Pamela Walker Laird's research explores U.S. business cultures and their influences on marketing and personnel practices, as well as the intersection of business and political ideologies. Her publications include Pull: Networking and Success Since Benjamin Franklin (Harvard University Press, 2006), which won the 2006 Hagley Prize for the best book in business history, and Advertising Progress: American Business and the Rise of Consumer Marketing (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998). She has guest edited issues of the British journal Business History and the Organization of American History's Magazine of History. She also co-edits the University of Pennsylvania book series, American Business, Politics, and Society.
She is a past president of the Business History Conference, the largest and oldest academic organization for the study of business history. The theme she selected for the organization's 2008 annual meeting in Sacramento was "Expanding Connections for Business History." That conference was one of the organization's most successful in attracting historians from outside of the field, as well as participants from 22 countries.
Laird's awards include the American Association of University Women's American Fellowship (2001-2002), and the 2006 Harold F. Williamson Prize for Achievement in Business History. Other awards have recognized Laird's commitment to scholarship and service, including the UC Denver College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Outstanding Faculty Achievement Award and the University of Colorado Faculty Council Distinguished Service Award, both in 2007, as well as the Service Award for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences in 2003. One of her passions is advancing shared governance within the University of Colorado.