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An international researcher returns

After many years abroad, Erik Reimer Larsen has now returned to Denmark as a professor at MGMT. On 6 April, he will hold his inaugural lecture, which is entitled “Please wait: Understanding delays, feedback and complexity in decision making” - a topic that he has dealt with throughout his entire research career.

2017.03.28 | Sinne Brandt Jakobsen

Professor Erik Reimer Larsen. Photo: Julia Rolsted Stacey.

London, Bologna, Lugano… and now Aarhus BSS. Since 1992, Erik Reimer Larsen has been employed at some of the world’s leading business schools. Now he has returned to Denmark as a professor at MGMT, and on 6 April he will hold his inaugural lecture at the department. In his lecture, Erik will talk about how delays and feedback in society or the system affect decision-making processes in companies and organisations. This topic has been the focal point of all his previous research, which he divides into three different focus areas: “Population ecology”, queue theories and the electricity market:

“Within population ecology, I’ve studied how delays in the system affect new and developing industries. Within queue theory, I’ve helped develop a number of ‘behavioural queueing models’, which explain the mechanisms and consequences of having to wait. My last research area is the electricity market, where I’ve studied which consequences delays and lack of feedback have on the free electricity market, and how you can ensure the future supply of both renewable energy and traditional electricity.”

Good to test if the theory works

Erik has published a number of articles and books within all three areas, and he has, among other things, published his research in journals such as the Academy of Management Journal and Management Science. In parallel with his academic career, he has worked as a consultant for companies and organisations around the world. He has been involved in a number of major projects in e.g. Argentina, Columbia and Nigeria, and he believes that it is good for a researcher to test whether your theories actually work in practice:

“I enjoy using my knowledge to help companies solve specific problems,” he says. “As a consultant, I use different simulation methods to model the companies’ problems and then discuss possible scenarios with them. In that way, the companies get specific tools which can help them make decisions.”

Back to Denmark - and Aarhus BSS

Erik Reimer Larsen is an international researcher, who has enjoyed a long and exciting career. He originally graduated as an MSc in Engineering, but completed a PhD in economics at Copenhagen Business School in 1992. Since then, he has worked abroad, first as a postdoc at London Business School and the University of Bologna with a Marie Curie Fellowship under his belt. Then he returned to London and Cass Business School, where he was employed as a professor of management systems for seven years.  In 2006, he travelled to Switzerland and spent 11 years at the University of Lugano. He is also an honorary professor at the largest university in Columbia. Why then is he returning to Denmark after so many years abroad?

“I’ve travelled a lot and had an exciting international career until now,” says Erik. “But I’m ready to return home to Denmark and a larger university with the many opportunities this offers. I’m very happy to be here at Aarhus BSS, and I very much look forward to getting started with both my teaching and research, which I think will primarily be within management studies and organisation theory.”

A tasty hobby

After spending so many years in various big European cities, Erik is looking forward to moving into his new flat in the centre of Aarhus. He has neither a car nor a cell phone, and as such he is happy that he will be living within walking distance of the city’s many offerings - especially its restaurants. Indeed, good food is his hobby - and not just the local hot dog stand, but the world’s finest establishments. He also enjoys reading  - both fiction and nonfiction.

Read about time and place for the lecture here