Many companies are grappling with the question whether socially responsible investing is at the expense of, or whether is it good for financial yield. In her Master thesis at the Faculty of Economics and Business Elizabeth van der Wagen reaches the conclusion that the one issue needs not to be at the expense of the other. Among other things, due to the practical relevance of these insights for investors she won the IIM Finance Award of 2,500 Euros of the Professor Robert van der Meer Fund.
Elizabeth van der Wagen wrote her thesis “The causal relation between corporate social performance and corporate financial performance” to round off the Master Programme Finance at Groningen. In her research she concludes that there is no conclusive relation between corporate social performance and corporate financial performance.
The thesis award was created by the Professor Robert van de Meer Fund and is presented every other year for the best thesis written for the programmes Finance and International Financial Management. This edition the jury was composed of Prof. Dr. Michael Damm, Prof. Dr. Roelof Salomons and Dr. Lammertjan Dam. The other nominees were Koen Seebus (thesis: Stock market participation and the strength of weak ties) and Remko Struik (thesis : Financial literacy and pension expectations: Adjustments to reforms in the Netherlands).
In assessing the theses the jury considers their practical relevance: investors must be able to derive useful insights from the thesis that are directly applicable . Criteria such as current issues , developments in the practice of financial markets, investments, investors (institutional or individual), or supervisory bodies play a role. In addition the following are important: a catching and clear problem statement, quality of data collection and execution of the research, clear and unambiguous conclusions and originality.
Dr. Auke Plantinga
, coordinator van de MSc Finance.
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