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Seth D. Baum, Stuart Armstrong, Timoteus Ekenstedt, Olle Häggström, Robin Hanson, Karin Kuhlemann, Matthijs M. Maas, James D. Miller, Markus Salmela, Anders Sandberg, Kaj Sotala, Phil Torres, Alexey Turchin and Roman V. Yampolskiy
This paper aims to formalize long-term trajectories of human civilization as a scientific and ethical field of study. The long-term trajectory of human civilization can be…
This paper aims to formalize long-term trajectories of human civilization as a scientific and ethical field of study. The long-term trajectory of human civilization can be defined as the path that human civilization takes during the entire future time period in which human civilization could continue to exist.
This paper focuses on four types of trajectories: status quo trajectories, in which human civilization persists in a state broadly similar to its current state into the distant future; catastrophe trajectories, in which one or more events cause significant harm to human civilization; technological transformation trajectories, in which radical technological breakthroughs put human civilization on a fundamentally different course; and astronomical trajectories, in which human civilization expands beyond its home planet and into the accessible portions of the cosmos.
Status quo trajectories appear unlikely to persist into the distant future, especially in light of long-term astronomical processes. Several catastrophe, technological transformation and astronomical trajectories appear possible.
Some current actions may be able to affect the long-term trajectory. Whether these actions should be pursued depends on a mix of empirical and ethical factors. For some ethical frameworks, these actions may be especially important to pursue.
Extant research posits that mergers and acquisition (M&As) do not create value. Still many firms adopt expansion strategies such as alliances, joint ventures (JVs), and…
Extant research posits that mergers and acquisition (M&As) do not create value. Still many firms adopt expansion strategies such as alliances, joint ventures (JVs), and M&As to grow and enhance their performance. Through performing a meta-analysis on 204 papers that assess the relationship between the three most prevalent expansion strategies formed by firms, alliances, JVs, and M&As and their different substantive and symbolic performance effects, this study contributes in two ways. First, it becomes clear that alliances and M&As enhance a firm’s substantive performance, while no positive performance effect is observed for JVs. In turn, all three expansion strategies boost a firm’s symbolic performance in terms of its legitimacy and status. Second, a distinction between their effects on a firm’s substantive performance in terms of their market-based and accounting-based performance shows that alliances and M&As both positively contribute to a firm’s accounting-based performance, while only the former spurs a firm’s market-based returns. This indicates that M&As have more long-term accounting-based performance effects compared to alliances and JVs, which suggests that in the long-term firms do best by expanding through M&As.
This paper undertakes an empirical analysis of the impact of absorbed and unabsorbed slack, employing three different measures for each slack type, on firm profitability…
This paper undertakes an empirical analysis of the impact of absorbed and unabsorbed slack, employing three different measures for each slack type, on firm profitability. We find that unabsorbed slack has a more favorable influence on future firm profitability than absorbed slack. While all the absorbed slack indicators have a significant negative influence on future profitability, the three unabsorbed slack indicators present positive, negative, and non-significant influences, respectively. The fewer constraints of unabsorbed slack on the redeployment to exploit new opportunities point to its comparative advantage over absorbed slack. We find evidence for the differential impact of absorbed versus unabsorbed slack on profitability in firms with lower levels of slack, which suggests firms prefer to withdraw resources from current business and redeploy them to develop new and more favorable business opportunities.
Increasingly, companies are using alliances and joint ventures to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities. These collaborations are voluntary arrangements between two or more…
Increasingly, companies are using alliances and joint ventures to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities. These collaborations are voluntary arrangements between two or more firms that exchange, share, bundle, and create resources in pursuit of entrepreneurial opportunities. This paper proposes that the innovativeness and risk characteristics of these entrepreneurial collaborations significantly influence the outcomes that partner firms realize. Furthermore, interfirm trust works to moderate the effects of these characteristics and allows partners to effectively manage these arrangements. Using data from a sample of alliances and joint ventures engaged in new product development in the telecommunications, medical, and electronics industries, we empirically test the effects of these characteristics on partner satisfaction and partnership success.
In this study we investigated the effects of news reports on acquirer short-term performance. Our focus was on the extent to which key deal characteristics – the type of…
In this study we investigated the effects of news reports on acquirer short-term performance. Our focus was on the extent to which key deal characteristics – the type of deal, during a merger wave or not or the presence of a significant premium – are made explicit. Moreover, we looked for the effect of the assessment of the deal characteristics by different key informants: board members, top management team members, and analysts. Configurations derived using the set-theoretic approach suggest that media-transmitted signals form complex interrelations among content and informant. We found that investors react positively to deals that are surrounded by unequivocal signals of synergy potential: they contain explicitly stated deal characteristics as well as deal endorsements from the boards and/or top management of acquirer and target companies. Analysts’ assessments of the deals seem to bear little influence on investor reaction. Meanwhile, investors react negatively to deals with low or absent media coverage as well as deals surrounded by signals of ambiguous synergy potential.
When I arrived at Stanford in the fall of 1993, the university was a thriving site of organizational research. The department of sociology served as a sort of epicenter…
When I arrived at Stanford in the fall of 1993, the university was a thriving site of organizational research. The department of sociology served as a sort of epicenter, with workshops on organizational ecology (led by Mike Hannan), organizations in the world polity (John Meyer and Francisco “Chiqui” Ramirez), and healthcare organizations (Dick Scott). In the school of education, Jim March was intriguing a new generation of students with his puzzles and wisdom. In addition to Mike Hannan's joint appointment, the Graduate School of Business featured such luminaries as Jeff Pfeffer, Joanne Martin, Jim Baron, Joel Podolny, and Bill Barnett. Slightly further afield, Ray Leavitt and Michael Fehling had begun to train engineers to think about organizational issues, as they developed computer simulations with nuanced attention to cognitive and decision-making processes. Steve Barley would join (what was then) the department of industrial engineering in 1994 and Mark Granovetter would join the department of sociology in 1995, adding fresh insights from the sociology of work and economic sociology, respectively, to what was already a firm foundation for organization studies. The umbrella organization that linked many of these efforts was the Stanford Consortium on Organizational Research (SCOR), which had been guided by Dick Scott's able leadership since 1988 and hosted an annual organizations conference at the beautiful Asilomar retreat in Monterey, California.
We analyze how entry order in a new field influences the stock market reaction to strategic alliances and acquisitions aimed at expanding firm boundaries. We argue that…
We analyze how entry order in a new field influences the stock market reaction to strategic alliances and acquisitions aimed at expanding firm boundaries. We argue that alliances would be more valued by investors at the early stages of a process of convergence between two markets, whereas acquisitions would be more valued in the later stages. Using a sample of alliances and acquisitions carried out by European telecom firms, our hypotheses have been confirmed.
This paper examines the growth of private corporate influence in American higher education. A key question is corporate philanthropy and privatization at what cost? The…
This paper examines the growth of private corporate influence in American higher education. A key question is corporate philanthropy and privatization at what cost? The terms often used in these discussions are commodification of the academy, privatization of a public good, or the increasing corporatization of higher education. Today, American universities are responding to the demands of the marketplace, as knowledge is being used as a form of venture capital and where professors have become academic entrepreneurs and students have become consumers. The foregoing is made more complex as an increasingly diverse student pool seeks access to postsecondary education, in the face of federal policies that serve to restrict access and financial support. A discussion of the collateral costs of our corporate culture as we face challenges to access, equity, and opportunity in America in the twenty-first century concludes this paper.