Category Archives: Working Papers

Do Incentivized Reviews Poison the Well? Evidence from a Natural Experiment at Amazon.com

Park, Jaecheol, Arslan Aziz, Gene Moo Lee (2021) “Do Incentivized Reviews Poison the Well? Evidence from a Natural Experiment at Amazon.comWorking Paper.

  • Presentations: UBC (2021), WISE (2021)

The rapid growth in e-commerce has led to a concomitant increase in consumer’s reliance on digital word-of-mouth to inform their choices. As such, there is an increasing incentive for sellers to solicit reviews for their products. Recent studies have examined the direct effect of receiving incentives or introducing incentive policy on review writing behavior. However, since incentivized reviews are often only a small proportion of the overall reviews on a platform, it is important to understand how their presence on the platform has spillover effects on the unincentivized reviews which are often in the majority. Using a natural experiment caused by a policy change, a ban on the incentivized reviews, on Amazon.com in October 2016, we conducted the difference-in-differences analyses for three different periods after the policy implementation. Our results suggest that there are positive spillover effects on the review sentiment, length, helpfulness, and frequency, suggesting that the policy stimulates more reviews in the short-run, and more positive, longer, and more helpful reviews in the long run.

Learning Faces to Predict Matching Probability in an Online Dating Market

Kwon, Soonjae, Sung-Hyuk Park, Gene Moo Lee, Dongwon Lee (2021) “Learning Faces to Predict Matching Probability in an Online Dating Market”. Work-in-progress.

  • Presentations: DS 2021, AIMLBA 2021, WITS 2021
  • Based on an industry collaboration

With the increasing use of online matching markets, predicting the matching probability among users is crucial for better market design. Although previous studies have constructed visual features to predict the matching probability, facial features extracted by deep learning have not been widely used. By predicting user attractiveness in an online dating market, we find that deep learning-enabled facial features can significantly enhance prediction accuracy. We also predict the attractiveness at various evaluator groups and explain their different preferences based on the theory of evolutionary psychology. Furthermore, we propose a novel method to visually interpret deep learning-enabled facial features using the latest deep learning-based generative model. Our work contributes to IS researchers utilizing facial features using deep learning and interpreting them to investigate underlying mechanisms in online matching markets. From a practical perspective, matching platforms can predict matching probability more accurately for better market design and recommender systems for maximizing the matching outcome.

Trustworthy Face? The Effect and Drivers of Comprehensive Trust in Online Job Market Platform

Kwon, Jun Bum, Donghyuk Shin, Gene Moo Lee, Jake An, Sam Hwang (2020) “Trustworthy Face? The Effect and Drivers of Comprehensive Trust in Online Job Market Platform”. Work-in-progress.

The abstract will appear here.

Robots Serve Humans: Does AI Robot Adoption Enhance Operational Efficiency and Customer Experience?

Lee, Myunghwan, Gene Moo Lee, Donghyuk Shin, Sang-Pil Han (2020) “Robots Serve Humans: Does AI Robot Adoption Enhance Operational Efficiency and Customer Experience?Working Paper.

  • Presented at WITS (2020), KrAIS (2020), UBC (2021)
  • Research assistants: Raymond Situ, Gallant Tang

Service providers have been adopting various robotics technologies to improve operational efficiency and increase customer satisfaction. Robotics technologies bring new restaurant experiences to customers by taking orders, cooking, and serving. While the impact of industrial robots has been well documented in the literature, little is known about the impact of customer-facing service robot adoption. To fill this gap, this work-in-progress study aims to analyze the impact of service robot adoption on restaurant service quality using 4,612 restaurants and their online customer reviews. We analyzed the treated effect of robot adoption using a difference-in-differences approach with propensity score and exact matching. Estimation results show that restaurant robot adoption has a positive impact on customer satisfaction, specifically on perceived food quality and perceived value. This study provides both academic and practical implications on the emerging AI robotics techniques.

A Scaling Perspective in AI Startups

Schulte-Althoff, Matthias, Daniel Fuerstenau, Gene Moo Lee, Hannes Rothe, Robert Kauffman (2021) “A Scaling Perspective in AI Startups”. Working Paper. [ResearchGate]

  • Presented at HICSS 2021 (SITES mini-track)

Digital startups’ use of AI technologies has significantly increased in recent years, bringing to the fore specific barriers to deployment, use, and extraction of business value from AI. Utilizing a quantitative framework regarding the themes of startup growth and scaling, we examine the scaling behavior of AI, platform, and service startups. We find evidence of a sublinear scaling ratio of revenue to age-discounted employment count. The results suggest that the revenue-employee growth pattern of AI startups is close to that of service startups, and less so to that of platform startups. Furthermore, we find a superlinear growth pattern of acquired funding in relation to the employment size that is largest for AI startups, possibly suggesting hype tendencies around AI startups. We discuss implications in the light of new economies of scale and the scope of AI startups related to decision-making and prediction.

Information Systems Design and Implementation

Information System Name Related Article Link
Business Proximity MISQ 2016 https://misr.sauder.ubc.ca/bizprox/
SpamRankings.net JC 2016 http://cloud.spamrankings.net/
Korean Cyber Risk Assessment System KIRI 2018 https://misr.sauder.ubc.ca/cyberrisk/
SEC Filings Text Analytics JTI 2018 https://misr.sauder.ubc.ca/edgar_dashboard/
Corporate Social Network WIP 2020 https://misr.sauder.ubc.ca/corporate_network/

 

Corporate Social Network Analysis: A Deep Learning Approach

Cao, Rui, Gene Moo Lee, Hasan Cavusoglu (2020) “Corporate Social Network Analysis: A Deep Learning Approach,” Working Paper.

