City, University of London produces high quality research on an incredibly broad range of topics. We have put together a quick overview of some of the top research stories from the Insitution in 2016. For all the latest news please go to the Research homepage.
Inspired by Airbnb
We all know when a new business comes along and disrupts the status quo, but how do they do it? Cass PhD student Tatiana Mikhalkina and Professor Laure Cabantous have had their research “How do innovative business models become the exemplars for a new category of firm?” published in Business Model Innovation: How Iconic Business Models Emerge. This explores how a new company emerges and the power of iconic business models. Read article.
More excuses to keep playing video games
Stop feeling guilty about how much time you spend with your PS4 or Xbox. Dr Irene Scopelliti from Cass Business School has published research on decision-making bias and the use of video games. The paper, published in Policy Insights in the Behavioral and Brain Sciences, explored ways to improve upon traditional methods of training designed to reduce bias and improve people’s decision-making ability. The research team developed two interactive computer games to test whether they might substantially reduce game players’ susceptibility to cognitive biases. Full text.
Online dating in The Independent
The saying goes “there’s plenty of fish in the sea” – but what if the fish send you unwanted explicit messages? Laura Thompson, a PhD student from the Centre for Law, Justice and Journalism, tackles just that and has had her research published in The Independent. The feature explores the issue of why some people choose to send graphic images to other website users without consent and looks at how different genders interact on dating websites and how this links to offensive or insulting behaviour. More details.
A better measure of obesity?
If you’ve ever worried about your BMI, it’s time to give that up and measure your waist-to-height (WHtR) instead. Dr Margaret Ashwell, Senior Visiting Fellow at Cass Business School and her colleague Sigrid Gibson, have proposed this new measure in BMJ Open. The research found that 35% of adults judged to be OK using the current measure were found to have higher levels of some cardio metabolic risk factors when using the waist-to-height ratio (WHtR). These risk factors can be early indicators of health problems including diabetes, heart disease or stroke. Full information
Cancer costs keep adding up even after a decade
The cost of cancer treatment on the NHS is a hot topic, and new research from Dr Mauro Laudicella and Dr Brendan Walsh at City, University of London shows that even a decade on, cancer survivors cost the NHS in England five times more than someone without the disease. This study was commissioned by Macmillan Cancer Support and published in the British Journal of Cancer and it reveals that hospital care for the average patient diagnosed with the four most common cancers (breast, colorectal, prostate or lung cancer) costs the NHS in England £10,000 in their first year of diagnosis – but nine years on is still costing £2,000 a year. Academics from Imperial College London also contributed to the report. Continue reading.
UK creativity on the up
If you’re looking to get in to the creative industries, the UK outperforms the US and Canada. Professor Andy Pratt, Director of the Centre for Culture and the Creative Industries at City, University of London, was part of the team behind a report for the charity Nesta titled “Creative Economy Employment in the US, Canada and the UK”. The research showed that employment in the UK creative economy grew at 4.7 per cent per annum on average, between 2011 and 2013 – faster than the US (3.1 per cent). Read on.
High praise for gender balance research
Leading figures from the BBC, Sky, Channel 4, ITV and Channel 5 joined politicians in praising City research into gender imbalance on the country’s top news programmes. Professor Lis Howell is running an ongoing study of the proportion of women experts, reporters and presenters in news programmes. This issue was discussed at the Women on Air conference, which highlighted the lack of women on television and the radio. More here.
Augmented reality can now help you choose wine by overlaying information on the bottle, and is opening the door for brand new ways to enhance online shopping. Professor Ko de Ruyter, Professor of Marketing at Cass Business School, said, “Companies such as IKEA, L’Oreal, and BMW have already added AR applications to their frontline service delivery.” The team’s research shows that adding AR into retail systems could reverse deep-rooted consumer dynamics and helps the customer to make choices that are more consistent with their personal goals. Fast-forward to the future.
Taking your phone to bed causes harmless blindness
Have you experienced that temporary blindness from spending too much time using smartphones in bed? A new study by academics from City University London, Moorfields Eye Hospital, King’s College London, and the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, seeks to raise awareness for physicians and reduce costly investigations, while also reassuring patients. Although ‘temporary blindness’ sounds alarming, the experience is completely harmless, and not confined to smartphone use, but due to the wide use of smartphones in bed, has been most commonly observed in connection with them. Read on.
