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La Trobe Business School

Month: July 2018

Jamila Gordon – How LTU can make dreams come true

LBS alumna, Jamila Gordon, was interviewed by the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD). The interview shows the amazing story of a Somali refugee who is now a high profile Non-Executive Director at Jayride & Advisory Board Member at Venture Crowd. Jamila sat on the university’s Board for five years and sits now on the Board of CareerSeekers, a not-for-profit that helps refugees and asylum seekers find roles within corporate Australia.

From Somalia to La Trobe

Jamila’s family had to flee her home country because of the Somali Civil War. She stayed in Kenya with distant relatives before she met an Australia backpacker who would help her emigrate to Australia. Her dream of going to university almost fell apart when every university in Sydney rejected her. La Trobe University, known for providing educational opportunities for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, accepted Jamila. She became part of the LBS community studying a bachelor of Business (Information Technology).

In the interview Jamila talks about her journey and her career but also about how LTU taught her big-picture thinking, and mentions the great support she received from La Trobe University.

“Not only did they help me, they provided amazing support.”

Read the full article: What I’ve Learned: Jamila Gordon

International Conference of Organizational Innovation (2018 ICOI)

The 12th International Conference of Organizational Innovation (2018 ICOI), Asia’s prominent Management and Innovation Conference, was recently held in Fukuoka, Japan. The conference is co-sponsored by La Trobe Business School. Conference host, Fukuoka University, delivered an outstanding event with spectacular views from the top floor of the Business School Building. A highlight was the student drum session. The 2018 ICOI was the most successful conference to date, and LBS is proud to be the only Australian University associated with the conference.

International scholars from over two-dozen countries presented 239 papers associated to organizational innovation. Included were two papers from LBS’ graduate researchers Ana Amirsardari and Roula Tabbah, presented by their Research Supervisor, Professor Alex Maritz.  Seen below is the organising committee of the conference, (L-R) Dr Charles Shieh (Conference Chair), Professor Alex Maritz (VP, International Association of Organizational Innovation), Dr Frederick Dembowski (President, International Association of Organizational Innovation and Mr Aria Aulandri (Indonesian Chair).

Keynotes included dynamic presentations on Renewable Energy, Resource Constrained Innovation and Innovating Organizational Innovation, together with VIP speeches from prominent international scholars, including Professors Niklov, Hristova, Dass, Gunawa, Huang, Jen-der Day, Antanov, de Waal and Engelbert.

Our special appreciation to Professor Yamazaki Yoshhiro, Faculty of Economics, Fukuoka University, for hosting a successful 2018 ICOI. LBS and Fukuoka University have agreed to future research collaboration and student/staff engagement.

 

2018 ICOI

LBS Innovation Series: Melbourne Innovation Centre – A case study in innovation

The Melbourne Innovation Centre (MIC), has been operating for 19 years and has been self-funded since 1998. The organisation’s role is to teach, train, mentor and support entrepreneurs and start-ups in Melbourne’s northern region. The organisation has incubated over 400 start-up and scale-up businesses throughout this period, creating more than 1,500 new jobs within Melbourne’s north and contributing approximately $66 million to the national economy annually.

Melbourne’s innovation system

Mr David Williamson, CEO Melbourne Innovation Centre, outlines the current state of northern Melbourne’s innovation system in some detail and the key industry, tertiary, state and local government, and intermediary players that help to shape it. He discusses how MIC’s methodology to assist start-ups and entrepreneurs has changed rapidly over the last three years. That is, away from writing long business plans to lean methodologies (start-up science) that utilizes things like the business canvas, lean start-up, design thinking and prototyping and strategies for rapid deployment. He noted that during this time the typical age profile of his clients has become younger from predominantly 30 to 40-year olds to 20 to 30-year olds. David discusses recent changes to national legislation for venture capital and crowd funding similar to legislation in the UK and New Zealand. He believes this offers great opportunities and will have a dramatic impact on the availability for funding new ideas and innovation.

 

Watch his presentation below:

 

This blog is part of the LBS Innovation Series, developed by Dr Mark Cloney, Professor of Practice in Economics in the La Trobe Business School. The series was developed after the successful National Innovation Forum organised by La Trobe Business School, NORTH Link and Deloitte Consulting P/L.

