SFU Business Researchers Score

Jul 01, 2007

SFU Business researchers scored well in the 2007 Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) competition, receiving funding for six out of eight grant requests, plus an Initiative for the New Economy (INE) grant.

All this comes in a year when less than 30 percent of SSHRC grant applications were funded, says David Thomas, SFU Business director of research. Here’s a synopsis of the research projects:

How Can Organizations Keep Their Secrets? Assistant professor David Hannah will investigate how organizations can effectively protect their trade secrets and confidential information.

Corporate Social Responsibility Content Analysis. Using content analysis software, professors Danny Shapiro and Leyland Pitt will analyse Canadian firms’ printed communications about their corporate governance and social responsibility (CSR). They’ll also examine what the firms’ stakeholders are saying about them in print. The goal? Firms will be able to visibly match their communications against competitors and other industry players and markets, enabling them to change their positioning if they wish. They’ll also be able to map stakeholders’ positions and compare them to various firms and each other.

Cultural Intelligence: Predictive Validity. David Thomas, professor of international business, will use this grant to continue his research into cultural intelligence – the ability of people to interact effectively with the cultural aspects of their environment. In this second phase, a 12-member international team will conduct multiple studies to establish the predictive validity of an online cultural intelligence assessment tool.

Developing an Extended Model to Predict Project Performance IT. SFU Business professors Blaize Reich and Andrew Gemino, along with Oxford University professor Chris Sauer, will examine influencing the organizational benefits of information technology projects.

Network Formation and Project Success of Open Source Software Projects. Assistant professor Nilesh Saraf and fellow researchers Deepa Chandrasekaran and Peter Monge, both from the University of Southern California, note that self-sustaining and successful open source software (OSS) development communities do not typically emerge spontaneously. Their project aims to develop statistical models that predict when and how an OSS project will attract developer participation and thus become commercially successful.

Portfolio Selection. SFU Business professor of finance Rob Grauer and Michael Best, a professor of mathematics from the University of Waterloo, are involved in a long-term project to develop active, real world asset allocation strategies. Their research combines economic theory, forecasts of economic returns and highly quantitative linear, non-linear and quadratic programming techniques. This phase of the project seeks to determine if previous results hold true in the presence of realistic constraints and transaction costs, and expands the scope to include portfolios consistent with prospect theory and behavioural finance.

SSHRC INE Outreach Grant

Improving Performance in Information Technology (IT) Projects. SFU Business professors Blaize Reich, Andrew Gemino and Oxford University professor Chris Sauer will use this outreach grant to disseminate previous research results on IT project performance to information technology practitioners and executives to improve the success rate of IT projects in their organizations.