Faculty | IE Business School

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Born into a family business, Professor Cruz research efforts over the past ten years have been devoted to expanding our understanding of family firms and entrepreneurial families.

The results of her research, which focuses mainly on entrepreneurial management and family business, have been published in leading international academic journals including the Academy of Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, Journal of Business Venturing and Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice. Her academic work has been internationally recognised on numerous occasions. For example in 2009, her article entitled “Socioemotional wealth and Corporate Response to Institutional Pressures: Do Family-Controlled Firms Pollute Less?” received the Best Paper Award in the Corporate Governance Division at the European Academy of Management Conference. In recognition of this research work, IE Business School gave her its Research Excellence Award in 2010, a prize that the school presents to its best researchers. 

Professor Cruz brings the results of her research to the classroom, where she instils in future generations the need to preserve and pass on entrepreneurship in business families. “The ultimate goal is to convince family owners that in the actual context of globalization and rapid change, families need to develop the next generation of family entrepreneurs, rather than just being focused on growing successors” she argues. This is the underlying philosophy of the family venturing elective, a course in which she provides family owners with the most innovative tools and strategies to become more enterprising.. In 2011 she was one of the lecturers selected by the Family Firm Institute (FFI) to present their innovative teaching methods in family business issues at the Family Business Research & Education Symposium. She is also the author of numerous cases studies involving successful family entrepreneurs and businesses.

Cristina Cruz holds a PhD in Economics and Quantitative Methods from Carlos III University, an Executive Development program in Family Business from IE Business School, a BA in International Economics  from Manchester University and a degree in Economics from Murcia University.


Academic Background

  • PhD in Corporate Economy and Quantitative Methods, Carlos III University (Madrid)
  • Executive Development Program in Family Business, IE Business School
  • BA in International Economy, Manchester University
  • Degree in Economics, University of Murcia (Spain)


Teaching And Research Experience

  • Assistant professor, Corporate Economics Department, Carlos III (1999-2004)
  • Professor of entrepreneurship, Instituto de Empresa (2004-present)
  • Research Member of the GEM Project (Global Entrepreneurship Monitor).

Latest publications

  • Does family employment enhance MSEs performance? Integrating socioemotional wealth and family embededdness perspectives

    Cruz, C., Justo, R., De Castro, J. Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 27(1): 62-76, 2012
  • Socioemotional Wealth and Corporate Responses to Institutional Pressures: Do Family-Controlled Firms Pollute Less?

    Cruz, C., Gómez, L., Berrone, P. Administrative Science Quarterly, Vol. 55: 82-113, 2010
  • Perceptions of Benevolence and the Design of Agency Contracts: CEO- TMT Relationships in Family Firms

    Cruz, C., Gómez, L., Becerra, M. Academy of Management Journal, Vol. 53(1): 69-89, 2010