Doctoral theses

Recent Submissions

  • Tesfaye, Yewondwossen (Hanken School of Economics, 2021-01-05)
    The primary objective of this thesis is to study the specific everyday aspects of the process of neoliberalization as observed through the object of water. Water as an object of representation means understanding its materiality within the totality of the political relations of knowledge systems that reproduce its materiality as rational. Approaching the process of neoliberalization through the object of water requires an in-depth look into the specific everyday practicalities and social relations of individuals/people (micropolitical) reproduced through water practices, together with the relation that this micropolitical has with the wider forms of neoliberal knowledge system or forms of politics (macropolitical aspects) reproduced and rearticulated through neoliberalism. By looking into three rural water practice cases, the thesis takes a closer look into specific forms of subjectivities and social relations that are constitutive of particular water practices, and the relation that this has with wider neoliberal forms of rationalities. In doing so, this thesis intends to enhance knowledge on how neoliberal political truths are naturalized and how their applications affect individuals and their social relationships. In order to produce a multidimensional analysis on the relation between the macropolitical and micro-practical, this thesis works within the analytics of governmentality and uses discourse analysis as a methodology. Knowledge building in neoliberal governmentality scholarship through a focus on the messy micro practicalities and social relations is the primary contribution of this thesis. With the focus on the micropracticalities, the thesis contributes to one of governmentality’s less researched areas (inattention to difference) as well as addresses some critical research gaps in authoritarian governmentality and authoritarian neoliberalism literatures.
  • Krohn, Mikaela (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-09-14)
    Online videos are a form of dynamic visual communication that embrace the amateurish and informal communication style that is typical of videos in social media. In organizations’ strategic communication these types of videos are used for disseminating management message about strategy, strategic issues and news, as well as, for culture building in strategic change. This thesis explores the use of online videos as visual strategic organizational communication, focusing particularly on what online videos are, how they influence strategizing, and what are the underlying mechanism that condition strategizing with online videos. Building on the strategy as practice and sociomateriality perspectives, this thesis connects the openness paradigm and the technological and cultural developments of our time with how people do strategy in current day organizations. This thesis comprises of three studies. Paper 1 outlines a definition of the phenomenon and discusses potential theoretical implications of the use of visual social media type of communication for strategizing. Paper 2 provides an internal open strategizing perspective on the phenomenon of online videos, with an in-depth ethnographic study of a large retail organization. Paper 3 studies an internal strategy workshop video that accidentally leaked outside the company and follows the external audiences´ gamified interaction with this video on public social media. This thesis contributes to strategy as practice literature in three ways. First, it defines the phenomenon of online videos as visual strategic organizational communication. Second, it demonstrates that the use of online videos influences strategizing with their affordances, supports open strategizing, and may over time enable a dynamic of intimacy to emerge. Third, it discusses why the underlying media infrastructure conditions strategizing in a specific way. Further, this thesis contributes to visual management studies by illuminating a type of visual communication practice and theorizing on how the affordances of visibility and visuality interplay with strategizing. Visibility is highly related to transparency and the demand and desire for openness in contemporary organization, whereas visuality enables us to create an emotional or sensory imprint of the message necessary for strategic buy-in and commitment. Together both of these build transparency, inclusivity, and intimacy for more open paradigm management and strategizing. For future research, this study lays the ground to further explore the visualization of organizations as ways to execute the ideal of openness, authenticity, and non-hierarchy in organizations.
  • Lipkin, Michaela (Hanken Svenska handelshögskolan, 2020-08-17)
    As megatrends shape our society and markets, the business landscape is also changing fast. Technological innovations, demographic movements and the rise of the individual are disrupting the ways in which businesses offer service, but also how customers serve themselves. Whereas traditional service provision primarily occurred in the firm’s environment on the firm’s terms, today’s customers often select and experience offerings in their own ecosystems beyond the firm’s visibility and control. For firms to be competitive and research to be relevant, it has never been as important to understand what goes on in this customer ecosystem, and how it shapes the customer’s experiences with offerings. Even though marketers and researchers increasingly acknowledge the importance of the customer and her context, most studies have focused on exploring how firms create customer experiences during isolated touch points, or how customers co-create experiences in service ecosystems. This thesis argues that such studies only marginally reflect issues related to customers in their own settings. Instead of focusing on the firm’s actions or service interactions, we should study how customers involve providers in their own ecosystems. This customer-dominant lens expands the view of the customer and helps to illuminate what goes on beyond the firm yet plays a key role in how offerings resonate with customers. This thesis aims to identify how customers’ ecosystems shape customers’ experiences with smart self-service. The thesis includes three studies utilizing various methods and qualitative data from a smart self-service context. The collective findings reveal how the customer’s ecosystem plays a key role in shaping her experiences with smart self-service, through its actors and actor constellations. The first study identifies and clarifies different individual-level perspectives and contextual lenses on customer experience formation. The sense-making-based perspective and customer-ecosystem lens emerge as especially suited to generate a deeper understanding of experiences in customers’ ecosystems. The second study conceptualizes and illustrates empirically how actors within and beyond the focal offering – in various constellations – shape customer experiences. The third study introduces a smart self-service typology and classification. This thesis contributes to the service and marketing literature by conceptualizing the elements of customer experience formation, customer ecosystems and customer self-service devices. Managers should aim to locate, monitor and join the customer’s life to better understand how experiences emerge in the customer ecosystem. Such insights can be used to predict long-term customer behavior and design offerings that become embedded in customers’ lives.
