Benjamin Kessler

  • July 21, 2022

    Hierarchy has its upsides and downsides. A pyramidical power structure works well for day-to-day decision making. But as the distance between the base and the tip of the pyramid increases, tensions between organizational tiers can create obstacles to reform. It’s a matter of “the unconscious dynamics of humans in groups and systems” rather than a deliberate response, says Renee Rinehart Kathawalla, a postdoctoral research fellow of management at Mason.

  • July 11, 2022

    Rashed Hasan, executive-in-residence at George Mason University’s Business for a Better World Center (B4BW), is working to make transparent metrics and benchmarks that accurately represent stakeholder value a reality. Alongside a group of researchers and business advisors, he’s developing the Stakeholder Value Index (SVI), which he hopes will be a reliable framework for measuring business impact across the five stakeholders mentioned in the BRT Statement, as well as two additional stakeholders: the company itself and the planet.

  • June 22, 2022

    Gregory Unruh, academic director of Mason’s brand-new chief sustainability officer certification program in Executive Development, has been training sustainability leaders for decades.

  • June 9, 2022

    On Friday, June 3, more than 20 participants from business schools across the country joined Mason marketing faculty for a day-long Marketing Research Symposium at the IDIA Classroom Space in Vernon Smith Hall, Mason Square. In addition to research talks, there was a panel discussion on digital transformation in retail featuring three industry experts.

  • June 7, 2022

    In business, a specialist strategy can sometimes be riskier than a generalist one. Competing in only one industry leaves firms highly vulnerable to heightened income volatility, with extreme gains and losses, often alternating in quick succession. Innovative firms, whose business models are based on heavy R&D investments with uncertain returns, are especially affected by these fluctuations. Kelly Wentland, assistant professor of accounting, discusses this issue.

  • June 2, 2022

    Government corruption has universally corrosive effects on U.S. society. Yet there is little uniformity to the structure of state-level corruption oversight agencies. Syrena Shirley, an assistant professor of accounting at Mason, recently published a research paper in Current Issues in Auditing suggesting that in the fight against corruption, these structural inconsistencies are impactful.

  • May 3, 2022

    These days, devising an outsourcing strategy involves a host of challenges and opportunities. Between deglobalization and pandemic-induced supply chain issues, the 20th century practice of moving manufacturing to wherever labor was cheapest is paying smaller and smaller dividends. As the value proposition of cost-cutting diminishes, a different rationale for outsourcing—one based upon maximizing synergies—is gaining traction. Cheryl Druehl, associate professor of operations management and associate dean for faculty at Mason, lays out a model to help managers think about how to outsource in this new world in her recently published paper in IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management.

  • May 2, 2022

    In the earliest stage of innovation, creative proposals are judged according to their perceived novelty and usefulness. Sharaya Jones, assistant professor of marketing at Mason, has a simple yet counterintuitive rule for would-be innovators hawking their ideas: More is more. Her recent paper in Marketing Science, co-authored by Laura J. Kornish of University of Colorado Boulder, pits verbose and detailed idea descriptions against terse ones.

  • April 29, 2022

    Einav Hart, an assistant professor of management at George Mason University’s School of Business, shows the economic implications of negotiators’ relationships, and how these economic implications affect how people negotiate. Her recent paper in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes (co-authored with Maurice Schweitzer at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania) introduces the construct “ERRO” (the Economic Relevance of negotiators’ Relational Outcomes) to shed light on when negotiators should consider their future relationships.

  • April 28, 2022

    According to a recent working paper co-authored by Mason finance professors Lei Gao and Bo Hu, more than 80 percent of U.S. public firms use graphics in their annual reports. Further, visual presentation has market benefits as well as aesthetic ones.