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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: Qualitative Research in Financial Markets, Volume 3, Issue 3
A warm welcome to the third issue of Qualitative Research in Financial Markets. As I hinted at previously, I can now confirm that Omar Masood received such a positive response to his call for papers for a special issue on Islamic Banking and Finance that at least one of the 2012 issues of the journal will be devoted to publishing more of these studies. As ever I would be delighted to receive ideas for further special issues in the future, whether topic- or region-based, so please let me know if you have any interest in taking one of these forward. Equally, as the journal grows in terms of numbers of submissions I would be keen to increase the size of the editorial board so again please contact me if yourself or colleagues would be interested in getting involved.
The current issue features four research papers that focus on both the empirical testing and philosophical questioning of modern finance orthodox, plus a detailed review of Professor Meir Statman’s latest book. The first research paper: “Investment decision making from a constructivist perspective” by Carlo Massironi and Marco Guicciardi, presents detailed modelling that can be used in the study and improvement of formal processes of investment decision making. In the context of prior tendencies for over-abstraction in the extant literature, the authors provide a novel theoretical framework and outline its potential application in three specific research contexts. In “The financial crisis and the failure of modern social science,” George Bragues argues that there was an important epistemological dimension to the recent crisis in financial markets, an aspect generally ignored in the extensive analysis of the events surrounding the crash. In particular, the paper argues that a critique of the positivist-quantitative orientation underpinning financial market research is now more urgently required than ever. The paper concludes by arguing that, while it might not be appropriate to entirely reject mathematical-positivism: “it is now clearer than ever that this method needs be enhanced by more qualitative techniques.”
The third paper in this issue, “Recovery from the current banking crisis: insights into costs and effectiveness of response regulations” by Lukasz Prorokowski, illustrates the way in which qualitative research techniques, in this case interviews with banking practitioners and experts across Europe, can complement and develop insights from quantitative methodologies. The paper highlights issues of response, usage of public funds and the links between these and the strength of existing financial service regulatory frameworks; the paper points to dramatic differences in the extent of immunity to the crisis (and, therefore, the drain on state finances) across Europe, with the aforementioned factors proving a critical determinant of cross-border variability. The final paper in this issue: “Neural network credit scoring model for micro enterprise financing in India” by Sanjeev Mittal, Pankaj Gupta and K. Jain, provides a welcome research focus on a critically important, but hugely under-investigated nation. The article suggests that qualitatively obtained data can be analysed via neural network analysis to improve lending institutions’ decision making regarding the providing of funds to India’s “micro” enterprises. The study explores the usage in this setting of comprehensive information regarding would-be borrowers’ credit risk, rather than simple investigation of “ability to pay” measured via conventional credit scores. The model represents a potential solution to the difficulties involved in assigning credit to enterprises having no past track record, a commonly encountered problem with small businesses in the part of the world examined in the paper.
Finally in this issue, I am delighted to say that William Forbes has provided an extremely thorough review of Meir Statman’s book What Investors Really Want. Without wishing to pre-empt the review, it appears to me to represent an excellent discussion of the issues raised by a fascinating text.
As ever I would like to thank the publishing team, editorial board, reviewers and authors for their continued support for the aims and work of QRFM. I would especially like to thank Caroline Gowen, who has now left Emerald, for all her hard work as editorial assistant, as well as the continued assistance and advice of Simon, Rebecca, Andrea and Chris who continue to make the process of producing a quarterly journal far more of a pleasure than a challenge.