Working Papers

This Working Papers Series are produced by IFMR- Graduate School of Business, Krea university . They are published to facilitate discussions and contribute to the advancement of knowledge. They represent work from Faculty and Research Scholars across a wide range of research areas, demonstrating both the depth and breadth of research being undertaken at IFMR, GSB.

© Copyright rests with the authors.



August 2020

Waldron (2012) calls dignity as ‘‘a principle of the highest importance” even though business research has paid “scant attention” to the notion of dignity. Dignity is an essential requirement for meaningful work, and contemporary society has evolved as such that work and workplace have become paramount. Focusing on dignity will allow companies to be organised more humanely and to be able to create a space where individuals flourish and will work in an intense and soulful way. Purpose of the study is to understand how managers define dignity at the workplace. The study tries to bring a conceptual framework for an otherwise vague construct of dignity at the workplace. While available literature defines dignity at the workplace as an individual phenomenon, current study approaches it as a combination of the individual and organisational phenomenon by adding a component of contextual dignity.

Key Words: Dignity at Work, India, Financial Sector, Young Managers, Qualitative 


Super Auto forge: Technology and leadership led growth

November 2019

The case on Super Auto Forge Ltd (SAF) is focused on the integration of operations perspective and market requirements of the company and relate its growth. Starting from nowhere with an ambition to be an entrepreneur in the space of production-driven business and ability to learn and develop the over time, the company grew to be a leading player supplying to Tier I auto component vendor and to OEMs. The case describes how, in a matter of two decades, the company transformed itself by developing cold forging technology, using an indigenously developed process. Pursuing homegrown technology requires zeal, adoption of excellence in manufacturing and cost advantage for Tier II and Tier I parts assembly units, which were the driving force of SAF and its promoter. During this phase, the company focused on the development of processes and managing implementation, which are the key drivers of its growth not only in India but across the globe specially to developed markets. Leadership of the company believed that locational advantage in facility decision can be exploited for the international growth of the firm, provided the leadership is clear about operations strategy formulation and implementation. It took some key strategic initiatives for SAF growth. This included implementation of quality management processes, continuous improvement through learning and operations and people related HR practices.

Key Words: Operations strategy, Indigenous development, Technology Process, Quality Management, Leadership

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP20-010

Impact and Effectiveness of MSME Entrepreneurs Training Program – A Case Study of Journey in Joy

Studies show that bringing in simple practices related to target setting, establishing incentives and monitoring performance can bring about substantial improvements in productivity, sales growth and reduction in product defects of MSMEs. Training entrepreneurs obviously appears to be the most time-tested and feasible intervention to bring about such a change. But are these training initiatives possible? What impact would it have on the entrepreneurs? What challenges would private entities face in conducting such training programs? To answer these questions, a training initiative in Tamil Nadu by Poornatha was examined. The program titled ‘Journey in Joy’ (JnJ) offered business skills training for 27 entrepreneurs in the Southern districts of Tamil Nadu. For this study, data was collected from a survey of all the participants, in-depth interviews conducted with the founder, trainers and 10 participants of the program. Also, data was collected from secondary sources including program content booklets, worksheets and exercises, written and video feedback of participants and business plans that the entrepreneurs had developed as a part of the program. Results from this study point out to a significant shift across entrepreneur mindsets, capabilities and enterprise performance. In short, the program has successfully demonstrated that a customized, impactful and low-cost training program for entrepreneurs is feasible.

Key Words: Entrepreneurship, training effectiveness, MSMEs, entrepreneur mindset

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP20-009



We evaluate lying in school children across age groups with different gender compositions in the presence and absence of peers and incentives. We find (i) significant peer and incentive effects on younger children (ii) lesser lying tendencies in an all-girl’s group at a younger age (iii) Effect of incentives independent of gender composition.

Key Words: unethical behavior, lying, incentives, gender differences, peer effects, field experiments

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-008

Impact of Ownership Structure and Board Characteristics on Firm Value: Evidence from China and India

November 2019

Corporate governance plays a decisive role in the financial performance of a firm. While majority of the firms in China and India are owned and managed by its promoters, the present study attempts to examine the impact of ownership structure and board characteristics on firm value for these two economies. The study employs panel data methodology with industry and time fixed effects on a sample of 1042 firms listed in NSE of India and 450 firms listed in SSE of China. We find promoter ownerships to positively impact a firm’s value creation process, while institutional investors exert a negative influence. Although CEO duality enhances firm value in China, the results show otherwise for Indian firms. Additionally, while board independence is positively correlated to firm value in India, it has a negative effect on firms in China. Lastly, we find that larger board size contributes favorably towards better decision making.

Key Words: Corporate governance; Board characteristics; Ownership structure; Agency theory

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-007

Volatility Contagion and Market Integration across major Coal Markets: A Diagonal BEKK GARCH approach

November 2019

The present study attempts to meaningfully add to the existing strand of literature on coal market predictability by examining the level of market integration across three major coal export markets. Using a tri-variate diagonal BEKK GARCH framework, the study investigates the own-volatility persistence and cross-volatility contagion effects among European, Australian, and South African coal markets. The results validate the presence of strong volatility contagion among the three markets, indicating a high level of market integration. The contagion effect is observed to be heterogeneous across market pairs. Further, while the study finds convincing evidence for volatility clustering, the EGARCH results fail to affirm the presence of leverage effect among the returns series. In short, the study unveiled complex dynamics in the coal markets’ price generation mechanism that necessitates active portfolio management. As such, besides having significant policy implications, the study’s findings would be of pertinent interest to financial practitioners and investors who seek to diversify their portfolio through investments in global commodity markets.