More blogs in the LBS Innovation Series:

LBS’ involvement with UN’s PRME

CR3+ is a partnership between LBS, Audencia Business School (France), Hanken School of Economics (Finland) and ISAE Brazilian Business School (Brazil). The partnership builds on the schools’ involvement with the UN Principles for Responsible Management Education, also known as PRME.

 

2018 CR3+ conference

From the 12th until the 14th of June the 6th CR3+ conference was held at Audencia Business School. The theme of the conference was “Navigating the Plural Voices of Corporate Responsibility (CR)”, which recognises that CR is situated at the interface of business and society, and as such requires business to draw on a multitude of voices (and in some cases, the voiceless) to reduce their negative impact and/or contribute to society’s wellbeing. The conference had four key areas:

  • Education for sustainably
  • Theoretical voices in Corporate Responsibility research
  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Giving voice to the unheard actors in Corporate Responsibility

 

LBS was well represented with 7 delegates attending the conference; Professor Suzanne Young, Dr Leila Afshari, Dr Nicole El-Haber, Dr Jillian Cavanagh, Dr Swati Nagpal, Dr William Keeton and Ms Patricia Pariona Cabrera. The papers presented by our LBS academics covered wide-ranging topics including community engagement, employee volunteering, corruption, graduate skills for sustainability and workers with intellectual disabilities:

  • Graduate Business Skills for Sustainability: The Nexus of Curriculum and Pedagogy.
  • Beyond CSR: Workers with intellectual disability and their ‘calling’ to further their careers.
  • Corporate responsibility and community engagement: complex decision-making in water organisations in Victoria, Australia.
  • Employee Volunteering: Individual and Organizational Levels of Action.
  • Authentic leaders and corrupt practices: Overshadowing effect of corruption normalization and highly regulated localization.

Why not bulldoze business schools?

There were also expert panel discussions, including one that Professor Suzanne Young was part of entitled “Why not bulldoze business schools”, in response to Martin Parker’s article in The Guardian.

The panel members took opposing points of view with some speaking of the importance of business schools in challenging the status quo and embedding issues of responsibility and sustainability into their ways of working; whereas others spoke of business education cementing the norms of business practices and the focus on profit and self-interest. Professor Young took the former viewpoint and gave examples of La Trobe University and La Trobe Business School’s values and practices. Examples included the university’s gender equality practices, sustainability and responsibility courses and curriculum, hosting of governance and sustainability conferences, as well as Sustainable Development Goals workshops.

10 years a UN PRME signatory

2018 marks LBS’ 10th year as a UN PRME signatory and the CR3+ conference is just one example of our global partnerships in corporate responsibility and sustainability. You can read more about LBS’ involvement with UN PRME and the progress LBS is making in research, curriculum and partnerships in our Sharing of Information on Progress (SIP) report later this year. Watch this space for more information.

2019 CR3+ conference

It’s also exciting to announce that LBS will be hosting the 7th CR3+ conference in late 2019 at our city campus. If you would like to be involved in the conference organising committee or the UN PRME community of practice at LBS, please contact Dr Swati Nagpal.

Basketbrawl

We know what it is, but what do we call it.  Fight. Stoush. Stink. Blue. Donnybrook. Altercation. An exchange of pleasantries. Ruckus. Brouhaha. Bit of Biffo. Fracas. Melee. Free for all.

The whatever-you-want-to-call-it between the Australian and Filipino basketball teams turned an otherwise humdrum game of international basketball into an international incident.

Sports violence

There are as many angles to take on this incident as there were punches thrown.

Sport is a masculine area of social life.  Let’s look at this list of words – physical, assertive, tough, rough, competitive, intense, intimidating, risky, aggressive, destructive, and violent.  None of them look out of place when describing sport, but they are actually from a well-accepted list of theoretical terms commonly associated with definitions of sports violence. Sport and violence are certainly not poles apart.

The circumstances were ripe for a whatever-you-want-to-call-it.  Home team being beaten comfortably. Some niggle. Some sledging. Equal parts nationalism and patriotism. A push, a shove and then a great big whack (by an Australian). The Filipino bench players take a few steps forward, and ‘fly the flag’ in support of their team mates. Somehow the Australian bench players resist the natural instinct to do likewise. And then it was on like Donkey Kong, except they threw chairs rather than barrels. The Australian Five versus…well pretty much everyone else. The court is small, so the pandemonium easy moves off court.  It was a perfect storm.

