School of Business Faculty Research

  • December 1, 2022

    George Mason University’s Business for a Better World Center (B4BW) recently convened an in-person Stakeholder Roundtable on the subject of Corporate Governance. The half-day event took place at Point of View International Retreat & Research Center at Mason Neck in Lorton, VA on October 21.

  • November 29, 2022

    Mehmet Altug, an associate professor of operations management at George Mason University School of Business who has been researching pricing and retail operations–and consumer returns in particular–for over a decade, says “When I first started doing research on this, I used to say up front ‘pricing is the main decision, returns are just something to deal with’. But now, it’s becoming a primary problem for retailers.” The main reason why return management does not have a well-defined solution is that it can be seen as a double-edged sword. While flexible consumer return policies increase our valuation and willingness-to-pay for the product (a positive effect), they also lead to more returned units, which are ultimately sold by retailers at a loss (negative effect).

  • November 10, 2022

    On the morning of Wednesday, October 26th, George Mason University professor Suzanne C. de Janasz conducted her first-ever negotiations workshop for female high school students at McLean High School in Northern Virginia. An enthusiastic audience of about 100 young women came to hear de Janasz explain why negotiation is important for women of all ages and walks of life, and how to build negotiating skills for the future. De Janasz, an organizational researcher who holds a joint appointment in the School of Business and the Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution, says there is a pervasive cultural bias against women who ask for what they deserve. The negative labelling begins in childhood, with terms such as “bossy” being applied to more assertive girls.

  • November 2, 2022

    It’s 9 am. Do you know where your team members are? Before Covid, the answer was simple: They were – or were expected to be – in the office. The pandemic erased that certainty and accelerated the pace toward work-place flexibility. As we move forward in our post-covid work environment, employees are strongly indicating their preference for flexibility and self-determination regarding their working environment. A portion of the workforce will desire to stay at home with high flexibility, whereas others will return to the office by choice.

  • October 19, 2022

    For most drivers in the U.S., obeying a stop sign upon approaching an intersection is an unavoidable annoyance. But for Mason finance professor Jiasun Li, it’s a problem waiting to be solved. His recent working paper proposes a simple and economical improvement: removing one stop sign from every four-way intersection. According to his calculations, this would boost not only driver safety, but environmental sustainability as well. 

  • October 12, 2022

    Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been on the business leadership agenda for more than 50 years, yet executives and corporate boards still demand to see the "business case" for CSR. Clearly, CSR’s familiarity as a concept has not translated into coherent ideas of where it fits into the cost-benefit calculations that motivate business strategy. A forthcoming article in the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis by Lei Gao, associate professor of finance at George Mason University School of Business, Jie (Jack) He (of University of Georgia) and Juan (Julie) Wu (of University of Nebraska – Lincoln) goes beyond the business case to form cause-and-effect connections involving companies’ CSR efforts.

  • September 28, 2022

    As Jenelle Conaway, assistant professor of accounting at George Mason University School of Business, says, “Being able to compare companies more easily makes for more efficient investment choices. And that scales from the individual level up to banks choosing who they lend to, and companies choosing who they want to merge with and acquire.” Her recent research finds that comparability trends have grown complicated.

  • September 26, 2022

    Jingyuan Yang, an assistant professor of information systems and operations management at Mason's School of Business, is at the forefront of AI research that aims to crack the codes of the physical world. Her results so far point toward innovative solutions for some of the biggest societal, governmental, and business challenges we face. 

  • September 22, 2022

    Exceptions may prove the rule, but they must first be explained. That is why finance researchers are drawn to the distress anomaly-- a well-documented phenomenon that challenges the risk-return paradigm in equity markets. Generally, higher-risk investments are expected to yield higher returns than safer, more stable securities. In recent years, however, studies have shown that high-credit-risk securities for companies in distress – i.e. when their already-low credit rating is being downgraded -- realize abnormally low returns compared to non-distressed securities of the same or lower risk.  Academics have proposed a range of rationales for this puzzle. Alexander Philipov, finance area chair and associate professor at George Mason University, says they mainly fall into two categories. 

  • September 20, 2022

    Selling is inseparable from relationship management. In the past, the one-to-one "human touch" of a salesperson compensated for the standardized nature of their wares. However, today's sales environment tends towards customized solutions and co-creation with the client, especially in the B2B space. In many cases, these trends have greatly increased the network of stakeholders whom salespeople are obliged to keep happy. Research shows that B2B customers benefit from being more involved in the process, but what about the sales force? Does their increased interpersonal burden translate to higher risk of burnout? George Mason University School of Business Marketing Area Chair Jessica Hoppner's recently published paper in Industrial Marketing Management, co-authored by Paul Mills of Cleveland State University and David A. Griffith of Texas A&M University, finds some surprising answers.