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(2021) Wang, HangThesisThis thesis examines the role of public information on equity prices. In the first study, we add new evidence that news increases investor disagreement. First, we find that stock prices are convex in relation to news, confirming that prices on news days reflect the risk compensation of opinion divergence. Second, using unexplained trading volume as a proxy for investor disagreement, we find that investor disagreement is positively priced in the cross-section, confirming that news increases investor disagreement. Finally, we distinguish empirically between two competing channels regarding how trading volume gets incorporated into asset prices when trading volume is a proxy for disagreement. We find that news-day unexplained trading volume is associated with high liquidity and low average bias, which reduces the effect of optimistic views. In the second study, motivated by the existing evidence that investors misreaction to news generates skewness and creates mispricing, we draw novel evidence that investors inability to interpret news correctly contributes to the pricing of skewness. Specifically, we find that only the skewness extracted from observed corporate news-day returns is negatively priced. This effect is particularly pronounced for stocks with greater asymmetric responses to good and bad news, and investors lottery preferences do not explain these results. Collectively, our findings suggest that accounting for endogeneity in skewness rather than treating skewness as an exogenous characteristic (lottery feature) of the return distribution is critical for understanding the negative relationship between skewness and future returns. In the final study, we examine the effect of Mercury Retrograde on stock market returns. Focusing on market indexes in 48 countries, we find that the average market returns in Mercury Retrograde periods are about 3.22% annually lower than those in other periods. This effect comes from a belief channel: investors who hold an astrological belief that Mercury Retrograde can destroy their decision-making will stay away from the market. This belief results in a higher risk premium required by remaining investors in sharing more risk. We further confirm that this belief channel concerns belief in ancient Greek culture, highlighting the importance of ancient culture in equity prices. Collectively, our findings suggest that investors may deem some ancient cultures important and behave accordingly.
Unpacking the ‘Bamboo Ceiling’ Effect from an Emotions Perspective and Examining Potential Solutions through Mentors and Role Models.(2021) Yustantio, JessicaThesisThe ‘bamboo ceiling’ is a metaphorical term used to explain the underrepresentation of Asians in leadership positions. This includes the individual, cultural and organisational barriers and challenges that Asians encounter on their way to attaining higher-level positions in Western organisations. The aim of this thesis is to provide a more informed understanding of the bamboo ceiling effect and to shape research questions that are of priority areas for knowledge sharing. Chapter 1 introduces the thesis topic and presents a review of the literature on the bamboo ceiling effect. In examining the literature, I synthesise the major findings in the literature, and subsequently gain further insight into under-examined areas. I pool together a series of research questions to guide the subsequent empirical studies (Chapter 2 and Chapter 3) that help explain the bamboo ceiling effect and its potential solutions. Chapter 2 focuses on the lack of knowledge in explaining the bamboo ceiling effect through an emotions perspective—namely, the mediating effect of perceived ability to manage emotions as a way to understand the differences in the leadership promotability of male and female Asian and Caucasian leaders. Chapter 3 addresses the limitations in the field to investigate potential solutions to eliminate the bamboo ceiling. This chapter presents the effect of race of mentors and role models through a two-wave field study, and applies signaling theory and similarity attraction paradigm to highlight the potential benefits for Asians of having a Caucasian mentor and an Asian role model towards their self-perceived leadership promotability. Chapter 4 presents the thesis’ overarching theoretical and practical contributions, alongside limitations and future research proposals.
