SMS

SMS Virtual Berkeley: Best Paper Prize Session

Held on Wednesday, April 29, 2020 2pm Pacific/ 5pm Eastern/ 11pm CEST/ 7am AEST

This virtual session brought together the eight finalists of the SMS Special Conference in Berkeley Best Paper Prize Competition. In the first session of its kind for SMS, each author group provided a live 5-minute presentation of their research paper around the conference theme of “Designing the Future: Strategy, Technology, and Society in the 4th Industrial Revolution” followed by a live discussion and Q&A with the audience. The SMS Berkeley Best Paper Prize was awarded during this session, and the audience will select a recipient of the "Audience Choice" recognition for the best presentation. The session will be moderated by Conference Program Chairs Sara Beckman and Tyrone Pitsis. 

Learn more about the papers that will be presented in this session below. 

Best Paper Prize Winner: 
Why Does Strategy Need Design Theory? A Framework for Developing Strategy Through Design Thinking 
Violina Rindova, University of Southern California and Luis Martins, University of Texas-Austin
 

Audience Choice Recipient: 
Getting on the Map: The Impact of Online Listings on Business Performance
Michael Luca, Harvard University; Abhishek Nagaraj, University of California, Berkeley (presenter); and Gauri Subramani, University of California, Berkeley

Authors: 

  • Beverly Rich, University of Southern California 
  • Roshni Raveendhran, University of Virginia 
  • Kyle J. Mayer, University of Sothern California

Abstract: 
Why is adoption of AI technology different than adoption of other technologies? We propose that it is due to AI as a process technology and explore motivations that contribute to firm's reticence to fully adopt AI technology using proprietary data from a legal technology company with an AI software product.

Managerial Abstract: 
When a GPT such as AI becomes more commercially available, firms decide to what extent they want to adopt it. Whether a firm “fully” adopts and integrates AI or just experiments is an important choice. By exploring when, why, and which types of firms engage in more complete adoption, our research enables both firms in varying stages of AI adoption and firms that create AI products to develop and implement strategies to achieve competitive advantage given rapid AI technology proliferation. Understanding that customer firms vary in their readiness to fully adopt AI and knowledge specificity pertaining to full adoption can help firms considering AI adoption to develop internal capabilities to integrate AI products, and product firms to tailor strategies to ensure growth (e.g., via renewal).

Authors: 

  • Ouafaa Hmaddi, University of Oregon 
  • Lauren Lanahan, University of Oregon

Abstract: 
This paper tackles the dilemma of substitution versus complementarity between financial policies targeting early-stage entrepreneurial activity and existing support programs such as private investments. We use the staggered entry of the State Small Business Credit Initiative by county to explore its relationship with the volume of crowdfunding campaigns launched on Kickstarter per capita as a measure of entrepreneurial activity. We find consistent evidence of a positive effect on the overall local entrepreneurial activity. While this result supports the complementarity argument, we also observe the effect of state program implementation was primarily driven by failed campaigns suggesting a substitution effect. Thus, we suggest “slack resources” as a potential explanation of the competing effects of complementarity and substitution. 

Managerial Abstract: 
Do public interventions complement or substitute existing support for early-stage ventures? Some argue government support leads to a reduction in the volume of private support. Others argue public funding can signal the venture’s high potential to private investors. We address this tension by considering failure as an outcome of entrepreneurial venturing. Unlike venture capital or patent data, we examine crowdfunding activity. This source provides a more transparent and somewhat less geographically constrained measure of the rate of entrepreneurship. We find a positive effect on total local entrepreneurial activity. However, the effect is primarily driven by failed campaigns. We explain the predominant positive effect by considering the role of excess external resources in venture experimentation. 

Authors: 

  • Michael Luca, Harvard University
  • Abhishek Nagaraj, University of California, Berkeley 
  • Gauri Subramani, University of California, Berkeley

Abstract: 
Prior research has studied the impact of consumer reviews on online platforms, yet many active businesses are not listed on online platforms. We estimate the impact of online listings on business performance using proprietary data from Yelp matched to monthly tax receipts on over 25,000 food and drink establishments in Texas. While Yelp coverage has improved over time, over 40\% of active businesses in our sample have no online listing as of 2017. Using exogenous improvements in Yelp's coverage, we analyze the impact of adding new listings on the performance of the focal businesses and their local competitors. We find that online listings matter for performance: focal businesses improve revenues by 5--12\%, while nearby competitors see a smaller, albeit significant, loss in revenue. 

Authors:

  • Alexander Murray, University of Oregon 
  • Farhan Iqbal, University of Georgia 
  • Susan Cohen, University of Georgia

Abstract: 
We examine how early-stage ventures maintain legitimacy in the face of internal legitimacy jolts—challenges that are initially unobservable to external resource providers but nonetheless affect a venture’s capacity to deliver on its initial projections. Through a multi-study, mixed-method analysis, we abduct three mechanisms through which entrepreneurs maintain legitimacy judgments under such circumstances—frequency, transparency, and consistency of communication. In this way, entrepreneurs bring early resource providers along for the ups and downs of their ongoing journeys to create a vicarious experience for these early supporters, evoke sympathy among them, and publicly reaffirm commitments to their initial projections. We further examine the effectiveness and temporal sequencing of these mechanisms using a large sample of crowdfunding campaigns that experienced challenges delivering on their initial projections. 

