Let us introduce Susan Cohen of the University of Georgia which is in Athens, Georgia, USA. Susan, you recently joined the TIM Executive Committee as an At Large member, so…
What are your research interests right now?
Understanding how organizations learn and innovate has always been my primary interest and it continues to be a driving force in my work. Lately, I’ve been exploring how start-ups learn and innovate. Much of my work is conducted in accelerator programs -- short entrepreneurial training programs that provide cohorts of start-ups education, mentorship, and often seed funding. They also provide scholars like me a lab to observe the start-ups that participate in them. For example, my co-authors and I are currently using accelerators to view how entrepreneurial firms interact with mentors to coproduce advice that informs strategy, and how start-ups use an evolving pitch to shape strategy.
What do you think is your most exciting contribution to academia?
Three come to mind. First, I was one of the first scholars to conduct research on accelerator programs and would like to think that my work may have inspired other scholars to do so. Second, our 2019 ASQ introduced the term “premature satisficing” to the literature. We define it as situations when firms settle on a decision “when a modest amount of additional search would likely have yielded a far more attractive solution.” Finally, I think the idea of having external structure (vs internal) to aid in information processing is a powerful idea that is yet to take off.
Tell us something personal about yourself.
I was on the founding team of priceline.com and before that part of an innovation think tank. My favorite thing to do is “thinking out of the box.” I also enjoy painting.
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