  • Afzali, Mansoor (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-06-18)
    Social capital, as an important construct in social sciences, captures shared common beliefs and density of associational networks within a community. Regions with high social capital tend to have higher levels of mutual trust and display greater contract enforceability through the power of the community. Sociologists argue that communities with dense associational networks face a harsher punishment for deviation from norms, which deters individuals from acting opportunistically. In the long run, this results in fostering a norm-conducive environment that encourages cooperation among individuals and mitigates norm-deviant behavior. Research in economics and sociology shows that social capital brings several benefits to the community. For instance, regions with higher levels of social capital have effective governance mechanisms, higher economic growth, better health, lower income inequality, fewer suicides, higher education attainment ratios, and reduced levels of crime compared to regions with lower levels of social capital. Recently, researchers in corporate finance and accounting have also encompassed the idea of social capital and studied its influences in mitigating norm-deviant behavior by firms. For instance, researchers show that firms headquartered in high social capital counties have a lower tendency to avoid taxes, commit less financial reporting fraud, and use their resources more efficiently. The first two essays of this dissertation contribute to this recent literature and extend it by studying how social capital influences corporate reporting culture and accounting conservatism, and proportion of female directors on corporate boards and corporate governance mechanisms. Using county-level data on social capital in the United States, the first essay illustrates that firms headquartered in high social capital counties have higher accounting conservatism as managers in such firms are less likely to withhold information in the form of bad news. The second essay studies how social capital influences boardroom gender diversity and corporate governance mechanisms. The findings indicate that social capital enhances oversight mechanisms and reduces inequality within a society, leading to lower supply-side barriers for female directors. This ultimately results in a higher proportion of female directors on corporate boards of firms located in high social capital. Networks formed through social interactions and personal relationships are an important dimension of social capital and vital in almost all economic activities. The third essay relates to the role of social networks in disseminating information to the market. The findings of this essay suggest that insiders with larger networks are more likely to have access to channels of information and resource exchange, which ultimately result in a higher market reaction to their insider trades. This dissertation contributes to the existing literature on two important social constructs – social networks and social capital – and their influence on different processes in accounting and finance through three distinct but related essays. The main contribution of the whole dissertation is the empirical evidence on how social networks influence insider trading and how social capital affects corporate governance and accounting conservatism.
  • Shen, Cenyu (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-05-27)
    Digital technologies have brought good opportunities for innovation in the scholarly publishing industry, including the Open Access (OA) model, which makes peer reviewed journal articles freely available on the Internet. Over time, alternative approaches and strategies to fund and support OA publishing activities have surfaced. The primary mechanisms for providing content OA include journals publishing articles directly as OA (Gold OA) or by authors archiving manuscript of articles in subscription journals in other web-based services (Green OA). Among different business models for gold OA publishing, the article processing charge (APCs) model has been a common path chosen by established major publishers. However, the introduction of APC-funded OA has also given rise to the problem of ‘predatory’ publishers, which has seriously damaged the reputation of OA publishing. Another problem is the increasing difficulties faced by the non-APC funded publishers either to sustain their journals financially or stay competitive to attract authors. This thesis examines the situation of three distinct types of gold OA journals, which includes early independent scholar-led (‘indie’) OA journals, ‘predatory’ OA journals and Chinese-language OA journals. The overall purpose is to offer a varied perspective on the landscape of gold OA journals and therefore provide a fuller understanding of gold OA. Quantitative methods using bibliometrics and web observations were used, further complemented by qualitative methods in the form of case studies and interviews. The thesis consists of three articles each focusing on one specific group of gold OA journals. The study of ‘indie’ journals shows that nearly half of them remain active with a relatively small publishing volume beyond the initial 6-9 years and that most of them had found other alternatives than to rely on APCs to finance themselves. The five related case journals present different development trajectories. The longitudinal development of the number of journals and article volumes of ‘predatory’ OA publishers indicates that this market was rapidly growing between 2010 and 2014. The estimated volume in 2014 rivalled that of OA journals indexed in DOAJ at the time. However, ‘predatory’ OA publishing can be seen as mainly a regional problem in terms of the distribution of publishers and authors across countries. The study of Chinese-language OA journals finds that most of the OA journals in China are published in Chinese and that they are mainly published by universities and scholarly societies. A prominent problem for the successful publishing of the journals which were studied with the support of interviews is the lack of a sufficient number of high quality manuscript submissions. Their operational situation is further exacerbated by their financial instability which is identified as the main barrier to internationalization.
