The George Washington University

School of Business: GWSB News

August 17, 2009

Making the Business Case for Solar Power

Cioffi says the outlook is sunny for solar power.

Denis F. Cioffi, associate professor of decision sciences, and his colleague Homayoun Khamooshi, assistant professor of decision sciences, recently completed a research project that used a systems-analysis approach to help policy-makers reach informed decisions on how to meet energy needs. The analysis looked at how current choices may affect future outcomes. Both professors are project investigators for the GW Solar Institute http://solar.gwu.edu/, a new research facility focused on economic, technical and public-policy issues associated with the development and deployment of solar energy.

Using sophisticated computer modeling software called STELLA, Cioffi and Khamooshi submitted information about energy generation capacity, efficiency, installation and maintenance costs for equipment and infrastructure, price ratios, CO2 output, and other variables for wind, solar and “other” energy sources (including existing fossil-fuel technologies).

“As ‘other’ retires, wind and solar, being the two primary renewable energy sources, will start to replace it,” Cioffi explained. “We wanted to investigate what it would take for wind and solar to become large components of the total generating capacity.” The researchers’ models indicate that while electricity generated by wind power will probably experience the most short-term growth, solar power should be the clear winner over the next 40 or more years.

“The primary argument against solar power is that it’s too expensive,” Cioffi said. “With technology improvements, it will become cheaper and cheaper,” and eventually more efficient and cost-effective than wind power. He added that solar power represents a virtually infinite source of energy with very little environmental impact.

The models created by Cioffi and Khamooshi start with the assumption that price is important, and that a CO2 tax and other policy decisions will affect price and profit, adding a business dimension to scientific, engineering, and environmental concerns involved in planning to meet future energy needs.

“Ultimately these decisions are business-political decisions,” Cioffi said. “The government has to come in and create a policy environment that makes it easier for businesses to make the right decisions, based on the best value. People aren’t going to go out and spend their money unless they think that in the long term they are going to make a profit.”

At the Old Ball Game...

Your 2009 GWSB softball team.

The GWSB softball team, Mind Your Own Business completed its inaugural season as a member of the GW Summer Softball League by posting a 3-4 record – very respectable for an “expansion team.”

Led by Erica Prakop from the dean’s office and Co-captain Alexis Gaul of the Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), the team boasted a roster of 30 faculty members, staffers and students. Standout players included shortstop Mike Battaglia, administrative manager for the International Council for Small Business, whose stellar glove work anchored the infield defense; Scheherazade Rehman, professor of international business and international affairs, who did a great job guarding the line at third base; Angela Gore, assistant professor of accountancy, who worked from the mound and always seemed to come through with a timely hit; and all-around team-player Stuart Levy, assistant professor of tourism and hospitality management, who wore a gold glove both at first base and in center field.

The highlight of the season for Mind Your Own Business was a thrilling come-from-behind victory over the ISS Department’s Terra Cotta Warriors on July 22. Down by three runs going into the final inning, MYOB held tight on defense, allowing no further damage. In the bottom of the frame, the team launched a steady barrage of hits – aided by some smart base running – for a memorable game-winning rally.

“Summer softball was a great way for GWSB faculty, staff, and students to interact in a friendly, casual setting outside of the School,” said Prakop. “We are thrilled that the season was so successful. The enthusiastic, supportive team made every game exciting. We can only hope the other teams had as much fun as we did!”

Advertising in GWbusiness off to a Strong Start

Tom Loper (left), GWbusiness magazine advertising consultant, and Alan Zimmerer of LeanDream have a deal.

GWbusiness magazine is offering advertising space for the first time in this fall’s issue. Many alumni and members of the GW community have been supportive and interested in helping to make this initiative a success.

Alan Zimmerer, a current PMBA student, became one of the first to reserve advertising space in the coming issue for his business, LeanDream. LeanDream offers workouts specially designed to your exercise needs and the equipment available to you. To learn more about how Zimmerer and his team can develop a personalized workout plan for you, visit leandream.com.

For information on advertising in GWbusiness, contact Tom Loper at 202-994-4057 or tloper@gwmail.gwu.edu.

Getting to Know: Bartholomew J. Timm

Title: Executive Director, MBA Programs

Job duties: Responsible for the delivery of six MBA programs: the Global, Professional, Accelerated, Executive, World Executive and Healthcare MBAs. The programs have a total enrollment of more than 1,200 students. With the help of a fantastic staff, I oversee all aspects of the six MBA programs, from orientation to student satisfaction to international experiences to faculty staffing.

Years at GW: Two weeks.

