picture of Karen Myers

Karen Myers

Professor, Department of Communication

Karen K. Myers is a Professor in the Department of Communication and Associate Dean in the Graduate Division at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Dr. Myers earned her B.S. in Marketing from Arizona State University in 1985. In 1987, she launched Heritage Publishers, a firm dedicated to researching, writing and publishing corporate and organizational history books. Clients included Pacific Life, Best Western International, Atlas Van Lines, and many others. In 1999, Myers sold her business to enter graduate school. She earned her M.A. in Communication from the University of New Mexico in 2001. Myers earned her Ph.D. in Communication from Arizona State University in 2005. She received the 2006 Charles Redding Award by the Organizational Communication Division of the International Communication Association for best Organizational Communication dissertation of the year.

Dr. Myers was an Assistant Professor at Purdue University 2005-2006. In 2007, she joined UCSB as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication. Myers was awarded the Harold J. Plous Award 2010-2011--one of the University of California, Santa Barbara’s most prestigious faculty honors, the award is given annually to an Assistant Professor from the Humanities, Social Sciences, or Natural Sciences who has shown exceptional achievement in research, teaching, and service to the university. In 2013, Myers became an Associate Dean in the Graduate Division at UCSB.

Her current research focuses on membership negotiation which involves the socialization and assimilation of organizational members. She has developed and validated an instrument for quantitatively measuring organizational assimilation. Myers also investigates other workplace communication issues such as workplace flexibility and work-life balance issues; organizational identification; and interaction between generational cohorts in the workplace. A second line of research focuses on communication that influences adolescents’ interest and desire to pursue various careers (a.k.a. vocational anticipatory socialization). Much of this work attempts to address the leaking STEM labor pipeline. Myers uses quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods in her research. Her work has appeared in journals such as Management Communication Quarterly, Human Communication Research, Human Relations, Communication Monographs, Journal of Business & Psychology and Human Relations. In addition, she has presented her work at numerous conferences including the National Communication Association, International Communication Association, the Interdisciplinary Network of Group Researchers, and the Academy of Management.  

Myers teaches courses in Membership Negotiation, Marketing, Research Methods, Mixed Methods, Organizational Communication and Small Group Communication. She is also faculty advisor for the UCSB chapter of the American Marketing Association.