  • Pokidko, Daniil (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-05-06)
    “Collateral learning in the way of formation of enduring attitudes, of likes and dislikes, may be and often is much more important than the spelling lesson or lesson in geography or history that is learned.” John Dewey (1938/1997, p. 48) Understanding (or misunderstanding) one’s own likes and dislikes and their origins plays a powerful role within human life. The power of likes and dislikes pushes a person toward or against something. This power makes a person pursue some issues while abandoning the others. It is the same power that makes people persist in something despite the challenges and limitations they encounter, or on the contrary, avoid doing something despite obvious benefits. I dare to suggest that in the context of the entrepreneurship experience, the power of likes and dislikes may determine the effort invested in pursuing perceived opportunities and the dedication to this pursuit, regardless of the scarcity of resources. I believe that the attempt to understand the hidden reasons behind these feelings may play a decisive role in experiencing the pursuit, and this needs to be emphasized within entrepreneurship research and education. I try to validate this statement through my personal example of experiencing entrepreneurship, and learning about it in the summary part of this PhD thesis. The four papers that constitute the core of this thesis provide the reader with a deeper insight into this issue from educational, methodological and theoretical points of view.
  • Meriläinen, Eija (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-04-28)
    While a hazard, such as an earthquake, may result from natural processes, the unequal ways in which it impacts people’s lives are not an outcome dictated by forces of nature. Indeed, the disaster unfolding from a hazard has much to do with how human societies are governed. In a disaster, marginalised people are more likely than others to lose their homes, livelihoods, lives, and people they care about. Meanwhile, powerful actors are likely able to protect themselves from many negative consequences of hazards and disasters, while sometimes even being able to capture potential benefits. These inequalities become exposed in the case of urban disasters, where people living in neighbouring residential areas may experience very different outcomes from a disaster. Addressing these inequalities calls for scrutiny on disaster governance, and the ways in which diverse actors address and experience disaster impacts. This thesis explores how disasters in the unequal city are governed, particularly within the frame of resilience discourse. Furthermore, the work strives to imagine more just urban disaster governance focused on the rights of people. The analysis is focused on elaborating and explicating the conceptualisations of resilience and rights within academic and expert literatures. The focus is on the critical analysis of bodies of knowledge on disaster governance. The thesis draws from and contributes to the interdisciplinary fields of disaster studies and human geography. The key contributions of the thesis lie in its four essays, which adopt diverse perspectives to disaster governance research and policy. A key emerging theme is the framing of subjectivities of disaster-affected people within disaster studies. Three subjectivity categories are identified: the beneficiary-stakeholder that is steered by actors ‘from above’; the active citizen that has agency only in relation to a pre-existing and persisting governance institutions; and the territorial community that is a political and organised group of people that can assert claims. In addition to these subjectivity categories, a broader narrative emerges in the thesis: one where a diffused network of private and non-state actors increasingly has the resources and power to shape how the exception of disasters is framed and governed. Against this backdrop, conceptualisations (e.g. resilient community), discourses (e.g. urban resilience) and streams of literature that may be benign in and of themselves may shape disaster politics in problematic ways. They might decentre and obscure underlying patterns of marginalisation and facilitation that result in unequal disaster risk – at worst delegitimising the politics that target structural causes of disasters.
  • Sarvikivi, Marja-Leena (Hanken Svenska handelshögskolan, 2020-03-27)
    Tryckt reklam har studerats såväl inom marknadsföring som lingvistik. Studierna har gällt bl.a. annonsinnehåll, kommunikationsstrategier, annonsernas effekt eller effektivitet, stilistiska element, metaforer och retorik, humor och kulturella frågor. Också interaktionen mellan det textuella och det visuella har studerats. Avsikten med denna studie är att överbygga den klyfta jag upplevt existera mellan lingvistiska studier av annonser och studier av reklam som en del av marknadsföring och därmed uttryck för marknadsföringstänkande. I studien granskas elementen i annonserna som uttryck för ett mera omfattande fenomen, utvecklingen av marknadsföringstänkandet. I ljuset av varuhuset Stockmanns tidningsannonser från ett sekel, 1902 (1900) – 2002, då tryckt reklam varit dominerande, har jag utforskat och belyst utvecklingen av marknadsföringstänkande och reklam i Finland. Materialet består av annonser med början från den tid marknadsföringsdisciplinen av de flesta forskare anses ha existerat. Studien har tre teoretiska referensramar: skolbildning inom marknadsföring, definition av marknadsföring samt reklamens basformat, vilka härletts från en innehållsmässig periodisering av marknadsföring och reklam. Metoderna i studien är innehållsanalys och periodisering. Analysen gäller annonserade produkter, vädjan för dem, det visuella samt relationen mellan det textuella och det visuella. Studien avser annonsinnehållet, vad annonserna är, inte vad annonserna gör, dvs. deras effekt eller effektivitet. I studien kan avläsas marknadsföringstänkandets utveckling från dominerande produkt- och nyttofokus mot kundfokus. Under 1900-talets första decennier annonseras framför allt nyttoprodukter och annonserna består av produktuppräkning. Vädjan är textuell, rationell och informerande. Småningom går vädjan över från textuell till textuell och visuell. Det visuella blir dominerande och texten verkar som stöd till det visuella under de sista studerade decennierna. Med avseende på annonserade produkter och karaktären av vädjan är 1950-talet och 1970-talet brytningspunkter. I början på 1950-talet blir annonser för fritidsartiklar frekventa, kosmetikannonser vanligare och vädjan upptar personifiering av varor. I annonserna från 1970-talet avspeglas den spirande ungdomskulturen, kosmetik annonseras frekvent, och det visuella får en dominerande roll i vädjan. Under de sista studerade decennierna upptar vädjan särskilt inom kosmetik, livsmedel och hälsoprodukter individuellt välbefinnande och njutning, självförverkligande eller självtransformation. Tjänsterna utvecklas från tjänster med produkten i fokus mot tjänster med fokus på kundens individuella önskemål och tjänster av upplevelsekaraktär. Studien fyller ett angeläget empiriskt behov. Den innehållsmässiga periodiseringen av elementen i annonserna reflekterar marknadsföringstänkandet under ett sekel i Finland. Studien bidrar till insikten om produkternas förändrade roll för konsumenterna och dess beaktande i marknadsföringstänkandet. I studien sammanbinds praxis och teori, språkliga och visuella uttryck i reklamen som uttryck för marknadsföringstänkandet. Utöver till kunskap om marknadsföringstänkandets och reklamens utveckling i Finland bidrar studien till kunskap om varuhuset Stockmanns utveckling samt om utvecklingen av Stockmanns tidningsannonsering under hela den tid tryckta medier dominerat i reklamen.
