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IWP Conference 2016 – submission deadline extended to 7 December 2015

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Attendees now have more time to submit their work to be considered for the Institute of Work Psychology’s International Conference 2016.

The deadline for submission has been extended to Monday 7 December 2015 – and it’s easier than ever to upload your work.

Dr Eva Selenko, Academic Chair of the conference, said: “We’re delighted to keep paper submissions open for the conference in June, which will look at how work and occupational psychology can make a difference, with a particular focus on work, wellbeing and performance. The conference always attracts a lively and varied selection of papers and presentations and we look forward to reviewing them in the new year.”

You can find guidelines, as well as the submission form, here.

The conference has attracted a number of high profile keynote speakers, including Prof Gillian Symon, Prof Rolf Van Dick and Prof Michael Leiter. Find out more here.

From Sheffield to Kobe – Dr Komori kick-starts potential partnership

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

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Dr Naoko Komori, lecturer in accounting at the Management School, has recently returned from Kobe University’s Graduate School of Business Administration where she was invited to deliver a lecture to young Japanese academics.

She presented a talk, titled ‘From Kobe to Sheffield: Developing Academic Careers in the Age of Globalisation’, to a diverse audience including doctoral students, academics from different Japanese universities, and senior professors engaging in an international entrepreneurial project.

On her trip to Kobe University, Dr Komori said: “It was an honour to talk to such a welcoming audience at one of the top three business schools in Japan.”

Her talk included the significance of develop academic career in an international context, drawing on her own working experiences both in Japan and the UK.

She also had a meeting with Professor Katsuhiko Kokubu, Dean of Kobe University’s Graduate School of Business Administration, and Professor Hirofumi Matsuo, the Director of the Strategic Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Alliance Management Initiative (SESAMI) to discuss about the possibility for building up partnership with Sheffield University Management School.

Dr Komori also received glowing feedback following her visit: “People who attended the talk were very complimentary, and it’s inspiring to learn that my work and career are considered pioneering amongst Japanese academics.”

A female associate professor who attended the talk commented: “We respect and are very impressed that Dr Komori started her academic career in the UK when publication in international academic journals was not common.”

Professor Katsuhiko Kokubu said: “We are thankful to Dr Komori for her enthusiasm in bridging the two schools, and for her talk that inspired our students to follow her path.”

For the latest publication on which her talk was based, click here.

We are 40 – our MSc Occupational Psychology celebrates four decades of success

Friday, September 25th, 2015


The Institute of Work Psychology (IWP), part of the Management School, has plenty of reason to celebrate this academic year.

Ahead of the biennial conference from 21-23 June 2016, the MSc Occupational Psychology programme has celebrated its 40th anniversary. Long-standing staff, and the programme’s new cohort, joined programme founder Professor Peter Warr for a short talk about the history of the MSC Occupational Psychology and IWP in general, followed by celebratory cake.

Prof Warr’s talk covered the history and development of the field of occupational psychology in the UK, and expressed to attendees how fundamental the University of Sheffield’s Social and Applied Psychology Unit (later to become IWP) was in establishing national recognition and generations of researchers – many of whom are still at Sheffield.

In June 2016, the fifth IWP International Conference will take place, focusing on cutting-edge research and theoretical contributions from all areas of work and organisational psychology, with particular focus on the areas of work, wellbeing and performance.

Held primarily at the Management School, the team hopes to see similar success to the 2014 event where we welcomed over 200 delegates from across 36 countries.

Read more about the conference here.

Prof Lee’s paper acknowledged by the Academy of Management

Tuesday, August 25th, 2015


A paper by Professor Bill Lee, Head of the Accounting and Finance division at the Management School, was acknowleged at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management in Vancouver, Canada.

Co-written with Professor Cathy Cassell of Leeds University Business School, the duo’s paper entitled ‘Understanding translation work in the multi-organizational translation of ideas‘, was placed as runner-up for the Carolyn Dexter Award for Best International Paper.

On the paper, Prof Lee said: “The article is about how an initiative that was first conceived in the UK – that of trade union supported learning representatives – was transferred to New Zealand.  The research involved three periods of fieldwork in New Zealand; one when the idea of learning representatives was being developed for the New Zealand context, another when the idea was being piloted and a third after the full scheme had been operational for a while. We discuss how the scheme evolved and changed as different actors either became involved or dropped out.

“Cathy and I have been working together on different research projects for well over a decade; indeed, the first period of fieldwork in New Zealand on this project took place in February-March 2005 and we had been studying  the corresponding scheme in the UK for a number of years before that.”

There are only two all-academy annual awards, this being one of them. There were 3,646 accepted papers at the conference this year – each of the 24 divisions put forward their best international paper for consideration. Lee and Cassell’s paper was put forward by the Organizational Development and Change Division.

A Pioneering Academic: Remembering Tony Lowe

Wednesday, June 17th, 2015

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We celebrated the life and contribution of the late Professor Tony Lowe at a series of events on 3 June.

Over 70 attendees came for a day of events at Sheffield University Management School organised by members of the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) Division and the Centre for Research into Accounting and Finance in Context (CRAFiC).

