Department seminar 2018

Decisions and action plan

In recent years, MGMT has set up a number of activities to support our research; among those are the department’s journal list, the setting up of tenure track positions, a publication and fundraising bonus system, a fundraising accelerator and support programme, etc.

One of the main objectives of this year’s department seminar was to create and select input for the further development of our research strategy consisting of an overall vision and objective, and a number of support initiatives.

The department seminar gave management valuable input for this work. We have scrutinised the many ideas and comments and have uncovered issues that many employees are concerned about. Based on this list of topics, we have made some decisions and have compiled an action plan that will be rolled out in the coming months.

Here is a short list of the topics and initiatives, which are in focus at the moment. This list will be updated as the initiatives are described, resolved and implemented.

MGMT research strategy
Lars Frederiksen is editing our existing research strategy so that it makes more sense to MGMT employees and is in better alignment with the general BSS and AU research strategy.

http://mgmt.au.dk/enhed/strategy/research-strategy/

The department management will approve the new version in the winter 2018.

Research groups and their section affiliation
The numerous comments concerning research groups at the department seminar clearly show that many see research groups as a central prerequisite for a sound research output – and for a fruitful and inspiring research environment. A research group is the framework for an academic community that is meaningful to the individual and which strengthens academic identity as well as knowledge sharing and production.

Management is in agreement with MGMT employees in that research groups are important, and management encourages researchers to form the research groups they find appropriate. This is how it is today, and management would like to stress that employees are free to form research groups – also across sections. The research groups may be focused around an academic fellowship, a certain method or an empirical phenomenon, etc. In many ways, MGMT researchers are responsible for using their research time in the best possible manner.

The sections are free to decide how they define a research group, and how a research group can be formed or closed down and what it takes to become a member of a group. The sections are also free to decide how and whether they want to support research groups; the section leaders will share knowledge about how this is done in each section to avoid that conditions in the MGMT sections differ too much, which could hamper the creation of cross-section research groups.

Some of the comments at the seminar suggested that the research groups be released from the sections and that the power of sections be limited as the “sections only are administrative units anyway”. Management does not concur with this suggestion. Research groups are solely academic communities. They do not have their own budget (unless external funding has been attracted), the research group ‘leader’ will not have any leadership authority, staff responsibility or get any bonuses and will not be part of the department’s organisational structure.

Mental work environment/tone of communication/recognition
Management acknowledges that a fruitful and inspiring research environment requires recognition and positive communication as well as open and constructive academic discussion. Management perceives a good work environment as a joint departmental undertaking – for management as well as for employees – and is aware of its particular responsibility to create a good atmosphere. Management members are therefore committed to work with, and improve, the management's own communication. At the same time, the management group will consider various initiatives to ensure and improve the department’s academic work environment.

Activities

Seminars
The sections define the scale of ambition for seminars and participation, including seminar planning, academic focus and relevance.

The section leaders will communicate that attendance is not required for all seminars.

Lars Frederiksen will organise approx. four annual seminars with a cross-MGMT focus.

What can we do to improve our understanding of journal editors’ work?
The objective of this initiative is for MGMT/employees to strengthen their relations with leading journals and their editors (e.g. those on the department’s journal list), and that MGMT employees boost their insight into how editors operate and prioritise their assessments and selection.

MGMT editors
Pernille Kallehave and Lars Frederiksen will determine which members of staff act as journal editors (preferably on the department list). A plan will be prepared so that other MGMT employees can get insight into editors’ prioritisations and work processes.

Relations to external editors will be strengthened.

The section leaders will let Jacob Kjær Eskildsen/Lars Frederiksen know whom it would be interesting or relevant to approach. Management will decide who to invite or for which purposes.

10% professors
The objective of this activity is that more MGMT employees may benefit from 10% professors’ competences, experience and networks.

We hope that we can get all 10% professors to visit MGMT at least once or twice a year and get them to do seminars, participate in PhD courses, etc. These professors should in various ways contribute to the improvement of MGMT’s research and teaching.

At the moment, we have the following 10% professors:

Name

Section

affiliation

Section contact

End of appointment

Dan Ariely

OSA

Panos Mitkidis

31.10.2019

Linus Dahlander

INEIS

Lars Frederiksen

31.10.2019

Robert D. Austin

INEIS

Andrea Carugati and Helle Neergaard

31.10.2019

Paul M. Leonardi (USA)

INEIS

Børge Obel

31.01.2020

Mark Peterson 

OSA

Jakob Arnoldi

31.08.2020

Stephan Zielke

MAR

Klaus Grunert

31.08.2020

Tomi Laamanens

OSA

Jakob Arnoldi

31.08.2020

 

In late 2018, there will be a short briefing of the section contacts about how the 10% professors’ relation to MGMT and their work here can be organised further.

A plan for their visits showing dates, etc. will be drawn up, and MGMT employees will be informed when and how they can get an interview with the visiting professors.

10% professor visits and contributions will be coordinated by the section contact, Vibeke Vrang and Lars Frederiksen.

Data consultants
The objective of this activity is to establish an MGMT resource dealing with data design input, pooling of data from multiple data sources, data management, GDPR, data runs and analyses.

Two pilot projects will be launched:

1. Shahab Kazemi was employed for one year as from 1 SEP 2018 (reports to Lars Frederiksen). Among other things, Shahab can help MGMT researchers do web-scrapping, text-mining, social network analyses, regression analyses, etc.
MGMT-employees can get access to Shahab’s competences by e-mailing Lars Frederiksen outlining the activity in question, start and end dates, etc. Shahab’s time may – to some extent – also be “bought” using external research funds.

2. Research data management steward
Research data management is concerned with how researchers handle their research data before, during and after a research project – that researchers handle data with due care research-wise, technically, legally and ethically throughout their lifecycle. More specifically this requires researchers to

  • Store and secure data so they are retraceable and so as to prevent data loss
  • Establish a procedure for organising, structuring, describing and documenting data
  • Formulate and follow a policy for data access and possibly sharing
  • Plan how data are stored (or destroyed)
  • Make data citable and recyclable if they are published

The Danish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity (2014) states that “Data and primary materials should be retained, stored and managed in a clear and accurate form”.

Research data management is essential in good research practice because it ensures that data can be traced for reproduction and/or result verification. As such, data management activities are a natural part of a research process (quote from https://vidensportal.deic.dk/da/datalagring-og-datamanagement)

The Smart Home group is working on a data management plan and is building up data management competences (a so-called Data Management Steward), which later will be shared with others at MGMT.

INEIS’ poster solution: ”doing deep work”
The secretariat will organise the production of such signs for researchers’ doors.

Inadequate information about organisation, services, admin, helpdesk
Much information as regards research services is already published on ’Practical Info’ http://mgmt.staff.au.dk/practical-information/.

In the spring 2019, Lone Larsen will visit the three sections to outline the service options that the secretariat can offer and respond to the researchers’ needs. Here the researchers will get the opportunity to elaborate on some of the comments from the department seminar: More research admin. support, too much bureaucracy, bundle admin tasks.

Administrative support for externally funded research projects
In the winter 2018, there will be an info meeting with Stine Trolle Elmholdt (HR), Jasper Pingel Kloster (TTO) and Jesper Fristrup Skovmøller (BSS Økonomi) about the support they can offer when writing up applications and when funding has gone through.