Online PhD Defence Radina Blagoeva
In her dissertation 'The Hard Power Of Soft Power: A behavioral strategy perspective on how power, reputation, and status affect firms’, Radina Blagoeva seeks to shed light on how evaluations by financial markets affect firm decision making and how strategic decisions are evaluated by those markets in three empirical studies. By approaching these issues through the lenses of power, reputation and status, this dissertation reveals some important insights. Radina Blagoeva defended her dissertation on Friday, 26 June 2020 at 13:30h. Her supervisors are Prof. dr. J.J.P. Jansen (RSM) and Prof. dr. T.J.M. Mom (RSM).
Radina Blagoeva is a doctoral candidate in Strategic Management at the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, where she also obtained an MPhil in Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship cum laude. During her PhD, she spent three months as a visiting scholar at the Lee Kong Chian School of Business, Singapore Management University. In August 2020, she will join the Terry College of Business, University of Georgia, as an Assistant Professor.
Radina is interested in behavioral strategy, and more specifically in the interactions and mutual influence of CEOs, firms and financial markets. Her research is focused on the impact of biases on (1) how CEOs incorporate feedback from financial markets in strategic decisions and (2) how financial markets evaluate firms’ strategic initiatives and communications. She analyzes those issues primarily through the lenses of power, status and reputation.
Radina has published some of her work in the Academy of Management Journal. She has also won a prestigious Strategic Management Society SRF Dissertation Research Program Grant. She has presented her work at multiple international conferences, including the Academy of Management Annual Meeting, Strategic Management Society Annual Conference, International Corporate Governance Society Annual Conference and Centre for Corporate Reputation Symposium.
This dissertation seeks to shed light on how evaluations by financial markets affect firm decision making and how strategic decisions are evaluated by those markets in three empirical studies. By approaching these issues through the lenses of power, reputation and status, this dissertation reveals some important insights. The first study shows that the kind of power held by a CEO determines the extent to which firms invest in R&D when financial analysts voice concerns regarding the future prospects of a previously successful firm. While CEO prestige power is instrumental in boosting R&D investment, CEO expert, structural and ownership power hinders it. The second study shows that building a strong growth or dividend reputation helps firms who are engaging in acquisitions to maintain positive relationships with investors. This is even more the case when firms communicate in their acquisition announcements how the acquisition is meant to exceed the expectations that investors have of firms, based on their growth or dividend reputations. Finally, the third study reveals that investors react positively to information released by firms with high-status CEOs not because of the CEO’s status per se, but because those CEOs use less powerful language to communicate to investors, which investors prefer. Overall, this dissertation demonstrates how unpacking the effects of power, reputation and status on decision-making and evaluation could help to advance behavioral strategy research.