.D. Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University (Virginia Tech) 2010

Courses Taught

Synonym Title Times Taught Terms Taught
E/M-365Strategic Management122015/SP, 2014/FA, 2014/SP, 2013/FA, 2013/SP, 2012/FA, 2012/SP, 2011/FA, 2011/SP, and 2010/FA
E/M-353Operations Management52015/SP, 2014/SP, 2013/SP, 2012/SP, and 2011/SP
E/M-351Globalizatn/Int'l Orgs52014/FA, 2013/FA, 2012/FA, 2011/FA, and 2010/FA
FTS-100FTS:Workplace Justice32014/FA, 2013/FA, and 2012/FA
E/M-261Organizational Behavior32014/SP, 2013/SP, and 2012/SP
GWS-224Staying Alive22015/SP and 2014/SP
E/M-350Human Resource Management22015/SP and 2011/SP
POL-351Globalizatn/Int'l Orgs12014/FA
E/M-344ST:Quality Mgmt12012/FA
E/M-268Career Exploration12012/JN