Malnutrition and obesity on the rise
The 2016 Global Nutrition Report was Co-Chaired by Professor Corinna Hawkes of the Centre for Food Policy at City, University of London, and it reveals insufficient progress in the fight against all forms of malnutrition. Forty Four per cent of countries with data available (57 out of 129 countries) now experience very serious levels of undernutrition as well as overweight and obese adults. Despite good progress in some countries, the world is off track to reduce and reverse this trend. Professor Hawkes said “One in 12 people globally have diabetes now, and nearly two billion people are obese or overweight. We must stem the tide.” Find out more.
Gender stereotypes strong in infants
What have you got for the little kids in your life this Christmas? Something ‘gender appropriate’, or something that breaks those stereotypes? A new study from academics at City University London and UCL found that children as young as 9 months-old prefer to play with toys specific to their own gender, according to the research in Infant and Child Development. The paper found that in a familiar nursery environment significant sex differences were evident at an earlier age than gendered identity is usually demonstrated. It continues that boys and girls follow different developmental patterns with respect to selection of gender-typed toys due to both biological and developmental-environmental differences. Continue reading.
How easily can you spot an online lie?
Spotting an online lie is now easier than ever thanks to a team of academics who have designed an algorithm that can detect lies in emails. The research team from Cass, Westminster Business School and Catholic University of Louvain developed the algorithm by identifying linguistic cues of deception found within online communications such as emails. The full paper, ‘Untangling a Web of Lies: Exploring Automated Detection of Deception in Computer-Mediated Communication’ is published in the Journal of Management Information Systems. Read further.
Men still dominate sports journalism
Despite some high-profile female sports presenters arriving on our screens in the past decade, the story is not the same throughout sports journalism. Professor Suzanne Franks, Head of the Department of Journalism, highlights why the number of women working on the sports desks of UK national newspapers has not improved over recent decades. The study, by academics at City, University of London and the University of Huddersfield, asked journalists why there were not enough women in the field and found aspects of the modern media climate could be hindering progress. The findings were published in the US journal Media Report to Women and built on their previous study which was conducted after the 2012 Olympic Games. Find out more.
Worldwide attention for City economist
The Wall Street Journal cited a research paper co-authored by a City economist which showed a link between national monetary policy changes and decisions by investors to withdraw their money from investment funds. Professor Gabriel Montes-Rojas is one of three academics behind a study that found that sudden actions by central banks, such as the US Federal Reserve, can have significant effects on the behaviour of investors and this can result in financial instability in bond and equity markets. Continue this article.
Virtual reality world helps stroke recovery
Impaired speech and language following a stroke has profound consequences for quality of life. The effects on personal and social relationships are particularly devastating, with loss of friends commonly reported. New research shows a virtual reality world called EVA Park can help, according to a paper published in PLOS ONE by academics at City, University of London. It shows the potential for technology to play an important role in improving the everyday lives of people with aphasia, which is a language disorder affecting about one third of stroke survivors. Further details.
Men 25% more likely to get a payrise
The gender pay gap has been big news in 2016, and this report from Cass Business School, the University of Warwick and the University of Wisconsin is helping to shed light on why it persists. The paper confronts the previous theories, which have all been based on reasons why women might be reluctant to ask for an increase in their pay packet. Co-author Dr Amanda Goodall at Cass Business School said “Ours is the first proper test of the reticent-female theory, and the evidence doesn’t stand up.” In fact, their report shows that females do ask for payrises, but are less likely to get them than men. Keep reading.
Cass leads the call for financial reform
A Cass Business School report for New City Agenda says that Britain’s financial regulators must change to avoid sleepwalking into another financial crisis that will have a devastating effect on our economy and political system, and that crucial changes made following the 2008 economic crash are already being watered down. Get the details here.
Boko Haram’s media strategies studied
Reserach from Dr Abdullahi Tasiu Abubakar shows how the changing media strategy of Boko Haram reflects their change from a peaceful movement in 2002 into a violent insurgency of 15,000 fighters. Published in a chapter of Africa’s Media Image in the 21st Century and based on interviews with individuals who have had first-hand dealings with Boko Haram, the research found that the organisation rose to notoriety through their long-standing commitment to self-promotion, barbaric activities, effective communication with journalists and the western media’s “obsession” with jihad-related stories. More information.
Chinese M&A in the UK
Cass has published innovative research into Chinese M&A market, focussing on acquisitions from China to the UK from 2012 to mid-2016. During this time Chinese companies began making frequent acquisitions in the UK. With the growth of Chinese outbound M&A activities and their foreign direct investment (FDI) becoming increasingly important to the world’s economy, the research is both timely and useful in examining whether these investments create value to shareholders of the acquiring firms and which factors will drive performance. Continue reading this arcticle.