The Role of the Different Types of Ethical Issues Recognised by Frontline Employees on Their Ethical Strategies(2021) Paramita, WidyaThesisEthical issues commonly occur within the frontline job context. Failure to handle ethical issues properly may incur damage to company reputation, making the management of frontline employees’ (FLEs) ethical strategies critical. Current literature suggests that ethical strategy is influenced by recognition of ethical issues, a subjective interpretive process that leads individuals to recognise distinct types of ethical issues. Unexpectedly, the existing theoretical frameworks do not account for variations in individuals' recognition of ethical issue types. The absence of such a theoretical framework has precluded previous studies investigating the implications of different ethical issue types on individual ethical decision-making. Building upon social cognition theory and the everyday problem-solving framework, this thesis proposes a theoretical framework that considers individual variations in ethical issue recognition and validates it across four sequential studies using Australian retail FLEs as the sample. Studies 1 and 2 employ a qualitative approach to explore the types of ethical issues being recognised by FLEs (Study 1) and FLEs’ ethical strategy types (Study 2). Studies 1 and 2 produce a taxonomy of ethical issues and a taxonomy of FLE ethical strategies, respectively. Study 3 uses a quantitative survey method to examine the implications of the different ethical issue types recognised by FLEs for ethical strategy, individual (i.e., customer-orientation, ethical ideology, organisational identification and moral identity) and contextual (i.e., ethical work climate, formal ethics system, and supervisor’s ethical leadership) factors, as well as FLE-perceived company reputation. The findings of Study 3 show that each type of ethical issue recognised by FLEs leads to different FLE ethical strategy types. In addition, each ethical issue type is related to different individual and contextual factors. Study 3 also reveals that FLEs’ ethical strategy types do not influence FLE-perceived company reputation. In contrast, using an experimental design, Study 4 demonstrates that FLEs’ ethical strategy types do affect consumer-perceived company reputation. Theoretically, this thesis contributes by establishing a framework accounting for the distinct types of ethical issues recognised by FLEs and the implications for their ethical decision-making process. From a practical perspective, this thesis provides guidelines for companies to manage FLEs’ ethical strategies so as to improve company reputation.
(2021) Li, YijingThesisReward-based crowdfunding is rapidly shaping up to be a revolutionary avenue for companies, especially start-ups, to broadcast their businesses and solicit capital through digital platforms. The platformized micro-investment mechanism in crowdfunding creates an unprecedented digital market that ensures a more fluid and granular distribution of financial resources. The Information Systems (IS) community has endeavored to shed light on this growing market by studying the decisive factors that motivate funders’ contributions and lead to crowdfunding success. Yet, despite its risky nature, no study thus far systematically investigates how risk perceptions emerge and impact funders’ investment behavior in reward-based crowdfunding and what companies can do to address funders’ risk concerns. To bridge these gaps, this thesis synthesizes contemporary knowledge on the contextual characteristics of crowdfunding and risks around diverse transactional environments to arrive at a typology of the risks encountered by funders when participating in reward-based crowdfunding. Drawing on the indispensable link between trust and risk, a holistic research model is constructed to: (1) postulate the impact of funders’ risk perceptions on their willingness to invest using a reward-based crowdfunding platform, (2) discern how different types of crowdfunding risks can be mitigated by enhancing the assessability of fundraiser’s trustworthiness, and (3) explore the optimum trust-building mechanisms that can facilitate funders’ assessments of fundraiser’s trustworthiness. Three experimental studies are conducted to validate the advanced research model empirically. The findings from the three studies yield theoretical insights on crowdfunding risks and mechanisms to diminish funders’ risk perceptions via trust-building. The results also yield actionable design principles that platform providers can adopt to help funders assess risk and improve their financing experience in this emerging market.
(2021) Dias, MalshikaThesisEmerging technologies are radically changing the future of work. From artificial intelligence for customer support to robotics for performing surgery, the change is unprecedented in the history of most organisations. This thesis aims to understand and contribute rich, empirically informed insights into the phenomenon of the future of work in the context of emerging technologies from an organisational history perspective. The thesis comprises three related but standalone studies that discuss organisational trajectories and the implications of emerging technologies in three distinct organisational contexts. To explore this emerging and intrinsic phenomenon in organisations, this work adopts the historical narrativist approach and the qualitative case study method. The first study explores the interplay between tradition and technology at a pre-digital organisation when new technologies are introduced. The second study delves into the strategies and practices of realising historically embodied process knowledge when adopting a robotic process automation technology at a digitally reformed organisation. The third study traces the evolution of a strategic path towards technology and data driven innovation, from the foundation to the implementation of artificial intelligence technologies, at a born-digital organisation. Each of the three studies provides a distinct but complementary understanding on the role of organisational history by contributing to the theories of imprinting, organisational memory and path dependence. Collectively, the thesis studies contribute to our understanding of “how history matters” in the future of work. The thesis discussion contributes to the literature by integrating the implications of surface- and deep-level effects of emerging technologies for the future of work and how they are shaped by the distant, intermediate and immediate histories of organisations.