Sanctions

Authorities will take a dim view of the players actions, providing many with a time out and a very visible naughty seat upon which they can reflect on their behaviours. But these authorities also need to exercise some restraint. Natural justice has a few dimensions and one of them is that the punishment must fit the crime.  It would be easy for FIBA, the International Basketball Federation, to throw the book at the Australian players. For example, should Daniel Kicker be sanctioned more for his elbow to the head of an opposing player simply because of what happened next? Does Thon Maker get some sort of reprieve because his flying kicks missed? Whatever the sanctions, some will say it is too much, others will say it is not enough.  If this criticism occurs, then you can be confident that FIBA got it about right. What is less clear is whether or not FIBA may seek to impose sanctions on Basketball Australia (BA) or Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas, its Filipino equivalent.

Responsibility

So far BA has played its cards well.  There have been some attempts to shift responsibility for the whatever-you-want-to-call-it to the Filipinos, but the BA CEO and Chair were quick to acknowledge some responsibility. The same can be said of the players.  At this stage the less they say the better. The majority of social media comments can be classified into one of two themes – “How good is this?” and “I am outraged”. BA cannot speak to the first group and they will need to placate outraged. Contrition is key to all of their messaging.

So, whatever you want to call it, basketball was not the winner.

 

This blog is written by Dr Geoff Dickson, Associate Professor and Head of Department of Management Sport and Tourism. His teaching and research interests include governance, interorganisational networks, leadership, strategy, risk and law in the sport industry. 

LBS Innovation Series: How can universities strengthen firms’ innovative ability?

The next presentation in the LBS Innovation Series is by Dr Stephan Buse, Deputy Director of the Institute for Technology and Innovation Management (TIM) at Hamburg University of Technology (TUHH). Stephan talks about academia-industry collaboration and engagement, and how universities can strengthen firms’ innovative ability.

Frugal innovation

Stephan argues that to succeed in emerging markets, especially in powerhouses like China and India, many companies from industrialised nations have had to change their established business models. In this environment, to remain competitive, a new way of thinking and acting is required.  Frugal innovation is a strategic approach to deal with these new challenges.

According to Stephan, frugal innovation refers to products and services that seek to minimise the use of material and financial resources across the complete value chain. The objective is to substantially reduce not just price but the complete cost of ownership/usage of a product. By adopting this approach firms can develop products that bring better priced quality goods to the customer both in the Business-to-Consumer and Business-to-Business sectors. He also gives examples of strong university-industry collaboration through the use of ethnography an emerging tool used to better identify habits of consumers.

 

Watch his presentation below:

 

This blog is part of the LBS Innovation Series, developed by Dr Mark Cloney, Professor of Practice in Economics in the La Trobe Business School. The series was developed after the successful National Innovation Forum organised by La Trobe Business School, NORTH Link and Deloitte Consulting P/L.

More blogs in the LBS Innovation Series:

Does Data Eat Strategy for Breakfast?

Businesses are operating in environments with increasingly large and complex sets of data.  This revolution of data is hitting every industry. Every organisation now has the power to harness large amounts of information that can help inform strategic decisions.

La Trobe University organised a panel discussion among leading industry experts to discuss and explore the synergy between data and strategy, whilst highlighting the importance of developing strategies to become a data-driven organisation.

The panel

  • Phil Bolton: Director at PwC Australia, who also leads the Safety Analytics practice. He has been delivering data analytics projects to businesses across a broad range of industries and countries for over 15 years.
  • Edith Cheng: Head of Digital Marketing & Analytics at Lens10, a digital analytics agency. Starting out in digital marketing, she developed an interest in analytics and specifically custom analytics integrations, which enable organisations to unlock the value of their data in innovative ways.
  • David de Garis: Director in Economics, Markets, Corporate & Institutional Banking at NAB. He is a business and financial markets economist and consults with clients ranging from the Bank’s agribusiness and corporate clients, to institutional clients at home and abroad.
  • James Fazzino: Vice Chancellor’s Fellow at La Trobe University. James is an LBS alumnus and recently concluded a highly successful eight-year term as Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Incitec Pivot Limited.

 

Many LBS staff and students as well as people from outside the university attended the insightful event. The evening was opened by Professor Jane Hamilton, Dean and Head of the La Trobe Business School who mentioned that the university is excited to be at the forefront of this data revolution.

Watch the video to see how the panellists discuss questions such as: How do you see data influencing strategic decision making? Which business sectors are ‘doing data’ well? And do you have data influence your strategy, or do you use data for hypothesis testing?