  • Dube, Apramey (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-03-20)
    Smartphone apps have become the new universal language through which customers interact with service providers. We are in an app economy in which most everyday service experiences are mediated through apps. The devices that started this revolution, smartphones, have become deeply embedded in the lives of customers with little restrictions on time and place regarding their use. If a reader today pauses to check his or her mobile phone, it is likely to be a smartphone filled with various apps, some of which are used many times daily, whereas others are never used. Never before has technology facilitated such a close and widely varied availability of service to customers, regardless of time and place. However, extant research remains highly influenced by traditional restraints of time and place in service provision. Specifically, a gap exists in investigating service experiences with an empirical service context that offers wide flexibility of time and space. To address this research gap, this thesis presents an evolved conceptualisation of service experience derived from customer use of smartphone apps. Apps are conceptualised as service platforms without any time and space constraints and their ubiquitous presence in customers’ everyday lives helps to illustrate the role of the everyday life in influencing service experiences. The research design employed for this thesis comprised of three studies. In the pilot study, respondents were asked to write auto-narratives of their service experience with a particular smartphone app (BBC World News app). In the main study, 23 semi-structured narrative interviews were conducted in which respondents narrated their service experience with multiple apps in their everyday lives. In addition, a third source of empirical data included collection and analysis of app store descriptions of smartphone apps that respondents experienced. The findings of this research contribute in expanding the prevailing understanding of service experience. They show that customers’ service experiences include both direct use experiences (that require direct app use), as well as indirect use experiences (that do not require direct app use). Furthermore, customers have service experiences that were intended or unintended by service providers and several unintended experiences are hidden from them. These four types of service experiences form combinations that differ from each other in exhibiting different app download, use and deletion behaviour. The indirect and unintended components of service experiences highlight an underutilised and scarcely investigated part of holistic service experiences. Although originating from app use, these findings are also applicable to newer service platforms that provide flexibility of time and place and ubiquitous ease-of-use. Therefore, the thesis recommends that service providers must keep in mind the potential indirect and unintended service experiences that customers may have with their service platforms.
  • Jongsma, Daniël (Hanken School of Economics, 2020-01-14)
    As a result of extensive, if incomplete, harmonization efforts in the area of copyright law most of the rights granted to authors and related rights holders now originate in EU law. This makes the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) an important authority with regard to the construction of copyright law in the EU. It appears the CJEU has accepted this role with great enthusiasm, achieving ever greater harmonization through an expansionist interpretation of the acquis communautaire. Increasingly, the CJEU pays attention to the impact of copyright on fundamental rights, such as the right to freedom of expression, considering that copyright must maintain a “fair balance” of rights and interests. Accordingly, fundamental rights are used as interpretative arguments when defining the scope of protection offered by copyright. This begs the question about the functionality of fundamental rights arguments in the process of judicial norm-making by the CJEU. This question is at the centre of this dissertation. To answer this question, this dissertation provides a systematic and critical analysis of both the CJEU’s interpretation of copyright norms generally and its use of fundamental rights arguments specifically. It does so against a legal theoretical background of proportionality analysis and balancing. It is argued that the CJEU frequently implicitly strives to find a “balance” between the interest of right holders in an “appropriate reward” and other rights and interests, but that this approach is often clouded by confusing rhetoric that obscures the true reasons for the CJEU’s decision-making. Even where it more explicitly emphasizes the need for copyright law to preserve a “fair balance of rights and interest”, the meaning and content of this concept is left unclear. Most importantly, the CJEU does not explain the precise content of the rights and interests to be balanced. The result is that its decision-making is opaque, not always coherent and often unpredictable. This dissertation makes several recommendations for a more coherent approach to the use of fundamental rights arguments in EU copyright adjudication. Importantly, the CJEU should more explicitly and more consistently focus on copyright’s purpose to provide right holders with an appropriate reward, taking account of both the empirical and normative uncertainty about the degree to which that reward can really be justified. To give full effect to fundamental rights, it is argued that limitations and exceptions to the rights of right holders can typically be construed broadly, since the right holder’s interest in an appropriate reward can be safeguarded by assessing whether the application of those provisions “preserves a fair balance”. Finally, remedies should be applied flexibly in a way that recognizes their potential limiting effect on fundamental rights but that respects the legislative prerogative to determine the boundaries between exclusivity, remuneration, and free use.
