Andrew Delios is a Professor in the Department of Strategy & Policy, NUS Business School, National University of Singapore. He completed his PhD in 1998 at the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario. He became a Fellow of the Academy of International Business in 2013.

Andrew is an author/co-author of more than 80 published journal articles, case studies and book chapters, as well as an author of six books, including the recently published `China 88: The Real China and How to Deal with It`(Pearson). He served as an Associate Editor and General Editor of the UK-based Journal of Management Studies for seven years. He has also been the editor-in-chief for the Asia Pacific Journal of Management and an area editor at the Canadian Journal of Administrative Sciences. From 2011-2013, Andrew served as the President of the Asia Academy of Management.

His research looks at strategy, governance and global competition issues in emerging economies, the international strategies of Japanese multinational corporations, and the geographic and product growth strategies of publicly-listed companies in China.

Andrew has worked and lived in Asia for 17 years, including three years in Hong Kong and two in Japan. He has also worked in Australia, Canada, China, Finland, India, New Zealand, the Philippines, Sweden, Thailand and the United States. At NUS, he has taught in numerous programmes, including the PhD and Executive MBA programmes in Singapore, Thailand, India and the Philippines. He is an owner and director in Belgarath Investments Limited, a company that is engaged in international franchising both as a franchisee and franchisor, with such brands as Chili`s, Subway and Sarpino`s Pizza.

Andrew received the Department Outstanding Researcher Award (NUS) – in 2003 and Faculty Outstanding Researcher Award (NUS) also in 2003.

 Professor Andrew Delios in an interview with Casium

 What area of research are you currently working on?

There has been a surge of interest in the ethics and science of publishing. Academics and other consumers of research question whether the findings from academic research are authentic. As part of that surge of interest, I am working on a project that seeks to replicate a large number of papers that used a common data source. We hope to be able to establish a better understanding of when and where replication is needed, as well as contribute to the improvement of our empirical techniques in our quantitative research.

 A case study that you think is important. Why?

Case studies are integral to the teaching of business strategy and business management. Consequently, I have spent much time developing cases. To be self-serving, a new case study that I have co-written with Markus Taussig seems like an important one. It covers private equity (PE) issues in an emerging economy (Vietnam), as well as governance and strategy issues for a leading private company, called the Mobile World Group. We have had excellent access to the company, making the case very real. We have video interviews with several of the top managers to accompany the case. The case study is important in the sense that it is a setting in which few cases have been written, and it reflects on timely strategy and governance issues for companies operating in the ASEAN region.

A management book you think highly of (written by someone else). Why?

The management books I enjoyed reading the most were the ones I encountered during my first and second year in my PhD program at Ivey Business School. We were required to read many of the foundational classics to the study of business. These books contain timeless valuable information and provide a good backdrop against which to consider modern management theory. These books were written by greats such as Peter Drucker, Kenneth Andrews, Frederick Taylor, Chester Barnard through to Alfred Chandler and Michael Porter.

A very recent business or management title you read, and its significant lessons.

I have not read many contemporary business or management titles. I browse through management books when passing a book seller in an airport, looking for highlights of the authors’ ideas. If I was to pick a book to read, I would read Blue Ocean Strategy. I can see that ideas from this book have filtered into the teaching of undergraduate and MBA students and executives, particularly the latter group. Before working with the same ideas, it is useful to understand the authors’ own thinking on the development and application of the ideas they have on strategy.

What is one of your well-liked teaching moments (case, discussion topic, …)?

I think for any instructor in the classroom, the moment one sees the students grab hold of an idea, understand it, and become excited by it, is a well-liked moment. When you are teaching and the attention of the students is fully on you, rather than being absorbed by their laptops or their smartphones, or when the discussion is intense and engaged, you know you are doing something they value. At the end of the day, our contribution as professors is measured by what our students learn, and the moment we can sense that the same has occurred or is in the process of occurring, we value that moment.

What was your most interesting consulting assignment? Why?

My most interesting assignment was not in consulting but in the ownership and directorship roles that I played in a Singaporean SME engaged in international franchising, both as a franchisor and as a franchisee. The company worked with Chili’s restaurants and Subway restaurants, as a franchisee, and Sarpino’s Pizza as the franchisor responsible for Asia and the Middle East. Working with the company and understanding issues and decisions related to growth, management, governance and financing brought to life many of the issues we research and teach, particularly with respect to international business.

If tomorrow you could occupy an executive function in any company, what function and company? Why?

I would like to serve more actively as a director in companies operating in the ASEAN region. As companies move to have more independent directors on their board, and as economies in the region become more integrated and open to competition, there is a lot that someone with an applied academic perspective could offer to the discussions made in the board and to the decisions that are rendered therein.

Source: NUS Business School website/Casium sources

The Case: Games People Play: