Sunderland Researcher wins Best Paper at National Awards Ceremony

Released: Monday 13th January 2014 at 10:31

Kayleigh Watson of Sunderland Business School has won the President’s Award for Best Paper by an Early Career Researcher at the Institute for Small Business and Enterprise (ISBE) 2013 Conference for her paper The Future of Extracurricular Business Planning Competitions: Incorporating Effectuation within Provision.

The President's Award is a new award created in recognition of the huge amount of upcoming talent demonstrated at the conference with some exceptionally strong papers by early careers researchers.

Kayleigh said: “As a leading voice in the field, I feel highly flattered that my work has been recognised by ISBE through the provision of this award. This validation undoubtedly provides a strong platform for my continued efforts to push forward the research and practical agenda within this area in 2014 and beyond.”

Kayleigh’s paper was written out of her concern that current business planning competitions in higher education could be discouraging entrepreneurial activity post competition by putting too much emphasis on business planning, rather than actioning a possible venture.

Kayleigh believes that competition planners should look at the use of Effectuation - a logic of thinking used by entrepreneurs to build successful ventures through utilising who they are, what they know and who they know.

Kayleigh explained how the theory of Effectuation could be used in a practical context. “Effectual principles could be incorporated through the move to the implementation competition, whereby competitors enter with a possibility for venture and proceed to transform and action this possibility within the competition context using who they are, what they know and who they know. The competition would be judged on the basis of this implementation rather than on the basis of any plan produced.”

Kayleigh explained how this approach would promote entrepreneurial activity beyond the competition stage. “It is considered that it will be easier for the competitor to continue with pursuit of their venture post competition if momentum has already been built through action within the competition.”

You can read more information about Kayleigh’s paper here. The Future of Extracurricular Business Planning Competitions: Incorporating Effectuation within Provision

Kayleigh works as a Postgraduate Academic Assistant at the University of Sunderland Business School and is an active researcher within the international centre for Research in Innovation Sustainability and Entrepreneurship (RISE).

You can find out more about Kayleigh by visiting her staff profile page.