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Virtual Graduate Speaker Series

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April 14, 2020 @ 8:00 am - 5:00 pm EDT

Graduate Speaker Series is a bi-weekly series for UofT students featuring UofT graduate students from all academic backgrounds presenting their research and ideas to a general audience of graduate students. We invite all UofT graduate students to attend, engage with speakers, learn about academic disciplines other than their own and build new connections.

Our April 16, 2020 session of the Graduate Speaker Series will be held on Thursday from 6:00 to 7:00pm remote through Zoom.

Register in advance for this webinar:


April 16, 2020:

Amir Sariri (PhD candidate, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto)

“How does Industry Affiliation of Academic Scientists Change the Rate and Direction of Research? “

The potential implications of university scholars’ collaboration with industry has long been the nexus of contentious debate. The prevailing concern among policy makers, scholars and the popular press is that inter-sectoral coalescence of scientific efforts causes research to lose its fundamental depth and become commercially driven. In this paper, I show that these concerns are misplaced for areas of research that have commercial value — that is, the specific lines of work for which these concerns are raised. By leveraging a dynamic measure of research similarity, I show that academic scholars who affiliate with a firm in the right field and at the right time not only produce more and higher quality research, but also publish work that is not really different from the work of their `pure’ academic colleagues. In particular, scarce scholars in `hot’ fields appear to be best positioned to leverage the resources of the firms with whom they affiliate for research without being pushed away from their desired focus. The under-appreciated but alarming trend, however, is the high concentration of research in these hot fields, leading to the starvation of potentially impactful lines of work that can only thrive in universities.


April 14, 2020
8:00 am - 5:00 pm EDT
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