The George Washington University

School of Business: GWSB News

April 10, 2009

An Agenda for the Americas

When President Barack Obama travels to Trinidad in mid-April for the Fifth Summit of the Americas, he will have a rare opportunity to shift the United States’ relationship with the rest of the hemisphere.

That was the consensus at “An Agenda for the Americas,” a half-day colloquium of panel discussions organized by the Center for Latin American Issues at the GW School of Business. Latin American experts from think tanks, universities, and corporate America discussed the roster of topics they predict will dominate the summit agenda.

“Our sister republics to the south are incredibly important to the welfare of the United States,” said Susan Phillips, dean of the School of Business, in opening the April 7 gathering. “Our event today aims to draw attention to our vital interests in the region and to spark attention in policy circles on the need to intensify and broaden those relations.”

The April 17-19 Summit of the Americas marks the first time Obama joins leaders from Central and South America, the Caribbean, Canada, and Mexico to discuss the most pressing issues affecting the hemisphere. Panelists at the CLAI event said the global economic crisis and its effects on Latin America will top the agenda.

But they said this summit, more than any other, offers an opportunity to discuss a broad spectrum of issues. They include: security, energy, transnational crime, trade, U.S.-Cuba ties, Brazil’s leadership role in the region, drug trafficking, China’s growing influence, police training, immigration, and Haiti.

“The best thing the U.S. can do for Latin America is to resolve its own economic problems, maintain the trade flows and, in fact, increase the free-trade area agreements, and make U.S. financial markets accessible to Latin America,” said CLAI Director James Ferrer Jr. “That means going ahead and maybe expanding NAFTA or making it richer, implementing the Colombian and Panamanian [trade] agreements, and pushing forward with the Doha Round.”

The United States needs to recognize Brazil’s leadership role in the region, Ferrer said. He added that education and technology are crucial for development, and Latin American governments must adopt domestic policies toward that end.

The CLAI director also said more U.S.-Latin America cooperation is needed. He called for the Summit of the Americas to be reshaped as a forum where critical issues can be openly discussed.

Climate Action Conference April 22-23

The Department of Strategic Management and Public Policy and the Institute for Corporate Responsibility’s Environmental Sustainability Program will co-host GWSB’s third annual Climate Action Conference. The conference brings together speakers from business, education, energy, health, economics, and other fields. It offers the GW community a chance to learn about climate change-related opportunities, policies, and the local and international effects of an ever-warming world.

April 22-23, 2009
8 a.m. — 5 p.m.

Jack Morton Auditorium
805 21st St., NW
Washington, D.C.

For details on the conference or to register, visit

The Princeton Review Gives GWSB MBA Program Top Honors

The George Washington University School of Business is one of 15 business schools nationwide named to The Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazines “Student Opinion Honors for Business Schools” in the Global Management category. M.B.A students gave kudos to the school’s global management curriculum, citing the stellar academic and professional foundation it gave them to drive their post-graduation careers.

“This Princeton Review ranking is especially significant to us because it comes from our students,” said Susan Phillips, GWSB dean and professor of finance. “The global business paradigm has shifted, and our mission at the GW School of Business is to inspire students to act responsibly, lead passionately, and think globally. Our Global MBA program prepares our students to lead business in the worldwide economy of the 21st century.”

Entrepreneur magazine’s editors wrote, “For many aspiring business school students, The George Washington University School of Business is simply too good to pass up. First, there’s hometown Washington, D.C., with its international flavor and job opportunities. In addition to a popular program in international business, GW offers concentrations in environmental management, management science, tourism and hospitality, and an ‘increasingly popular’ real estate and urban development specialization. Joint degrees with the GW Law School and the Elliott School of International Affairs provide another powerful draw.”

The Princeton Review compiled its lists using data from its national survey of 19,000 M.B.A. students attending 296 business schools. It profiled the schools in the book, Best 296 Business Schools: 2009 Edition, published October 2008.

To view The Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine “Student Opinion Honors” lists, visit and

Professor Receives Grant to Study Online Consumer Chatter

Some businesses’ marketing efforts and outreach are trumped by consumer-to-consumer communication. The success or failure of a product can be determined by what shoppers have to say. So how much is online-consumer-generated gab worth, and what impact does it have on a business’ bottom line? Assistant Professor of Information Systems & Technology Management Wendy Duan aims to find out.

