The faculty received a $417, 781 grant to build behavioural business research labs
By: Britin Cote – Contributor
The faculty of business at the University of Regina has received a $417,781 grant with plans to build behavioural business research labs. This begs the question of what the faculty plans on doing with labs. Lisa Watson, an associate professor in the business faculty and one of the writers of the grant application, explained some of the upcoming plans and uses for the labs.
Though still in the early design stages of development, the labs are going to be located on the fifth floor of the education building directly in the school of business, so students can have easy access. The labs are set to be completed for the start of the fall semester. This now means that the faculty has to decide how to best use its space.
“Everything is going to be easily moved and rearranged so that we can set the space up in a variety of different ways,” said Watson.
“So, if we were running a marketing experiment where people pretending [to do] their shopping vs another day where we might be simulating a casino environment. That is one of the biggest tricks that will make the space unique compared to what we have in other spaces on campus,” said Watson.
The project is in part thanks to the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) for supplying the grant to the school. The CFI provides 40 per cent funding with the expectation that it will be matched by the provincial government supplying another 40 per cent. This leaves the school responsible for covering the remaining 20 per cent, which will be funded through donations or discounts from vendors.
“We are going to be initially getting some eye tracking equipment. We’ll have a whole bunch of physiological measures for like sweat tests and heart monitors and those kinds of things,” said Watson.
In addition to new and exciting technology, the labs will also require basic tools to function, like several computers and monitoring devices.
“We’re going to be running simulations on them, cameras in the ceilings, audio microphones so that we can record what’s happening in the different spaces,” said Watson.
With this new technology, the faculty will now be able to conduct interviews, simulations, and focus groups. Just like the psychology labs, students and professors will be able to work together and conduct their very own research in their field.
“There’s a huge demand and that’s why we applied; it’s really labour intensive to even apply for the money,” said Watson, adding that “the faculty really pulled together as a team.”