Celebrating Excellence in Research and Impact Awards 2020

Professor Robert Taylor

Please explain your research in two sentences.

My current research looks at investigating whether returns to investment on the stock market can be predicted. Although finance theory, in the form of the Efficient Market Hypothesis, suggests it cannot the data suggest otherwise and this is what I explore using rigorous econometric methods.

Why is your research important and what difference will it make?

On a practical level it may help identify important predictors of stock market returns which will help for example pension providers to improve returns for their members. On a purely theoretical level, the econometric techniques that I am developing have wider applicability than this one area of application.

Please provide a summary of your research achievements

I have published over 100 articles in leading peer-reviewed academic journals. I have held several external research grants. I am editor of the leading journal in my field and sit on a number of other editorial boards.

What can Essex researchers do to support each other and improve the impact of their research?

Outreach and dissemination both within the university and more widely is key here. As a university community we need to do more to encourage both internal and external research seminar series as well as other networking events with external partners and organisations, as well as encouraging staff to attend leading international conferences and events and to disseminate their work as widely as possible both within the academic community and beyond.

What would be your top three tips for winning funding?

  1. Be very clear about why you need external funding for the project and properly justify the requested resources. Think hard about not asking for resources that you do not really need.
  2. Present a coherent story about what you want to do in the project and why, and why it is relevant and useful. If you are a social scientist then also explain why the research is relevant and useful for society.
  3. Think hard about the likely impact of your project and try to provide a strong case for this.

      How these things are best done will of course vary widely across subjects.