Independent Research Projects

Many of our MBA students choose to conduct independent research projects under the supervision of our faculty. Click here for an independent study proposal form.

Current publications and projects are detailed below.  For information on past research publications, click here.  For information on past independent studies, click here.

RECENT RESEARCH PUBLICATIONS

Shinde, J., Poznic, G., & Buehne, A.  "Auditor Faux Pas and Managerial Fraud:  McKesson & Robbins", Forthcoming in Journal of Accounting & Finance.

Shinde, J., Shinde, U., Wacker, R., & Zhenghon, H.  "Superfluity & Murkiness in the Understanding of Social Responsibility:  A Content Analysis", Forthcoming in The Journal of Leadership, Accountability and Ethics.

Dr. Dean Elmuti and Julian Grunewald and Dereje Abebe. "Consequences of Outsourcing Strategies on Employee Quality of Work Life, Attitudes, and Performance," Journal of Business Strategies (Vol. 27, Number 2, Fall 2010) .

Abstract: Outsourcing is the strategic use of outside resources to perform activities that are usually handled by internal staff and resources.  The consequences of implementing outsourcing strategies in an industrial setting were studied using a field study.  This study was designed to explore both the financial as well as the human aspects of outsourcing activities.  The attitudinal results of this research indicated that the outsourcing strategies had a negative impact on the perceived quality of work-life dimensions.  The performance results presented here provide, at best, circumspect support or the claims of outsourcing proponents that the technique improves participants' performance and productivity.  Although outsourcing can lead to certain gains for the organization, there are definitely human costs to be taken into account, and they should be considered as major factors contributing to the outsourcing debate, not just the financial aspects of organizations' decisions.

Dr. David Boggs and Eric Arseneau.  "Smart Mobile Devices and Competitive Strategy: A Resource-Based Perspective," Journal of the North American Management Society (Vol. 5, Numbers 1/2, 2010). 

Abstract: "Smart Mobile Devices and Competitive Strategy: A Resource-Based Perspective": This research examines the implications of smart mobile devices (SMDs) on organizational competitiveness. It employs a resource-based framework to analyze the relationship among SMDs, strategy, and firm performance. Building on existing strategic management research which suggests that leveraging information technology (IT) to build business strategies can be a source of sustainable competitive advantage, six propositions are presented. Drawing also from scholarly work in the IT and information systems domains, strategic implications of mobile-device technology for firms are provided. It is suggested that SMDs impact firm communications, decision-making, innovation, and performance.
(Spring, 2010)

Dr. Yunus Kathawala and Christoph Heeren. "IT Outsourcing: China Grasps for the Lead", Graziadio Business Report (Vol.12, Issue 3, 2009) & Global Supply Chain Review (Volume 12, Issue 3, 2009).

Abstract: Rough economic times make the outsourcing of information technology (IT) an even more critical area of discussion for businesses.  Recently, there has been a great deal of debate on whether a shift in the global outsourcing of IT is occurring. India has long been know for its dominance in the field; however, Chica, which plays a leading role in the outsourcing of manufacturing, is making strong headway in the industry and may soon pose a major threat to to India's supremacy.

CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS & PROCEEDINGS

Alexander, J.A., & Wollan, M.L. (2011, October).  Corporate messages:  The purpose of marketing messages and recruitment messages.  Proceedings and Paper presented at the Institute of Behavioral and Applied Management Conference, Orlando, FL.  In P. Jacques (Ed.), Proceedings of the Institute of Behavioral and Applied Management, 19, 127-134.

Goddard, N.M., & Wollan, M.L. (2011, October).  For love or money?  Engagement at work:  It matters.  Proceedings and Paper presented at the Institute of Behavioral and Applied Management Conference, Orlando, FL.  In P. Jacques (Ed.), Proceedings of the Institute of Behavioral and Applied Management, 19, 194-205.

McCrory, C.A. (2011, October).  The Office at your office:  Head of the committee against workplace bullying.  Paper presented at the at the Institute of Behavioral and Applied Management Conference, Orlando, FL.  Abstract in P. Jacques (Ed.), Proceedings of the Institute of Behavioral and Applied Management, 19, 339.

Shinde, Jay; Poznic, Greg; Buehne, A. & Brumleve, L.  Auditor Faux Pas and Managerial Fraud:  The Case of McKesson & Robbins.  2011 Global Business Summit Conference, Chennai, India.

Shinde, Jay, & Hou, Zhenghong.  Academic Stress in Accounting Students:  Development & Validation of an Instrument.  Academic Business World Conference, May 25-27, 2011, Nashville, TN.