And to help in that effort, Duan has received a $2,400 research award from the Office of Undergraduate Programs Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU). The money is earmarked for an undergraduate student to help Duan with her work. GWSB is one of only a few business schools that offer this type of research opportunity to undergraduates.

“Visiting any online retailer today, one will notice that consumers are actively sharing their experiences and product information with each other,” said Duan. “The popularity of a product is increasingly determined by such consumer-to-consumer communications instead of a business’ marketing budget.”

Duan’s undergraduate research assistant (RA) will collect, review, and analyze consumer-generated content from the Web site CNET The RA will also assist Duan in producing at least three presentations and publishing the findings in leading academic journals.

Alum Helps Americans Become Financially Fit

Left to right: D. Christopher Kayes, GWSB associate professor of management, Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, MBA, ’87, and Jennifer Griffin, GWSB associate professor of strategic management.

Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, MBA, ’87, senior vice president and chief strategist for consumer education at The Charles Schwab Co. and president of The Charles Schwab Foundation, spoke to MBA students on April 2 as part of the MBA GLOBE series. Schwab-Pomerantz talked about corporate social responsibility at Schwab. She also discussed how, since taking over the foundation in 2001, she has channeled her passions and interests toward a foundation strategy to make Americans financially fit and fluent.

Schwab-Pomerantz wanted to maximize Schwab’s resources to do more than give money. She also wanted to reach beyond the company’s headquarters in San Francisco. So, she forged a partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America to develop a program to build children’s financial literacy. Schwab said the program, “Money Matters – Make it Count,” benefited more than 100,000 young people in the United States. Schwab-Pomerantz called it her proudest accomplishment, meeting a need that is more important than ever in today’s economy.

“At the very least, we need to instill a basic understanding of everyday financial issues,” said Schwab-Pomerantz. “We need to focus on the young, and educated them so they can then become good role models.”

With the current recession and Main Street backlash against Wall Street, Schwab-Pomerantz said she believes that Schwab’s conservative investment strategies and carefully guarded brand has kept the company in a positive light. Schwab’s community involvement has also played a role. Schwab supports the National Financial Literacy Challenge, a 35-question test administered to high school students, and the President’s Advisory Council for Financial Literacy, where she serves as an expert adviser.

Corporate social responsibility is part of the foundation of the new GWSB Global MBA program. At the start of the GLOBE, which is a lecture series for M.B.A. students, associate professors Jennifer Griffin in strategic management and D. Christopher Kayes in management provided an overview on GWSB’s programs to illuminate the connections to Schwab-Pomerantz’s talk.

Professor Does Her Homework for 2010 Olympic Games

GWSB Associate Professor Lisa Delpy
Neirotti stands in front of the 2010
Winter Olympics countdown clock in

A GW School of Business Associate Professor of Tourism and Sport Management traveled to Canada to jump-start her lesson plans for a 2010 Winter Olympics class. Lisa Delpy Neirotti spoke at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Sports and Environment conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. She also scoped out work opportunities and housing prospects for the GWSB students who will take her “Behind the Scenes of the Olympic Games” class.





Teaching in Another World

GWSB Professor Emeritus of Science, Technology & Innovation William E. Halal took his lessons about technology into cyberspace. Halal was invited by his publisher, Palgrave Macmillan, to give a presentation on his book, “Technology’s Promise,” in the virtual world of Second Life. Halal’s avatar Emitt Landar spoke to about 50 avatars gathered at the amphitheater on the pavilion of the journal Nature.

Learning the Benefits of Asset Management in the Hospitality Industry

The GW Tourism Alumni Network and the GWSB Department of Tourism and Hospitality will host the 2009 Spring Colloquium: Asset Management in the Hospitality Industry.

April 13, 2009

Duquès Hall, Room 151
2201 G Street NW
Washington, D.C.

Reception: 6 p.m. — 7 p.m.
Discussion: 7 p.m. — 9 p.m.

Guest speakers Randall Carroll, president of Lazer Lodging Asset Management Division of REVPAR International, and Lew Lemon, regional vice president of operations at Davidson Hotel Co., will discuss the responsibilities of an asset manager, the career path and qualifications for the job, and what role asset managers play among stakeholders. They will also address the financial impact of the economy on the tourism industry and hospitality management.