Key Words: Coal Market; Volatility Contagion; Diagonal BEKK GARCH; Leverage Effect

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-006

Community as a Critical Component: People Management Model in Not-for-Profit Healthcare Organizations

October 2019

Attracting and retaining employees is crucial for success of any organization. Competitive compensation system, challenging assignments and rapid career progression are offered as carrots to retain employees in for profit corporate entities. However, small organizations working in not for profit sector lack such resources and hence would have to improvise or innovate ways of attracting and retaining employees. ASHWINI, a hospital run for and by tribal communities in a remote location in India, has tentatively but consciously embarked on a process that emphasizes more on retention of knowledge, skills and abilities than the more difficult task of retaining people. The key feature of talent management at ASHWINI includes creation of a permanent core team of people from the tribal community, who excelled in critical competencies needed to run the community health initiatives and the hospital. To support and sustain the permanent core, ASHWINI has developed a participative culture marked by democratic processes.

Key Words: HR practices, Employee retention, talent management, tribal communities, India

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-005

The Macro-economic impact of financial crisis on private R&D effort in Indian Manufacturing sector: a sectoral analysis

October 2019

The effect of business cycles on long run economic growth and innovative activity has been a central question in macro-economic theory and empirical research. While studies in developed country contexts show R&D to be countercyclical with economic crisis and highly responsive to subsidy programs, in India, not much research has been done to understand the nature of R&D during economic shocks. This study aims to analyze the R&D behavior of firms during economic crisis and the impact of macro-economic policy variables on R&D intensity of manufacturing firms in India during 2000-2015. Among the South East Asian economies, although India is a $trillion economy, it ranks well behind China, Brazil, South Korea in terms of per capital real GDP, R&D intensity, patent applications and high technology exports. Consequently, Indian manufacturing activity is concentrated in low value-added segment in the global production networks. Using Prowess data set on R&D expenditure the study analyzes R&D behavior in Indian firms and attempts to draw policy implications for developing incentives to encourage R&D behavior in a more effective and sustainable manner

Key Words: R&D, Fiscal Incentives, Business cycle, Manufacturing, India

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-004

Investigation on factors influencing online information search: Behaviour of doctors with reference to medical equipment

October 2019

The purpose of this study is to investigate and draw out factors influencing information search among doctors with special reference to medical equipment through online. An attempt is made to highlight the traits of searching behaviour of doctors and information seeking before making a purchase decision through online for their professional requirement for which investigation on the factors which leads to information searching behaviour and purchasing behaviour. The study followed qualitative and quantitative approach enquiry approach questionnaire in the form of survey. Factor Analysis, Regression Analysis and Correlation analysis has been carried out to identify factors influencing online information search among doctors.

Key Words: Medical Equipment, Search Behaviour, Online Information, Purchase Intention

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-003

Product Recalls in India and the Impact on Stock Prices

October 2019

In recent times, product recalls are receiving greater attention in India among policy makers, consumers and regulators after major recalls by firms such as Nestle (Maggi) and Johnson and Johnson. Product recalls are also crucial events for investors as they could cause unexpected changes in corresponding stock prices. This paper aims to find if product recall events have a significant impact on stock prices in the Indian context. We examine this using an event study methodology for three sectors: automobiles, food, and drugs. We also check whether the impact is different for voluntary firm led recalls as compared to involuntary government-imposed recalls. The results show that all the three sectors are impacted but differently. We observe a minimal impact on the stock prices of automobile sector while food and drugs are the most impacted sectors. Government initiated recalls show a higher impact than firm led recalls in case of both food and drug sectors.

Key Words: Product Recall, India Stock market , Event study

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-002

Transport Mode Choice for Commuting: Evidence from India

October 2019

Using the first ever available information in Census of India 2011, covering 640 sub-national units (districts) in India, we analyze the correlates of modes of transport used by non-agricultural workers at the regional level covering both rural and urban areas. Providing a holistic picture from the perspective policy and academic perspective, we bring out some key stylized facts. Further, using the Seemingly Unrelated Regression (SUR) estimation, we model the transport mode choice for commuting by the workers in the context of rural and urban India, and further extend it based on distinction in motorized and non-motorized transport modes. We find that urbanization level, population size and density along with education attainment and worker’s sex ratio (gender ratio among workers), age (elderly) and land use mix play very important role in regional pattern in transport mode choice for commuting. These results highlight the dire need for proper development of transport infrastructure and understanding its various dimensions from socio-economic, demographic and spatial point of view in the context of developing countries

Key Words: Transportation, Commuting, Motorized, Non-Motorized Transport, India

IFMR GSB Working Paper WP19-001

HR Practices, Middle Managers and Organizational Change

October 2019

The importance of Middle Managers (MMs) to organizational change initiatives is well-entrenched in the literature. However, little is known about the contingencies, in particular the role of HR practices, which impact on MMs’ contributions to change. This study, with India as the backdrop, examines the role of HRM and its impact on MMs involved in change initiatives. Findings are based on two in-depth case studies of organizations in India. The paper concludes that importance accorded to the HR function, the coherence of HR practices with change objectives and devolution of HR responsibilities to MMs have a significant influence on MMs involved in change. In addition, the study also argues that MMs are better supported if HR practices are tempered to suit the Indian context.

Key Words: HR practices, India, Middle Managers, Organizational Change

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