Thiry, Joseph, & Boggs, David.  Corporate Social Responsibility and Disaster Relief:  USA Pharmaceutical Firms' Responses to the 2010 Haiti Earthquake and 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.  2011 MBAA International Conference, March 23-25, 2011, Chicago, IL.

Chiou, Ingyu, & Tekle, Luel.  Financial Intermediation and Economic Growth:  Evidence from East Africa. 2011 MBAA International Conference, March 23-25, 2011, Chicago, IL.

Flight, Richard, D'Souza, G., Allaway, A., & Maximov, Sergey.  The Affect of Innovation Characteristics on Product Diffusion.  2011 MBAA International Conference, March 23-25, 2011, Chicago, IL. 

WILLIAMS TRAVEL GRANTS

Luel Tekle.  Financial Intermediation and Economic Growth:  Evidence from East Africa.  2011 MBAA International Conference, March 23-25, 2011, Chicago, IL.

Zhenghong (Jane) Hou.  Academic Stress in Accounting Students:  Development & Validation of an Instrument.  Academic Business World Conference, May 25-27, 2011, Nashville, TN. 

BUSINESS RESEARCH PROJECT PRESENTATIONS

Student Name:  Zhenghong (Jane) Hou

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Shinde

Abstract:  "Academic Stress in Accounting Students:  Development & Validation of an Instrument."  The purpose of this research is to develop and validate an instrument for measuring academic stress in accouting students.  Academic stressors were investigated and categorized, and potential sources of stress in each category were identified and used for constructing a questionnaire.  All the categories of the stressors were examined to explore the relationship between the stressors and academic stress.  The sample consists of 59 accounting students at a Midwestern university.  Statistical analysis techniques like factor analysis and scree plots were used to examine dimensionality of the concept of academic stress.  A scale for measuring academic stress was developed and the instrument was psychometrically tested to check for validity and reliability.  The test results suggested that the instrument is a reliable and valid measure of assessing academic stress in accounting students.   (Spring 2011)

Student Name:  Dereje Abebe

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Elmuti

The Effect of Supply Chain Initiatives on Organization's Performance:  The Health Care Context.  (Fall 2010)

 

RECENT INDEPENDENT STUDIES

Student Name:  Tristan Pisarczyk

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Dobbs

Abstract:  "Measuring Success in Non-Profit Organizations."  Performance measurement systems like the Blanced Scorecard (Kaplan & Norton, 1996) enable managers to more effectively implement strategic initiatives within their organizations.  However, because these systems are primarily designed for companies, nonprofits do not have solid guidance in this area.  In an attempt to learn specific, practical solutions for my current position and prepare for a possible career in nonprofit management, I reveiwed the literature on performance measurement.  In this paper, I share key concepts discovered in the performance measurement literature, make recommendations for nonprofit leaders, provide examples of how this might be utilized, and share future opportunities to develop this area in research and practice.  (Spring 2011)

Student Name:  Luel Tekle

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Chiou

Abstract:  "Financial Intermediation and Economic Growth:  Evidence from East Africa."  This paper investigates the relationship between financial development and economic growth in 12 East African countries (Burundi, comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Rwanda, Seychelles, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda).    (Spring 2011)

Student Name:  Anci Borozan

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Boggs

Abstract:  "Willingness to Work in an International Context:  An Empirical Investigation."  The objective of this study is to 1) develop the concept of international context, and 2) explain and predict students' willingness to work in an international context.  Multinationals have identified an increasing need for employees interested in and capable of working in foreign locations.  Moreover, studies have shown that even in domestic locations, employees are required to possess basic international skills for their companies to function effectively in an increasingly interdependent global economy.  This paper reviews research on receptivity to wokring internationally and reports the results of a survey of 392 undergraduate and graduate students at a Midwestern university.  The survey was administered to examine factors that predict willingness to work in an international context.  Empirical results show the effects of perceptions, preparedness and coio-biographical background variables on students' willingness to work in an international context.  The findings have relevance for companies that select employees for their global operations. (Spring 2011)

Student Name:  Greg Poznic

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Shinde

Abstract:  "A Fraud Hidden by the Passage of Time."  This paper reports on the results of a study conducted with undergraduate accounting students.  The study focused on measuring student awareness of the McKesson & Robbins Fraud.  Within this paper a detailed history of the fraud is provided to illustrate the fraud's impact on the modern accounting profession.  Results from the study suggest that current undergraduate accounting students have little or no knowledge of the fraud.  The level of awareness students possess was determined by two underlying factors.  (Spring 2011)

