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The Best Paper Award at Ivey's PhD Sustainability Academy is presented by the Beryl M. Ivey Fund for Corporate Social Responsibility. The winning paper is also featured in the Network for Business Sustainability newsletter, and distributed to more than 8,000 business sustainability researchers, students, and managers.

2023 -- Kerrigan Unter and Hannah Schupfer

Kerrigan is a postdoctoral research fellow for the Institute for Economy and the Environment at the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland funded through the Swiss Network for International Studies and the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Her research broadly focuses on the interconnectedness between business and the natural environment. More specifically, Dr. Unter examines the relationship between biophysical conditions, such as climate change, extreme weather, and biodiversity, and business performance and response strategies. She has experience working with environmental nonprofits in the areas of water quality, invasive species, and biodiversity of native species. Dr. Unter earned a bachelor's degree in business administration, a graduate certificate in geographical information systems, and a Ph.D. in strategic management and public policy, all from George Washington University. 

Hannah is a fourth year PhD candidate at the University of Oslo, Norway. Her main research interests lie within the intersection of organization studies, institutional theory and grand challenges. She seeks to understand organizational and institutional dynamics and change processes related to sustainability crises. Empirically, she conducts qualitative research on established organizations in the oil and gas industry, a setting that has become heavily contested due to its contribution to the climate crisis. In her work, she has investigated organizational approaches to green innovation through building purpose and legitimacy within conventional organizational structures, but also how incumbents collectively manage the rising stigmatization towards the industry through linguistic mechanisms. Streams of literature include frames and framing, categories, legitimacy, and green innovation.

View Kerrigan's article, "Wineries Earn More Per Bottle When They Adapt to Climate Change", written in collaboration with the Network for Business Sustainability. 

View Hannah's article, "Oil Industry Climate Goals: Lots of Talk, Little Action", written in collaboration with the Network for Business Sustainability. 

2022 -- Simon Xu and Maegan Baker

Simon is a Finance Ph.D. candidate at the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley. His research interests include sustainable finance and corporate social responsibility. His current projects focus on the interplay between environmental regulations and firm pollution, and their impact on mutual funds’ portfolio choices, shareholder wealth, and corporate philanthropy. His Pre-Ph.D. research has been published in journals such as the Review of Finance, Journal of Financial Markets, Journal of Empirical Finance, Quantitative Finance, and European Journal of Operational Research.

Maegan Baker is a PhD candidate in the discipline of Strategy, Innovation at the University of Sydney Business School.  Maegan’s research considers the interplay of different perspectives in cross-sector partnerships, with a focus on emotion and temporal work.  She has a particular interest in Indigenous-led initiatives that refocus dominant ways of knowing and being towards the potential for innovation through engagement and collaboration.

View Simon's article, Breaking Environmental Regulations Hurts Company Stock Price, written in collaboration with the Network for Business Sustainability. 

View Maegan's articles, 6 Ways Companies Can Build Stronger Relationships with Indigenous Partners and "Efficiency Culture" Harms Indigenous Partnerships, written in collaboration with the Network for Business Sustainability. 

2021 -- Claudio Rizzi

Claudio Rizzi is a fourth-year Ph.D. student in finance at the University of Miami, Miami Herbert Business School. Claudio's research focuses on the interdisciplinary connection between environmental sustainability, climate change, and finance. Specifically, focused on the asset pricing implications of nature conservation and natural capital’s importance for local economies, as well as the relationship between nature and executives’ environmental preferences.

View Claudio's article, How to Reduce Climate Costs Using Nature, written in collaboration with the Network for Business Sustainability.

2020 -- Bell Piyasinchai

Nareuporn (Bell) Piyasinchai is a PhD Candidate at Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge. Nareuporn’s sustainability research lies at the intersection between strategy and organizational theory. Her current projects examine tradeoffs between legitimate conformity and strategic differentiation in organizations’ pursuit of sustainability, and firms’ strategic responses to normative pressures. She holds MPhil in Finance from Cambridge Judge Business School and BA in Economics from Chulalongkorn University. Professionally, Nareuporn co-founded NextOnc, a precision medicine startup in Cambridge. Her social venture focuses on healthcare innovations and promises to bring a targeted life-saving approach of precision medicine to countless individuals. Prior to her PhD, she had industry experiences at the Bank of Thailand and at the management consulting company Korn Ferry Hay Group.

View Bell's article, Corporate Sustainability Reputation Matters Most During Crises, written in collaboration with the Network for Business Sustainability.

