Research Projects

Research Projects Results (75)

Law, Social Responsibility, and Outsourcing ( 2015 )

Assistant Professor Gong Jie
: Strategy and Policy
Previous research into law and corporate social responsibility mostly assumes that the vertical structure of production is exogenous. By outsourcing, a brand may avoid some liability and responsibility, but lose direct control over the evasive actions that cause harm. Here, we analyse the trade-off between avoidance of liability and control over evasion. (i) Evasive actions reduce production costs, and so, evasion increases with the speed/scale of production. Under outsourcing, the brand may depress speed/scale to induce less evasion. (ii) Maximising welfare requires comparing welfare under vertical integration and outsourcing, and so, is an inherently non-convex problem. (iii) If demand is elastic, the cost of production is high or enforcement is weak, then vertical integration is optimal. It discretely raises welfare by raising production speed/scale (increasing consumer benefit by more than production costs), and lowering evasion (reducing harm by more than it raises production costs).

Predicting Corporate Frauds ( 2015 )

Professor Ke Bin
: Accounting
Corporate fraud is a worldwide problem, especially in emerging markets (e.g., China and India). If not detected and prevented on a timely basis, corporate fraud can cause significant harm not only to stakeholders of the firms directly linked to the fraud cases but also to non-fraudulent firms that compete with fraudulent firms for investors’ scarce capital or customers. Unfortunately, the detection of fraud is difficult, especially in emerging markets due to weak firm-level corporate governance and country-level investor protection. Even if fraud is detected, it may not be disclosed to the public. Hence, an important research question in academic research is to develop effective methods to detect corporate frauds on a timely basis so that the extent of damages from such fraud cases can be either completely prevented or minimised and an economy’s resource allocation becomes more efficient. The existing literature has employed a variety of fraud detection techniques, ranging from the simple logistic regression model to more advanced models such as the bivariate probit model with partial observability or the SVM (support vector machines) method developed in computer science. The objective of this proposal is to develop new fraud detection methods appropriate for different levels of financial markets (e.g., the US versus China) using new ideas and interdisciplinary methodologies.

Public Release of Enforcement Actions and Financial System Stability ( 2015 )

Assistant Professor Ma Guang
: Accounting
In the wake of financial crisis, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (DFA) puts more emphasis on financial system stability and establishes two new regulating agencies to monitor systemic risk. Meanwhile, financial system transparency is advocated by researchers and practitioners and promoted by the banking regulators. However, the underlying assumption that transparency helps improve financial system stability is not warranted. Especially for disclosures from regulators, it is not clear whether such disclosures will improve the financial system stability, and no empirical evidence has been documented. In this project, we investigate the impact of public releases of enforcement actions on the stability of the entire banking system. Specifically, we investigate the impact of the public releases of bank regulators’ enforcement actions against a bank on the entire banking industry, the role of the peer bank’s financial reporting transparency in mitigating or intensifying the effects of public releases of enforcement actions on financial stability, and the cross-sectional variance of impact due to types and qualities of enforcement actions. Our project will contribute toward the debate on transparency in financial industry and have practical implications for financial regulators. Our evidence also provides rational explanations for some actions taken by the regulators in recent years. For example, during the financial crisis in 2008-2009, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) deliberately halted the application of fair value accounting on some financial instruments to prevent further market crash.

Retailing Analytics with Sensors ( 2015 )

Associate Professor Wang Tong
: Analytics and Operations
In face of increasing competition from online retailers, traditional retailers have been losing their market share. One of the key disadvantages for traditional retailing, besides higher cost due to rental for shop space, labour for salesforce, etc., is the lack of data availability. Not like an online retailer, who can easily identify which customer is browsing what product and for how long, traditional retailers have very limited visibility in customers’ activities in the store. The absence of such valuable data has been the major obstacle for traditional retailers to better understand and optimise their retailing operations. In this project, I attempt to explore various sensors technologies that may lead to cost-effective ways of collecting data on customers’ activities in retailing outlets, investigate statistical methodologies for calibrating models with such data, and optimise operational decisions such as assortment, inventory, pricing, and product display. The framework closes the loop of data collection, parameter estimation, and model optimisation.

Sustainability Reporting and Firm Performance in Singapore ( 2015 )

Associate Professor Lawrence Loh
: Strategy and Policy

Sustainability reporting is becoming a most critical area of concern for organisations all across the world. In particular, more and more companies are required disclose information related to sustainability. Singapore Exchange just announced plans in May 2015 to boost the transparency of governance with sustainability reporting on a “comply or explain” basis and thus making sustainability reporting an important feature in the Singapore business landscape of the future. This research aims to investigate the relationship between firm performance and sustainability reporting in Singapore. Specifically, it will generate a broad-based model of awareness, acceptance and adoption of sustainability reporting and the linkages with the key domains of firm performance.