  • Al Nabulsi, Nasib (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-12-03)
    The financial crises during 2008 followed by quantitative easing environment implemented by central banks significantly affect macroeconomic stability. Since 2015, negative interest rate become a new phenomenon in the Euro area and in countries like Sweden and Denmark. These events revive the interest in how monetary policy channels influence economic output and financial markets. This dissertation consists of three essays that examine the correlation between monetary policy tools and economic activities—more specifically, interest rates, asset prices, consumption and economic growth in the context of the Nordic countries, with accounting for structural changes in the correlation between the variables. The first essay focuses on the predictive content of stock returns, short-term interest rates and the term spread by using non-linear regime switching models for forecasting GDP growth in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. The paper applies the threshold autoregressive (TAR) model-switching approach and regime-switching signals which combine the inversion of the yield curve and the recession as the signal to switch between economic states. The results suggest that the TAR model approach with an inversion–recession signal is preferable for predicting economic activity in all four of the Nordic countries. Among the Nordic countries, the predictive relationship between financial variables and economic activity is found to be the strongest in Finland and Sweden. The second essay uses time-varying parameter vector autoregression model and impose an exogenous monetary tightening shock on the Swedish equity market. The main findings are that monetary tightening shock results in a decrease in both components of the price—fundamental and mispricing. The nominal price is more responsive to the monetary policy shock after the year 2000. On average, the fundamental component of the asset price accounts for less than 40% of the expected response to a tighter monetary policy. These results are consistent with a “leaning against the wind” policy view. However, they contrast with the rational asset price bubble theory. The third essay examines the relative correlations between housing, stock-price movements and private consumption in Denmark, Finland and Sweden by means of time-varying parameter vector autoregression model to account for structural changes during economic restructuring periods and boom/bust cycles. The results suggest that the expected response of consumption to a shock in housing prices is higher in comparison to financial wealth. Furthermore, the results show the dynamic nature of the consumption response to wealth shocks, where the magnitude of the consumption response differs across the study period. There are shifts in how consumption responds to the housing price shock post-economic restructuring period in the 1980s. These shifts reflect the need to address the changing structure of the dependences between economic variables when examining the wealth effect on consumption in the Nordic context.
  • Meyer, Niclas Oskar (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-11-25)
    CEOs and the board of directors have the main decision-making power in a firm and hence carry a significant responsibility for its performance. Consequently, they are often blamed when their firms are caught for misconduct. As Karpoff, Lee, and Martin (2008) note, it is important to know whether corporate governance and the director and CEO labor markets work to deter misconduct and scandals, i.e. whether culpable individuals incur personal penalties, as a lack of penalties would indicate to policy makers that more oversight and regulation might be needed. Prior research documents that CEOs and directors are disciplined following economic misconduct. However, firms may be involved in other types of scandals, such as customer fraud, environmental violations, employee disputes, etc. Such scandals relate to a firm’s Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards or its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – and have been argued to be potentially costly for firms, their shareholders, and stakeholders. Yet little is known about whether CEOs and directors suffer personal costs following stakeholder-related corporate misconduct. The three essays in this thesis study consequences for CEOs and directors following ESG/CSR-related scandals. In the first essay, we examine whether directors of US firms with the highest numbers of CSR controversies in a year experience losses in their reputations in the director labor market. We find that independent directors, who lose their seat at the focal firm’s board, and affiliated directors, who retain their seat, lose seats at other firms’ boards in the future. Additionally, we find that, among “controversial” independent directors, losses are significant only for directors who serve on the governance committee. The second essay investigates whether firms’ risk exposures to ESG issues affect the career prospects of directors of Stoxx Europe 600 firms. Employing panel data regressions, I find that directors’ career prospects decline when a firm has had very high or extremely high risk exposure to ESG issues. Furthermore, prior literature documents significant variation in ESG rankings between firms in different countries. Examining European firms allows studying if legal origin, as well as other country-level variables, affect penalties to directors following ESG scandals. I find that penalties vary by legal origin: contrary to expectations, penalties are severe in common-law countries, where firms, on average, score the lowest on ESG rankings, and somewhat weaker in civil-law countries, where firms, on average, score the highest on ESG rankings. In the third essay, we study CEO turnover following ESG scandals. Using logistic regression models, we find that the likelihood of CEO turnover increases significantly following environmental and governance issues, but not following social issues. In addition, we find that firms in common-law countries rely on ex post penalties, whereas firms in civil-law countries appear to rely on ex ante (governance, regulation, etc.) mechanisms, to deter ESG-scandals.