(2021) Nguyen, Dinh Yen OanhThesisConsumers encounter thousands of scarcity messages daily, yet the effects of scarcity tactics are unclear. This thesis aims to uncover the effects of different types of scarcity tactics from both firm and customer perspectives. Included herein are fifteen studies that employed mixed research designs (i.e., experimental designs, cross-sectional surveys) with a variety of product categories (i.e., clothing, shoes, electronics, food, sustainable products, etc.). Three essays are produced to articulate this work; Essay One focuses on product scarcity and investigates when and why a corporate decision to create an intentional scarcity of products would improve or impair the brands. Essay Two examines how two types of messaging, scarcity based, and social proof based, can drive or diminish consumers’ information sharing in promotional contexts. Essay Three identifies how a personal scarcity concept - feelings of relative deprivation - undermines consumers’ adoption of sustainable products. Collectively, this thesis contributes advances to multiple streams of research including scarcity, branding, information sharing behaviour, and sustainable purchases. It also offers practical guidance for marketers, retailers, and policy makers.
(2021) Bay, JoshuaThesisThis paper explores extensive asset allocation possibilities and asset pricing tests shedding light into the cross-sectional and time-varying nature of combining multi-asset alternative risk premia. Existing literature in the multi-asset risk premia space is limited in terms of allocation studies as most research on combining factor exposures are only in the single-stock equity space. The literary gap is further exacerbated over the last decade with the explosion of new factors discovered. To address this, key asset allocation techniques commonly used in allocating across long-only traditional asset classes and equity factors are applied to multi-asset risk premia. The results seem to suggest the key assumptions of expected returns, followed by expected risks, higher moments and then lastly correlations in this order of importance are associated with building portfolios with higher risk-reward. To the best of my knowledge, this is one of the first papers that provide a comprehensive and practical study of a wide array of portfolio implementation approaches to multi-asset risk premia. This paper serves as an annex for investors to better understand the interaction and concentration of multi-asset risk premia exposures to meet their desired investment profiles.
(2021) Burton, KelseyThesisThe enduring prevalence of dark personalities in the workplace has warranted recent research on narcissists, psychopaths, and Machiavellians and their adverse effects on the workplace. However, little effort has been made to investigate the individuals who favor dark personalities, enabling them to flourish within organizations. To better understand “when” and “how” exactly dark personalities are favored, Study 1 used an experimental design to investigate different strategies by which leaders favor narcissists, psychopaths, and Machiavellians. An actor role-played these three dark personality types within teams. Narcissists and psychopaths were favored by leaders through resource allocation, both covertly (i.e., when the decision is confidential) and overtly (i.e., when the decision is not confidential). In contrast, Machiavellians were only favored through overt resource allocation. This study also showed that narcissists were favored through interpersonal influence and promotion recommendations, while psychopaths were favored through task influence. The first study provided insight into the different ways by which leaders favor the three dark personalities and found narcissists, as compared to psychopaths and Machiavellians, to be favored through multiple mediums. Building on the premise that narcissists successfully obtain additional resources and attain favored status through interpersonal influence and promotion recommendations, further research was needed to investigate the motivational factors associated with favoring narcissists. In Study 2 and Study 3, we used a 2x2 experimental design to test a three-way interaction to determine the motivational factors that drive leaders to favor narcissists. Study 2 employed a design in which leaders watched videos of teams containing a narcissist. Study 3 employed a design in which an actor role-played the narcissist within a team. Both experiments supported the hypothesis that high dominant leaders will favor low status, narcissists through resource allocation. Thus, high dominance motivated leaders have a heightened awareness of potential threats to power and strategically choose to favor less threatening narcissists even though such narcissists negatively affect team coordination and performance. Additionally, Studies 2 and 3 supported the hypothesis that low dominant leaders favor high status narcissists through resource allocation. Leaders low in dominance motivation have a greater concern for the overall team well-being and performance while also being less assertive. Therefore, low dominant leaders are more susceptible to a narcissist’s demands and will favor the high status ‘bad apple’ to maintain high team performance. Our studies further expand the research on narcissists in the workplace and provide key insights into the leaders who favor narcissism in a manner that promulgates the prevalence of narcissists throughout organizations.
