The incremental growth of submissions to the IFERA annual conference testifies the increasing interest towards the family business field. Indeed, the submissions to the annual conference have increased substantially in recent years (e.g., +50% from 2018 to 2019). Experiencing such momentum, the IFERA Board decided to redesign its offer of developmental opportunities by offering new initiatives aimed to support the development of IFERA members and new potential participants.
Over the years IFERA has been offering developmental sessions dedicated to doctoral students and early faculty members through the “Doctoral and Faculty Consortia”. These sessions have always been highly appreciated and attended, triggering the interest not only of doctoral students and early scholars, but also of senior scholars looking for insights on theory and methods. Moreover, last year IFERA successfully hosted a Paper Development Workshop (PDW) in collaboration with the Academy of Management Review. The initiative was highly appreciated by all participants who had the opportunity to discuss their manuscripts and receive feedback from the editors. Capitalizing on these experiences, intending to respond to emerging needs and integrating the range of developmental initiatives, the board decided to undertake a strategic revision of all professional development activities, introducing a new project: the IFERA Research Development Program.

IFERA Research Development Program
The Research Development Program takes place on the first day of the IFERA conference (June 24, 2020) and has been designed with two main objectives. First, the program aims to provide all IFERA members with concrete opportunities to develop, enhance and enrich their research capabilities in the family business field, responding effectively to the diversity of needs expressed by members at different stages of their career and professional development. Second, the Research Development Program is created to define a strategic, structured and sustainable approach for a synergic integration of the developmental initiatives.

The project is composed by three initiatives that address different target audiences, offering diversity in terms of contents and final purpose.
As a first initiative, the Doctoral Consortium is designed as an interactive and educational event for doctoral students and junior faculty members developing and nurturing a career of scholarship in the family business field. Specifically, the Doctoral consortium wants to target anyone who wishes an introduction to the family business research, with a specific focus on early stage doctoral students. To do so, it provides an opportunity to familiarize with the field starting with introductory topics and inspiring talks, while emphasizing more the theoretical aspect. Additionally, it proposes multiple moments of networking via close interaction with peers and mentoring by renowned scholars.

Second, a group of IFERA members have proactively promoted the idea of creating an IFERA Summer School, which is now a concrete opportunity. Located in Bilbao and Santander, the IFERA Summer School provides participants with the opportunity to fully immerse in 6 days of in-depth methodological learning, with regards to selection and application of qualitative and quantitative methods in the context of family business research. Therefore, the IFERA Summer School targets anyone who feels the need to engage in a research retreat, to deepen their knowledge of methods for family business research, with a special focus on mid-advanced stage PhD students and early faculty.

Third, after the successful experience of the 2019 AMR workshop, the IFERA Research Development Program decided to include the PDW as a regular format. The Paper Development Workshop (PDW) is open to anyone who has a well-developed paper close to submission on a top-tier journal, as it provides a unique opportunity to engage in “how to publish” presentations made by the editors of highly ranked journals, one-to-one discussions and roundtable sessions, in order to receive detailed feedback about the manuscript. The 2020 PDWs will host the following editors: Sharon Alvarez (Academy of Management Review, Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal), Kimberly Eddleston (Journal of Business Venturing), Franz Kellermanns (Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice), Bill Schulze (Journal of Management), and Gerardo Patriotta (Journal of Management Studies). Submissions selected for inclusion in the workshop will be those judged to make potentially significant and novel theoretical contributions to family business and management research and have the highest potential for publication in highly ranked journals.

An additional incentive to be part of the IFERA Research Development Program is represented by the introduction of two dedicated awards. Research proposals submitted by doctoral students to the Summer School together with those of the Doctoral Consortium will be eligible for the Doctoral Proposal Award. Additionally, during the last day of the Summer School, all participants will pitch their ideas in a Shark Tank. Like the reality TV show, each participant will pitch a research idea to a group of senior scholars, who will assign the Shark Tank Award.
Application for all the initiatives part of the IFERA Research Development Program are open until March 2, 2020 and only accepted applicants will be allowed to take part to the events.
Don’t miss the opportunity, join the IFERA developmental journey!

If you are interested in participating in the Doctoral Consortium, Summer School or PDW submit here (Deadline March 2)!