Six times per year, the School of Economics and Business Administration (SEBA )organizes a faculty research colloquia to enable SEBA scholars to learn what their colleagues are working on, and experience the joy of intellectual pursuit along with some wine and cheese. Started by Associate Dean Shyam Kamath and Professor Roy Allen, these successful get-togethers are now spearheaded by Professor Andrew Wilson. “Over the last several years, SEBA faculty have been working hard to increase their scholarly output. This effort is crucially important to our initiative to become AACSB-accredited, but also benefits our students more directly in that research interests often spill over into the classroom. The SEBA Research Colloquia are an essential part of our effort to continue to create an environment that is supportive and conducive to scholarly productivity” says Wilson.
In March, the SEBA Research Colloquium highlighted Xiaotian Tina Zhang, Yung Jae Lee, and Shyam Kamath’s paper titled “Reach-Risk-Return in Microfinance Institutions: An Evaluation Framework." This paper examines the tradeoffs among reach (outreach), risk and return that microfinance institutions are typically faced with in serving the needs of borrowers at the Base of the Pyramid (BOP).”
The second paper was presented by Andrew Wilson who co-authored with Peter Darke of York University and Jaideep Sangupta of HKUST titled "Is the road to deception paved with good intentions?: Unintended consequences of training consumers to detect deceptive advertising." This research shows that training consumers to detect specific deception tactics can have the unintended consequence of causing them to fail to detect other well known tactics they would have detected without such training. Further, a consumer training intervention is developed and tested which avoids these unintended consequences.
On April 26th, the final SEBA Research Colloquium of the academic year featured Tom Cleveland's paper titled ""Evolving Ways to Make a Financial Merger Work: Wells Fargo Bank Case Study." In addition, Judith White presented her paper titled "Sources Of Moral Courage: A Study Of Leadership For Human Rights And Democracy In Burma." This exploratory, qualitative, cross-cultural study examines sources of moral courage of leaders of small, local, grassroots, non-governmental organizations that work towards the development of democracy, human rights, and civil society in Burma. Nineteen leaders who regularly engaged in acts of moral courage were interviewed in Burma and Thailand. Analyses of the interviews revealed that the relationship between moral motivation and the demonstration of moral courage was mediated by political, social, and psychological factors, and the activists’ knowledge. Demonstration of moral courage resulted in individual and social outcomes—both positive and negative. The results offer scholars and practitioners insight into the moral courage of leaders working for social and political change across borders by presenting results based on the participants’ understanding of themselves and their actions. These activists who risked imprisonment, torture and death to pursue moral ends did not see themselves as having moral courage. These findings present methodological challenges for cross-cultural research when the research topic is minimally significant to the study participants. Finally, this study suggests that individuals who are confronted with coercion, corruption, exploitation, and denial of due process, among other injustices in traditional organizations can act with moral courage by engaging their moral principles, commitment, compassion and sense of urgency while recognizing the risks and potential hardship.