2017 Research in Organizations

The SRF of the Strategic Management Society announces the 2017 Research in Organizations (RiO) Program. The objective of the RiO program is to support empirical studies conducted in organizational settings in which scholars collaborate with managers to address a problem important to both the theory and practice of strategic management.  The grants are intended to encourage strategy researchers to engage more closely with the strategic decision-makers and strategy developers in different types of organizations. Thus, all proposals are required to formally include an organization that will serve as the primary research site and subject of study.


Submission System Opens
OCTOBER 1, 2017
Submission Deadline
Notifications of Review Committee Decisions
JANUARY 1, 2018
Grant Period Begins
DECEMBER 31, 2019
Grant Period Ends

Download the Call


Please send any questions you might have on the Research in Organizations Program to the SMS Executive Office at 

Call for Proposals

Target Applicant: A full-time faculty member or post-doctoral researcher affiliated with a university and a current member of the Strategic Management Society.

Funding and Key Terms: Grants of up to USD 25,000, to support direct research expenses such as data collection and research assistance. No institutional overhead is paid.

All proposals are required to have a Participating Organization (PO) that serves as the organizational setting for the project and a Principal Investigator (PI) who leads the research effort.

Proposed projects must address a problem important to both the theory and practice of strategic management. The project must contain a significant empirical component that involves collection of qualitative and/or quantitative data in the PO.

The PO may be a public or private organization that is either for-profit or non-profit. It may not be a university. The PO will serve as the primary research site and it is a requirement that one or more managers from that organization be engaged directly in the research effort.  The SRF recognizes that confidentiality concerns may impose non-disclosure requirements affecting information provided in publications or public presentations based on the research, including the identity of the PO. However, that identity must be fully disclosed in the proposal.

The PI must be a faculty member or post-doctoral researcher affiliated with a university and a current member of the Strategic Management Society (SMS). A proposal may have only one PI but collaborators may be named as Co-Investigators (CIs). Inclusion of a manager from the PO who is involved in the research as a CI is required. An individual is permitted to serve as a PI or CI on one RiO proposal in this award cycle.

Doctoral students who have been awarded funding through the 2015 or 2016 SRF Dissertation Research Programs may not be part of a RiO proposal. Further, any Doctoral Student named as a CI on a proposal selected for funding through RiO will be ineligible to apply for future SRF Dissertation Research Program funding for a closely related project.

Researchers on a proposal who have previously received SRF funding must disclose prior awards and demonstrate that the project in the RiO proposal is distinct from the previously funded research.

The grants are intended to support research that has yet to be undertaken. Thus, completed work is not eligible for funding.  

The SRF plans to award 5 to 10 RiO grants of up to USD25,000 each during the 2017 funding cycle.  Grantees will be named SRF Scholars. Financial support is provided to cover direct research expenses for data collection (including travel to the research site), student research assistance, and other support that enables the research project to be conducted.  Examples of ineligible expenses include conference travel and registration fees, compensation for PI or CI time, teaching buyouts, purchases of software or equipment, or university overhead. Operating activities of the PO are also not eligible for funding. Determination of eligible and ineligible expenses rests with the SRF.

If a proposal is accepted for funding, the SRF will prepare a written agreement to be executed by the PI and which details the responsibilities of both the PI and the SRF. Monies awarded will be available for a 2-year period beginning January 1, 2018 and paid as expenses are incurred. Reimbursement for expenses incurred prior to the award period is not permitted.

The SRF requires regular progress reports as well as a final report on the project. The final report will include an executive summary of the research findings and documentation of the expenses incurred. In addition, for each funded proposal, the PI, and a manager from the participating organization (if non-disclosure terms permit) should be prepared to present findings from the research at an SMS Conference in a session designated by the SRF for that purpose.  The PI and the manager will receive registration fee waivers for that conference.

Proposals written in English must be submitted by the PI through the SRF website at where additional information on the submission process is available. Submissions are required to contain the following in a single pdf format document:

a) Cover sheet with the following information:

  1.  Submission title Amount requested in US Dollars
  2.  Name of PI and academic affiliation of PI  
  3. Name of Participating Organization  
  4. Name and position of Co-Investigator from Participating Organization  
  5. List of any additional Co-Investigators and their affiliations
  6. A summary (500 words) of the proposed research project

b) Research Proposal of up to ten (10) pages, single spaced, with the following structure:

  1. Research question(s) to be addressed, including relevant literature, theoretical background, and expected contributions to both the theory and the practice of strategic management
  2. Methodology including description of the data provided by the Participating Organization
  3. Cited references
  4. Timetable/schedule (including a description of any work completed to date)
  5. Budget, in detail with disclosure of other sources of funding, including any financial support from the Participating Organization
  6.  Expected Impact of SRF Funding on the quality of the research
  7. Any other pertinent supplemental information

c)  CVs for the PI and academic CI(s), and professional resume(s) for manager CI(s)

d)  Disclosure of any personal or business relationship between researchers and the PO (other than managers employed by the PO)

e)  A description of any non-disclosure agreements governing the research, including discussion of restrictions on publishing outcomes

f)  A letter from the PO signed by a senior representative not named as a researcher on the proposal that confirms the organization’s participation in the proposed research

g)  A letter from the Dean’s Office of the PI’s primary academic institution confirming support for the funding application and acknowledging any institutional financial resources being provided to the project.

Grantees will retain copyright to all materials prepared in connection with the funded project. However, it is expected that the SRF will be granted an irrevocable, royalty free license in perpetuity to use such materials for non-commercial purposes furthering the mission of the SRF. The SRF will omit the identity of the PO in its use of those materials if non-disclosure agreements prevent its inclusion in publications.  The SRF requires that any publication of the resulting research in articles or other forms includes an acknowledgment that the research was funded in part by the SRF.

The SRF website will open for submissions in August 2017, and the submission deadline is October 1, 2017. Announcement of RiO grants awarded will be made by January 1, 2018.

· Contribution to the strategic management theory: Are the frameworks employed, and/or the data to be used, and/or the potential results to be obtained likely to make a new and substantial theoretical or empirical contribution to the academic field of strategic management?

· Contribution to strategic management practice: Is this research likely to yield important advice for managers in private or public organizations and make a significant contribution to the practice of strategic management?

· Research design and methodological rigor: Are the data appropriate for the theory being developed or tested? Are the procedures appropriate for the research questions and are they adequate? Is there adequate description of the methods used? Is validity properly justified?

· Novelty of the research topic/question: Is this research likely to start or redirect a line of inquiry?

· Collaboration with the Participating Organization: Is the PO a suitable research site for topic/question studied? Does the project fully leverage the involvement of the PO?

· Likelihood of project success: Are the qualifications of the research team appropriate for the proposed research? Do the researchers have sufficient access to resources (financial and non-financial) to carry out the project?

· Expected impact of the funding: Is SRF funding likely to make a significant difference to the quality, scope or other characteristic of the project that will enhance its conceptual or empirical contributions to theory and practice?

Submit a Proposal

Ready to submit a proposal? Click below or click on 'myRiO17' then 'Submit a Research in Organizations Grant Proposal' to start the process.