Huntsman Alumni Magazine

Fall 2013

Notable Faculty Research

Professor Alison Cook and USU Sociology professor Christy Glass will have published four articles, including one in the Strategic Management Journal, the premier strategy journal in the world, exploring the conditions under which non-traditional leaders (women and racial/ethnic minorities) are promoted to top leadership positions. Each paper tests the “glass cliff” theory that predicts that women and racial/ethnic minorities are more likely than white men to be promoted during times of weak performance. They also developed a second theory, the “savior effect”, that predicts that non-traditional leaders will be replaced by traditional leaders if the organization struggles. They tested these theories by looking at the promotion of CEOs in Fortune 500 companies and the promotion of head basketball coaches in Division 1 programs.

Dr. Kelly Fadel ‘02 published a paper in International Systems Research, a top 3 journal in the field, showing that people’s evaluation of knowledge they find in Internet forums is strongly influenced by the presence of peripheral cues such as author expertise and third-party validation, even when such cues do not accurately reflect knowledge quality. This means that Internet knowledge seekers must be wary of the influence of such cues when evaluating knowledge they encounter online.

Glenn McEvoy published two articles, “Human Resource Management Practices in Mid-Sized Enterprises,” in the American Journal of Business, and “The Management of Expatriates,” which was the feature article in the Thunderbird International Business Review. The AJB article explored the differences in HR practices in mid-sized firms (400 to 4000 employees) versus those in large corporations. In the former group, HR practices were less strategic in scope but rated higher in effectiveness. The article in TIBR disputed the conventional wisdom that American expatriates have high failure rates overseas, and encouraged academics to pay more attention to the real problems faced by international HR managers when conducting research.

Jason Smith, along with three others, received the best paper award in the Journal of Financial Economics, the premier journal in the field of finance. Their paper, titled “Cash Flows and leverage adjustments,”show that the costs of adjusting the firm’s capital structure affect both how quickly a firm adjusts its debt and the level of debt.

Dr. Nicole Forsgren Velasquez ‘01, in partnership with Dr. Helen Taylor Martin, from Instructional Technology and Learning Sciences, has been awarded a grant, funded by the National Science Foundation, to use analytics and data mining methods to examine how children learn mathematics in online educational games. Early mathematics understanding is key for future student success in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. The application of data analytics methods can provide numerous insights about student learning pathways and strategies that will have a broad impact on STEM learning and teaching.