  • Mohamadi, Ashkan (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-11-06)
    The popularity of entrepreneurship as a practice is matched by scholars’ increasing attention to the phenomenon. In the management literature, entrepreneurship has become a field in its own right. Several scholars have argued that the right types of entrepreneurship, such as opportunity entrepreneurship, are an important driver of economic development and growth through employment, innovation, and structural transformation. Thus, it is unsurprising that finding ways to encourage entrepreneurship, especially the preferred types, is of interest to researchers and policymakers alike. In order to do so, they need to understand why the incidence of entrepreneurship is different from one country to another, and in that respect, country-level factors are determining the rate of entrepreneurship. These factors create the environment in which entrepreneurial opportunities and activities can be defined, generated, and also limited. Surprisingly, however, our understanding of the ways in which these national and institutional environments are fertile or fatal for entrepreneurship is limited, and study results on the benefits of various aspects of institutions to entrepreneurship continue to be debated. The overall objective of this thesis and the cases presented herein is to investigate how institutions and institutional factors affect opportunity exploitation at country level. We acknowledge that both institutional settings and the process of opportunity exploitation are complex phenomena. To address the research objective, this thesis builds on two co-authored research articles and one sole-authored. The methodological approach of the current work is nomothetic and quantitative. Moderation analysis at country level is the main approach applied in all the articles. As a result, we examined regression models that include interaction terms. In the articles, we perform fixed effect regression analyses. To be able to do the analyses, we utilize data from Adult Population Surveys of Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM). Previously a challenge in studying country-level entrepreneurship, institutions, and policymaking has been the lack of data. In recent years, the rise of GEM as harmonized and internationally comparable database on entrepreneurial activities has created the opportunity more effectively to conduct research in those areas. This thesis fills two specific gaps. First, our articles examined under-investigated institutional settings, in order to stimulate future research. This furthered our understanding, recognizing several theoretical concepts such as institutional incongruence. Additionally, we conclude that different aspects of institutions should not be considered and studied in isolation. Second, instead of studying direct impacts on startup rates, we examined how opportunities are discovered and exploited at country level. This is important because opportunity discovery is a major step in the entrepreneurship process, and we learned more about economic development through entrepreneurship, following the research stating that opportunity entrepreneurship is the preferred type of entrepreneurship for that purpose.
  • Ahlvik, Catarina (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-08-12)
    Today, the word mindfulness is so widely used that the profundity of this practice is sometimes overlooked. Furthermore, some articles, mostly in practitioner-oriented journals, have raised the concern of mindfulness practice having a pacifying effect on employees. This concern often stems from the notion of mindfulness having a non-judgmental component and the fear that this component may create complacency in the workplace. This is, however, a misreading of the practice, as non-judgement in this context refers to how to skillfully relate to one’s own experience. A non-judgmental attitude or attitudes such as acceptance and self-compassion are qualities that can facilitate contact with uncomfortable experiences and may thus diminish impulsive or defensive reactions. Thus, a non-judgmental attitude does not refer to complying with potentially disharmonious external conditions; rather, it enables turning towards and experiencing the present circumstances exactly as they are. In this thesis, I tackle this question in detail both theoretically and empirically, and show that mindfulness develops personal resources and may indeed be a powerful trigger for agency. Agency here refers to purposeful engagement with the social context, aiming to alter or maintain that context. Specifically, I argue that mindfulness may trigger what I refer to as institutional awareness, that is the ability to be aware of the emotional and cognitive impact of the institution in which you are embedded. Furthermore, I empirically show that mindfulness supports change-oriented behavior in organizations and that it does so through facilitating autonomous choice. Choices and actions are seen as autonomous when they are congruent with a person’s authentic interests and values. In line with previous research in clinical settings, I also show that mindfulness reduces, stress, burnout and increases the ability to detach from work after working hours. These findings are the result of a large-scale randomized field intervention, where 130 managers from four organizations in Finland participated in an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course.
  • Ritvanen, Hannu (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-08-07)
    This thesis has two aims: firstly to discuss and answer what are Intellectual Capital (IC)-related risks, and secondly to develop a framework for decision-makers for managing IC-related risks in an organisational context and practice. The main discipline and contributions of the thesis are in IC theory. Risk theory forms an important element to the contribution. The presumption is that risks occur in relationships, while results are shown in entities or in new tensions in relationships. Knowledge is seen as relational, between subject and object, between knower and known (or not known). The dominant classification, the ‘IC-Triad’ (human, structural and relational capitals), is an artefact from the time when IC was understood from an accounting perspective with financial and intangible assets. In this thesis an alternative is proposed. If classification is understood as a means to make sense of the complex world for managerial purpose, it is better to interpret the managerial task with concepts as close to the managerial reality as possible. I suggest re-conceptualising the original ‘IC-Triad’ to address arguably one of the most difficult, yet most common, managerial tasks: how to manage risk. Practitioners must in temporal flow of events ‘make do, with what is available’; I see them as ‘bricoleurs’. The ultimate aim of this thesis is to give decision-makers, through a practical framework for managing risk, more than they currently have available. Related IC and Intellectual Capital Management (ICM) discourses and the Risk Management (RM) literature have been reviewed. The conclusion from the IC literature review is that the dominant ‘IC-Triad’ needs to be re-conceptualised, including relationships, by developing a full ‘relational approach’ to Intellectual Capital Risk Management. This means that knowledge and knowing are understood as ‘existing’ in relationships between the subject (knower) and object (known). The object of enquiry can be entities or potential relationships between objects. The conclusion from literature review is that the conceptualisations underlying ISO 31000 are appropriate to the purpose of managing risks, risk defined as: the ‘effect of uncertainty on objectives’. The ICRM Framework is the main contribution to the IC, ICM and IC risk literatures by defining IC-related risks, identifying (with an emphasis on finding) IC-related risks in the practical organisational context and bridging the gap between management and operations by identifying the essential uncertainties in the organisational domain operationalised as epistemic holes in three temporal dimensions: ex-ante, present, and ex-post. The key is to avoid the ‘optimistic agenda’ by taking all essential uncertainties into account for decision-making and sharing the objectives of the organisation to all decision-makers. The risk identification process further ensures that the objectives are commonly known and that all events, whether positive or negative at the time of assessment, are also shared.
