Professor Duncan Lewis

Professor Duncan Lewis

Chair in Management

Plymouth Business School (Faculty of Business)


I am now a part-time Professor of Management with supervision and research responsibilities. I am no longer taking doctoral candidates for supervision.

I am specifically interested in workplace conflicts such as bullying and discrimination. I am also interested in emotional labour, emotion work, employee engagement and destructive leadership.


PhD (Cardiff University)

BA (Hons) CNAA

Professional membership

Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (FCIPD)

Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA)

Teaching interests

I teach on mainly Masters programmes in HR and Leadership topics.

Research interests

I have recently completed two large ESRC funded research projects. The first with Ralph Fevre of Cardiff School of Social Sciences. Cardiff University  was a nationwide study of negative behaviours in the workplace. If you are interested in receiving a copy of the practitioner report, please send me an email.  The second piece of research that has just ended (Feb 2014) was also funded by the ESRC and was undertaken in conjunction with Helge Hoel at Manchester Business School and Anna Einarsdottir of Hull Business School. This study also involved a nationwide survey of lesbian, gay and bisexual employee experiences of discrimination, bullying and harassment in the workplace and utilised a complex mixed methods study of survey, interviews and focus groups. This study had the support of the Equality and Human Rights Commission. If you require a PDF of the report please email me.

in 2015 I commenced a national study of workplace ill-treatment in Ireland with Margaret Hodgins of the National University of Ireland (Galway) and colleagues at the University of Limerick. The study replicates the above ESRC project with Fevre and deploys a mixed methods methodology of survey,organizational case studies and key informant interviews. The study is funded by IOSH.

In October 2015 I am acting as co-investigator for a 3 year study on interventions and preventions for workplace bullying and mistreatment in organizations in Manitoba, Canada. Working in conjunction with the University of Winnipeg and with colleagues from other Canadian, US and European universities, the project aims to compare Canadian and international experiences of these phenomena with the aim of improving organizational responses to these destructive workplace problems.
I am broadly interested in emotional labour, destructive leadership, discrimination, bullying and in workplace conflicts more generally. I supervise a number of PhD students in these broad disciplines and welcome conversations with anyone interested in undertaking doctoral level research in applied topics. 

Research degrees awarded to supervised students

I have supervised a number of students to successful completion of doctoral theses including PhD and DBA students including:

  • 2016 Constantine Manolchev (PhD) - 'Precarity and Precasriousness - a study into the impact of low-pay, low-skill employment structures on the experiences of workers in the south west of Britain'
  • 2014 Keith Davies (PhD) - ‘Emotional Dissonance Among UK Animal Technologists: Evidence, Impact and Management Implications’.
  • 2013 Hazel Mawdsley (PhD) - ‘A Tri-partite study of Trade Union Intervention in Workplace Bullying: The Role of Collective Voice’.
  • 2012 Melinda Drowley (DBA) - ‘Post-merger narratives in a high education context: re(constructing identity’.
  • 2010 Joy Zhang (Ph.D.) – ‘Ethical Decision Making among Chinese and British Managers: An Exploratory Study’, with Dr. Simon Brooks
  • 2010 Andrew Hunt (DBA) – ‘Exploring the Identity of Embedded Micro-consultants in an Organisation Change Environment’, with Dr. Paul Thomas 
  • 2009 Kemi Adewumi (Ph.D.) – ‘The Exploration of the Nature and Extent of Workplace Bullying in an Emergency Services Organisation in the UK’, with Professor Michael Sheehan
  • 2009 Peter Williams (DBA) – ‘Third Party Intervention into Workplace Bullying: An Exploratory Study’, with Professor Michael Sheehan
  • 2007 Javier De-Rentera (DBA) – ‘Pharmaceutical Lobbying in Argentina: a study of Pharmacopolitics’, with Professor Kerry Howell, Plymouth Business School

Grants & contracts

I have recently been a co-investigator on two large ESRC funded research grants:

1. £800,000 with Professor Ralph Fevre, Professor of Social Research at Cardiff University ‘Workplace Bullying in Britain: With Special Reference to Race and Ethnicity’  

2. £520.000 with Dr. Helge Hoel, Senior Lecturer in Organizational Psychology, Manchester Business School. 'Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual employees experience of discrimination, bullying and harassment at work’. Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (RES-062-23-2412)

I commenced a new project in 2015 funded by IOSH in collaboration with the National University of Ireland and the University of Limerick. The study deploys a mixed methods methodology exploring ill-treatment in Irish workplaces. The project is led by Margaret Hodgins of the National University of Ireland.

In October 2015 I am co-investigator on a large research project in Manitoba, Canada funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council (Canada) and in conjunction of Dr Karen Harlos of  the University of Winnipeg. The study also adopts a mixed methods approach exploring interventions and solutions for workplace bullying and mistreatment in Manitoba workplaces.

I have also recently completed two independent research contracts for Royal Mail and Barts Health NHS Trust on workplace bullying and discrimination.