Head of the AFM Division at Sheffield, Professor Bill Lee, said: “We were delighted to welcome guests from academic and practitioner backgrounds, as well as individuals who knew Tony personally. I was very honoured to welcome many of Tony’s family who helped us during the ceremony to rename the Lowe Lecture Theatre in the Management School.”

“Tony Lowe was the University of Sheffield’s first Professor of Accounting and Financial Management and led The Sheffield School of accounting research, so to see him honoured in the building was very important to us.”

The day began with the Early Career Researcher and PhD workshop and an introductory lecture from Professor Lisa Jack (Portsmouth) discussing social theory and accounting research. The workshop was co-organised with the BAFA Inter-Disciplinary Perspectives SIG and was supported by the Management Control Association. Attendees then split into groups of six to analyse how social theory can be applied to help understand current events. Bill Lee (Sheffield), Doris Merkl-Davies (Bangor), Robin Roslender (Dundee) and Lesley Catchpowle (Greenwich) led these groups.

Following lunch, there was a comprehensive feedback session and discussion on the morning’s events and the naming ceremony. Attendees then filled the Lowe Memorial Lecture Theatre ahead of a panel session discussing the relevance of The Sheffield School today.

Dean of the Management School, Professor David Oglethorpe, and Professor Bill Lee opened proceedings and introduced the panel which was facilitated by Professor John Cullen and comprised Emeritus Professor Richard Laughlin (Kings College, London), Professor Prem Sikka (Essex), Professor Christine Cooper (Strathclyde) and Professor Jane Broadbent (Royal Holloway).

The discussion was broad, but also introduced fascinating insights into Tony’s life and career. While Richard discussed The Sheffield School’s basic principles, Prem touched on how accounting academics can engage the political arena. Meanwhile, Christine profiled the effect of neoliberalism on society and higher education and Jane presented the history of the Management Control Association (MCA), which Tony had helped to found, and the need to revisit The Sheffield School’s original debates. A lively Q&A session followed.

As attendees retired for supper, Dr Stewart Smyth (co-director of CRAFiC) read tributes to Tony which we received from those who couldn’t attend. He concluded: “The day was a fitting tribute to a man who contributed so much to the School, and to the accounting and financial management as a whole. It was an honour to celebrate Tony’s legacy at Sheffield University Management School.”


Find out more about CRAFiC
Find out more about The Sheffield School and Prof Anthony Lowe

Forward thinking: Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Regional Development conference comes to Sheffield

Friday, June 12th, 2015


If the Northern Powerhouse is going to come to fruition, locations like the Sheffield City Region need to innovate. With this in mind, the timely arrival of the eighth International Conference for Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Regional Development (ICEIRD2015) in the city next week is certainly appropriate.

The conference which aims to address key factors in fostering entrepreneurship at national and regional level, share good practice in innovation research, facilitate regional partnerships and promote open innovation networks, is being hosted by academic members of the Centre for Regional Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED), a group of researchers at Sheffield University Management School (University of Sheffield).

Conference Chair, Dr Nick Williams (pictured), said: “Sheffield is a city which is changing, moving from traditional industries to a modern, diverse economy. The debates which take place at ICEIRD2015, regarding how city and regional economies can bounce back from crisis and grow again directly reflect the policy debates taking place in Sheffield and elsewhere.

“CREED is a leading research centre producing cutting edge work on entrepreneurship, innovation and regional development. It therefore provides a natural home for the conference, which is being held at the heart of the University of Sheffield campus. We hope our international delegation will enjoy not only the rigorous academic panel sessions, but also the energy of our city and the university itself.”

Keynote speakers include Professor Susan Marlow of the University of Nottingham who will present on ‘searching for the elusive female entrepreneur’, Professor Aard Groen from the University of Twente discussing ‘Entrepreneurial ecosystems’ and Michael Kitson of Cambridge University who opens his dialogue on ‘The role of the university in the innovation ecosystem’.
Sheffield’s world-class conference facilities will play host to ICEIRD2015, which is to be held at INOX, in the University of Sheffield Students’ Union.

Dr Williams continued: “ICEIRD2015 will focus on how entrepreneurship and innovation can help to drive regional and city economies to grow. Much of the focus will be on how the recent economic crisis has presented challenges and how these may be overcome through effective policy.

“Sheffield University Management School is producing leading research on these topics and will contribute to the debates taking place across the two days.”

Find out more about ICEIRD2015 on the website:

Flexicurity: WOERRC event lifts the lid on future directions

Thursday, June 11th, 2015

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Labour Market Security and Flexibility: The Future Directions of Flexicurity in the Age of Austerity, was the title of an event jointly hosted at Sheffield University Management School by the Work, Organisation and Employment Relations Research Centre (WOERRC) and the Academic Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES)

Delegates enjoyed a day of lively discussion on the subject, covering such areas as the changing political ideology of labour market regulation, the impact of European youth employment policies before and during the crisis and whether flexicurity is a spent concept. Views from speakers were certainly of a European nature, bringing perspectives from Denmark, France, Spain, Greece and Ireland.