  • Sohn, Minchul (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-06-17)
    Natural hazards are events that take place as a result of naturally occurring processes. They have the potential to become disasters when they destroy the lives and/or livelihoods of a vulnerable population that cannot anticipate, cope with, resist, or recover from the impact of natural hazards using their own resources. For example, combined with the critical conditions of exposure and vulnerability, recurring small-scale seasonal climate risks (e.g., floods or droughts) become a disaster if a community’s functioning is undermined. In addition, there is substantial evidence that patterns of climate variability are changing, especially in terms of increased heavy rainfall events, prolonged dry spells, and shifts in seasonal rainfall patterns. Such seasonal climate risks are undoubtedly affecting many developing regions of the world and have significant implications for the vulnerable people living in these areas. To mitigate the negative impacts of recurring seasonal climate risks, there is a need to effectively manage humanitarian logistics and supply chains as well as develop strategies to cope with these risks and their associated uncertainty in terms of variability, even if their consequences do not always have catastrophic impacts. Thus, it is important to build and implement a preparedness approach that can fully exploit the risk mitigation strategies available to manage climate-related hazards as a means of improving the ability of humanitarian supply chains to deal with the potential impacts of seasonal climate risks and unpredictable variability. The overarching objective of the thesis is to investigate how humanitarian logistics preparedness can contribute to efforts to mitigate the negative impacts of a particular set of recurring natural hazards. It aims to examine conceptually how mitigating disaster risk could be incorporated into the management of humanitarian logistics and supply chains. This aim is addressed by developing the argumentation in support of the concept of developmental relief. Empirically, this thesis aims to explore the utilisation of seasonal climate information as part of humanitarian logistics preparedness activities to mitigate the negative impacts of seasonal climate risks. Seasonal climate information is rarely used in humanitarian logistics preparedness, even though there is a wealth of available information on seasonal climates and the whole area is well-recognised as foundational for effective disaster risk management. In this thesis, seasonal climate information and its utilisation by responding organisations constitute an important medium to explore the primary aim set out above, which addresses the inter-relationships between humanitarian logistics preparedness, mitigation of disaster risks, and seasonal climate risks. In addition, and as a result of the author’s experiences when conducting the fieldwork research underpinning this study, this thesis also examines the benefits and challenges associated with the process of performing fieldwork-based research that can drive solid insights into the phenomenon of interest.
  • Reunanen, Mika (Hanken School of Economics, 2019-05-08)
    The purpose of the research is to give understanding what is the company law background concerning the use of mezzanine financing, how mezzanine instruments are handled from accounting and taxation perspective and how they are used in the market today. On top of that is reviewed the size of mezzanine market in relevant countries. The main focus is in Finland and comparison is done to Sweden, Estonia, USA, UK and Germany. The differences of legal frameworks and markets in relation to the discussed financing form are analysed. The research objective has been to conclude what are some of the main differences of company regulation, accounting and taxation rules and local market conditions related to the topic in question. Additionally, is reviewed how mezzanine could be used in bank lending going forward in order to support functioning capital markets. In the review of legal background, the focus has been on company law solely. Reference to other legislation is made only if it is necessary to understand better the specific company law regulation in question. The analysis of applicable accounting rules has concentrated on the local GAAP and IFRS regulation. In the review of taxation rules is focused on thin capitalisation rules and deductibility of interest from the borrower´s view. When reviewing the local market conditions, the attention has been given to the size of the market in terms of amount of venture capital actors, volumes of venture capital investments, number of banks and volumes of bank loans. The research is based on academic and professional literature in company law and finance. The outcome of the research is that there are significant differences in the company law, accounting rules and taxation regulation between the observed countries. There are also significant differences in mezzanine markets between the observed countries due to variation of actors and their capacity to provide financing. This influences on the availability of the mezzanine financing in general. Additionally, it can be concluded that mezzanine is a potential bank lending form. Mezzanine financing could be used especially in situations where customer does not have collateral to offer and bank would be prepared to grant financing even with traditional debt instruments. Mezzanine instruments give also additional possibilities for a bank to price the lending to reflect better the risk of the financing transactions. However, mezzanine cannot be a tool which would allow banks to step to transactions or projects which would be riskier than those transactions or projects which are financed by banks today with traditional senior debt loan instruments. It is rather a tool which would provide to banks additional alternatives to price more accurately the risks they would take anyhow.
