University of Colorado at Boulder
Dr. Ashcraft 's research highlights the organization-society relationship, related tensions, and possibilities for social justice. Specifically, she examines professional identity and organizational forms, with particular attention to gender and power. One branch of her work investigates the role of system design and implementation in social change processes, especially practical tensions faced by those who work in organizations designed to facilitate empowering relations. Her award-winning dissertation project, for example, analyzed dilemmas of power and participation at a non-profit battered women's shelter, where members sought to merge bureaucratic systems with feminist empowerment philosophy.
Recently, Dr. Ashcraft has begun to examine the evolution of professional identity across diverse arenas of organizing activity, such as popular films and literature, museum exhibits, trade education, and labor associations. Her current research is devoted to the question: How are gender and race becoming part of occupational identities, and specifically, how are white, male-dominated professions developed and sustained over time? Dr. Ashcraft 's work thus blends attention to contemporary work formations with a historically conscious interest in how public talk organizes gendered labor. She is especially concerned with how various masculinities and femininities are played off one another, addressing the ways gender interacts with race, class, sexuality, age, and other systems of identity and power.
Dr. Ashcraft has been the recipient of numerous other awards and academic honors including but not limited to, Article of the Year Award for NCA in the Organizational Communication Division, in 2006, Book of the Year Award for NCA in the Organizational Communication Division in 2004, and she was named the Virgil C. Aldrich Fellow by the Tanner Humanities Center at the University of Utah for Spring 2003.