Luigi Cominelli: The Evolving Practice of the Organizational Ombudsman

In my last article I covered opportunity trends for the Organizational Ombudsman in our increasingly conflicted society primarily based on current anecdotal experience and practicing an “ombudsmanship” role in my corporate, business and organizational development practice.

Immediately following this I discovered that Luigi Cominelli has produced academic research specifically on the Organizational Ombudsman field, something we rarely, if ever see.  Currently he has no sponsor, professional journal or publisher for his work… yet.  What I personally do like is his fortitude to provide a transparent view, insight, for the profession regardless of what “others” may think regarding issues related to confidentiality and best practice.  If you are interested in future trends and reading interviews with contemporary leaders and practitioners our field, his work was produced in May of 2009 and provides very good insight, objective and complete; and within ethical limitation via permission from his sources.

Cominelli presents his paper today, 3 November 2009 at the Law and Society Annual Meeting in Las Vegas.  I wish him the best success in his visit to America.

The organizational ombudsman practice is becoming in recent years a new field of interest in the academia. Born in North America and now rapidly spreading to Europe, the organizational ombudsman is a neutral employee in charge of dealing with disputes and complaints within the organization. Many universities, corporations and government agencies have an ombuds office today. What is still lacking is empirical research in the field.
This article features extensive interviews with some of the most prominent people in the organizational ombudsmen world: 8 university ombudsmen, 4 ombudsmen from a government agency, 4 corporate ombudsmen, 1 community ombudsman and 1 ombudsman working in a international organisation.
The research includes participant observation in the meetings of the “Ombudsman Association” and of the “University and College Ombuds Association” and examines two main issues such as the kind of systemic changes induced in organizations and the evaluation of the ombudsman impact.
Finally, among these ombudsman experiences two original ombudsman plans were analyzed in details: the ombudsman/mediator programme in the health care sector and the community ombudsman in charge of dealing with disputes and relational dissatisfaction within a religious community.

Paper available for purchase on

One Citation here

and here

Luigi Cominelli public view on LinkedIn


One Response to Luigi Cominelli: The Evolving Practice of the Organizational Ombudsman

  1. Phoebe Morgan says:

    I am very interested in reading Luigi Cominelli’s paper. Unfortunately only has the abstract on file and it does not include contact information for the author. How might I obtain a copy of the paper?

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