To learn more about the event or to RSVP, e-mail:

Just-in-Time Career & Internship Fair

GWSB is hosting the annual Just-in-Time (JIT) Career and Internship Fair. JIT is open exclusively to GWSB students and alumni. Dozens of employers with an open internship or full-time position will be on hand to meet with students and alumni.

Thursday, April 16, 2009
2 p.m.— 6 p.m.

Duquès Hall
2201 G Street, NW
Washington, D.C.

RSVP: Please visit and log in or register for an account. Alumni interested in attending should contact Kristen Nicole at 202-994-3251 or

JIT is free to employers, and there are still a few spots left. If you know of a firm that may be interested in attending, contact Kristen Nicole.

Developing Entrepreneurs Through Diaspora Development and Investment

Turning Stone into Gold: The hope for diaspora development and entrepreneurship.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009
6 p.m. — 7:30 p.m.

The George Washington University
Alumni House
1918 F St., NW
Washington, D.C.

Liesl Riddle, associate professor of international business and international affairs, and Tjai Nielsen, assistant professor of management, will discuss and answer questions about the GW Diaspora Capital Investment Project (DCIP).

Formed in 2006 by Riddle and Nielsen, the GW-DCIP is a collaborative research effort by faculty and students from academic disciplines across the university, including economics, international affairs, international business, management, and public administration.

The research team is engaged in several different studies of diaspora investment and entrepreneurship. GW-DCIP is part of GW’s Diaspora Program, a broader research initiative exploring the relationship between diasporas, development, and policy.

For more information click here.

Understanding the Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Thai Style

Travel to Bangkok and learn about Thailand’s impressive tourism and hospitality industry with the GW Tourism Alumni Network and Occasions Inc. From July 8 – 15, students and tourism professionals will explore Bangkok’s venues, cuisine, and culture, and meet face-to-face with city tourism representatives.

For complete trip details go to

GWSB to Co-Sponsor Labor Conference with Bureau of National Affairs

The Department of Management at The George Washington University School of Business and the Bureau of National Affairs will co-sponsor “New Frontiers in Labor and Employment Policy: Ensuring Good Jobs, Fair Treatment, and High Performance in a Turbulent Economy.”

June 11-12, 2009

Cafritz Conference Center
800 21st St., NW
Washington, D.C.

The forum, led by the Labor and Employment Relations Association (LERA), will focus on policy issues around union organizing, pension and health care benefits, and other themes for which legislative debates are anticipated. The forum will also consider state and industry-level challenges in rebuilding the “American Dream” and explore assumptions about the workforce, unions, employers, and other stakeholders.

The forum is structured as a series of seven workshops and four plenary sessions featuring panels of legislators, labor and management practitioners, and leading researchers. The debate offers an opportunity to participate in public policy dialogue concerning some of today’s most pressing problems.

For details and to register for the event, visit

Getting to Know: Homayoun Khamooshi

Title: Assistant Professor of Decision Sciences

Job Duties: My duties are comprised of three sections: research, teaching, and service.

Years at GW: Six years.

Best part of working at GWSB: Working with a very elite group of people in a very friendly and supportive environment makes me feel good.

What co-workers do not know about me: I have told them everything. They even know that I have two kids, a 6-year-old and a 24-year-old. My oldest graduated from GW with a double major in chemistry and biology, and he wants to be a physician.

Family: I have been married for nearly 26 years, my wife is my best friend, the children are great. What more could I ask for?

Favorite things to do on the weekend: Shopping (not anymore due to economy), gardening, and getting together with friends and family for wining and dining.

Favorite Vacation spot: Hawaii

Favorite Book: “Robaiyyate” a collection of poems by Hakim Omar Khayyam, a Persian mathematician, philosopher, and poet.


Edward Cherian, professor of information systems & technology management, presented “Information Technology and Armenia” to eight visiting business and government executives from Armenia. The executives were on a three-week U.S. State Department-sponsored trip to study U.S. business and government organizations. Cherian’s presentation was at the request of the State Department. (3/27)

William C. Handorf, professor of finance, presented “Lessons from 2008 U.S. Bank Failures,” at The George Washington University Law School conference titled “The Panic of 2008.” (4/3-4)

Salah S. Hassan, chair and professor of marketing, was the featured speaker at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management “Global Initiatives in Management” program. His presentation, “Unlocking Your Brand’s Potential: Strategies for Engaging the GCC (Gulf Corporation Council) Region,” highlighted findings from his ongoing research on global brand performance in the GCC region. (March)

Miguel Lejeune, assistant professor of decision sciences, presented “Combinatorial Patterns for Probabilistically Constrained Optimization Problems” at the University of Iowa. (4/3)


Susan Aaronson, associate research professor of strategic management and public policy, published “Alas, we are not All Keynesians now” in the e-book “Rebuilding Global Trade: Proposals for a Fairer, More Sustainable FutureGlobal.”

