Inspiring conference showcases research on a global stage.

Posted on 18th October 2017

The positive impact staff and students have made across the globe was the focus of a research conference hosted by the University of Chester’s Faculty of Business and Management.

Business School Award winners
Business School Award winners

The theme, Deepening Impact, gave an opportunity to reflect on achievements over the past and to plan ahead. 

The conference showcased the exciting and dynamic research being carried out in the Faculty and celebrated multiple awards supported by international professional bodies including the Global Centre for Work Applied Learning (GCWAL) in Australia, the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD) and Lapidus International. 

The Faculty has a rich and diverse history of creating impact in the communities it serves. On an annual basis, this includes: more than 1,800 full-time students contributing to workplace projects in the UK and overseas; 1,500 full-time students contributing to the regional economy and beyond; more than 1,000 professionals studying in the workplace across the globe and more than 70 doctoral students tackling issues of international significance. 

As well as reflecting on recent achievements, the conference focussed on new longer-term commitments for deepening impact such as the launch of the International Thriving at Work Group; the launch of a research centre on family business and the establishment of a responsible education research impact group as a catalyst for change. 

Keynote speakers at the event included Professor Carole Parkes, Professor of Global Issues and Responsible Management at the University of Winchester, who discussed PRME (Principles for Responsible Management Education) and responsible management education and fighting global poverty as a challenge for business and management education. PRME is an initiative of the United Nations to transform management education, research and thought globally. Professor Ralph Tench, Professor in Communications Education at Leeds Beckett University, explored the current status and future of business schools and Emeritus Professor Jonathan Garnett, Global Centre for Work Applied Learning, Australia, reflected on organisational impact.

 

The winners were:

  • Vicky Evans, Lecturer in Business and Finance received the GCWAL International Research Impact Award for ‘Ordinary and Extraordinary Magic: A systematic literature review of entrepreneurial resilience, its antecedents, processes, and outcomes’. This project pushes the boundaries of what we know about how entrepreneurs mobilise their resilience and continue with the challenge of operating their own business – and ultimately how entrepreneurial resilience can be supported.

  • Pip Weston, Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Work Related Studies (CWRS) was given the Championing Work and Working Lives Research Impact Award by the CIPD for ‘Thriving at Work Through Learning at Work: a review of the antecedents, processes and outcomes of thriving at work’. This project looked at supporting conditions for thriving in workplaces.

  • The Health and Well-being Research Impact Award, also sponsored by CIPD, was awarded to Matt Parkyn, DBA student, for his research into Stress at work: what do we know about how line managers manage workplace stress experienced by their subordinates?’ This project looks at how managers manage the stress of their employees – this is a global challenge and a major gap in current knowledge.

  • Nerise Johnson, Head of International Operations, Director of Postgraduate programmes received the CIPD Equality and Diversity Research Impact Award for her project, ‘The plurality of care: International student perspectives’. Working with international business and management students, this project pushes the boundaries of what is known about what is done to enable the felt condition of ‘being cared for’ and how this appears in complex and varied ways.

  • The GCWAL Research Education Impact Award was received by Debbie Scott, Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Work Related Studies (CWRS), for her project, ‘The ignorant manager: conceptualising and realising impact with Rancière’. This project provided a fresh and controversial perspective on what can be done to support deeper and more profound learning in workplace learning concepts, and draws on cases developed over the last five years.

  • The Lapidus International Research Award (for the use of narrative, story or literary arts to enhance the lives of people) was given to Lisa Rossetti, Senior Researcher, for her work, ‘Indra’s Net: Nurturing the Spirit of Ubuntu at Work’ which explored how we can try to create organisational spaces for professionals with multiple complex demands – and led to many practical insights into how to facilitate wellbeing in complex and demanding organisations.

  • Lisa also received the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Contribution to Research Culture.

  • The Environment and Climate Change Research Impact Award was awarded to Dr Ann Hindley, Senior Lecturer in Marketing, Tourism and Events Management; Professor Tony Wall; Tamara Hunt, Sustainability Officer; Jeremy Peach, Director of the University’s Work Based Learning department; students, Martin Preston, Courtney Hartley and Amy Fairbank for their project ‘A Unifying, boundary crossing approach to climate literacy: work-based learning as a catalyst’. This project looked at how fresh and innovative approaches can be created to develop climate awareness and understanding across silos and disciplines. 

 

Professor Clare Schofield, Executive Dean of the University’s Faculty of Business and Management, said: “Our annual Faculty of Business and Management Conference is an opportunity to showcase the innovative and deeply impactful research that colleagues and research students are undertaking. This year we had three excellent keynote speaker representing both theoretical and applied research areas that complement our research strengths in terms of subject and methods. I was delighted to be able to award prizes to for the very best papers and to highlight areas of research and practice excellence. Our research community continues to grow and it underpins the quality of our research outputs, our teaching and learning and our impact as a scholarly community. 

“We had eight awards and they showcase the innovative and interesting research that is currently underway in the Faculty. Well done to everyone that submitted a paper and shared their work with colleagues from our academic community. I would also like to thank our sponsors, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and the Global Centre for Work Applied Learning (GCWAL).” 

Professor Tony Wall, Director of the International Thriving at Work Research Group and Director of Professional Doctorates (DProf and DBA), said: “This year’s research conference demonstrates how we’re really building our community of high-impact researchers within the Faculty. It is wonderfully stimulating to work and collaborate with practitioners and researchers, who are pushing the boundaries of practice and knowledge.”