Aaron Hill
Associate Professor of Management Aaron Hill.

University of Florida management professor’s work awarded for research method advancements

This is the second consecutive year that a researcher from the University of Florida has received the award from the Academy of Management Research Methods Division.

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Research methodology in the field of management is advancing thanks to new insights from University of Florida Warrington College of Business Associate Professor Aaron Hill. Hill’s paper was awarded the Sage Publications/Robert McDonald Advancement of Organizational Research Methodology Award at the prestigious Academy of Management annual meeting this week.

The award recognizes methods-oriented articles and book chapters that create or improve methods for research design, data collection and data analysis. This is the second consecutive year that a researcher from the University of Florida has received the award, as Ph.D. alumnus and Indiana University Assistant Professor Jake Gale (Ph.D. ’23) received it for a paper he co-authored in 2022.

Hill’s award-winning research helps to address a common analytical problem called endogeneity in a non-technical way. The paper is essentially a ‘how-to’ guide with an applied focus, Hill explained. Thanks to the paper’s insights, other researchers and consumers of research can learn how to avoid conducting analyses that do not address the issue and/or drawing conclusions based on potentially wrong information that may result.

“If endogeneity is not addressed in analyses, the estimated relationships can be very biased and people may then make decisions based on biased, and even wrong, implications,” Hill said. “At the same time, the ways to address endogeneity are often technical, so not everyone is comfortable with the techniques or even learns them and there is a number of misapplications, too.” 

Hill and his co-authors, Iowa State’s Scott Johnson and Indiana University’s Ernest O’Boyle and Sheri Walter, were inspired by a methodology-practice divide within the subject.

“We recognized that while there is knowledge that methods should be used to address endogeneity, they are not always executed correctly in practice,” Hill explained. “As such, we help solve this problem perhaps by making what can be a fairly technical problem more approachable to a wider audience so they are more able to implement the methods in practice.”

Hill noted that he is particularly proud to play a role in the University of Florida tradition of advancing research practice across the field of management.

“It is great to be honored particularly because the paper is intended to help others – and it is nice that this does, in fact, seem to be helping others improve their research,” he said. “It is also nice to contribute to the tradition of methodological excellence that our college and department are collectively known for. For example, in looking at the Academy of Management’s recent award winners in our methods area, you’ll see [Hyatt and Cici Brown Chair in Business] Phil Podsakoff won the Distinguished Career Award, [Associate Dean and Lanzillotti-McKethan Eminent Scholar] Mo Wang and alumnus Nathan Podsakoff (Ph.D. ’07) have won the Early Career Award, and Jake Gale’s paper received this same award last year.”

The complete research, “Endogeneity: A Review and Agenda for the Methodology-Practice Divide Affecting Micro and Macro Research,” is published in the Journal of Management.