Student Research Opportunities
UF-CIBER offers a wide range of research opportunities for students. In addition to the programs outlined below, the center is always interested in possible collaborations in any of our program areas. We have provided funding for graduate students to work as research assistants, for microfinance research in Africa, and for student participation in academic conferences and seminars. The center always invites discussions of cooperation between CIBER and students with projects that can support our mission. Contact CIBER for more information.
Research Tutorial Abroad
In a new program offered by CIBER, students may spend two to four weeks in Africa working with faculty researching and collecting data. Faculty members must initiate research projects by submitting proposals to CIBER, and they also organize all aspects of the trip, including accommodations; the call for proposals is usually posted in November. Winning projects receive funding to cover faculty and student costs. All proposals must support CIBER's mission—to enhance the competitiveness of U.S. firms abroad. Relevant projects may examine a particular national product market, fundamentals of a nation's economy, ethnographic characteristics that affect product usage, or language and cultural constraints that affect competitiveness. Interested students should contact CIBER.
Grants for Microfinance Projects in Africa
CIBER has awarded four travel grants supporting graduate student research projects examining microfinance institutions (MFI) in Africa. MBA student Torrey Peace examined MFIs' use of technology (SMART cards, ATMs, mobile phones, etc.) in Southern Africa (primarily Tanzania) and its impact on African society, as well as on the financial institutions themselves. (See banner at the top of this page.) Study results will be compared with similar research conducted in Mexico.
Political science student Merise Jalali worked at Nyèsigiso, Mali's second largest MFI, analyzing its prospects for self-sufficiency and evaluating the impact of its financial-services program for women on gender equality. Undergraduate student Jessica Snyder conducted research in Tanzania examining the growing demand for microinsurance in rural Africa, and whether risk management in such regions can be provided more effectively and efficiently through partnerships with existing MFIs. Graduate student Levy Odera traveled to three cities in Kenya—Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu—to analyze how loan terms, conditions and penalties that MFIs use in group-loan strategies affect collective action among business owners in the informal sector, and whether these rules lead to success or failure.
Contact CIBER for more information about submitting proposals for Africa MFI projects.
Internationalizing Doctoral Education in Business (IDEB) Conference
The University of Wisconsin-Madison CIBER sponsors this conference, which is designed to increase the globalization of business doctoral programs nationwide, influence a new generation of doctoral students to approach their studies with an international perspective, and support doctoral candidates with international dissertation topics by developing a peer network. The conference is open to first- and second-year doctoral students in all business disciplines who would like to incorporate an international dimension into their teaching and research.
Business Language and Research Teaching (BLRT) Grants
UF-CIBER is a member of a consortium that provides grants that allow PhD students to add a business-language dimension to their research and teaching. Applicants who focus on U.S. government-designated priority languages are especially encouraged to apply, though all proposals are welcome. The grant is $2,500, and the winner also receives funding to attend the CIBER Business Language Conference.
Previous grantees have developed materials using international business case studies to teach business Japanese; examined pedagogy and curricula in business Chinese to determine gaps in existing programs; and have researched methods to teach Chinese language and culture through Chinese commercials.