 

End of Financial Year: Tax tips for students*

It’s time to prepare and lodge an income tax return with the Australian Taxation Office (the ATO). Taxes are a complicated topic, there is a lot of (sometimes misleading) information, and students might wonder whether they actually need to lodge a return. Mark Morris, Professor of Practice in Taxation here at LBS, sums up the most important tax questions you’ll need to consider as a university student studying in Australia.

First of all, if the income tax deducted from a student’s job exceeds the total income tax payable for the tax year, a student can obtain a refund of overpaid tax by lodging an income tax return. It might also be that students are legally required to lodge a return and pay tax where insufficient income tax been retained from their salary, or where they derive other categories of assessable income on which they owe tax.

Are you an Australian tax resident?

If you were born in Australia and continue to live here, you will be regarded as an Australian resident for income tax purposes.

However, for international students to recognise that being a resident for Australian tax purposes is quite different to being a permanent resident for Australian immigration purposes, and that they may sometimes unknowingly be an Australian tax resident. As a broad rule of thumb, the ATO takes the view that living in Australia for six months is a period which is generally consistent with a person residing here for tax purposes. If you are unsure whether you are an Australian resident for income tax purposes you should contact the ATO or a registered tax agent.

Tip: Remember that being a resident for Australian tax purposes is quite different to being a permanent resident for Australian immigration purposes.

What happens if you’re an Australian tax resident?

On the upside, you’ll be entitled to a tax free threshold. This means you won’t pay any income tax for the year ended 30 June 2018 if your total taxable income is $18,200 or less.

What’s more, you may be eligible for a refund. Say you worked part-time, earned a salary from which income tax was deducted by your employer, and your total taxable income was $18,200 or less, then you’d be able to receive a refund of any tax withheld from your salary income.

On the downside, you’ll be subject to tax on all your assessable income for the year ended 30 June 2018 – regardless of where you earned it. For example, as an international student, you’ll need to include both your Australian salary income and any interest income earned in a bank account held in your home country.

And if insufficient income tax has been withheld from your salary, or if you’ve earnt other assessable income on which you owe tax, you’ll be legally required to lodge a return to pay tax. In addition, Australian residents are subject to a 2 per cent Medicare levy, but only where your taxable income exceed certain thresholds.

Tip: The tax your employer withholds is known as a Pay As You Go (PAYG) withholding. Look for it on your payslip.

What do I need to lodge a tax return?

Everyone who lodges an income tax return needs a tax file number (TFN). If you’ve been employed, you’ve probably already been issued a TFN. If for some reason you’re lodging a return but don’t have a TFN, you’ll need to apply for one from the ATO, either directly or by using a registered tax agent.

Next, you’ll need to collate information to prepare your income tax return. This information includes things like your:

  • payment summary, a statement your employer issues at the end of each financial year to show how much income they paid you and how much tax they withheld
  • bank statements showing any interest you’ve earned
  • dividend slips, to show payments made by companies you have shares in
  • invoices and receipts.

Assuming you have a TFN and your tax return is relatively simple, you can prepare and lodge your income tax return on-line using the ATO’s myTax product. In case your tax return is more complicated, contact a registered tax agent to ensure you identify all your entitlements and to ensure that your income tax return is correctly prepared.

Tip: If you expect to receive a tax refund, you’ll also need to have your bank account details on-hand to nominate where your refund will be deposited.

What types of income need to be included in your return?

When you prepare your tax return, you’ll need to declare all the assessable income you’ve earned this financial year. Income is more than just ‘money’ – it can come from a range of sources, such as:

  • Salary and wages, as a full-time, part-time or casual employee
  • Allowances and bonuses
  • Tips and gratuities, such as those earned while working in hospitality jobs
  • Fees received as an independent contractor
  • Business income (but not income earned from a hobby)
  • Government payments and allowances like Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance, Austudy payments and others
  • Income from bank interest
  • Dividend income
  • Distributions received from a family trust or as a partner in a partnership, and
  • Capital gains on the sale of assets – a highly complex area requiring specialist expertise.

What type of work-related deductions can you claim?

Your total assessable income can be reduced by what the ATO calls ‘deductions’. Deductions are amounts you can claim for any expenses you’ve incurred to make that income. They come in three main forms: work-related deductions, self-education expenses and personal deductions.