Young Hoon Kwak, associate professor of decision sciences, published “Towards a Comprehensive Understanding of Public Private Partnerships (PPP) for Infrastructure Development” in the 2009 winter issue of California Management Review, Vol. 51 (2), pp. 51-78. The co-authors were C.W. Ibbs and Y.Y. Chih from the University of California at Berkeley.

Homayoun Khamooshi and Denis Cioffi, assistant professors of decision sciences, published “A Holistic Approach to Program Risk Contingency Planning” in IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, Vol. 56 (1), February 2009.

Getting Ink

A panel discussion on transnational crime organizations hosted by the Center for Latin American Issues was mentioned in the Security Management magazine article “Cooperation on the Border.” (April)

Philip Budwick, director of the Capital Markets Trading Lab and visiting instructor in finance, spoke about ethics and investing on NOS Dutch Public Radio. (4/7)

Timothy L. Fort, Lindner-Gambal professor of business ethics and executive director of the Institute for Corporate Responsibility, was interviewed by Crain’s Chicago Business about CEO compensation. Fort was also a guest on WAMU’s “The Kojo Nnamdi Show,” where he spoke about incorporating ethics into MBA programs. (4/1)

William E. Halal, professor emeritus, was a guest on WAMU’s “The Kojo Nnamdi Show.” He talked about his new book, “Technology’s Promise,” and the TechCast Project. (3/17) Halal was also interviewed on the Woodrow Wilson Center’s television show “Dialogue.” He spoke about his recent forecasts indicating that the Green Revolution, exploding global e-commerce, and other emerging business sectors are likely to lead the world out of recession in two to three years and create an economic boom in 2015.

Lisa Delpy Neirotti, associate professor of tourism and sport management, was quoted in the Reuters article “Chicago may lead for 2016 Olympics in tight race.” The story focused on bids for the 2016 Summer Olympics. “After all these years, I know not to bet on these bids,’ Neirotti told Reuters. ‘There really is no formula and you can’t get inside people’s minds.” The article was also picked up by AsiaOne News. (4/1) Neirotti was also quoted in the Maryland Daily Record story “The big drop in O’s attendance doesn’t lend itself to a quick fix.” Neirotti commented on how game attendance by fans can impact a sports organization’s bottom line. “’That’s what’s so tough about sports, because depending on how much money you bring in, that dictates how much you get to spend on free agents — the better ones cost more but they bring more people into the park.’” (4/2) Neirotti was also quoted in the Kiplinger Letter story “Baseball Braces for a Less Hopeful Season.” The article looked at how the recession will impact baseball. Neirotti commented on the use of private boxes and suites. ‘“It’s an image thing. People see it as a luxury perk and don’t understand there’s a business motivation behind it,’ she said.” (4/3)

Robert Weiner, professor of international business, was quoted in the Oil & Gas journal article “Cause of 2008’s crude oil price surge remains elusive, CFTC says.” The article addressed what factors impact crude oil prices. “The conventional wisdom that heavy commodities trading causes volatile prices is driven more by intuition than facts or systematic analysis, according to Robert J. Weiner, an international business professor at George Washington University. ‘Over a time period where trading increased significantly, aggregate statistics did not show a corresponding increase in volatility,’ he said.” (4/6)

Gilbert Yancey, executive director of the GWSB F. David Fowler Career Center, was a guest on Atlantic Television News’ “American Dream.” The segment, “Foreign Students in America Going Home,” was about students from other countries who come to the United States to study but return home to seek job opportunities. (3/31)


Derrick Heggans, adjunct professor of tourism and hospitality management, was named a winner of Sports Business Journal’s “2009 Forty Under 40 Awards.” (3/23).

We want to hear from you!

If you have information for the newsletter, news, or items to post on the GWSB Web site or events calendar, please send them to: