ERIM Awards for research – from diversity in teams to sustainable finance

The Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) recognised the best research articles, book, dissertation and young researchers at the ERIM Awards ceremony at the Kunsthal in Rotterdam on 28 November 2019. The award ceremony was part of an anniversary event, which celebrated 20 years of ERIM.



Researchers from the Institute, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, were encouraged to venture out and ensure societal impact by aiming higher and seek diversity in the publication portfolio.

Open and engaged science

Rector magnificus Prof. Rutger Engels from Erasmus University Rotterdam presented the ERIM awards for achievements such as excellence in dissertations, and scientific impact. The award recipients were selected by a jury, consisting of representatives from the Universities of Groningen, Tilburg and Maastricht.

Bloody business

The 2019 Dissertation Award was presented to Dr Caroline Witte from ESE for her dissertation entitled Bloody business: multinational investment in an increasingly conflict-afflicted world, which evaluates the causes of political conflict and its consequences for investments by multinational enterprises. Her promotors were Prof. Enrico Pennings, Prof. Harry Commandeur and Prof. Martijn Burger. Caroline Witte is currently Assistant Professor of Strategy and International Management at the Copenhagen Business School.

The jury selected Dr Witte’s dissertation for the timeliness and importance of the research topic. “The data is original and the empirical analyses are very well done. The thesis makes an important (empirical) contribution to both international business and international economics.” Another jury member added: “This thesis really stands out. Dr Witte studies a very interesting societal problem, and at the same time also advances our theoretical understanding. The research builds on strong multi-disciplinary foundations, and is empirically solid. The study is also highly readable, and very complex issues are presented in a very accessible manner.”

Positive and negative feedback

The 2019 Top Article Award was presented to Dr Inga Hoever and Prof. Daan van Knippenberg for their article with Jing Zhou, entitled Different strokes for different teams: The contingent effects of positive and negative feedback on the creativity of informationally homogeneous and diverse teams which was published in Academy of Management Journal.

Inga Hoever is Associate Member of ERIM and Associate Professor at the Department of Organisation and Personnel Management at RSM. Daan van Knippenberg is High Performance Member of ERIM and Professor of Organisational Behaviour at the Department of Organisation and Personnel Management at RSM and Joseph F. Rocereto Chair of Leadership and Academic Director of the Institute of Strategic Leadership, LeBow College of Business at Drexel University. He was not able to attend the ceremony.

“The authors have taken on a truly salient topic, with clear connections to contemporary management practice,” said the jury. “The contributions of this article are both theoretical and societal. The creativity is convincingly presented as a team outcome, rather than as an individual trait. The research question is addressed using multiple methods, including an elaborate experiment. It is also interesting and illustrative that this article itself is the product of the concerted efforts of a highly diverse team.”

Neural profiling of brands

Another 2019 Top Article Award was presented to PhD candidate Hang-Yee Chan, Dr Maarten Boksem and Prof. Ale Smidts for their article Neural Profiling of Brands: Mapping Brand Image in Consumers’ Brains with Visual Templates which was published in Journal of Marketing Research. Hang-Yee Chan is ERIM PhD Candidate in Marketing, Department of Marketing Management at RSM. Maarten Boksem is High Performance Member of ERIM and Associate Professor of Marketing Management, Department of Marketing Management at RSM. Ale Smidts is High Performance Member and Fellow of ERIM and Professor of Marketing Research, Department of Marketing Management at RSM. See more about this research on RSM Discovery, plus this video on brain scans to reveal engagement levels.

The jury said: “This is an exemplary contribution, because it shows how classic questions in the field of marketing, such as cobranding suitability and brand image strength, can be reassessed using novel methods. In particular, the authors draw on an interesting mix of methods from neurology, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging, and classic marketing research methods, in the form of consumer surveys. The resulting study is original, timely and important.”

Sustainable finance

The 2019 Book Award was presented to Prof. Dirk Schoenmaker for his book Principles of Sustainable Financewith Willem Schramada published by Oxford University Press. Dirk Schoenmaker is Member of ERIM and Professor of Banking and Finance at the Department of Financial Management at RSM.

“This book fills a clear gap in the literature: a comprehensive and holistic perspective on sustainable investing (…) The work should also have broad appeal for readerships beyond academia. It convincingly shows that the financial system has an indispensable role to play in the societal transition towards a more sustainable future. It is also a commendable feature of the book that it is very clearly written, and understandable to audiences who are not themselves insiders in the global financial system,” according to the jury.

Young researcher awards

The 2019 ERIM Award for Outstanding Performance by a Young Researcher for ERIM members or ERIM associate members who received their PhD less than five years ago has two winners this year. The jury consisted of Prof. Gerrit van Bruggen (chair), Prof. Albert Wagelmans, and Prof. Wolf Wagner.

One award went to Dr Dan Schley, High Performance Member of ERIM and Assistant Professor at the department of Marketing Management at RSM.

“Dan Schley received his PhD in quantitative psychology from the Ohio State University and joined RSM as an Assistant Professor of Marketing in July 2015. Dan is a truly interdisciplinary researcher, who has published in premier journals in consumer behaviour, management, and psychology. In particular, publishing in Psychological Review is a rare event, and he actually is the first RSM scholar to do so. Dan was also successful in acquiring an NWO Veni grant in 2017. In addition to being a terrific researcher, Dan is also an excellent and very dedicated teacher, and an active member of the Young Erasmus Academy.”

Dr Schley was not able to attend the ceremony so the chair of the department, Prof. Ale Smidts, received the honour on his behalf.

Organisational social networks and innovation

The other 2018 ERIM Award for Outstanding Performance by a Young Researcher went to Dr Stefano Tasselli, Member of ERIM and Assistant Professor in the Department of Marketing Management at RSM.

The jury said: “Stefano Tasselli joined ERIM in 2015, after receiving his PhD from the University of Cambridge in 2015. In the last six years, Stefano published six top papers in management and three more in adjacent disciplines. Stefano combines a strong focus on the micro-foundations of organisational social networks and innovation, with an interest in broader topics of interest for organisational research. External interest in Stefano’s work is evidenced by a rapidly growing number of scholarly citations, and by the attention his work has generated in the media. Finally, in 2018, Stefano was mentioned by Poets and Quants as one of the 40 World's Best Business Professors under 40.

Dr Tasselli was not able to attend the ceremony so the chair of the department, Prof. René de Koster, received the honour on his behalf.

More information

The Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) is the joint research institute of Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE). The research undertaken by ERIM is focused on management of the firm in its environment, its intra- and interfirm relations, business processes, strategies, finances, consumers, markets and their interdependent connections.

Since its founding in 1999, the objective of ERIM is to carry out first-rate research in management and to offer an advanced doctoral programme in Business and Management. Within ERIM, over 350 senior researchers and PhD candidates are active in five research programmes, spanning all areas of management research. From a variety of academic backgrounds and expertise, the ERIM Community is united in striving for excellence and working at the forefront of creating new business knowledge.

Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) is defined by its groundbreaking research and excellence in education. It is strong in econometrics and behavioural economics. ESE is committed to finding solutions for today’s and tomorrow’s economic issues by challenging yesterday’s economic theories as well as building from and valorising existing models and methods. Just like the countless leaders in business, research and politics, who started their careers in Rotterdam, we make it happen. Just like its students will do, as they are taught and inspired by the best.

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top 10 business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China. www.rsm.nl

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Marianne Schouten, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at mschouten@rsm.nl.

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