2019 -- Cathy Lu and Leandro Pongeluppe

Xuege (Cathy) Lu is a Ph.D. candidate in the Management & Organizations group of the Johnson College of Business at Cornell University. Her research mainly focuses on the interplay between institutional environments and market formation. She is currently studying how firm anticipate and respond to prosocial demand from different stakeholders. Her dissertation examines how institutional strategies shape the formation of a new market category, and how institutionalization as a process impacts dynamics among market participants. Prior to joining the PhD program at Johnson in 2016, Xuege worked as a consultant at the World Bank, where she managed development projects that promote sustainable business practices. Xuege holds a BA in journalism and mass communications from Fudan University and an MA from Johns Hopkins University in public policy.

Leandro "Leo" Pongeluppe is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Strategic Management Department at Rotman School of Management - University of Toronto. Leo's primary research interests are related to inclusive innovation and public innovation. Particularly, Leo is interested in understanding how organizations design and governance affect the achievement of social goals, such as poverty alleviation. Leo uses mixed-methods in his research, combining econometrics causal inference models and ethnographic techniques to analyze multi-faced problems related to socioeconomic development. Currently, Leo is performing research on Brazilian favelas as the main setting. Professionally, Leo co-founded and worked as a PMO at Insper Metricis, a research group dedicated to evaluating projects' socio-environmental impact. At Insper Metricis, Leo participated in the design of Brazil's first Social Impact Bond (SIB), in partnership with the São Paulo State Government. Leo also worked for about three years as an associate researcher at Accenture Institute for High Performance.

2018 -- Anna McKean and Hee-Chan Song

Anna McKean is a joint PhD student in Management & Organizations and Sociology at Northwestern University. Her research interests include organizational change and influence, social movements, and non-market strategy. Her current projects focus on how corporations respond to, participate in, and influence social/political activism and policy change. 

Hee-Chan Song is a Ph.D. candidate in corporate sustainability at Ivey Business School, Western University. His dissertation, the ethnography of Buddhist temples, investigates various tensions in the core issues of corporate sustainability: profit versus morality, short-term versus long-term goals, and organizational adaptation versus persistency. The fieldwork aims to offer new perspectives to tackle those tensions. By studying historical Buddhist temples that have never been previously explored in management field, he hopes management researchers are able to find new ways of handling tensions and even reframing some of existing organizational issues. Hee-Chan is also interested in bridging Buddhist philosophy and corporate sustainability literature. This work attempts to provide a theoretical framework on the paradox of human desire, material well-being, and economic behavior, which together form the foundations of both sustainable development and our business practice.

2017 -- Grace Augustine

Grace Augustine is a Ph.D. candidate in Sociology, Management, and Organizations. Her work encompasses social movements, work and occupations, and field-level emergence and change. Grace’s dissertation looks at the emergence of the field of sustainability and the occupation of sustainability management, and she uses qualitative methods alongside quantitative computational text analysis to ask how disparate ideas regarding a nascent field’s principles, practices, and “rules of the game” are contested and potentially cohere over time. In addition to this work, Grace is also currently involved in projects on corporate personhood and examining projects that are proposing technological geo-engineering solutions for a sustainable future.

2016 -- Jimi Kim 

Jimi Kim is a Ph.D. candidate in International Business and Strategic Management at the Fox school of Business, Temple University. Her primary research interests include corporate social responsibility (CSR), sustainability, global corporate governance, strategic alliance, technology, and innovation. Her dissertation focuses on the role of culture and institutions on CSR globally. In particular, she examines (1) why firms integrate the interests of stakeholders into the strategy formulation, (2) how firm behaviors affected by diverse factors such as corporate governance, cultural, and institutional environments. Jimi earned a bachelor degree from Korea University, and studied at Shanghai Jiaotong University as an exchange student. Prior to pursuing her Ph.D., she worked as a manager in the telecommunication industry, executing cross-border investments, and mergers and acquisitions from 2007 to 2012. 

2015 -- Juyoung Lee

Juyoung Lee is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Sociology at Brown University. Her research interests lie in the intersection of urban, political, and organizational sociology. In her dissertation project, she examines how the political economy shapes the distribution of toxic chemicals from industrial facilities across U.S. neighborhoods. In particular, one of her research questions concerns how the hierarchical and geographic restructuring of firm's business activities, in conjunction with neighborhood characteristics and state governments' environmental policies, shapes the environmental performance of polluting plants. Her dissertation research project has been awarded an NSF Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant in 2014. Before coming to Brown, she received a BA in 2005 and MA in 2007 from Korea University, where she studied sociology. She also worked as an assistant researcher for the Korean Women's Development Institute from 2007 to 2010.

