The Ruthven Institute Hub

The RI Hub is an alliance between the University of Melbourne and the Ruthven Institute centred on research and curriculum development to improve the profitability and sustainable success of Australian businesses.

The Ruthven Institute (RI) has collected and analysed corporate data over the past five decades in Australia which shows profitability has not improved over that time, and that only 1 in 10 of Australia's 2,000 largest corporations achieve world best practice returns of 22% over any 3-5 year period. Businesses continue to make fundamental strategic errors that hurt the bottom line and Australia's productivity and economic well-being.

The Hub is developing new and exciting teaching materials to bolster Australian business students' capabilities in evidence-based decision making, with a strong focus on the relationship between strategic choices, management and leadership practices and business performance. Training and tools are also in development for corporate clients, with an aim to lift the strategic wisome of Australian C-suites.

Alongside this curriculum development, the Hub houses a program of research designed to interrogate and leverage the RI evidence base to deepen our understanding of the key drivers of sustained success.

12 Rules for Business Success

The Ruthven Institute has developed 12 rules for business success. Based on 45 years of analysis of Australia’s top 1000 companies, the Ruthven Institute has distilled the essence of a winning business strategy. Research undertaken by the University of Melbourne between 1998 and 2001 supported many of these rules. Our Teaching Cases aim to expose students to these rules. Our Research Notes frame our ongoing research into the rules, while our Practice Notes translate these findings for a business audience.Graphic representation of 12 Golden Rules

Teaching Cases

We are developing teaching cases that showcase examples of Australian organisations wrestling with key strategic choices. Our Teaching Notes (available on request) explore the relationships between these choices and RI’s 12 Rules for sustained success. If you are an academic interested in developing cases for publication here, please contact us.

Teaching Case #1: Yering Station

Teaching Case #2: Kogan

Teaching Case #3: Amcor

Teaching Case #4: Gingham & Heels

Research Notes

The Ruthven Institute has developed 12 rules for business success. Based on 45 years of analysis of Australia’s top 1000 companies, the Ruthven Institute has distilled the essence of a winning business strategy. Research undertaken by the University of Melbourne between 1998 and 2001 supported many of these rules. In this series of Research Notes, the RI Hub examines the academic and practice literature to assess the validity and continuing relevance of these rules. The Notes are designed to frame our ongoing research projects.

Research Note #1: How Should We Calculate Firm Profitability

Research Note #2: Rule 1 - Focus On One Business At A Time

Research Note #3: Rule 2 - Know your Industry and its Life Cycle Phase

Practice Notes

As part of our Research work we produce brief Practice Notes explaining key concepts and findings for practitioners:

Practice Note #1: Performance Measures - How Should We Calculate Profitability?

Practice Note #2: Focus or Diversification?

Practice Note #3: Know your Industry Life Cycle Phase

Hub Staff and Partners

Professor André Sammartino leads the RI Hub. André is Deputy Head of the Department of Management & Marketing at the University of Melbourne, and has a PhD from Melbourne. He has extensive teaching experience in strategic management, business judgement, consulting and international business subjects. André has published in Strategic Management Journal, Journal of International Business Studies and California Management Review on a range of topics include top management team decision-making, assessment of country risk, and the geographic spread of multinationals. André has been a visitor at Copenhagen Business School, Temple University and Bocconi. He recently received ARC funding for a project on the history of inward foreign direct investment into Australia.

Dr Sabutay Fatullayev is the research fellow for The RI Hub and has recently finished his PhD in Accounting at the University of Melbourne. He holds a Bachelor’s degree with a double major in Business Administration (Accounting) and Economics from the American University in Bulgaria and a Master’s degree in Commerce (Accounting) from the University of Melbourne. Prior to his doctoral studies, Sabutay served in the military and worked as an accountant in Azerbaijan. Sabutay’s main research interests lie in financial accounting, with a stronger focus on financial statement analysis, credit ratings, and debt contracting. He has attended and presented in conferences in Europe, Australia and New Zealand, where a paper from his dissertation received the best paper award. He has also taught several courses in introductory financial accounting and quantitative finance.

Dr Rakesh Pati is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Management at the Deakin Business School, Deakin University. Dr Rakesh Pati was the RI Research Fellow for 2019. Prior to U. of Melbourne, Rakesh worked as Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the department of Strategic Management & Entrepreneurship at Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota. He has been a Fulbright Scholar in Strategy & Entrepreneurship for his predoctoral fellowship University of Minnesota. Rakesh holds a PhD in Strategy & Entrepreneurship, MBA in Marketing & Strategy and Bachelor of Engineering. Rakesh’s research and teaching interests are in the areas of Strategy, Entrepreneurship and International Business, areas in which he holds extensive experience in research, teaching, industry collaborations, and consulting that spans across USA, Australia and India. He also has wide experience in research grants, industry partnerships, community engagement, coaching and executive teaching. Rakesh has taught courses in Strategic Management, Entrepreneurship, International Business, Behavioral Strategy, and Business Judgement at undergraduate, postgraduate and executive levels.

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