Lawrence Fellowship

Four Faculty Members Awarded Lawrence Fellowships

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

For their contributions in enhancing the intellectual environment of the Carlson School, four junior and recently-promoted faculty members have been selected as recipients of the 2021 Mary and Jim Lawrence Fellowship. They are:


Abdifatah Ali

Abdifatah Ali, assistant professor, Department of Work and Organizations

Ali’s research interests focus on understanding how individuals with stigmatized identities make sense of, and communicate about, those identities across different stages of the employee-organization relationship; workplace diversity and inclusion; and how motivation and emotions shape behavior in organizations. His research has been published in peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Applied Psychology. Ali graduated with a bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University and a master’s and a doctoral degree from Michigan State University.




Sofia Bapna

Sofia Bapna, assistant professor, Department of Information and Decision Sciences

Bapna’s research interests lie at the intersection of digital platforms, gender gaps, and entrepreneurship. Her work has been featured in Management Science and the MIS Quarterly and national publications such as Forbes. Bapna holds a bachelor’s degree from the Manipal Institute of Technology, a master’s degree from Babson College’s F. W. Olin School of Business, and a doctoral degree from the Carlson School.




Alan Benson

Alan Benson, assistant professor, Department of Work and Organizations

Benson’s research explores work and employment issues, especially on the economics of human resources. His work has appeared in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, Journal of Labor Economics, and Journal of Health Economics, among others. Benson received a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and a doctoral degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.





Edward McFowland

Edward McFowland, assistant professor, Department of Information and Decision Sciences

McFowland’s research lies at the intersection of information systems, machine learning, and public policy. His findings have been published in leading publications, including the Journal of Computational and Graphical Statistics and the Journal of Machine Learning Research. McFowland received a bachelor’s degree, three master’s degrees, and a doctoral degree from Carnegie Mellon University.



Established in 2017 from a generous gift from the Lawrences, a total of 17 scholars have now earned this prestigious honor. Jim Lawrence, currently the chairman of Lake Harriet Capital, has devoted significant time and resources supporting the School, including as vice-chair of the Carlson School Board of Advisors. 

“Jim and Mary’s generosity provides a great opportunity to increase the Carlson School of Management’s competitiveness in recruiting and retaining junior faculty that are performing at the highest level,” says Alok Gupta, associate dean of faculty and research and Curtis L. Carlson Schoolwide Chair in Information Management. “The fellowship helps junior faculty to enhance their scholarly profile, take challenging teaching assignments, and increase their internal and external impact.”