Corporate Finance & Accounting

Research Focus

  • Corporate Financial Management
  • Corporate Governance
  • Corporate Responsibilities
  • Accounting and Public Policy

The center focuses on applied research in best practices in accounting and financial management.  It will work with local organizations to apply novel methods and techniques to improve and streamline management of their financial resources, including cash, inventory, and non-current assets.  It can help organizations set up and maintain internal accounting systems, including policies and procedures for internal control of financial assets. It can also assist in the development of appropriate strategies for managing current and long-term liabilities, individual and corporate financial risk management, corporate governance and social responsibilities using qualitative methods, statistical methods, business intelligence and knowledge management. 

Corporate Financial Management

Corporate financial management emphasizes capital budgeting, cash flow projection, the optimal cost of capital, sources of funding, and financial performance evaluation. The goal is to help either profit or non-profit organizations to identify financial problems, improve financial health, and to further increase revenues or profits by utilizing financial tools and software. The analyses will be based on the nature of the industry and the organization’s characteristics. For small business, the focus is on how to establish a successful business plan, launch a business, manage business, and grow sustainably.  In addition to traditional statistical methods, new methods such as scenario-based analysis, business intelligence, risk modeling, machine learning, simulation and knowledge base are employed.

Corporate Governance

Corporate governance is aimed at protecting all stakeholders’ rights, satisfying stakeholders’ needs, and preventing any fraudulent activities. Corporate governance is composed of two parts: internal control and external control. Internal control mechanisms include the structure of the board of directors, internal audits, risk management, and all internal stakeholders (managers, employees, and shareholders). External control mechanisms include regulators, financial intuitions, governments, and outside stakeholders.  Analysis of corporate governance structures include quantitative and qualitative methods.  Some new methods including analysis of knowledge management, intellectual capital, business intelligence, fuzzy logic, key performance indicators and dashboards are used to measure and monitor corporate governance performance. An organization with effective corporate governance will result in a better financial performance, raise capital easily, obtain lower cost funding, and attract market or potential investors’ attention. 

Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate social responsibility focuses on having a positive impact not only on stakeholders but also on society, the environment, and marketplace. In general, corporate social responsibility is composed of the following six factors: community, diversity employee relations, environment, human rights, and product characteristics. An organization making positive contributions to the community significantly enhances its reputation and performance. Corporate social responsibility is essential for both profit and non-profit organizations. Besides the organization’s profits, how to maximize benefits to the community, and even the world, is a major task for all organizations.  Some contemporary techniques used for corporate social responsibility measurement include: key performance indicators, balanced scorecards and dashboards.

Accounting and Public Policy

Accounting, auditing, and financial reporting are essential to an organization’s growth and profit potential. As accounting measurements create an impact on an organization’s budget plan and resource allocation, the selection of data and accounting methods impacts an organization’s or even a public policy decision. Government units must properly manage financial resources using the same methods of analysis as for-profit and nonprofit organizations. Current approaches to accounting measurement and company auditing and financial reporting include cash flow measurement, capital turnover analysis, credit risk analysis, business risk factor analysis, macro and micro economic analysis, industrial growth analysis, financial risk analysis, and corporate financial performance evaluation. Qualitative analysis and statistical analysis are typical methods used in accounting measurement. Some new methods such as intellectual capital matrix mapping, business growth indicators, data mining, scenario simulation, and network analysis will be researched and applied to issues in accounting measurement and financial risk management.