BALAS Track Descriptions  

Accounting, Taxation and Management Information and Control Systems
This track focuses on research in Accounting and Finance in Latin America. It welcomes papers that are relevant to broad issues in accounting or finance for academics in the region. A particular preference is expressed for topics that provide lessons to all participants such as implementation of IFRS, how culture affects financial or accounting issues, research on issues in financial markets. Research papers that compare different countries to arrive at regional perspectives are particularly valued. Very narrow papers in taxation or other national or local topics are unlikely to be successful nor are intensely applied research (e.g. how to file a  tax return in particular city or country).

Consumer Behavior
Papers that shed light on the choices of Latin American consumers are welcome in this track. Approaches to understanding the consumer can come from any field such as psychology, anthropology, sociology, etc. The consumer as individual and as part of groups such as families or as types such as gender or socio-economic status. Response to marketing activities would also be appropriate in this track.

Corporate Finance
The financial concerns of companies operating in Latin America or from Latin America is the focus of this track. Means of acquiring funds, investing them, managing, controlling and distributing them are all included. Issues of risk and performance, capitalization, cash flow. Mergers and acquisitions. Annual reports, shareholder interests, governance.

Culture, Social and Ethical Issues
The focus of the culture, social and ethical issues track is on a range of topics that include corporate social responsibility, sustainability, business ethics, cultural differences across borders, and social issues in the workplace.  Papers with an emphasis on how cultural, social and ethical issues impact growth strategies of MNCs within Latin America are of particular interest.  Individual, firm and country level papers are welcome.  In addition, papers that address practitioner concerns related to corruption and moral issues within the context of Latin America are invited as well.  Finally, the idea of cultural shifts due to globalization (or the influence of foreign investors) is particularly relevant to this track. 

Economic Environment and Regional Integration
This track takes a macro view of the Latin American business environment and considers the economics of the region. All economic factors are appropriate such as income, inflation, employment, interest rates, productivity and distribution of wealth. Government policy, natural resources, trade, trading blocks, etc. are all relevant in this track. Political and social trends that affect economics in the region as well as regional trends in business policies and practices.

Entrepreneurship
The Entrepreneurship Track is interested in papers that address issues that would be of interests to academics in the entrepreneurship, strategy, general management, family business and corporate governance areas. It includes topics such as small business, family business, corporate governance, strategy and general management.  Other topics are management control, ownership, governance and the use of theories to explain behavior of individuals and groups that interact with management and organizational issues. Papers in this track need to address the Latin American context and could compare or contrast the countries of Latin America with those of other regions in their practices and actions.

Financial Markets, Investment and Risk Management
Papers for this track should deal with securities issuance and trading, portfolio management and performance, asset pricing, derivatives and risk management in financial markets, investor behavior, managed funds, financial institutions, and financial market and institutions regulation at a national or international level. Papers should address issues relevant to Latin America.

Human Resource Management
The Human resource track receives papers that relate to people and management in organizations.  This includes organizational behavior, motivation and coaching, leadership, personality, workplace attitudes, and employee performance.   Other topics include more macro issues such as group dynamics, teams, teamwork, organizational culture and culture as social variable that affects individuals and organizations.  The track is interested in papers that traditionally address human resources in Latin America.  This track is also especially interested in papers that relate to Latin American organizations as they move into the new centers of influence and opportunity for Iberoamerican nations, such as East Asia, India, Africa, or the Middle East. 

Information Technology Management
Papers related to all aspects of IT Management are welcome including hardware, systems, software, personnel and procedures. All submissions should be specific to the Latin American context. IT-specific subjects such as network planning, technical support and software design are appropriate as are general management issues applied to IT such as 
change management, strategic alliances, competition, evaluation, etc.

Management Education and Teaching Cases
This track has two foci. The first is about teaching management in Latin America:  pedagogical projects, curricular frameworks, activities of curricular interest, activities of interdisciplinary integration. Assessment and institutional self-evaluation. Theories of education and the teaching-learning process in Latin America. The teaching-learning relationship. Teaching practices at the different levels of college education. Teaching methodologies. Virtual and in-class learning environments. The second focus is cases used for teaching about management in Latin America. These should be cases prepared for use in the classroom. Teaching notes should be included and do not need to fit the page limit for other papers. True case are preferred to hypothetical cases. Games and other learning exercises are also welcome and should be presented so that they can be used by other teachers.

Marketing Management
This track is focused on marketing of services and products and on strategies specific to Latin America. Therefore, themes related to relationship marketing, market orientation, international marketing, product, price, place and promotion management, marketing models, customer equity, branding and brand equity are welcome.

Strategies for Global Competitiveness
Latin American companies are a growing force around the world even as foreign companies have sustained interest in Latin American investments and markets. This track welcomes papers that explore the effects of policies, strategies, industry perspectives and relationships across borders.

Supply Chain and Operations Management
This track focuses broadly on the issues related to managing supply chain and operations in
manufacturing and service organizations in Latin America. This includes but is not limited to analysis, design and development, technology and systems. Issues related to materials and inventory, manufacturing, transportation and logistics are welcome. Extra-firm issues such as partnerships, regional infrastructure, and environmental issues are also appropriate for this track. Performance improvement, planning, measurement and productivity can be addressed.