Identifying inter-firm relationships is critical in understanding the industry landscape. However, due to the dynamic nature of such relationships, it is challenging to capture corporate social networks in a scalable and timely manner. To address this issue, this research develops a framework to build corporate social network representations by applying natural language processing (NLP) techniques on a corpus of 10-K filings, describing the reporting firms’ perceived relationships with other firms. Our framework uses named-entity recognition (NER) to locate the corporate names in the text, topic modeling to identify types of relationships included, and BERT to predict the type of relationship described in each sentence. To show the value of the network measures created by the proposed framework, we conduct two empirical analyses to see their impacts on firm performance. The first study shows that competition relationship and in-degree measurements on all relationship types have prediction power in estimating future earnings. The second study focuses on the difference between individual perspectives in an inter-firm social network. Such a difference is measured by the direction of mentions and is an indicator of a firm’s success in network governance. Receiving more mentions from other firms is a positive signal to network governance and it shows a significant positive correlation with firm performance next year.

Targeting Pre-Roll Ads using Video Analytics

Park, Sungho, Gene Moo Lee, Donghyuk Shin, Sang-Pil Han. “Targeting Pre-Roll Ads using Video Analytics”, Under Reject ana Resubmit, Management Science. [Submitted: April 25, 2021]

  • Funded by Sauder Exploratory Research Grant 2020
  • Presented at Southern Methodist University (2020), University of Washington (2020), INFORMS (2020), AIMLBA (2020), WITS (2020), HKUST (2021), Maryland (2021), American University (2021), National University of Singapore (2021)
  • Research assistants: Raymond Situ, Miguel Valarao

Pre-roll video ads continue to rise at an unparalleled pace, creating new opportunities and challenges. They are more immersive than conventional banner ads and must be viewed at least partially before the content video is played. On the other hand, the prevailing skippable format of pre-roll video ads that allows viewers to skip ads after five seconds generates opportunity costs for advertisers and online platforms when the ad is skipped. Against this backdrop, we propose a novel video analytics method for improving pre-roll video ad performance by extracting multi-modal (audio, video, text) properties from both video ads and content videos using deep learning and signal processing techniques, and then analyzing their effect on video ad completion. The findings indicate that the ad-content congruence in various modalities is essential in explaining viewers’ ad completion. Specifically, visual congruence (i.e., celebrity overlap in ad and content) and textual congruence (i.e., topic similarity of ad and content) play important roles as viewers may shape ex-ante expectations of the congruence based on visual cues (i.e., thumbnail images) and previous experience (i.e., watched content clips from the same program) before watching the content video. We also discover, through predictive analyses, that video ad completion can be reliably predicted by features derived from the proposed method. Surprisingly, there is no discernible loss of predictive power when analyzing only the first five seconds of ads and content videos rather than their entire length, resulting in significant cost savings when processing large video datasets.

On the Heterogeneity of Startup Tech Stacks

Schulte-Althoff, Matthias, Kai Schewina, Gene Moo Lee, Daniel Fuerstenau. “On the Heterogeneity of Startup Tech Stacks”. Under Review [HICSS version]

  • Presented in HICSS 2020 (Maui, HI)
  • Previous title: On the Heterogeneity of Digital Infrastructure in Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

Digital infrastructure is the backbone on which digital startups realize business opportunities, and the homogeneity or heterogeneity of the technological base can have significant downstream impacts on business risks, inflexibilities, and growth barriers. On the nexus of digital entrepreneurship and infrastructure studies, we suggest a conception of startup digital infrastructure as organized in tech stacks; tech stacks contain individual technological elements that are combined in a single startup, while the way this is done will be inspired by shared templates within the ecosystem. Given that there is limited understanding of the heterogeneity (or homogeneity) of startup tech stacks, we use public registry datasets from StackShare and Crunchbase to identify common tech stacks of startups. Through our analysis, we identify ten commonly used startup tech stacks, which we use to measure and analyze the heterogeneity of startup tech stacks and its antecedents. OLS regression analysis shows that a startup’s technologies’ interrelatedness, its age, and investor funding are associated with the heterogeneity of startup tech stacks. The overall analysis suggests that while startups may make individual choices regarding technology usage, there could be underlying commonalities and imprinting effects across startups, exposing them to common risks in terms of their digital infrastructures. This could pose important implications for startups, investors, and society at large

Price Competition and Inactive Search

Koh, Yumi, Gea M. Lee, Gene Moo Lee (2021) “Price Competition and Inactive Search”. Working Paper. [Latest version: April 28, 2021] [SSRN]

We propose a model of price competition in which firms select prices conditional on privately-observed production costs and a subset of consumers can choose to search sequentially given price dispersion. We investigate how competition affects the consumers’ choice of whether to purchase immediately from a randomly-selected first firm or engage in sequential search. We establish two types of equilibria, random equilibrium and searching equilibrium, based on the consumers’ search decision in equilibrium. We show that sequential search can be completely or at least partially inactivated in the market with a sufficiently large number of competing firms.