An investigation into political connections: literature review and empirical tests of the impact and antecedent(2021) Wei, QiaoThesisConnections between business and political entities (“political connections”) have received unprecedented research attention in the last decades. Studies investigate the relationships between political connections and firms’ behavior, strategy, as well as various performance outcomes. Meanwhile, scholars have adopted diverse perspectives to explain the role of political connections in these relationships. Nevertheless, reviews designed to synthesize political connections studies has not kept pace with the explosive growth of this scholarship. In addition, there are still research gaps to be addressed within the scholarship. In particular, as political connections can generate both positive and negative impact on the firm, further research is needed to explain the reason behind and reconcile existing mixed findings. Furthermore, prior studies have predominantly focused on understanding the impact of political connections while leaving the antecedents of such connections underexplored. This thesis takes up these challenges by synthesizing prior political connections studies and addressing the research gaps above. This thesis consists of three studies. First, it combines bibliographic techniques and qualitative review techniques to conduct a comprehensive review of the political connections studies published during the last three decades (in Chapter 2). Next, based on the findings of Chapter 2 and guidance for future research provided therein, it includes two empirical studies to investigate how connections may paradoxically influence firms’ resource acquisition and utilization for innovation performance (in Chapter 3) and to examine how the emphasis the firm places on financial vs. nonfinancial goals acts as an antecedent of formation of different types of political connections (in Chapter 4). In sum, this thesis offers a more complete and fine-grained understanding of political connections and provides research guidance for future development of the scholarship of political connections.
(2021) Andonopoulos, VasilikiThesisSocial Media Influencers (SMIs) occupy an increasingly focal position in the digital marketing landscape. Although authenticity has drawn researchers’ attention to understanding how digital influencers command influence over online consumers, the notion of personal authenticity, the human variant of authenticity has yet to be applied and tested in the marketing literature to understand online spokespersons and consumer responses. Accordingly, the present research aimed to investigate the role of SMI personal authenticity in influencing online customer behaviour. The first chapter in this thesis broadly explored the notion of authenticity across disciplines and defines SMI personal authenticity in reference to self-identification theory. Employing a bibliometric analysis, it further highlighted relatively limited empirical work on online influencers and their authentic self-representation in the marketing literature. The following chapter empirically investigated whether the online representations of SMIs’ self-identity exert consumer behaviour. The pilot study examined whether an SMI Instagram profile adequately reflected their personal authenticity after ruling out the possible confounding effects of gender and familiarity. Study 1 examined online consumer behaviour in response to SMI authentic representation. In Study 2, the preceding study was built upon, and investigated a mediating effect of SMI trustworthiness on the relationship between SMI personal authenticity and consumer responses. The final study (Study 3) tested the serial mediation of SMI trustworthiness and Inspirational capacity of the SMI as a means of explaining the relationship between SMI personal authenticity and consumer outcomes. The findings reveal consumers perceived SMIs who were high in personal authenticity to be more trustworthy and hence more inspirational, resulting in an increased tendency to purchase products advertised by them. Further analyses show that high levels of SMI personal authenticity had a negative effect on inspiration and then resulted in a decrease in consumer purchase intent. These findings challenge the existing marketing literature on authenticity by showing that highly authentic self-representations of SMIs are not always indicative of encouraging consumer purchase intent. The findings from this thesis make a significant and pertinent contribution by filling the current research gap in the extant literature on online influencers and authenticity, in addition to carrying a high degree of digital marketing practitioner value.
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