Mystique shrouds the activities surrounding the board of directors. Today directors serving on boards are paid quite handsomely. In a first-of-its-kind paper, SMU Cox Distinguished Finance Professor James Linck, with Viktar Fedaseyeu and Hannes Wagner, analyze directors —who they are, what they do and how much they are paid. Many believed that the board of directors was an 'old boys network.' As far back as the early '90s, research indicated the 'appearance' of an old boys network, notes Linck. That has changed.
In the world of finance, quantifying the "soft qualities" of CEOs is a fairly new trend. In this emergent literature, SMU Cox Accounting Professor Ke and co-authors focus on how the executive team and their communications affects corporate disclosure quality. Their study is a first to demonstrate that top executives, other than just the CEO and CFO, also play important roles in the management forecast process. This study also adds to the growing literature in finance on social networks.
Marketers like online advertising because the medium allows them to target their messages to specific groups of customers. Typically, success has been measured by whether a user clicks on the ad. However, there are many other effects of advertising that don't get captured with click-through metrics. New research by SMU Cox Marketing Professor Michael Braun and co-author Wendy Moe offers a more holistic approach to online advertising. The study also analyzed how to schedule ads in an optimal way and add different creative versions.
The skill and quality of a CEO is not so easy for financial markets, boards, and analysts to discern. Stock performance of a firm can fluctuate for reasons unrelated to CEO decisions, and may not necessarily reveal anything related to management at the very top. There is an observable signal, however, that reveals the skill and motivations of the CEO—the decision to withdraw an acquisition offer owing to the price being too high. SMU Cox Finance Professor Stacey Jacobsen's new research shows that the decision to not follow through on an acquisition says a lot about the CEO.
The movie business just made its debut in America's gross domestic product figures, helping growth trend upward. Making films or movies are now part of a 'new' investment class called "intellectual-property products." The contribution of movies to ITOM researcher Tom Tan of SMU Cox and co-authors comes as no surprise. Their novel research shows how to more effectively manage movies' production stages, and in the process create a better bottom line. While most movie research focuses on the uncertain demand side, Tan focuses on supply-side factors such as production stages and their length, finding areas where managers can add to profitability.