Student Name:  Carly McCrory

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Wollan

Abstract:  "The Office at Your Office:  Head of the Committee Against Workplace Bullying":  The objective of this study is to determine the need for formalization of workplace bullying policies in organizations and which level of the organization should develop and administer those policies.  While the issue of bullying has been a popular topic in recent news and personal conversations, it has not been adequately researched in workplace settings.  We surveyed executives from 50 seperate organizations to examine their workplace bullying practices.  We found that acceptance of bullying policies was more likely when those policies were developed by Human Resource Departments and when policies were formalized.  Women felt more strongly than men about having a workplace bullying policy and indicated a stronger understanding of other company policies.  Organizational size did not have a significant relationship to responces.  (Spring, 2011)

Student Name:  Jackie Alexander

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Wollan

Abstract:  "Corporate Messages:  Are Recruitment and Marketing Messages Different?"  This study examined relationships between marketing messages targeting consumers and recruitment messages targeting applicants/potential employees.  The study involved 51 students that analyzed two corporate videos and completed a survey based on their reactions after watching each video.  We found a relationship between consumer intent to purchase and the marketing videos, and the applicant/potential employee and the recruitment videos.  We also found that communication effectiveness of the video, regarldess of the message orientation (consumer vs. applicant) appears to have the most impact on perceptions of the respondents.  The implication for marketing professionals, human resource professionals, and employees include the collaboration of resources between marketing and human resource departments when targeting consumers and applicants because consumer-oriented promotional videos appear to have a significant impact on applicant/potential employee perceptions of the company as a future employer.  (Spring, 2011)

Student Name:  Nicole Goddard

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Wollan

Abstract:  "Is Your Employment for Love or Money?  Engagement at Work:  It Matters."  The purpose of this field study, involving 100 participants from six industries, was to examine possible variables that influence employee engagement and the outcomes that employee engagement may produce for an organization.  Intrinsic motivation and organizational culture are antecedents to emotional and cognitive engagement.  Emotional and cognitive engagement were then demonstrated to positively influence employee performance, organizational citizenship behavior, commitment, autonomy and job satisfaction.  This study suggests that managers should prioritize mechanisms to increase engagement as a driver of employee behavior since engaged employees produce behaviors that are desirable in organizational settings.  (Spring, 2011)
  

Student Name: Joseph Thiry

Faculty Mentor: Dr. David Boggs 

Abstract: “Corporate Social Responsibility and Disaster Relief: USA Pharmaceutical Firms' Responses to the 2010 Haiti Earthquake and 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami”: Though corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a global business norm and CSR perspectives are well developed, little prior research has investigated business responses to devastating natural disasters, such as the 2010 Haiti earthquake and 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami that each killed more than 200,000 people. This paper examines USA Fortune 200 pharmaceutical firms' responses to the two disasters in the light of existing CSR perspectives, including the "triple bottom line" approach. Multiple factors, such as geographic distance, cultural similarity, demographics, market attractiveness, and historical country relationships are examined to see if they correlate with firm responses to the disasters. Managerial implications and the unique positions held by pharmaceutical firms responding to extreme natural disasters are addressed. (Spring, 2010)

OTHER PROJECTS

Student Name: Benjamin Tueck 

Faculty Mentor:Dr. Yunus Kathawala 

Abstract:"The Use of RFID for Traffic Management": Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is a globally accepted technology, which has a great success in the area of supply chain management and particularly inventory management. Large retailers such as Wal-Mart benefit from this cost efficient opportunity to scan and track their inventory. The tracking of items by using RFID devices is applied in a variety of areas such as retailing, health care and traffic management. Traffic congestions in metropolitan areas have developed to a major problem in many countries all over the world. Traffic congestions have a negative impact on the economy, the environment and the overall quality of life. The purpose of this article is to discover the use of RFID technology to manage traffic congestion and reduce the negative impact on the economy and society. RFID devices would give the opportunity to control the traffic in real-time and to gather valuable information about the development and the sources of congestions. Bottlenecks could be detected early and the infrastructure could be aligned to use that information. By doing this, bottlenecks and resulting congestions, could be avoided before they can develop. The use of RFID in this area incorporates other benefits, such as the steering of emergency vehicles in congested traffic and law enforcement activities. (Spring, 2007)

Student Name: Amie Janssen

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Patricia Graves and Dr. Cheryl Noll

Title: "Evaluating Performance in Team Learning Activities," Society for Case Research Conference Presentation, Chicago, Illinois, February, 2002.

Abstract: N/A