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Darla Moore School of Business

Ph.D. alumnus awarded prestigious honor for his dissertation

Aug. 3, 2020

Moore School alumnus Noman Shaheer (’19 Ph.D., international business) recently received the Peter J. Buckley and Mark Casson AIB Dissertation Award during the Academy of International Business Conference 2020.

Shaheer, who holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the Institute of Business Management and an MBA from Yonsei University, worked for several years as an international business manager before deciding to pursue his doctoral degree at the Moore School.

“I developed an interest in finding answers to critical international business problems that concern international business practitioners but are rarely discussed in international business teaching and research,” Shaheer said. “In particular, I always felt that international business research is inadequate in answering new questions that are arising on the backdrop of modern technologies. I decided to research those questions myself, and the Moore School is the best place to train international business researchers.”

During his time as a doctoral candidate, Shaheer said he enjoyed the “collegial community” of the Moore School. As he began working on his dissertation with Moore School faculty member Sali Li as his advisor, Shaheer decided to focus on the limits of current international business practices. 

“[Shaheer] has gone a great length to address this gap,” Li said. “He dedicated several years during his Ph.D. program to engage with key players in digital economy to better understand the unique dynamics of digital businesses. He established connections with several digital firms, senior managers at Google and Apple as well as consulting and analytics firms including Boston Consulting Group, McKinsey [Company] and World Economic Forum.”

Shaheer utilized his background, connections and understanding of modern digital technology to draft and defend his dissertation entitled “Reappraising international business in a digital area: Barriers, strategies, and context for internationalization of digital innovations.”

“My dissertation revisits the most prominent international business frameworks in the context of a burgeoning digital economy,” Shaheer said. “It highlights several limitations of current international business theory in explaining internationalization and global strategies of digital firms and proposes several theoretical extensions to update current international business scholarship to make it more relevant to the unique dynamics of the modern digital era.”

Adding that Shaheer’s dissertation points out how firms can leverage user networks and explore user demands to better utilize the global market, Li said that Shaheer is a persistent and researcher and fast learner, which have been key to his success in academia.

The Peter J. Buckley and Mark Casson AIB Dissertation Award recognizes the importance of the international business environment and multinational enterprise. The two researchers for whom the award is named after pioneered development of international business theory. Doctoral students are invited to submit their innovative dissertations for consideration and finalists are invited to present their research at the AIB annual conference.

As the 2020 award recipient, Shaheer said he thinks this award is a reflection of the Moore School’s support.

“This is the most prestigious and highly competitive dissertation award in the field of international business, and some of the most prominent international business scholars have received it in the past,” Shaheer said. “In the 35-year history of this award, this is the first time a graduate of the Moore School has received [it], for which the credit goes to the mentoring and support I received from the entire department and particularly my dissertation committee, Sali Li, Tatiana Kostova, Omrane Guedhami and Richard Priem. This award is a reflection of the groundbreaking nature of the research we carry out at the Moore School, which has the potential to inspire future research as well as the world of practice.”

After graduating from the Moore School Ph.D. program in 2019, Shaheer began as an international business discipline lecturer at the University of Sydney in Australia. He said that his time at the Moore School shaped him into a strong researcher and scholar. His faculty position at the University of Sydney allows Shaheer to continue pursuing his research agenda while simultaneously educating new international business practitioners.

“What we as Ph.D. students invest at the Moore School is our time and effort for four to five years and the most precious return to this investment is a highly rewarding scholarly career in which we can advance the sphere of human knowledge to new horizons,” Shaheer said. “The training at the Moore School ensures that the time and effort we invest to complete our Ph.D. earns us this return by enabling us to produce high quality and valuable research work throughout our careers.”

Shaheer earned three additional prestigious international business awards during and shortly after his time as a Moore School student: Alan M. Rugman Most Promising Scholar Award in 2017, Buckley & Casson Dissertation Award in 2020 and AIB/Temple Best paper award in 2020.

-Erin Mooney

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