The Department of Accounting at the University of Ghana Business School (UGBS) organised a series of PhD seminars and workshops for students from August 15th to August 19th, 2022, at the UGBS Graduate School. The Seminar had three visiting professors namely Professor Hans Christensen, Prof. Thomas Rauter and Prof. Alex Dontoh as facilitators.
In his initial remarks, Professor William Coffie, Head of the Accounting Department (HoD) welcomed both the facilitators and students to the seminar. He further briefed them on what to expect from the weeklong programme and gave a synopsis of the profile of the facilitators. Giving details about the facilitators, the Accounting HoD stated that Prof. Hans Christensen is a Chookaszian Family Professor of Accounting and a David G. Booth Faculty Fellow at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, whereas Prof. Thomas Rauter is an Assistant Professor of Accounting at the same university. Prof. Alex Dontoh on the other hand is an alumnus of the University of Ghana Business School and a Professor of Accounting at the Stem School of Business at New York University. He also serves as the Director of the MSc in Accounting programme at the same school.
In his presentation, Professor Hans stressed the value of having a research title and a detailed problem statement for any paper. He added that a problem statement shouldn’t take long to formulate and further postulated that a problem statement that calls for extra explanation needs to be reconsidered. Additionally, he mentioned that it is crucial to have a conceptual framework or theory that will enable results to be generalised. He said that by doing this, it is possible to avoid being country-specific and generalising the findings to suit the needs of various nations. Prof. Hans also emphasised the significance of knowing your variables because they would dictate the type of data required for the study.
The week-long seminar had all three professors speaking on several topics throughout the event. The topics included selecting research questions, empirical methods, and settings; conducting empirical research in African settings; utilizing theory in research; and how to publish in prestigious accounting journals. A briefing on the application process for PhD programmes and positions for visiting PhD students in the United States of America was also given to the students. Following that, students had the chance to present snapshots of their research works.
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