An official publication of the Incentive Research Foundation

The IRF Quarterly Academic Review is the world’s first journal focused on academic research into incentives, rewards, recognition, and motivation in the workplace. The Quarterly presents academic research summarized into the key findings and takeaways most relevant to Incentive, Reward, and Recognition (IRR) programs owners and designers. Each study is summarized, with additional key findings, actionable takeaways, and question and answer with the author. The Quarterly also offers research abstracts and book recommendations.

The journal reflects the IRF’s commitment to building deeper links with the academic community, including the IRF's academic network of more than 50 university researchers worldwide, and to expediting the use of academic findings in business and programs.

The IRF Quarterly Academic Review is written by
Allan Schweyer, IRF Chief Academic Advisor. 



  • Volume 2, Number 2
    Summer 2019

    Access Summer 2019 Issue Here

    This issue of The IRF Quarterly Academic Review contains:
    Effective Incentive Compensation for Sales Employees During Tough Economic Times
    How to Really Motivate Salespeople
    (Re)defining Salesperson Motivation: Current Status, Main Challenges, and Research Directions
    The Motivational Power of Incentive Travel: The Participant’s Perspective
    The Perils of Altering Incentive Plans: A Case Study
    Enhancing Return on Salesforce Investment: Reallocating Incentives and Training Resources with Intrinsic Valuation Approach
    Incentives Versus Reciprocity: Insights from a Field Experiment
    The Effects of Salesperson Need for Achievement and Sales Manager Leader Reward Behavior
    Sales Contest Effectiveness: An Examination of Sales Contest Design Preferences of Field Sales Forces
    Books Reviewed and Recommended

  • Volume 2, Number 1
    Spring 2019

    Access Spring 2019 Issue Here

    This issue of The IRF Quarterly Academic Review contains: 
    Pre-Release Research Summary: The Interactive Effect of Reward Type and Employee-Firm Identity on Instrumental-Symbolic Valuation of Rewards and Willingness to Exert Effort
    Micro-Review: The Impact of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivators on Employee Engagement in Information Organizations
    Pre-Release Research Summary: When Do Tangible Rewards Motivate Greater Effort Than Cash Rewards? An Analysis of Three Commonly Cited Differences
    Pre-Release Research Summary: Needs Versus Wants: Which Motivates More Effort?
    Pre-Release Research Summary: Rejections, Incentives, and Employee Creativity: When Chocolate Is Better Than Cash
    Recent & Relevant Research Summary: Self-Selected Sales Incentives: Evidence of their Effectiveness, Persistence, Durability, and Underlying Mechanisms
    Books Reviewed and Recommended
  • Volume 1, Number 4
    Winter 2018

    Access Winter 2018 Issue Here

    This issue of The IRF Quarterly Academic Review contains:
     Summary: The Motivational Properties of Tangible Incentives
     Summary: The Performance Effects of Tangible Versus Cash Rewards: The Mediating Role of Categorization
     Summary: Motivational Spillovers from Awards: Crowding Out in a Multitasking Environment
     Summary: The Carrot or the Stick? Investigating the Functional Meaning of Cash Rewards and Their Motivational Power According to Self-Determination Theory
     Summary: When are Rewards Bad for Innovation? Leaders as Catalysts for Positive Linkages Between Work Motivation and Innovation
     Books: Reviewed & Recommended
  • Volume 1, Number 3
    Release: Fall 2018

    Access Fall 2018 Issue Here

    This issue of The IRF Quarterly Academic Review contains:
     Summary: Intrinsic Motivation and Extrinsic Incentives Jointly Predict Performance: A 40-year Meta-Analysis
     Summary: Do All Material Incentives for Prosocial Activities Backfire?
     Summary: Employee Incentive Programs: Recipient Behaviors in Points, Cash, and Gift Card Programs
     Summary: Preference Reversals in Evaluations of Cash Versus Non-Cash Incentives
     Summary: A Wonderful Life: Experiential Consumption and thePursuit of Happiness, and We’ll Always Have Paris: The Hedonic Payoff from Experiential and Material Investments
    • Summary: Experiential Gifts Foster Stronger Social Relationships than Material Gifts
    • Books: Reviewed & Recommended
  • Volume 1, Number 2
    Release: Summer 2018

    Access SUMMER 2018 ISSUE HERE

    This issue of The IRF Quarterly Academic Review contains: 
     Summary: Is Cash King for Sales Compensation Plans? 
     Summary: It's Not All About the Jacksons
     Summary: The Currency of Reciprocity
     Summary: Paying $30,000 for a Gold Star
     Books: Reviewed & Recommended
  • Volume 1, Number 1
    Release: Spring 2018

    Access SPRING 2018 ISSUE here

    This issue of The IRF Quarterly Academic Review contains: 
    Summary: Why Individuals Want Money is What Matters 
    Summary: The Effects of Cash vs. Non-Cash Rewards in Sales Contests
    Summary: The Reward Value of Time
    Research Abstracts
    Books: Reviewed & Recommended


The IRF Quarterly Academic Review was supported by IRF Research Advocacy Partner, United Incentives.