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Ideas by year 2021

Rise of alternative data could be a boon, not a bust, for hedge funds, says study

Whether it’s satellite images or social media activity, alternative data has become hot property as hedge funds and other large asset managers hunt for new ways to gain a competitive edge in their trading strategies. Despite concerns that alternative data could spell the demise of those funds unable to keep up with the diverse skills required to interpret it, new research by Professor Liyan Yang suggests the opposite scenario is more likely.

Predictive analytics pays off with complementary investments

Despite the hype over big data and the forecasting power of tools such as statistical modeling and machine learning, not all firms that sink money into them reap benefits, prompting a research team, including Professor Kristina McElheran, to probe what makes the difference.

“Hooking” online shoppers is about more than popularity, shows new study

Online shoppers are a fickle bunch. Research has shown that e-commerce websites have as few as 30 seconds to impress customers or lose those shoppers to greener digital retail pastures. But a new set of algorithms, developed by a team of researchers, including Professor Shreyas Sekar, may help.

Virtual job interviews infected by COVID-19 worries, new study finds

For job-seekers living in areas hardest hit by COVID-19 deaths, the pandemic heightened their anxiety during virtual job interviews held in the first wave, with a subsequent reduction in performance, a study led by Prof. Julie McCarthy has found.

Just because they’re angry doesn’t make them guilty

Across six separate studies, Professor Katherine DeCelles and her research colleagues laid out the disconnect between the way we typically interpret anger when trying to determine someone else’s guilt or innocence and the way we tend to respond when we are falsely accused ourselves.

Artificial intelligence “doubled-edged sword,” for addressing gender, racial bias, report shows

AI technologies can overcome human error as well as biases that can taint human decision-making, especially those with negative impacts on other people. But care and attention is urgently needed to curb the technologies’ equal potential to reinforce gender and racial inequities says a report from the Institute for Gender and the Economy.

Racial revenue gap narrowed with AirBnb pricing algorithm, but only for those who adopt it.

A voluntary AirBnb pricing algorithm substantially narrowed a pre-existing revenue gap between white and Black hosts, a new study has found – but only when Black hosts adopted it, says a study by Professor Nitin Mehta and his research colleagues.

You can have too much of a good thing, study into financial analysts’ work-life balance finds.

On social media, people more often share attitudes that are framed in terms of support instead of opposition, according to research by Professor Rachel Ruttan and her colleagues. That happens regardless of whether the opinion itself is positive or negative.

Image of Ole-Kristian Hope

You can have too much of a good thing, study into financial analysts’ work-life balance finds.

A group of researchers led by Rotman Professor Ole-Kristian Hope have examined the role of work-life balance in financial analysts’ performance and career advancement. The nature of the study, which drew upon data from a popular social media platform, are as unique as the insights it produced.

Photo of Sarah Kaplan

Professor Sarah Kaplan and Peter Dey

360° Governance: Where are the Directors in a World in Crisis? Report Provides Updated Guidelines for Canadian Boards to Meet the Challenges of the 21st Century.

Early warning system for COVID-19 gets faster through wastewater detection and tracing.

Its latest contribution is a sophisticated algorithm, using municipal wastewater systems, for determining key locations in the detection and tracing of COVID-19 back to its human source, which may be a newly infected person or a hot spot of infected people.

Anita McGahan

Lessons Learned from India’s Polio Vaccination Program Provide Valuable Insights for Future Mass Vaccination Initiatives.

In the face of climate change, rising economic equality, system racism and the COVID-19 pandemic, it is time for a new set of guidelines for Canadian corporate boards says a report from the Michael Lee-Chin Family Institute for Corporate Citizenship at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management released today.

Using social values for profit cheapens them, a new study cautions.

Businesses sometimes align themselves with important values such as a clean environment, feminism, or racial justice, thinking it’s a win-win: the value gets boosted along with the company’s bottom line.