Desiree Pacheco

Desiree Pacheco headshot

Associate Professor
Hanna Andersson Scholar in Management and Sustainability
Cameron Professor of Strategy, Sustainability, and Entrepreneurship

Office:  KMC 430C
Phone: 503-725-9684
Fax:     503-725-5850

See also:

Desirée Pacheco holds a Ph.D. in Management and Entrepreneurship from the University of Colorado at Boulder, an M.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Colorado, and a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico.  Prior to her doctoral studies, Professor Pacheco worked as a management and technology consultant with Accenture.  During this experience she worked with a variety of established and start-up companies in defining their strategic direction and implementing new processes and systems.  In addition, Professor Pacheco has experience teaching courses in the areas of strategic management, environmental studies, and entrepreneurship.

Professor Pacheco was granted the 2015 Emerging Scholar Award by the Organizations and the Natural Environment (ONE) division of the Academy of Management.  This award is granted to early career academics who have already made outstanding research contributions in the area of organizations and the natural environment, and who appear to have a strong potential to continue making such contributions in the near future.

Dr. Pacheco’s research has been recently recognized by PSU.  See: for a description.

Dr. Pacheco’s research interests relate to the interface between institutions, entrepreneurship, and firm strategy.  She often applies these areas of research to the study of sustainable business.

Her research has been published in the Journal of Business Venturing, Journal of Management, Organization Science, Strategic Management Journal, and The Academy of Management Journal; amongst other publications.  Professor Pacheco is an editorial board member of the Journal of Management and the Journal of Business Venturing.
Sustainable Entrepreneurship and Institutions

Throughout her research, Dr. Pacheco suggests that the study of sustainable entrepreneurship requires an in-depth understanding of the institutional environment under which entrepreneurs operate.  In order to exploit new economic opportunities that enhance the natural environment, entrepreneurs are not only subject to market conditions, but to the institutions (“the rules of the game”) that support the functioning of markets.  Consequently, entrepreneurs must sometimes engage in the proactive transformation of informal and formal rules, policies, and property rights that are required for their markets to operate in more equitable or efficient ways.  Within this area, she is particularly interested in the strategies that entrepreneurs undertake to bring about institutional change, the effect of social movement activism on the institutional environment of emerging industries and the new ventures that operate within them; as well as the ability of emerging industries to transform social movements and broader social norms.
Strategic Management, Institutions, and Sustainability

Dr. Pacheco’s research also addresses the relationship between institutions and firm strategy.  It focuses on understanding how firms attempt to influence institutions in order to gain competitive advantages from sustainability-related initiatives.  She is particularly interested in how firms devise non-market and political actions that can have important repercussions for their competitiveness.  In addition, she examines how external actors, such as social movement activists, impact the strategies of firms.  On a related stream of research, Dr. Pacheco studies the relationship between institutions and firm innovation.  She argues that the process of innovation is more socially complex than it is typically depicted and that institutions and social activists play an important role in legitimizing certain innovations and in enabling firms to profit from their inventions.