The conference, held annually, is an opportunity for doctoral students to present their work, through either presentations or posters, and learn from research being conducted across all Henley departments, as well as receive feedback from academics and business professionals.
The theme of the 2021 event, held simultaneously at our Greenlands campus and online, was ‘Innovations across boundaries – applying research to business’. It showed how collaboration between Henley and businesses is a critical component in the innovation process, and the benefits that enhancing collaborative innovation could bring.
Professor John Board, Dean of Henley Business School, opened the event, which saw 12 PhD and Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) students from across Henley’s six academic departments present their research in front of a panel of academics and practitioners.
The panel included Professor Nada Kakabadse, Professor Peter Scott and Dr Peder Greve from Henley Business School in the UK, Patrick Wiedijk, Head of IT Portfolio CX Thames Digital at Thames Water, and Christoph Raudonat, Managing Director of Henley Business School in Germany.
After the presentations, the panel took part in a discussion on the importance of research and innovation, and how research can help business achieve its goals. Moderated by Jurek Sikorski from the Henley Centre for Entrepreneurship, the panel shared their insights, thoughts and experiences and provided their takeaways from the conference.
At the end of the session, winners were announced and presented with prizes. The winner of the best paper presentation went to Aisling Stalley, a DBA candidate whose research focuses on improving acquisition success, and on executive exit trajectories in a post-acquisition context. Aisling said:
“Businesses need to be able to take learnings from the findings of academics and apply them to real world challenges. Bridging the gap between the two worlds can only be win-win. I was delighted to accept the award for Best Presentation for my work on executive exit trajectories in a post-acquisition context. It was great to see qualitative work being recognised and I hope that my findings better inform acquirers on how to retain their executive talent pool in the years following an acquisition.”
Aisling was awarded £1,000 by Thames Water, which she will donate to the LauraLynn Children’s Hospice in Ireland, which is celebrating its 10th birthday this month.
The winner of the best poster presentation was Sabreena Zaman, a PhD research assistant from Henley’s International Business and Strategy department who investigates the innovation of global value chain suppliers who are formally registered firms in developing countries, and how this is affected by competition from informal firms. Sabreena said:
"It was an absolute honour to receive the Best Poster prize at the Doctoral Research Conference and the recognition for my work is highly encouraging. It was an exciting opportunity to know about fascinating research and the panel discussion was very insightful. The conference not only provided an excellent platform to showcase our research to both academic and industry experts but also to meet like-minded people."
Sabreena was awarded £500 by Thames Water. Both winners were also awarded an overnight stay for two at Phyllis Court Club, donated by Phyllis Court.
The event on Wednesday 22 September was supported by Thames Water, Phyllis Court Club, Business Club Hamburg, Life Management Consulting, Henley Business School Germany and the Henley Centre for Entrepreneurship.