Our 2016 Research Highlights

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Research and innovation

Hannah Preston works in the Research and Innovation Office and is the editor of this blog.

Winners of the Research with Impact awards

As well as looking forward to a new year of opportunities, the start of the year is also a good time to look back and reflect on the past 12 months, taking time to acknowledge achievements and milestones.

Although 2016 has largely been branded a pretty dismal year for many, there have been a number of positive stories as well. Leeds University Business School has a lot of proud moments from last year to shout about from a Research and Innovation perspective. Here are just a few of our highlights:

January to March

The fourth seminar in the Food Options, Opinions and Decisions seminar series took place in Banbury at the start of the year. Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the series aims to understand and improve UK consumers’ decisions about nutrition, food safety, and domestic food waste. There have been a number of interesting speakers and panel discussions throughout the series. The seventh seminaris taking place again in Banbury, on Tuesday 17 January. 

Two of our most popular posts since the blog’s inception were published in January. One offers advice on how to write a research PhD proposal, written by Dr Nicola Bown, and the other, written by Postgraduate Researcher Sonja Perkovic, lists five benefits of visiting another university for research.

Dr Martyn Griffin was awarded a three-year Future Research Leaders grant by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC.) You can read about his project – “A democracy to come?” – on our blog.

For the first time, the Business School held its internal Research with Impact awards in March. The awards are a way of recognising and rewarding those who have led particularly impactful research activities. We received many excellent applications which is testament to the increasing commitment to research impact here within the Business School.

April to June

The conference which had the highest number of Leeds University Business School researchers presenting papers in 2016 was the Academy of International Business Conference, which took place in April in London. The theme of this year’s conference was “international business in a multi-speed global economy.” The conference with the second highest number of our presenters was the Society for Risk Analysis Europe, in June in Bath.

The Centre for Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Studies (CEES) hosted the fourth European Council for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ECSB) Education conference - 3E - at the University of Leeds in May. The CEES supports research into enterprise education, entrepreneurship and enterprise development. With over 14 academics across Leeds University Business School, the University of Leeds has one of the largest groups of entrepreneurship and enterprise faculty and researchers in the UK. Members of the CEES worked with the ECSB to organise and host the conference.

Dr Sally Jones’ paper – “’You would expect the successful person to be the man’: Gendered symbolic violence in UK HE entrepreneurship education” published in International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship 2015 - was selected as a Highly Commended Paper in the 2016 Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence

Dr Nick Williams was awarded a British Academy grant to examine ethnicity and entrepreneurship in Bosnia. He’s written a blog post about the project. Later in the year Dr Williams was awarded a Leverhulme Trust grant, to examine “the role of the diaspora.”

July to September

From 29 June to 1 July, Leeds hosted the British Universities Industrial Relations Association (BUIRA) conference. BUIRA is one of the largest academic associations in the UK aimed at promoting the study of employment relations across relevant academic disciplines. The focus of this year’s conference was on the prospects and opportunities for employment relations as we approach 2020. Postgraduate Researcher Chris McLachlan won an award for the best PhD paper at the conference, which he wrote about on the blog.

The annual White Rose Social Science DTC Business and Management conferencetook place at Leeds University Business School in July. The conference addressed the theme of ‘change’ in the domains of business and management, accounting and finance, and work psychology. Leeds postgraduate researcher, Aleksandra Irnazarow, was one of the joint winners of the Tom Lupton Prize: Doctoral Oral Presentation, and has written about her research on complex decision making on the blog.

There have been a number of Ideas in Practice events throughout the year. The Big Data Conference held in Leeds in July was particularly successful, with around 70 delegates attending from different business and public sectors. A second Big Data Symposium will be held on 31 March 2017 at the British Academy in London.

The Ideas in Practice programme covers a variety of different topics and has been very well received in both Leeds and London. The seminar series is a crucial part of our commitment to engaging externally and making sure our research is relevant and useful to practitioners and policymakers. The team will continue to build on their current success and expand the series during 2017. 

Over summer, the Research and Innovation office launched a number of new schemes to complement and extend the existing support we offer our researchers. We have various internal grants available to cover a range of activities, such as assisting researchers editing special issues of journals or holding workshops, as well as other support schemes such as helping develop external partnerships. You can read about the support available to researchers at Leeds University Business School in a previous blog post

We had a lot of researchers featured in the news throughout August, including: Professor Timothy Devinney in the Financial Times, Dr Matthew Davis in The Telegraph, Dr Jo Ingold in Local Government Chronicle, Professor Bill Gerrard in Future Sport, and Associate Professor Iain Clacher in The Yorkshire Post.

