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National Research Foundation official visits AUS
Dr. Ahmed Alosi, Research Program Managerof the National Research Foundation (NRF) recently visited American Universityof Sharjah (AUS), and met with Dr. Gautam Sen, the AUS Vice Provost forResearch and Graduate Studies as well as four AUS faculty members who receivedtwo NRF grants. The visit was part of the funding process of NRF grants.
Dr.Sen expressed his satisfaction over the visit. "I am very pleased that Dr.Alosi came to AUS. His visit will be very helpful in developing a strong bondand long-term relationship between the research offices of the two majorinstitutions, NRF and AUS. I anticipate that the visit will lead to furtherlong-term collaboration that will move the country forward," he said.
Dr. Alosi first met with Dr. Ilhem Allagui, Associate Professor of MassCommunications at the College of Arts and Sciences who is the PrincipalInvestigator of an NRF grant and Dr. Harris Breslow, Associate Professor ofMass Communications who is the Co-Investigator of the same grant entitled, "TheEmirates Internet Project" (EIP).
Hediscussed with the researchers the progress of their project, its implicationsand potential beneficiaries. The project explores Internet coverage andpenetration in the UAE which, despite enjoying a telecommunication infrastructurethat makes it the region's technology leader, has been the subject of littleresearch on the multi-dimensional impact of Internet adoption.
Dr.Allagui explained, "The EIP is a longitudinal survey project research thatstudies the social integration of the Internet, and more specifically thechanging habits on a variety of levels, personal and professional, in thesociety at large due to Internet adoption. EIP is conducted annually throughthe distribution of 1,000 surveys of Emirati residents. The results are notonly used to merely portray the country's changing habits but also incomparative analysis with the results from other country partners in the WorldInternet Project and for the generation of comparative internationalpublications."
Dr. Alosi also met Dr. Virginia Bodolica, Dr. Martin Spraggon, who are bothAssociate Professors of Management at the School of Business and Management(SBM), and are Principal and Co-Investigator respectively of an NRF Researchand Scholarship Award for a project entitled "Understanding family businessesin UAE through an evolutionary perspective."
Dr. Bodolica updated Dr. Alosi on the research project which combines twounderexplored topics, namely family businesses and corporate governance."Family businesses represent the world's most prevalent form of organization,yet the large majority fail to survive into the second or third generation. Intoday's globalized and hypercompetitive environment the design and adoption ofan effective system of corporate governance might be exactly what family-ownedenterprises are lacking in order to be able to strengthen their competitiveedge and secure their longevity," said Dr. Bodolica.
Theresearch project, Dr. Bodolica says, is intended to improve the knowledge baseon family-owned companies located in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), provide anunderstanding of the ways they are governed in the long run, and uncover thegovernance-related determinants for boosting their sustainability andprosperity. "An increased awareness of the importance of corporate governancecould assist family business leaders in the UAE in developing and implementingan appropriate governance configuration for the long-term benefit of theirorganization."
Atthe meeting with Dr. Alosi, Drs. Bodolica and Spraggon discussed their researchprogress, presented their preliminary project-related outcomes, shared theirscholarly endeavor associated with the publication of a peer-reviewed casestudy and participation in several international academic conferences,discussed opportunities for additional publications on family businessgovernance in the UAE, and elaborated on potential strategies for futurecollaboration with NRF.
Accordingto Dr. Bodolica, Dr. Alosi made several constructive suggestions regarding thepotential efforts that could be deployed by the NRF for promoting theuniversity's research findings in the broader business community, including thepublication of a special NRF newsletter related to our project.