  • Huang, Kun (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2019-02-08)
    Since the stock market crash of October 1987, extensive research has been carried out on modelling implied volatility for option pricing. The three essays of this thesis investigate how to generate arbitrage-free and smile-consistent implied volatility using various option pricing models. The first essay studies the efficiency of the Vanna-Volga method in equity options markets. The Vanna-Volga method is commonly used in the FX options market to manage implied volatility surface and hedge against the movement of underlying asset prices. However, this method has not attracted much attention in other derivative markets. Apart from the Vanna-Volga method, the accuracy of two approximations of Vanna-Volga implied volatility are also examined. The compelling numerical results provide evidence to support the efficiency of the Vanna-Volga method and two approximations for building a smile-consistent implied volatility of the equity index option. The second essay studies the Heston (1993) model, which is the most successful stochastic volatility model, in a local volatility context. The hybrid model combines the advantages of the local volatility and stochastic volatility models, and minimizes their downsides by incorporating a leverage function which reflects the weights of local and stochastic volatility. The challenge for implementing the hybrid model is the computation of the leverage function. The study results convince us of the better performance of the hybrid model than the pure Heston model. In recent years, the negative interest rate has become a feature of financial markets. The negative interest rate spawns serious problems for financial modelling, particularly for option pricing and hedging in interest rate derivative markets. The benchmark model for pricing and hedging interest rate derivatives was Hagan's asymptotic expansion of implied volatility which is built under the SABR process. However, the weakness of Hagan's asymptotic expansion came to light in the case of negative interest rates. The third essay explores a different asymptotic formula of implied volatility under the SABR process, and the model was proposed in De Marco, Hillairet and Jacquire (2013). The numerical results show the accuracy of the model, particularly for large maturities and small strikes when the CEV component is close to zero and when the volatility of volatility is high.
  • Sabari Ragavendran Prasanna Venkatesan (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2018-12-07)
    In recent times, there is an increase in the need for longterm aid. Since no actor can handle long-term aid alone, there is an increased need for collaboration between the actors. The actors in the long-term aid possess a variety of organisational cultures. Commercial supply chain literature informs that differences in organisational cultures between the partners in a supply chain lead to a strain in the collaborative relationship. In some instances, the differences result in ceasure of collaboration between partners. This thesis investigates the relationship between organisational culture and humanitarian supply chain collaboration in long-term aid. The aim of the thesis is to examine the influence of organisational culture on buyer-supplier collaboration in long-term aid. The thesis is both timely and relevant for a number of reasons. First, the increasing occurrence of natural and manmade disasters has led to a corresponding increase in long-term aid programmes. Second, longterm aid requires collaboration among multiple actors from differing organisational cultures. Finally, unlike commercial supply chain collaboration, this process has not yet been perfected in HSC contexts. The thesis investigates how differences of organisational culture influence collaboration in long-term HSC aid provision. This thesis takes a qualitative research approach. The findings included a framework that explains how organisational cultural attributes influence supply chain collaboration. The organisational leadership, or antecedent, influences organisational learning and organisational flexibility (organisational cultural elements). These elements influence information sharing (collaborative behaviour) through organisational routines. It can be further argued that there are four mechanisms through which organisational culture develops: organisational routines, organisational practices, organisational flexibility, and organisational learning. These mechanisms influence the mechanisms of supply chain collaboration: information sharing, trust, mutuality, and commitment. The thesis also finds the existence of humanitarian institutional logic as an overarching mechanism that mitigates the influence of organisational cultural differences on collaboration between actors.
  • Schimanski, Caroline (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2018-11-23)
    This doctoral thesis addresses in four articles two broad challenges in the field of development economics. The first two articles aim at providing causal evidence for the existence of systematic profit-shifting by multinational companies (MNCs) with a special focus on shifting out of developing countries as these are claimed to particularly suffer in terms of forgone tax revenue from profit-shifting. The first article re-estimates the results of Dharmapala and Riedel (2013), an influential paper in the literature, using more recent data, expanding its geographic scope and comparing between statutory and effective tax rate incentivized profit-shifting from parent firms to subsidiaries. The second article expands on this by looking into more complex potentially multi-directional profit-shifting flows between any affiliate of the group and other incentivizing factors, apart from lower statutory or effective corporate income tax rates, such as development status, credit rating, corruption and tax haven status of the country. The remaining chapters three and four address labour market challenges in developing countries, whereby the third article still links to the former through the topic of taxation. More specifically, the third article estimates the elasticity of formal work in sub-Saharan Africa, as the transition into formal employment, in economies largely characterized by informal labour markets, is the precondition for domestic resource mobilization from personal income taxes. The fourth article estimates the extent and evolution of race-based labour market segregation and wage inequality in Trinidad and Tobago, in the light of its colonial history characterized by racial segregation.

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