There were a number of awards throughout summer as well. Sajid Siraj won the Best Paper Award at the International Symposium on Analytic Hierarchy Process (ISAHP 2016) for his paper “An evolutive descriptive mapping visualisation tool with the integrated GAIA-AHP.”

Professor Chee Wong and his co-authors were selected as runners-up for the Academy of Management’s 2011-2015’s Jack Meredith Best Paper Award for their paper: “The contingency effects of environmental uncertainty on the relationship between supply chain integration and operational performance”, Journal of Operations Management.

Postgraduate Researcher, Faisal Al Noori, won the best paper (student) award at the British Accounting and Finance Association (BAFA) conference for the Northern Area Group in September. His paper was entitled “Why US Multinational Firms have Lower Leverage Ratio in Comparison to Their Domestic Counterparts?” 

Dr Martyn Griffin was awarded a BAM 2016 Best Paper Award in the critical management studies stream at this year’s BAM conference for his submission ‘Organizational Readiness: A Vygotskian Analysis of Mediated Learning through Disney Animation (1937-2014)’, co-authored with Mark Learmonth and Peter Hamilton.

Professor Tyrone Pitsis was presented with an award at the 2016 Academy of Management Annual Meeting for his contribution to leadership in his various roles on the Practice Theme Committee.

The final annual conference of the Financialisation, Economy, Society and Sustainable Development (FESSUD) project was held on the 27 and 28 September in Brussels. FESSUD is funded by the European Union and led by Leeds University Business School and involves 14 business schools in Europe and South Africa. The €10m research project has examined the dominance of the financial system over other parts of the European economy in the last 30 years and suggests reforms to support economic, social and environmental sustainability. Visit the website to find out more about the project and to read some of the publications that are a result of the research.

The Northern Advanced Research Training Initiative (NARTI) hosted its Annual Doctoral Conference in Sheffield, with a record number of applications to attend. The conference offers doctoral researchers from business and management schools the opportunity for advanced dialogue and debate on a range of methodological issues.

NARTI provided bursaries for Postgraduate Researchers to participate in the AIDEA Summer School in Capri in September 2016 and intends to do this again in 2017. This year also saw two new additions to NARTI: Huddersfield Business School and Sunderland Business School, taking its membership to 18.

Also in September, the Centre for Employment Relations, Innovation and Change (CERIC) hosted the Work, Employment and Society (WES) Conference at the University of Leeds. Working with the British Sociological Association (BSA) and the Work, Employment & Society Editorial Board, this year’s conference was on the theme of ‘Work in Crisis.’

October to December

Five Early Stage Researchers (ESR) joined the University of Leeds as part of the Complex and Open Innovation for Networked Society (COINS) project. They are studying the development of innovation capabilities required for organisations of different types to effectively respond to institutional, social and technological complexity in innovation ecosystems. COINS is a €1.3m project funded through the European Industrial Doctorate (EID) scheme, led by Professor Krsto Pandza from Leeds University Business School and Dr Saeed Khanagha from Ericsson. 

Our Deputy Dean, Professor Cathy Cassell, was elected a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, joining other Business School members: Peter Buckley OBE, Professor of International Business; Professor Timothy Devinney, Pro-Dean for Research and Innovation, University Leadership Chair and Professor of International Business; and Emeritus Professor Richard Thorpe, former Pro-Dean for Research and Innovation.

Dr Sally Jones was awarded the Best Paper in the Gender and Enterprise Trackaward for her paper - “Gendered Language and Student Entrepreneurship Course Choice in Universities: A Cross-Cultural Analysis”, co-authored with Dr Jan Warhuus from Aarhus University in Denmark.

At the end of October, we celebrated the Research and Innovation Blog’s 1st birthday. The blog has been a great platform for us to share our research with a wider audience beyond academia.

Professor Chris Forde and Dr Gary Slater won the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Ian Beardwell Prize, a prestigious award given to the best paperpresented at the Annual CIPD Applied Research Conference in December. Their paper is entitled: “Temporary agency work: evolution, regulation and implications for performance”.

We had another reason to celebrate in December, as Eleanor Allaker, our Research Finance Officer, marked 25 years of service in the Business School.

We expect 2017 to be another busy year full of research activities and achievements!

Contact us

If you would like to get in touch regarding any of these blog entries, or are interested in contributing to the blog, please contact:

Email: research.lubs@leeds.ac.uk
Phone: +44 (0)113 343 8754

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect the views of Leeds University business school or the University of Leeds.