HDR Supervisor of the Month

To recognise good practice in ANU Higher Degree Research (HDR) supervision, we have introduced the HDR Supervisor of the Month Award.

All HDR supervisors, conveners, administrators, or anyone else who works to support HDR are eligible to be nominated.

The winner will receive ANU-wide recognition.

Nominations are welcome from all members of the ANU community. Nomination involves completion of the simple HDR Supervisor of the Month – Nomination Form.

Current HDR Supervisor of the Month awardee

April 2022

Anton Kriz
Photo by CBE

Associate Professor Anton Kriz
Research School of Management
ANU College of Business & Economics

Anton’s supervisory approach:
“I see the PhD supervisory role as real privilege and as much as my students may benefit, I know it also changes me as a person, mentor and researcher. My pathway to academia was slightly different to what might be the “norm” and included being a CEO, management consultant and working in government. My early career choice to do an undergraduate business degree after working for a few years was a critical turning point; the decision to then engage in a PhD (after spending time working in industry) really changed the way I view life and learning. “You don’t know what you don’t know” and in my case I was probably sitting at the top of Mt Stupid when it comes to the Dunning-Kruger effect. The delayed trajectory in my own development as an academic and as researcher, mixed with extensive management experience, is something I cherish. I seem to attract PhDs with similar backgrounds wanting to embark on equivalent research journeys, and have appreciated the interest of some experienced and original-thinking prospective management PhDs. Pursuit of a PhD in the latter stages is about perspiration, so you need passion for such a pursuit. Fortunately, the students with whom I am now working and learning, often have a very astute sense of self and know why they are pursuing such a higher-order research challenge. This mix of experience and a search for our own truth fits with what I was taught about a doctor of philosophy and its search for wisdom. I am now far more interested in helping people learn rather than being the “teacher” which likely coincides with my shift to andragogy and executive level instruction. Increasing involvement in regional interventions and impacting on triple helix dynamics (interplay of university, government and industry) adds significantly to my PhD related story. Watching PhDs and masters students now investigate these innovation-related dynamics in different contexts is exciting. Action research, case studies and action learning are now predominant in my methodological tool box and I have been fortunate to witness not only interesting research but also substantial change in the researched phenomenon. Impact is therefore core business for me and I do get concerned when I occasionally hear higher-degree students being prompted to “game the system” in pursuit of journal outputs and climbing the academic ladder. It reminds me of the movie Jerry Maguire when a young boy abused Jerry for encouraging his dad to keep playing football despite regular and serious concussions. Jerry had an overnight conversion and his report to the firm on being more caring had immediate consequences. I agree that the PhD journey is more important often than the destination. But the contribution needs to be worth the effort. Hopefully if you too embark on a PhD, you derive as much satisfaction as I have. I have definitely gained more from my students than I have given. As I have slowly descended the slope of Mt Stupid, I hope I have become richer in my understanding of people, contexts and organisations."

Find out more about Anton’s work by visiting Anton's profile webpage on the Researchers website.