The Department of Accounting and Finance, Monash University, in collaboration with the Universities of Leeds and Amsterdam, held its second annual accounting and finance doctoral symposium at Monash’s Prato Centre in Italy on 6th and 7th May 2009. The symposium, which attracts a wide audience of PhD students, included 21 doctoral candidates and 14 faculty members from five European countries and Australia. Presentations by doctoral candidates were made on various topics related to the themes of corporate governance and capital markets research.
The 2009 symposium was highly successful. A key success factor of the symposium is the one-on-one feedback that doctoral candidates receive on work they present at the event. Feedback from students was overwhelmingly positive, with the majority of students indicating the symposium had exceeded their expectations, highlighting that detailed feedback from reviewers and personal interactions at the event were perceived to be important to them. For example, one student wrote on the feedback questionnaire: “The overall strength of this symposium is its international focus, the opportunity to network with students and receive detailed feedback from other staff members. The topics presented at the conference are interesting and quite helpful to developing future research”.
Prominent academics and researchers in the fields of accounting and finance who attended this year’s event were: Professors Allan Hodgson, Dean at the University of Amsterdam Business School; David Hillier, Head of the Accounting and Finance Division at the Leeds University Business School; Kevin Keasey, Professor of Finance at the Leeds University Business School; Julio Pindado, Professor of Finance at the University of Salamanca, Spain and Visiting Professor to the London School of Economics; Marco Bigelli, Professor of Corporate Finance at the University of Bologna, Italy, and Adjunct Professor of Corporate Finance at the Johns Hopkins University, USA; Professor Robert Faff, and Professor Don Stokes.
These academics not only acted as discussants, providing in-depth, constructive feedback to students but they also led plenary sessions on various researchrelated topics.
Four students were presented with awards. Elena Delasheras of the Autonomous University of Madrid, Spain, was awarded best paper, Shima Amini of the Leeds University Business School, received the best presentation award, while Ignacio Requejo of Salamanca University, Spain, and Matthew Pollard of the Australia National University were jointly voted by their peers as being the best students at the symposium.
Plans for next year’s symposium, to be held 11-14 May 2010 at the Monash Centre in Prato, is to extend the event by an additional day to include participation by early career researchers and to provide participants with more time to present their work to an international audience. These enhancements fit into the overall objectives of the symposium, which is to provide constructive support to ongoing work, to serve as an international networking opportunity and to enhance Monash’s international research collaboration with other institutions.
Each student / early career researcher will be granted 30 minutes for their presentations, while a further 15 minutes will be reserved for discussion and feedback from both prominent academics/researchers and other participants.