Authors:

  • Jarryd Daymond, University of Sydney 
  • Eric Knight, University of Sydney 
  • Stefan Meisiek, University of Sydney 

Abstract: 
Our paper advances understanding of the distinctive role that middle managers play in the management of organizational paradoxes by examining the material practices that middle managers deploy in managing tensions, and the differences that this materiality affords the role of middle managers in managing tensions compared to frontline employees. Our findings are based on a longitudinal visual ethnography of a bank, as it used design approaches and wrestled with exploration-exploitation tensions in the enactment of a new digital strategy. We contribute to paradox literature by showing the centrality of material practices in rendering latent tensions salient. We also contribute to research on middle managers by using a material practice lens to illuminate the distinctive role of middle managers in managing paradoxical tensions.

Managerial Abstract: 
Employees draw on a range of materials, such as Post-it notes, whiteboards sketches, digital prototypes, PowerPoint presentations, and so on, to communicate and “workshop” ideas during meetings. Using video data from strategic product development meetings, we go behind the outer layer of these material interactions to show that these material practices do more than just communicate ideas—they enable managers and employees to visualize and interact with strategic tensions confronting new product development. Further, we show how middle managers play an important role in either readying tensions for strategic intervention by senior managers or dealing with the tensions themselves. Middle managers, therefore, intervene early in contradictions before they reach senior managers so that they manage ‘by exception’.

Authors: 

  • Johannes Loh, LMU Munich 
  • Tobias Kretschmer, LMU Munich

Abstract: 
Today, many digital platforms - such as Wikipedia or GitHub - rely on user contributions to create value. However, little is known about how such user-driven platforms are affected by competition. In the present study, we thus seek to answer two broad research questions: 1. How is the activity of a user activity affected by platform competition? 2. What conclusions can be drawn in terms of competition at the platform level? We argue that competition affects both users' ability to coordinate as well as their motivation to contribute their knowledge. Using data about contributors on two video game wiki platforms and a quasi-experimental study design, we (preliminarily) find that a better competitive position increases user activity.

Managerial Abstract: 
In the digital economy, the content available on many platforms is entirely created by users, yet it is not well-understood what motivates them. We analyze if and how the presence of a competing platform may act as a motivation device in the context of video game wikis. Our results show that a more dominant platform exhibits a more active user community compared to its competitor, mainly because the community is larger, which in turn motivates each user to create more content.

Authors: 

  • Jan Auernhammer, Stanford University 
  • Karl Warner, University of Glasgow 

Abstract: 
This paper aims to utilize design to advance SAP research, discusses the interrelation between design and strategy and evaluates the methodological choices and their implications of strategy-as-practice research. Design and SAP approaches are useful for studying how strategies unfold in uncertain, collaborative and fast-changing environments such as digital and organizational transformation. The paper argues that Design Research provides an opportunity to close the gap between actionable knowledge, the why-to, when-to and how-to of strategy making and practice-theory, the explanation of how agents’ actions create social structure. This paper provides SAP and wider strategic management researchers with important methodological choices when investigating strategy through Design Research as well as their implication for research, education and practice.

Managerial Abstract: 
This paper aims to utilize Design to advance Strategy-as-Practice (SAP) research, discuss the interrelation between design and strategy and evaluate the methodological choices and their implications of SAP research. Design and SAP approaches are useful for studying how strategies unfold in uncertain, collaborative and fast-changing environments especially relating to digital and organizational transformation. The paper argues that the pragmatic Design Research provides an opportunity to bridge the gap between actionable knowledge, the why-to, when-to and how-to of strategy making and practice-theory, the explanation of how agents’ actions create social structure. This paper provides SAP and wider strategic management researchers with important methodological choices when investigating strategy through design as well as their implication for research, education and practice.

Authors:

  • Violina Rindova, University of Southern California 
  • Luis Martins, University of Texas-Austin

Abstract: 
We propose that design theory provides a valuable approach to understanding strategy making, as the goal of strategy is to not only analyze reality but to change it to a firm’s advantage. To orient research efforts in this direction, we articulate a framework for strategy making that is grounded in design thinking theory and prior strategy research. We suggest five design beginnings for generating novel strategies and theorize the processes associated with each. It further articulate the distinctive strategy attributes that design-based processes generate, including novelty, as design involves purposeful creation of novel forms; stakeholder engagement, as design invites multi-stakeholder participation; futurity, as design follows intentions for change and transformation; and flexibility, as different design beginnings afford different paths to generating new strategies.