The event was attended by a number of scholars, including PhD students, with an interest in the area – speakers included WOERRC members Prof Jason Heyes and Dr Thomas Hastings, as well as Paul Lewis (University of Birmingham), Prof Andrew Gamble (University of Sheffield – pictured above left) and Phil Whyman (University of Central Lancashire), Mikkel Mailand (University of Copenhagen – pictured above middle), Susan Milner (University of Bath – pictured above right), Oscar Molina (UAB) and Orestis Papadopoulos (Keele University).

Dr Hastings said: “The workshop addressed three main questions – firstly, are member states genuinely seeking to achieve flexicurity or will the future of work simply involve ‘less security’ for workers; secondly, what impact have supra- and international institutions had on national labour market policies; and thirdly, does flexicurity need to be re-thought or simply abandoned?

“Attendees readily engaged with the discussions so it was a rigorous but enjoyable workshop, with funding coming from a small event grant by UACES.”

Read more about WOERRC here.

Prof Williams sees European-level successes in tackling undeclared economy

Thursday, June 4th, 2015


A series of high-profile keynotes means that combating the cash-in-hand economy is now close to the top of the European Commission’s policy agenda.

Following two high-level European conferences in April, held in Bucharest and Dubrovnik, Sheffield University Management School’s Professor Colin Williams has recently presented two further talks at European seminars in Brussels.

On 21 May, a seminar was held for the Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion on developing policy towards self-employment. Given the greater likelihood of the self-employed participating in off-the-books work, Prof Williams provided an advisory talk on how the European Commission could join-up its policy on self-employment with its policy on tackling undeclared work.

Later in May, Prof Williams gave a keynote presentation to Copa-Cogeca, the united voice of farmers and agri-cooperatives in the EU, representing 28million farmers. This conference was designed to tackle undeclared work in the agricultural sector and included representatives from the National Farmers Union in the UK, FNSEA in France and their equivalents from 20 other European member states.

The European Parliament is currently engaged in a legislative initiative to establish a European Platform for Combating Undeclared Work which, if approved, will be established by the end of 2015. In 2010, Professor Williams conducted an evaluation of the feasibility and design of this EU Platform for the European Commission.

Out of the shadows: SUMS contributes to high-level conference on combating undeclared work in the EU

Tuesday, May 5th, 2015

Seating Delegates

In Dubrovnik in late April 2015, Deputy Prime Ministers, Cabinet Ministers and senior government officials from 24 European countries met to discuss how they could cooperate to tackle the undeclared economy.

Professor Colin Williams from Sheffield University Management School was invited by the host, Milanka Opacic, Deputy Prime Minister of Croatia, to provide the keynote address on approaches towards tackling undeclared work in the European Union.

The outcome, expressed well by Helena Dalli, Minister of Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties in the Maltese government, was a raised awareness that besides complementing the traditional ‘sticks’ approach that punishes non-compliance with more ‘carrots’ to reward compliance, there was also a need for introducing awareness campaigns on the consequences of undeclared work targeted at enterprises, workers and the general public.

Summarising the view of many countries, Deputy Prime Minister of Bulgaria, Ivaiol Kalfin stated: “Promotion of regulated labour relations between Bulgaria and other EU and non-EU countries is a priority of the government”. The European Commission representative present, Jader Cane, urged governments to make full use of the European Social Fund to undertake coordinated responses.

Professor Colin Williams is currently coordinating a Marie Curie project entitled ‘Out of the shadows: developing capacities and capabilities for tackling undeclared work in Bulgaria, Croatia and FYR Macedonia’, which is seeking to raise understanding among South-East European governments about the need to transcend the ‘sticks’ and ‘carrots’ approach and to tackle it more indirectly by introducing greater awareness amongst citizens of the consequences of undeclared work so that they self-regulate themselves, rather than need to be forced to be compliant through enforcement authorities.

See the website for this project here.

Combating illegal trade and the shadow economy in Europe – SUMS’ Professor Colin Williams paves the way

Tuesday, May 5th, 2015

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Senior tax policy, tax administration and customs officials from 19 Eurasian countries met in Bucharest at the end of April 2015 to learn more about the latest strategies to tackle multibillion-dollar revenue losses stemming from illegal trade, counterfeits, and other aspects of the shadow economy.

Sheffield University Management School’s Professor Colin Williams (pictured above, and with other conference delegates) gave the opening academic overview (PDF) and closing review of policy approaches.

As one of only two academic experts invited, other speakers included senior officials from the U.S. State Department, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the World Customs Organization, Interpol and Europol, as well as senior officials from multi-national corporations in the tobacco (JT International, British American Tobacco), alcohol (SABMiller) and pharmaceuticals (Pfizer) industries.

The two-day ‘International Conference on the Shadow Economy and Taxation’ was co-hosted by the International Tax and Investment Center, a non-profit research and education organisation focused on tax reform and public-private initiatives to improve the investment climate in transition economies, and Euromonitor Business Consulting Services.

Professor Williams, along with experienced enforcement officials, concluded the conference by advising that a new approach was essential as we cannot police ourselves out of the current situation, and argued that we need to make it easier and more attractive for people and businesses to move from the shadow to the formal economy.