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WSB Faculty Research Demonstrates Impact Through Top Media Coverage in 2016

By Clare Becker

February 14, 2017

Prison privatization. Corporate inversions. The hidden dangers of having a backup plan. These and seven other topics comprise the Wisconsin School of Business’s top 10 list of most-covered research in 2016, garnering more than 739 million impressions in national and international news publications.

Leading media outlets across the globe turn their attention toward the robust body of faculty research at WSB for its demonstrated influence on business and industry. In 2016, top publications featuring WSB faculty work included: The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, The Boston Globe, The New Yorker, Money, Harvard Business Review, The Huffington Post, Fast Company, Psychology Today, and Inc.

“Our faculty consistently produce innovative and groundbreaking research that clearly has a much wider application than just within academic walls,” says Russ Coff, senior associate dean for faculty and research. “To have a reach like this with our work underscores just how important quality research continues to be, not just in advancing our scientific fields but also in helping people better understand the world we live in.”

Here are highlights of the year’s most-covered research:

Jihae Shin, assistant professor of management and human resources, made the year-end list for two topics. Her study on work motivation and effort suggests there may be a positive link between delay and innovation, finding that procrastinators may in fact exhibit greater degrees of creativity than those who begin tasks immediately. Her second research topic questioned whether having a backup plan bolsters an individual’s goals or defeats them entirely.Russ Coff Pull QuoteAssistant Professor of Marketing Evan Polman also appears on the top 10 list for two bodies of research. His exploration of decision fatigue found that it is easier for individuals to make decisions for others than it is for themselves, and that this process could also yield creative solutions to one’s own problems. In a separate study with Associate Professor of Marketing Joann Peck, Polman looked at how curiosity affects our behavior and influences us to make healthier choices.

Oliver Levine, assistant professor of finance, researched corporate inversions and how current practices may do shareholders more harm than good. Meanwhile, Anita Mukherjee, assistant professor of risk and insurance, examined prison privatization and the related incentives to incarcerate inmates longer.

Other faculty on the 2016 list include:

Sought-after experts on contemporary topics

In addition to their roles in teaching and scholarship, WSB faculty are sought-after experts on many of today’s most pressing topics. In 2016, School faculty contributed to public discourse on everything from Airbnb regulations to wearable activity trackers to then-presidential candidate Donald Trump’s affinity for his alma mater.

“Our faculty are true thought leaders, both in and outside the classroom,” adds Coff. “They serve as go-to voices for many journalists, and by extension, the consumers of today’s media. Their expertise and perspective helps inform our collective understanding of many important issues.”