2014 -- Omar Asensio and Steffen Farny

Omar I. Asensio is a doctoral candidate and National Science Foundation (NSF) IGERT Fellow at UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. He studies technological and behavioral change in U.S. electricity markets. His research focuses on the design of incentives for energy efficiency and conservation at the individual and organizational level. He is also an affiliated researcher at the UCLA Center for Corporate Environmental Performance (CCEP) and the California Center for Sustainable Communities (CCSC).

Steffen Farny is a doctoral candidate at the Entrepreneurship Discipline, Department of Management Studies at Aalto University School of Business in Helsinki, Finland. He holds a MSc in Corporate Development from the University of Cologne and a MSc in Entrepreneurship from Aalto University. His research interests include entrepreneurship and sustainable development, institutional work, entrepreneurship education and post-disaster community development. Steffen’s dissertation focus is on institutional work of entrepreneurs pursuing sustainable change.

2013 -- Mark DesJardine, Jose Carlos Marques and Maddy Ong

Mark DesJardine is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in General Management at the Ivey Business School, Western University where his research focuses on redeveloping the ways that society approaches business sustainability. Unsettled with the current state of sustainability research and practice, Mark applies an interdisciplinary approach to integrate influential theory from the study of ecology to help managers better understand complexity in organizations. By doing this he intends to ground sustainability in a systems-based approach.

Jose Carlos Marques is a PhD Candidate in Strategy and Organization at McGill University. His thesis examines the divergent emergence, competition and organizational field dynamics of private regulation in global industries (apparel, electronics and mining). Research interests include: 1) impact of organizational structures/practices upon private governance and standards; 2) the private-public regulation nexus; 3) reciprocal links between business strategy and public policy.

Maddy Ong is a PhD Candidate in Management and Organizations at the University of Michigan’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business. Her research focuses on business ethics and corporate social responsibility. She uses a combination of laboratory experiments and field survey methods in her research. Her main research program focuses on understanding the relationship between employees’ prosocial behavior and their organizations’ social responsibility. ?Secondary research interests include the moral judgments that individuals make at work.

2012 -- Anna Kim and Ryan Raffety

Anna Kim is a PhD candidate in the Organizational Behaviour Subject Group at Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge. Anna's dissertation consists of essays on the elaboration of institutional logics, temporal sensemaking and corporate-community relations as a negotiated order. She uses qualitative methods to gain an in-depth understanding of organizational life in the rural areas of low-income countries.

Ryan Raffety is a PhD candidate at the Ivey Business School at Western University. His research interest lies in exploring the incentives and motivations behind managers' decisions to pursue or avoid non-essential strategic investments. Ryan's dissertation examines how and why the partitioning of property rights discourages corporate owners from pursuing environmental sustainability.

2011 -- Garima Sharma

Garima's research interests are around Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Sustainability, especially how organizations integrate often conflicting profit and social/environmental goals. Specifically, she is interested in topics including hybrid organizing, sensemaking of CSR issues and trajectory of CSR implementation in organizations. Through questions related to these areas, she wants to explore how institutional logics, organizing practices and the organizational context facilitate or inhibit integration of social/environmental and profit goals.

2010 -- Mark Taussig and Lite J. Nartey

Mark Taussig is Assistant Professor at the National University of Singapore. His research interests are emerging economies, government institutions and private equity.

Lite Nartey is Assistant Professor at the Darla Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina. Her research interests are broadly to explore the relationships, contingencies, and dynamics among multinational firms, governments and civil society actors and the implications of these dynamics on both firm performance and societal value.

2009 -- Simona Giorgi

Simona Giorgi is Assistant Professor at the Carroll School of Management, Boston College. She examines how organizational actors use culture to affect favorable institutional change. She explores cultural processes of influence in a wide range of settings, from the automobile industry to environmental non-profit organizations, securities analysts, and food movements.

2008 -- Josh Ault

Joshua Ault is Assistant Professor in international business at Gustavson and research chair of the Centre for Social and Sustainable Innovation. His research examines the financial and social challenges to conducting business in the world's poorest countries. His current projects examine trends in the global growth of microfinance lending, one of the few business models to successfully penetrate these markets on a large scale.

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