You can also claim an amount for the decline in value over time (‘depreciation’) of certain assets, like a computer, in relation to how much it’s been used to help earn your assessable income.

Some of the more common types of deductions you might be able to claim are:

  • Work-related subscription and union fees
  • Protective clothing and compulsory work uniforms
  • Home office expenses (if you’re required to work at home after hours, and you keep a diary listing the hours you worked at home, for a minimum of four weeks)
  • Work-related phone and internet costs, and
  • Travel expenses between worksites (but not for travel between home and work).

You might also be entitled to claim a deduction for the cost of tools of trade, briefcases and calculators costing less than $300, to the extent that you use them for work.

Tip: Take care when claiming deductions for work-related expenses, as this is an area that’s closely scrutinised by the ATO. You can’t claim an expense that your employer reimbursed you for. And you’ll need written records of the expenses you’ve incurred (such as invoices, receipts and bank statements).

When are self-education costs allowed?

If you’re studying a course that will maintain or improve your skills in your current occupation, you can claim the costs of study as a self-education expense. You can also claim the costs of course fees, textbooks, stationary, travel costs and the depreciation of items like laptops, tablets and printers. Accordingly, you can’t claim study costs if you’ve not yet started a particular career. For example, as an undergraduate student, you can’t claim costs associated with obtaining your initial academic qualification. The same logic applies if you’ve decided to change careers – you can’t claim the costs of studying a new area of expertise. You also can’t claim Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) repayments.

Tip: To see some specific examples of when you can and can’t claim self-education expenses, check out Taxation Ruling TR98/9.

What personal deductions can you claim?

You can claim donations of $2 dollars or more to a deductible gift recipient (for instance, a charity like the Australian Red Cross) provided you’ve kept copies of receipts for any gifts made. You can also claim a deduction for any fee paid to a registered tax agent during the year ended 30 June 2018 for the cost of managing your tax affairs. However, in a unique twist, this deduction is held over until the following year – a good incentive to do your tax return in the financial year ending 30 June 2019!

Tip: For gold-coin donations (like those you drop into a collection bucket), you can claim a deduction equal to your contribution up to $10 without a receipt.

What tax offsets can you claim?

Tax offsets are different to deductions. While deductions can reduce your assessable income, tax offsets are directly applied as a credit to reduce your tax payable. And sometimes, for certain tax offsets, the tax credit received might be more than your tax payable – which could even result in a refund!

The most common tax offsets you can claim:

  • Beneficiary tax offset: may be available if you receive Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance, Austudy payments or certain other Commonwealth education or training programs.
  • Franking credit tax offset: If you’re a shareholder in an Australian company, you might be eligible for the franking credit tax offset. When a company pays you a franked dividend, the company may pass on a tax credit for tax it’s paid on its income. Such a tax credit can be claimed as a franking credit tax offset.
  • Small business income tax offset: if you’re a student who’s also running a business, you might be entitled to the small business income tax offset. This equates to 8 per cent of the income tax payable on the portion of your taxable income that’s ‘total net small business income’, provided the aggregated turnover of the business is less than $5 million.

Tip: The small business income tax offset is quite complex, so seek specialist advice if you intend to claim them.

Where do I go for help?

If you think you need to lodge an income tax return, get in touch with the ATO or take a look at their valuable information for individuals. If you’d prefer to get independent tax advice, find an accountant who’s not only a tax expert, but also a registered tax agent, to ensure they’re legally authorised to provide such services.

And if you’re entitled to a tax refund – go get what is yours!

 

Mark Morris La Trobe Business School Professor of Practice

Mark Morris is Professor of Practice in taxation at LBS. Prior to this role Mark held various senior roles in chartered accounting and industry, and has been a frequent speaker and author on tax matters. Mark has degrees in Law and Commerce and majored in Accounting. He is a registered tax agent, a member of CPA Australia and the Taxation Institute and has been admitted to practice as a solicitor in Victoria.

 

This blog post was originally published on NEST. Read the original article.

*Disclaimer: La Trobe University has used reasonable care and skill in compiling the content of this general commentary. However, it should not be relied upon as advice in any circumstances, and no warranty is provided by either the University or the author concerning the accuracy and completeness of these materials. Accordingly, we disclaim all and any liability to any person in respect of reliance on any of the matters raised in these materials, and professional advice should be sought from an appropriately qualified registered tax agent where required.

 

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