May 12

Appraisals work well in UK,but rest of world is not as keen

first_img Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Appraisals work well in UK,but rest of world is not as keenOn 26 Jun 2001 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. The use of appraisal systems is particularly British. Indeed, no other EUnation uses them at managerial level more than the UK. In 1999/2000, 92 per cent of UK organisations had an appraisal system fortheir managers. The only exception is Sweden, where organisations are just ahead in terms ofspreading the use of appraisals to other categories of staff. Other countries, such as Germany, do not tend to implement appraisal systemsas widely, although even there, about one in two organisations have a system inplace. One explanation for the uneven take up in Europe is the degree of fitbetween the assumptions underpinning an appraisal system and the organisationaland national context. Appraisals work best in cultures where it is acceptable for subordinates andsuperiors to receive feedback from one another. This pre-supposes a degree ofinformality and flat management structures. Traditionally, appraisals are carried out by an immediate superior (92 percent of cases in the UK). However, this is not the only model. Some appraisalsare carried out by the next person up (57 per cent of cases in the UK). The useof self-appraisal systems is also very popular (88 per cent in the UK).However, all these methods raise issues of bias. However, 360-degree feedback – which involves all of the above as well aspeers, subordinates and customers – is currently considered best practice as itis based on multiple viewpoints and allows a more precise assessment ofsomeone’s performance. But the use of 360-degree feedback is resource intensiveand remains marginal. Only about 4 per cent of organisations in the UK use thisinstrument. Yet it is much more popular now than it was in 1995 when even fewerorganisations (2.4 per cent) made use of it. Not surprisingly, HR managers in other EU countries are less likely thanBritish managers to offer 360-degree feedback in their organisations. last_img read more

March 1

The Pershing Square Foundation awards $17M to Harvard

first_imgHarvard University announced today that New York–based The Pershing Square Foundation (PSF), founded by alumni Bill Ackman ’88, M.B.A. ’92, and his wife, Karen Ackman, M.L.A. ’93, has awarded the University $17 million to catalyze the work of its Foundations of Human Behavior Initiative (FHB).Created to yield important discoveries about the basic mechanisms that influence human behavior, FHB will immediately expand with this gift through the establishment of three endowed professorships and a $5 million research venture fund, open to all Harvard faculty, doctoral students, and postdoctoral fellows. FHB’s work will enable researchers to identify cost-effective, scalable solutions to societal challenges in areas ranging from health care and economic development to education and government.The first of the three Pershing Square Professorships has been awarded to Matthew Rabin, a leading scholar in behavioral economics, who will join the Harvard faculty in July. Rabin’s research includes the economics of individual self-control problems, reference-dependent preferences, fairness motives, and mistakes in probabilistic reasoning. He is a recipient of a John Bates Clark Medal and a MacArthur Fellowship.For Bill and Karen Ackman, this gift reflects their philanthropic passions and their desire to effect social change globally. The Pershing Square Professorships and The Pershing Square Fund will marshal Harvard’s substantial multidisciplinary resources to develop new research capacities in the social and natural sciences.“Supporting innovation and new approaches to creating sustainable change is a vital part of what The Pershing Square Foundation was established to do,” said Bill Ackman, CEO and portfolio manager of Pershing Square Capital Management, L.P. “Understanding the foundations of human behavior is a key to improving people’s health, wealth, and security around the globe. We are inspired by the potential of Harvard’s initiative.”Drew Faust, president of Harvard University and Lincoln Professor of History, said that while the gift may center on FHB, its effect will be felt University-wide and, ultimately, well beyond Harvard’s borders. “The Pershing Square Foundation and the Ackmans recognize the University’s commitment to connecting individuals and to taking full advantage of the great strengths that exist across our Schools,” Faust said. “This generous gift will spur research and discovery on our campus, and the important work that begins here will have the potential to improve lives around the world.”“David Laibson and other members of the Foundations of Human Behavior Initiative are asking fundamental questions about virtually every aspect of human existence and society,” said Michael D. Smith, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and John H. Finley Jr. Professor of Engineering and Applied Sciences. “Their research reaches across a score of different disciplines at Harvard — from economics to the life sciences — and is directly relevant to how we live today. Not only will this gift support that important scholarship through the creation of new professorships, but it will also, through the new venture fund, create opportunities for graduate students to engage directly with faculty on these important research projects.”FHB’s goal is to drive transformative insights about the psychological, social, economic, and biological mechanisms that influence human behavior, and then help translate that new knowledge into mechanisms for improving human well-being across the world. Toward that goal, FHB will galvanize cross-fertilization and collaboration among the University’s discipline-based departments in the social and biological sciences.Harvard faculty will expand their study of a wide range of important cognitive, social, and behavioral phenomena — from decision-making, self-control, addiction, altruism, reciprocity, cooperation, herding, and violence, to productivity, innovation, and leadership. FHB will apply this new knowledge to develop and test interventions across the major realms of social endeavor, including health care, economic development, education, and governance.“The Foundations of Human Behavior Initiative supports interdisciplinary research that studies fundamental biological, psychological, sociological, and economic forces that drive behavior,” said Laibson, the director of FHB and the Robert I. Goldman Professor of Economics. “We encourage the creation of a rich ecosystem of scholarship by recruiting brilliant new faculty and by providing seed money that advances innovative, pathbreaking research that transforms understanding of basic science mechanisms and enables us to design cost-effective, scalable interventions that improve societal well-being.”“The Pershing Square Foundation is committed to social change around the world,” said Foundation CEO Paul Bernstein. “We are pleased that we can play a part in funding an academic initiative that can help address major challenges in all areas of society, from mitigating the effects of poverty, to increasing adoption of scientific innovations, to arresting epidemics.”About The Pershing Square FoundationThe Pershing Square Foundation ( is a private family foundation, based in New York, founded in December 2006 by Karen and Bill Ackman. The foundation has committed $235 million in grants and social investments to support exceptional leaders and innovative organizations that tackle important social issues and deliver scalable and sustainable impact. Bill Ackman is the CEO and portfolio manager of Pershing Square Capital Management, L.P.last_img read more