Best Unpublished Research Paper

The Best Unpublished Research Paper Award is awarded annually after a blind, peer review of all submissions.
Papers may be on any topic of relevance to the understanding and appreciation of family firms and/or family firm advisors. The manuscript should not have been submitted to a journal at the time it is submitted for the award. Manuscripts should not be more than 45 typed double-spaced pages, all inclusive, (using 12-point Times New Roman font and one-inch/2.5 cm margins). Researchers are not allowed to submit more than one paper as first author (per year). The winners are encouraged to submit the award-winning paper to FBR (or equal journal) for publication consideration.

The 2024 Best Unpublished Research Paper Award is generously sponsored by Relative Solutions.

Award: Cash prize of $2,500, one-year membership in FFI, and complimentary registration for the 2024 Annual Global Conference in October


For a paper to be eligible for consideration, the author(s) must adhere to the following guidelines:

  • All materials must be submitted in English and as PDFs.
  • All required fields on the online submission form must be completed and uploaded as directed.
  • All materials submitted must redact all references that would allow for the identification of the author or authors.

Submission deadline: Applications for award submissions open on January 1 of the award year. The deadline for submissions for awards is April 1 of the award year.

Apply Online Here

Applicants will be notified of the decision in writing by June 15 of the submission year. Winners are expected to be present at the FFI annual conference to receive the award.

Award Recipients


James J. Chrisman, Hanqing “Chevy” Fang, and Vitaliy Skorodziyevskiy, Toward a Property Rights Theory of the Family Firm


Sohrab Soleimanof, G. Tyge Payne, Kristen Madison, and Daniel T. Holt (posthumously awarded), Microfoundations of Strategic Renewal in Family Firms: Insights from Family Communication Patterns Theory


Marco Mismetti, Cristina Bettinelli, and Alfredo De Massis, Conflict Origin and Management Mechanisms in Family Firms

Honorable Mention: Ivan Miroshnychenko, Giorgio Vocalelli, Alfredo De Massis, Stefano Grassi, and Francesco Ravazzolo, The global impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on corporate performance of family and nonfamily firms


Eric Clinton, Colm O’Gorman, Dawn R. DeTienne, and Catherine M. Faherty, How emotion-laden considerations affect the paths of longstanding imprints in family firms

Honorable Mention: Fabian Bernhard, Should the next generation show that they are proud? Experimental studies on the outside perspective of expressed pride in family businesses


Zografia Bika and Simy Joy, Contextualizing institutional logics: The difference that the “social class” context makes in “family logic” scripts development and their enactment in Scottish family businesses


David S. Jiang, Franz W. Kellermanns, Timothy P. Munyon, M. Lane Morris, Family Ties That Bind: How emotion and family system dynamics preserve socioemotional wealth


Kristen Madison, Kimberly A. Eddleston, Franz W. Kellermanns, Gary N. Powell, Kinship and Sex in Family Firms: Who Reciprocates the CEO’s Altruistic Behavior?

Honorable Mention: Morten Bennedsen, Sterling Huang, Hannes F. Wagner, Stefan Zeume, Family Firms and Labor Market Regulation


Patricio Duran, Pascual Berrone, Luis Gomez-Mejia, Pursey Heugens, Tatiana Kostova, Marc van Essen, The Family-Legitimizing Environment: A key determinant of family-controlled firms’ prevalence, strategy, and profitability

Honorable Mention: Marjan Houshmand, Marc-David Seidel, Dennis Ma, Overcoming Time Compression Diseconomies of Organizational Emergence Through Family Business Work


Jim Chrisman, Srikant Devaraj, Pankaj C. Patel The Impact of Employee Profit Sharing on Firm Productivity in Family and Non-Family Firms

Honorable Mention: Robert S. Nason, David Gras The Impact of Household Health Events on Family Economic Activity in Indian Slums


Cristina Bettinelli, Manisha Singal, John Davis The Roles of Boards in Family Businesses: Grounded research and new findings


Jan-Philip Ahrens and Michael Woywode for Heroes of the Green Room: Post succession restructuring and corporate performance in family firms


Cinzia Dessi, Michela Floris, Nadine Kammerlander, Alessandra Murru for Breaking with or Adhering to Tradition? Path Dependence and Innovation in Italian Family-Owned WIneries


Nava Michael-Tsabari, Rania Labaki and Ramona Zachary for The Cluster Paradigm Updating the Circle Paradigm: The Family Firm and Entrepreneurial Activities Across Generations


Lucia Naldi, Mattias Nordqvist, Thomas Zellweger, Knowledge Resources and Performance: The moderating role of family involvement in strategy processes


Pankaj Patel, Kimberly Eddleston, Franz Kellermanns, Family Firm Commitment and Performance: A moderated mediation analysis


Isabelle Le Breton-Miller, Danny Miller, Richard Lester, Stewardship or Agency? A social embeddedness reconciliation of conduct and performance in public family businesses


James Chrisman, Jess Chua, Franz W. Kellermanns, Thomas M. Zellweger, Family Firm Valuation by Family CEOS: The role of socioemotional value


Danny Miller, Isabelle le Breton-Miller, Richard H. Lester, Albert A. Canella, Jr., To Reap or To Sow? Governance, strategy and performance in family versus founder businesses

Honorable Mention: Jess H. Chua, Franz Kellermanns, James J. Chrisman, Zhenyu Wu Family Involvement as Social Capital in Debt Financing of New Ventures

Honorable Mention: Justin Craig, Vicki Bitsika Using Valued Outcomes Analysis to Explain Potentially Disruptive Individual Behavior in Family Business: An Exploratory Study


Belen Villalonga, Ph.D., Raffi Amit, Ph.D., Benefits and Costs of Control-Enhancing Mechanisms in U.S. Family Firms


Annika Hall, Mattias Nordqvist, Professional Management in Family Business Contexts: Meanings and implications


Reginald Litz, Understanding the Family Firm Through Metaphor: An alternative strategy for defining the family business


Reginald Litz, Understanding the Family Firm Through Metaphor: An alternative strategy for defining the family business


Pramodita Sharma, S. Manikutty, Shedding of Unproductive Resources in Family Firms: Role of family structure and community culture


Pramodita Sharma, Greg Irving, Four Shades of Family Business Successor Commitment: Motivating factors and expected outcomes

Honorable Mention: Cathleen Folker, Ritch L. Sorenson, Gender Differences in Business Owners: A test of the cooperative network orientation model


Ercilia Garcia-Alvarez, Jordi Sintas-Lopez, Values and Successors: A founder’s legacy of different psychosocial and business blends


Reginald Litz, Robert Kleysen, Your Old Men Shall Dream Dreams; Your Young Men Will See Visions: A conceptualization of of innovation in family firms


Pramodita Sharma, Jess Chua and James Chrisman, Succession Planning and Its Dimensions in Family Firms: An empirical evidence


Barbara Murray


Susan F. Moon, Anisa M. Zvonkovic, Wives’ Perspectives on Their Involvement in Commercial Fishing as a Family Business: Constructing a fishing family


Daniel McConaughy, Founding Family-Controlled Firms: Operations, financing and value


Ivan Light


Barbara Dunn


Steven D. Goldberg, Bill Wooldridge, Self-Confidence and Dominance/Control: An alternative perspective for succession in family business


Richard Guzzo


Cynthia Iannarelli


Stewart Malone, Selected Correlates of Business Continuation Planning in the Family Business