Morela Hernandez

Assistant Professor of Management
Michael G. Foster School of Business
University of Washington


  • Department:

    Management and Organization

  • Research Interests:

    Stewardship, leadership, ethics, intergenerational behavior, and diversity


  • Liu, D., Hernandez, M., & Wang, L. (2014). The role of leadership and trust in creating structural patterns of procedural justice: A social network investigation. Personnel Psychology. In press.
  • Eberly, M. B., Johnson, M. D., Hernandez, M. & Avolio, B. J. (2013). An integrative process model of leadership: Examining loci, mechanisms and event cycles. American Psychologist. In press.
  • Avery, D.R., Volpone, S. D., Stewart, R. W., Luksyte, A., Hernandez, M., McKay, P. F., & Hebl, M. R. (2013) Examining the draw of diversity: How diversity climate perceptions affect job pursuit intentions. Human Resource Management. In press.
  • Hernandez, M. (2012). Toward an understanding of the psychology of stewardship. Academy of Management Review, 37(2), 172-193.
  • Wade-Benzoni, K. A, Tost, L. P., Hernandez, M. & Larrick, R. P. (2012). It’s only a matter of time: Intergenerational beneficence as a death anxiety buffer. Psychological Science, 23(7), 704-709.
  • Hernandez, M. & Sitkin, S. B.(2012). Who is leading the leader? Follower influence of leader ethicality. In D. De Cremer & A. Tenbrunsel (Eds.), Behavioral Business Ethics: Shaping an Emerging Field, 81-102.New York: Rutledge.
  • Hernandez, M., Eberly, M. B., Avolio, B. J. & Johnson, M. D. (2011). The loci and mechanisms of leadership: Exploring a more comprehensive view of leadership theory. The Leadership Quarterly, 22, 1165-1185.
  • Wade-Benzoni, K.A, Hernandez, M., Medvec, V., & Messick, D. (2008). In fairness to future generations: The role of egocentrism, uncertainty, power, and stewardship in judgments of intergenerational allocations. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 44, 233-245.
  • Hernandez, M. (2008). Promoting stewardship behavior in organizations: A leadership model. Journal of Business Ethics, 80(1), 121-128.
  • Tost, L. P., Hernandez, M. & Wade-Benzoni, K. A. (2008). Pushing the boundaries: A review and extension of the psychological dynamics of intergenerational conflict in organizational contexts. Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management, 27, 93-147.
  • McKay, P. F., Avery, D. R., Tonidandel, S., Morris, M., Hernandez, M., & Hebl, M. R. (2007). Racial differences in managerial retention: Are diversity climate perceptions the key? Personnel Psychology, 60, 35-62.
  • Hernandez, M., Chen, Y., & Wade-Benzoni, K. A. (2006). Toward an understanding of psychological distance reduction between generations: A cross-cultural perspective. Research on Managing Groups and Teams, 9, 3-20.
  • Avery, D. R., Hernandez, M., and Hebl, M. R. (2004). Who’s watching the race? Racial salience in recruitment advertising. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 34(1), 146-161.
  • Research Overview
      My research centers around two basic questions:
    (1) How do individuals affect others’ socially positive behaviors such as institutional and intergenerational responsibility?
    (2) How does self-identity, shaped by demographic factors such as ethnicity, cultural origin, and gender, affect the decision making and behavior of individuals within the organization?

    To explore the first question, I focus on examining responsibility and ethics within the leadership context. Focal points in my research include the factors that influence how a leader displays and instills in followers a sense of responsibility to others in present and future generations (i.e. stewardship behavior). For example, I explore the likelihood that an individual will act out of self-interest under particular psychological conditions (e.g., uncertainty; mortality salience) and I examine the consequences of such behavior on stakeholders of the organization and on organizational survival. I have also recently begun to explore how followers may influence a leader’s ethicality and shape other followers’ interpretation of justice in a group context. More broadly, I investigate how leadership emerges and how moral decision making can be developed.

    The second question brings to light the social psychological differences that affect decision making and behavior. For example, in some of my past work, I examine how cultural norms, which shape an individual’s identity, can influence an individual’s decision to act on the behalf of contemporary and future others. In current projects, I explore how self-identity rooted in ethnic background can influence job applicant behavior in negotiations and on the perceptions of leaders within different multicultural contexts.

    Going forward, I am continuing to develop theory and empirical tests that further our understanding of these phenomena as part of a longer term objective of investigating psychological factors affecting decision making and behavior at the individual and group levels.

      DUKE UNIVERSITY, Durham, North Carolina
    Ph.D. in Business Administration, Management
    Dissertation Title: "Stewardship: Theoretical development and test of its determinants"

    RICE UNIVERSITY, Houston, Texas
    B.A. in Psychology – Magna Cum Laude and Honors in Psychology
    Honors Thesis Topic: Recruitment strategies for minority applicants in corporate environments

    Electronic copies of articles are posted for educational purposes only.



    Contact Information:

    Mailing Address:
       Foster School of Business
       University of Washington
       Paccar Hall, Box 353226
       Seattle, WA 98195

    Additional Information:

    Pictures taken by Matt Hagen ( 03/2008

    Last modified: January 2014