Investors and analysts regularly get price-sensitive information in one-on-one meetings with corporate executives. That is shown by a just-released study carried out among about 400 investors and analysts around the world. Almost half of respondents (47%) say they intentionally or unintentionally receive “material” information in these talks. “This leads to inequality between investors and may distort the market,” says research leader Dr. Erik Roelofsen, who is a researcher at Erasmus University and also a director for PwC in the Netherlands. He and his colleague, Professor Gerard Mertens therefore advocate greater transparency on the part of companies, which, for example, could explicitly tell to whom they have spoken and when they did so.
In the current edition of Nature, Gail Whiteman, Professor of Sustainability and Climate Change, reviews the book Climate Capitalism: Capitalism in the Age of Climate Change by L. Hunter Lovins and Boyd Cohen.
Rules and bureaucratic formalities are a very recognizable and striking part of many organizations, despite numerous predictions by scholars and public figures of the rise of radically different forms of organization that would render bureaucracy obsolete. When dealing with organizations, we all experience situations when we might wonder why particular bureaucratic rules have suddenly changed, or why a rule can remain unchanged for a very long time.
How should investors respond to asset price bubbles? By riding them, argue Dr. Erik Kole, Assistant Professor in Financial Econometrics, and his co-authors. Their paper ‘Riding bubbles’ earned them the 2011 Crowell Second Prize from the quantitative research group of PanAgora Asset Management in Boston.
Policymakers generally assume that innovation happens in companies and organisations. In their view, the activities of individual inventors pale in comparison. However, Dr. Jeroen de Jong contradicts this view in a pioneering study, mapping out the number and characteristics of Dutch inventors. The study is a joint project of EIM Business and Policy Research, the Dutch Association of Inventors (NOVU), and Erasmus University Rotterdam.
Dutch organisations put too much effort into improving existing processes, products and services when they could achieve greater business success by being more creative and entrepreneurial, according to Justin Jansen, Professor of Corporate Entrepreneurship at Erasmus University. On 14 April, he presented his ideas for a more entrepreneurial business future in his inaugural address, entitled: “Corporate Entrepreneurship: Sensing and Seizing Opportunities for a Prosperous Research Agenda”.
Questionnaires are an important way to gather information about large populations for both qualitative and quantitative research. Hence, the value of a good questionnaire design and the quality of questionnaire data cannot be emphasised enough. By improving the methodology to analyze collected data, information can be obtained more efficiently and the quality of the information in the data can be increased. In her thesis, entitled Reliability and Rankings, Kar Yin Lam discusses some aspects of the statistical analysis of measurement data obtained via questionnaires. She proposes new methodologies to collect consumer preferences data measured as partial rankings data, especially in the context of conjoint measurements.
Professor George Hendrikse, Scientific Director of the Erasmus Centre for Cooperatives, is taking part in the EU study "Support for Farmers' Cooperatives". The study should provide the background knowledge required to help European farmers organise themselves in cooperatives, by describing current forms of producer organisations in European agriculture and by identifying measures that have proved to be effective in supporting those organisations.
“If we want to save the world, we have to reinvent business education.” This is the recommendation of an Engaged Business Leaders’ Forum held on Friday 1 April, an invitation-only event attended by 17 distinguished guests. The event was organised by Professor Gail Whiteman. The group of senior executives of leading companies, environmental organisations and foundations, included H.R.H. Princess Irene of the Netherlands, chair of the Lippe-Biesterfeld Natuurcollege, and H.R.H. Prince Carlos de Bourbon de Parme, director of the Institute for Sustainable Innovation and Development (INSID).
On Friday 1 April 2011 Gail Whiteman presented her inaugural address entitled ‘Making Sense of Climate Change: How to Avoid the Next Big Flood -- Management Lessons for the 21st Century’. The focus of this lecture was how to make better sense of climate change. Professor Whiteman argued that it is essential for managers and academics to take a more systemic approach and collaborate with the natural sciences and local people. She ended with management lessons for the 21st Century.