SMLR Gathers Scholars From Around The World, Addresses Employee Stock Ownership

Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations (SMLR) welcomed over seventy scholars from across the country and the globe as the school hosted the annual, Mid-Year Fellows Workshop in Honor of Louis O. Kelso on January 12-14, 2014 at the Heldrich Hotel in New Brunswick. The researchers—professors from many universities and SMLR faculty and doctoral students and fellows—addressed broad-based employee stock ownership and profit sharing in a global economy. The goal of the workshop was to encourage feedback, discussion, mentorship, and collaboration among researchers in a variety of fields. 

During each of the event’s sessions, SMLR fellows had the opportunity to present their finished or ongoing piece of work. The presentations were followed by constructive feedback by leading experts, who expressed ways in which concepts can be developed and methodologies can be improved. Topics included “ownership and culture under employee ownership,”  “employee ownership and organizational commitment,” “worker cooperatives and unions,” and “broad-based financial participation plans and firm performance,”  Presentations were given by the CEOs of several ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) companies, including King Arthur Flour and A.D. Marble, along with a presentation on the global employee share plan of Siemens A.G.

“It was good to have everyone in the same room with the chance to report on what they were doing. It keeps us all on the same page,” says Fuxi Wang, Rutgers SMLR Ph.D. student. “I got a chance to speak with people who are so inspiring and have practical experience.”

The Mid-Year Fellows Workshop was held in honor of Louis O. Kelso, a political economist who pioneered the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP), which was invented to enable working people without savings to buy stock in their employer company and pay for it out of its future dividend yield. The workshop allowed the scholars to discuss their work with Rutgers SMLR’s faculty and graduate students and colleagues from around the world.

Scholars in attendance were from Rutgers SMLR’s Fellowship Program and included the J. Robert Beyster Fellows, the Louis O. Kelso Fellows, the Accurate Equity Fellows, the Adam Blumenthal Fellow, the American Coalition of Stock Plan Administrator Fellows, the Blue Wolf Capital Fellows, the Joseph Cabral Distinguished Scholars and Fellows, the Ray Carey Fellow, the Fidelity Investments Fellows in Equity Compensation Research, the Michael W. Huber Fellows, the Q.A. Shaw McKean Jr. Fellows, the Bill Nobles Fellows, the Corey Rosen Fellows, the Kevin Ruble Fellows, the Rutgers Research Fellows, the Rutgers Faculty Mentors, the Robert Smiley Economic History Fellows, current and former sabbatical visiting scholars, and special guests.

The Mid-Year Fellows Workshop in honor of Louis O. Kelso is made possible by the generous gift of John D. Menke of Menke & Associates through the Louis O. Kelso Traveling Fellowships that support participation in the meeting. The participation of the Beyster Fellows is supported by a generous gift of Mary Ann Beyster and J. Robert Beyster of the Foundation for Enterprise Development. The participation of the Kelso Fellows is supported by a generous gift of the Employee Ownership Foundation. Other support comes from the Beyster Endowment at the Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations. The event was organized by Rutgers SMLR Professor Joseph Blasi with support from SMLR staff.

Click here for more information on Rutgers SMLR’s fellowships