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Faculty and Scholarship

Thought Leadership in Review

Explore articles that resonated most with the community and see our faculty comments in the mainstream media.

In the past year, faculty experts at Poole College of Management attracted a broad audience as they contributed emerging research, discussed hot topics in the marketplace and weighed in on national issues and societal challenges. A broad range of local and national media outlets turned to Poole thought leaders for their expertise. Check out the highlights below. 

Top 10 Viewed Articles

1. Taxation in North Carolina and the 2023-25 State Budget

Aug. 14, 2023

With fluctuations to North Carolina’s 2023-2025 budget in view, Nathan Goldman and Christina Lewellen, associate professors of accounting at Poole College of Management, consider the implications for state tax collections. When the state collected more than $3 billion above what was anticipated the prior year, Republican lawmakers pushed to lower state taxes to achieve revenue neutrality. Meanwhile, Democratic lawmakers suggested using the funds for other purposes — such as increasing pay for teachers and state employees (both of which are facing record-high vacancy rates in North Carolina) and enhancing public health. Goldman and Lewellen examine the current state of taxation in North Carolina to evaluate whether lowering state taxes appears to be a reasonable path. 

2. 2023 The State of Risk Oversight: An Overview of Enterprise Risk Management Practices – 14th Edition

July 10, 2023
Each year, the Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative, in partnership with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), conducts research about the current state of risk oversight processes in organizations of all types and sizes — with the goal of understanding the relative maturity of underlying activities executives and boards use to monitor the rapidly changing risk landscape. The 14th edition, the 2023 State of Risk Oversight Report, reflects insights from 454 respondents and highlights more than 40 different aspects of risk management practices that practitioners can use to benchmark their risk management processes along several dimensions. 

3. 2023 Global State of Risk Oversight: Managing the Rapidly Evolving Landscape

Oct. 24, 2023
The Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative, in partnership with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), published the 2023 Global State of Risk Oversight Report, which provides insights about the state of risk oversight practices in organizations around the globe. The report contains data from 983 executives as well as information from four geographic regions: Europe and the U.K., Asia and Australasia, Africa and the Middle East, and the United States. The report shows a significant gap between escalating risk realities and overall risk management capabilities, and it offers 10 diagnostic questions to foster discussion among business executives and boards.

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4. Oppenheimer, Ulam and Risk Analytics: The Legacy of WWII Scientists on Contemporary Computing

Aug. 31, 2023
The box office hit Oppenheimer, based on the true story of Robert Oppenheimer, an American theoretical physicist and scientific director of the secret Los Alamos Laboratory in New Mexico, sparked renewed interest in World War II and the role technology played in its outcome. As compelling as Oppenheimer’s role was in the film, several other scientists responsible for the development of the atomic bomb and the scientific computations behind it are not depicted in the movie. Still, they have a lasting legacy that extends beyond science and mathematics into other fields — including business. Sherry Fowler, professor of practice in information technology and business analytics at Poole College of Management, explores the connection between the earliest development of atomic weapons and modern-day data analytics.

5. Report: Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2024 and a Decade Later

Dec. 7, 2023
The 12th annual report conducted by the Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative and global consulting firm Protiviti reports risk insights about current and emerging risks from more than 1,143 respondents — including board members and C-suite executives from a variety of industries and organizations worldwide. Measuring the most pressing business risks over the next year, as well as the next decade, the survey had respondents rate 36 macroeconomic, strategic and operational risks on a sliding 1-10 scale. In addition to identifying these top risks, the survey highlights important steps executives can take to protect their companies against risk and maximize their chances of success in the future. 

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6. Bots Are Not Coming, They’re Here! The Impact of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) on the Accounting Profession

Nov. 7. 2023
Since 2012, when the term robotics process automation (RPA) was first coined, this technology has slowly picked up steam. During COVID-19, RPA exploded as companies sought to maintain productivity in the face of a remote, and often reduced, workforce. Today, RPA is no longer a bleeding-edge technology requiring proof of concept. Companies waiting for it to “take off” may miss out on the opportunities for process efficiencies and cost savings. Marianne Bradford, professor of accounting at Poole College of Management, explores the benefits and challenges of the technology in the accounting industry.

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7. The Tax Implications of Closing Business Operations

Oct. 23, 2023
During the pandemic, many companies both small and large closed their doors due to widespread mandated business closures and consumers’ voluntary behaviors to stay home and avoid infection. In the post-pandemic era, many would assume businesses that survived the pandemic should be thriving, as the U.S. gross domestic product and other measures of economic stability have rebounded nicely. However, businesses did not rebound enough, and consequently, many retailers have continued to close storefront locations. Nathan Goldman and Christina Lewellen, associate professors of accounting at Poole College of Management, discuss important factors that can affect the tax treatment of business dispositions and help business owners avoid tax surprises. 

