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Kenan Institute 2022 Annual Theme: Stakeholder Capitalism
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Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues

Technology, Innovation & Strategy

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Our 2023 Frontiers of Business Conference will convene top researchers, corporate executives and policy leaders working around the globe to navigate the balance of corporate value and values. Join us as our experts share objective, evidence-based solutions for implementing stakeholder capitalism and ESG frameworks more broadly.

Pless, a Kenan Institute Distinguished Fellow, will discuss the degree to which divestment versus continued investment in polluting industries might help drive the transition to a cleaner economy.

Please join us for “How Leadership Is Changing for Your Generation,” an exclusive conversation with Zach Clayton of Three Ships and Bill George of Harvard Business School. Their fireside chat is offered through the Dean’s Speaker Series, hosted by the Kenan Institute in partnership with UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Interim Dean Jennifer Conrad.

Nuclear power’s star has dimmed in recent years, diminished by the rise of solar, wind and natural gas as well as the 2011 disaster at Japan’s Fukushima plant. Now many nations, suddenly in need of a secure, clean energy source, have plans to reopen or extend the lives of their existing facilities.

Elon Musk’s bid to purchase Twitter for $44 billion appears to have fallen apart, but the reality of what nearly happened, and still may, will probably be with us for good. Before attempting to terminate the deal, Musk spoke with Twitter employees and discussed his vision to turn the social media platform into the world’s town square. The wealthiest person in the world wanting to own space where people gather to mobilize, to call out injustices and criticize powerful organizations and governments, and to coo at the latest cat videos?

Bradley Staats, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School professor of operations and faculty director of the institute-affiliated Center for the Business of Health, spoke to The Well about Amazon’s next move in health care. The online retail giant announced in July that it was acquiring primary care provider One Medical and will now shut down its Amazon Care telehealth service. Staats and co-author Robert S. Huckman recently wrote in Harvard Business Review about three key components to Amazon’s playbook for entering new businesses.

We examine the relation between plant-level predictive analytics use and centralization of authority for more than 25,000 manufacturing plants using proprietary US Census data. We focus on headquarters authority over plants through delegation of decision-making and design of performance-based incentives.

We quantify the causal effects of humorous banter among three rival fast-food brands on Twitter in the context of a new product launched by one of the rivals (viz, the focal or entrant brand). We argue that Twitter banter can cause a surge in online search that in turn leads to higher offline sales.

Adverse events, such as product recalls, transcend business-to-business (B2B) secondary markets (i.e., used product markets). Yet, little, if any, is known about the impact of such adverse events on purchase responses of B2B buyers (i.e., channel intermediaries). The current study addresses this research gap in the empirical context of product recalls in the U.S. automobile secondary market.

Employees often engage in collective grassroot efforts to bring about gender equity in the workplace. Such coalition-based advocacy is largely driven by women, which has led to debate about whether men’s involvement as allies can help. Integrating literatures on signaling and legitimacy, we propose that the demographic composition of a gender equity advocacy coalition matters: Men-only groups lack coalition legitimacy, or the perception that they are the “right” spokespersons for gender equity issues, whereas women-only groups struggle to convey issue legitimacy, or the perception that gender equity is of strategic importance within business organizations.

If companies are going to provide equitable advancement opportunities for remote and hybrid workers, managers must be mindful and leaders must lead, say Jami Stewart of Cisco Systems Inc. and Jes Averhart of Jes & Co., speakers at a recent discussion hosted by the Kenan Institute-affiliated UNC Entrepreneurship Center and the Research Triangle Foundation. Also: A company’s commitment to social impact can be a key to adding and keeping talented young employees.