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2019-2020 Investor Research Award Competition

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2020 Corporate Governance Symposium
"Critical Issues for Boards and Investors in 2020"
John L. Weinberg/IRRCi Investor Research Awards Competition
Call for Papers

Tuesday, March 17, 2020 / 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance and
the Department of Finance, Lerner College of Business and Economics
Clayton Hall, University of Delaware

The John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance and the Department of Finance at the University of Delaware will host a Corporate Governance Symposium on March 17, 2020 at Clayton Hall on the University's campus.  The focus of the Symposium will be on "Critical Issues for Boards and Investors in 2020." 

The Weinberg Center is accepting submissions for its John L. Weinberg/IRRCi Research Award competition.  

Academics (both from the Finance and Law areas) and Practitioners are invited to submit research papers by Monday, September 16, 2019 for consideration.  Three research papers will be selected – two academic (one Finance/one Law) and one Practitioner – to each receive the 2020 John L. Weinberg/IRRCi Research Award and a $10,000 award.  One of the authors of each of the three selected papers will present the paper at the Weinberg Center's Symposium on March 17, 2020.

This research competition is the successor to the IRRCi Investor Research Award that had become a prominent award garnering significant attention amongst the investment community, academia and policymakers. The John L. Weinberg/IRRCi Investor Research Award, as its predecessor did, highlights innovative research focused on the nexus between real world economy activity and investment theory.

Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) has dominated investment theory for half a century.  MPT focuses on security selection, portfolio construction, and other financial issues rather than the intersection of the real economy and investing. Simultaneously, the growing importance of the private sector relative to the public sector in the real economy has increased scrutiny pf private sector behavior and economic activity.  The John L. Weinberg/IRRCi Investor Research Award encourages new research that analyzes how investments interact with real world economic activity.

Other research papers that will be eligible for the Research Award will be those that address topics within the field of corporate governance that are of critical importance in 2020 for boards of directors and investors with a focus on:  board and committee composition and structure, director skill sets, director evaluations, board diversity, board tenure, board and/or management succession planning, the board's role in monitoring risk and other oversight responsibilities, board oversight of corporate culture, executive and director compensation, shareholder engagement, investor stewardship, shareholder activism, long-termism, dual-class stock, ESG issues and corporate governance reform measures associated with the foregoing.

John L.  Weinberg/IRRCi Research Award Guidelines/Procedures

Papers should be submitted using the following guidelines.  Failure to comply with these guidelines may disqualify papers.

  • Submissions may be an original work created specifically for the Research Award or relevant unpublished papers.
  • All papers must be submitted in English.
  • Papers should be submitted with a cover page that includes the paper title, date of submission, full name and affiliation of author(s), a 100-250 word abstract summarizing the argument, how it fits into a wider literature, and its relevance to the John L. Weinberg/IRRCi Research Award objective.
  • Papers should be a standard 8.5x11 format, in a PDF version. 
  • The page number should be included on the bottom right of each page of the paper.
  • Please use the following format as the file name when you save your paper:  Last name (all caps), underscore, shortened name of paper, period, pdf (e.g., DOE_Shareholder Engagement.pdf). 
  • Please submit your papers to Louisa Cresson at

Lodging and meals will be provided, and travel expenses for the Symposium on March 16-17, 2020 will be reimbursed pursuant to University of Delaware guidelines, for the three selected Research Award winners.

General inquiries regarding the competition or the Symposium should be directed to Louisa Cresson at the email address above.

Please note that the selection of winners, if any, is at the sole discretion of the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance.  The Weinberg Center fully anticipates awarding three prizes, but reserves the right to select no papers as winners for either or all categories (academic –Finance and Law, and Practitioner) in the event papers submitted do not meet the above guidelines and does not believe any paper is worthy of the award.




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2019-2020 Investor Research Award Competition
  • John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance
  • 103 Alfred Lerner Hall, 20 Orchard Road
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-6157
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  • Delaware Secretary of State
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