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8. Back to School: Poole College Researchers Gauge NC State Faculty Perceptions During Return to Campus in 2021

Sept. 28, 2023
As the COVID-19 pandemic raged on, there was a lot of talk about how students and parents felt about returning to in-person learning. But what about the faculty at universities across the country? Many were forced to make quick transitions to virtual classrooms in order to continue delivering high-caliber teaching to their students. However, as vaccines became more readily available and cases began to drop, a return to face-to-face instruction became inevitable. How did the faculty feel about making the transition back to campus? With support and funding from the NC State Office of the Provost, a team of researchers at Poole College of Management and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences set out to find answers to these questions — and offer key insights into facilitating a successful transition back to on-campus instruction.

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9. Should We Be Surprised That Entrepreneurs Lie?

July 14, 2023
Amid the flurry of high-profile entrepreneurs who have been accused of and charged with crimes related to fraud and lying, some speculate that the “faking” is over. Is it, though? Jeff Pollack, Lynn T. Clark II Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship at Poole College of Management, examines this issue at the intersection of psychology and entrepreneurship. He says he finds most of the lies to be unsurprising — and we should anticipate the lies to continue. The crux of the issue, he says, is that aspiring entrepreneurs face liabilities of newness and smallness. 

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10. Grateful Employees Are More Helpful and Have Better Attitudes: Poole Professor Finds Out Why

Nov. 8, 2023
Many businesses believe that employees feel obligated to reciprocate favorable treatment they receive from their organizations. But does “hump day happy hour” really impact Harry in HR’s job performance, company loyalty and job satisfaction? That’s what Tom Zagenczyk, Poole College professor of management, and colleagues set to find out. Their findings were recently published in the journal Group & Organization Management. We sat down with Zagenczyk to learn more about his findings.

In the Media

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U.S. News & World Report | Sept. 26, 2023

Rob Handfield, Bank of America University Distinguished Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management, discussed the wave of supply chain disruptions triggered by the Panama Canal drought.

“The Panama Canal is a critical element in the global supply chain. It is a major channel for ships,” Handfield explained. “More than 110 ships are waiting to pass through…[and] experts say this problem will likely last through 2024 and will not be solved anytime soon.”


BBC | Dec. 18, 2023

Heather Dretsch, assistant professor of marketing, weighed in on the brand-boosting power of redesigned packaging for iconic brands like Coors and Jell-O, which are revitalizing themselves to win over new audiences as consumer tastes change. She noted that it makes sense for these iconic brands to refresh their designs to appeal to Gen Z and their preference for fun, exuberant branding.

“The art on Jell-O’s packaging feels fun and evokes the ‘jiggle’ and playfulness of the product,” she said.


The News & Observer | Aug. 25, 2023

Nathan Goldman, associate professor of accounting, explained how the government taxes casino winnings — and how these winnings need to be reported to the Internal Revenue Service.

“If you win more than $5,000, the government knows you made that money, and the casino will automatically hand you 76% of it. For an even example, if you win a $10,000 jackpot, you’re going home with $7,600,” Goldman said.

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ABC 11 Eyewitness News | Nov. 20, 2023

Steve Allen, economics professor, provided insight about inflation and recession as local businesses prepared for the holiday season.

“Based on what’s going on right now, I think the odds of an actual recession seem pretty low. I would say, if anything, the odds of some modest decreases in interest rates in the coming year are starting to look pretty good,” Allen said. “And that’ll be good for the stock market as well. People will start getting out of bonds and back into the market, so there are some reasons to be optimistic.”


Journal of Accountancy | July 25, 2023

Mark Beasley, Alan T. Dickson Distinguished Professor of Accounting and director of the Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative, discussed the disconnect between increasing organizational risk and insufficient risk management capabilities.

“I think [many struggling organizations] skip the strategy focus and [start with] ‘What keeps you up at night?’ That’s going to tend to lead people toward what risks they already know about. Because if they know about it, that’s what’s going to keep them up. But good risk management is really trying to tease out, ‘What is it I don’t know?’” Beasley said.

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Advisorpedia | Aug. 1, 2023

Roger Mayer, professor of leadership, weighed in on research about the difficulty of establishing trust in the workplace. He offers an integrative model of organizational trust that includes three strands.

I trust you implies that I believe you have the necessary skills to do your job well,” Mayer said. “I believe that you are a person of integrity whose values are in large measure aligned with mine. And I see you as someone who is benevolent — by that I mean you genuinely care about the success of all you work with and the business in its entirety.”