Best part of working at GWSB: The people – the staff, the students, the faculty

What co-workers do not know about me: I ran the Chicago Marathon, have run the Virginia Beach Rock and Roll Half Marathon the last four years in a row, and I love to play racquetball.

Family: Nathaniel, 24; Rachel, 23; Eva Irene, 19; Aaron, 17; and Alexandria, 9.

Favorite things to do on the weekend: Travel and do something new with my children.

Favorite vacation spot: Oxford, England.

Favorite book: Moby Dick by Herman Melville.

Presentations

James Bailey, Ave Tucker Professorial Fellow of Leadership and professor of management, gave the keynote presentation “Leading change in uncertain environments” at the Department of Defense’s Human Capital Summit on July 28. The conference was designed to introduce Department of Defense leaders and decision makers to new practices and concepts in human resources management.

“Because the pace of change shows no sign of diminishing, leaders who are mindful to the emotional fatigue of their reports will be especially highly prized,” Bailey said in his presentation. “Now more than ever, to be a good leader one must also be a good psychologist.”

Publications

Young Hoon Kwak, associate professor of decision sciences, published “Applying Process Simulation Technique to Value Engineering Model: A Case Study of Hospital Building Project” in IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, 56(3), pp. 549-559, August 2009.

Elias G. Carayannis (left), professor of information systems and technology management, and William Halal (right), professor emeritus of information systems and technology management, co-wrote a guest op-ed column, “Business collaboration could transform the economy,” in the Christian Science Monitor on Aug. 6. Carayannis and Halal wrote that they see the possibility of “a bold new opportunity to unify left- and right-wing values” in a cooperative effort to solve the economic crisis. “…what if Americans could unite the Republican ideal of free enterprise with the Democratic ideal of social community? It may seem like a fantasy, but progressive corporations are moving in that very direction – to a form of ‘collaborative enterprise’ that offers a more productive, innovative, and socially responsive market system.”

Getting Ink

Susan M. Phillips, dean and professor of finance, was featured in a symposium of prominent experts in The International Economy magazine. The experts’ responses appeared in an article titled “Question for Team Obama: Can U.S. personal consumption fully recover without the value of real estate and other assets rising?” Phillips wrote: “The short answer is ‘yes.’ But as always, with economic questions, there are qualifiers. Personal consumption will eventually recover when the job market starts to improve whether or not the values of real estate and other assets rise. As consumers develop confidence in their ability to get, maintain, or change jobs, they will risk-adjust their personal balance sheets and expectations and resume spending.” (Spring 2009).

Robert Weiner, professor of international business and international affairs, was quoted in an Associated Press story about Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) hearings on whether tighter regulations on energy futures trading should be put in place. “ ‘Reducing speculation won’t make [oil] prices higher or lower,’ said Robert Weiner, a professor of international business and international affairs at George Washington University.” (7/28)

Philip H. Budwick, visiting professor of finance and director of the GWSB Capital Markets Training Lab, was interviewed by Voice of America radio for a program on the causes of the financial crisis. “In the old days, you lent out money, you kept that loan on your books, which means you had to have really tight risk management in place. You had to verify who the borrower was, their ability to pay, what kind of credit risk they were. And you were limited to how much money you could lend out based on your balance sheet,” Budwick said. The program, “How a Housing Bubble Burst into a Global Financial Crisis,” aired Aug. 3

Kudos

Bart Kogan, BBA, ’69 and MA, ’70, and GWSB board of advisers member, has been named Alpha Kappa Psi 2009 Alumnus of the Year. AKPsi, the world’s largest and first professional business fraternity, selected Kogan for the honor in recognition of his long and successful business career, his good works on behalf of humanitarian and charitable causes, and his instrumental role in re-establishing the fraternity’s Beta Mu chapter at GWSB in 2007. Kogan received the award on Aug. 8 at AKPsi’s biannual convention in Orlando, Fla.

“My Alpha Kappa Psi brothers never cease to amaze me. Especially the tight interaction and support they have shown to me while at GW and, subsequently, both personally and in cyberspace,” Kogan said. “The bond of brotherhood continues throughout life, so the closing of my chapter at GW, where I benefited so much as an undergraduate, was a wrenching blow. When I first met the excited students and local alumni seeking to re-establish the GW chapter of AKPsi, my eagerness to assist them was a way for me to give back to our brotherhood. I am grateful to them for asking me to help. I am proud to share brotherhood with the current brothers of Beta Mu Chapter as I am with my brothers everywhere.”

Class Notes

After an almost five-year engagement, Christina Fanitzi, BBA, ’03, has wed Shawn Fitzgerald. Both have spent several tours overseas in Iraq as Army captains. TNT’s program Wedding Day worked with the military and the Catholic Church to arrange to fly the couple home for the wedding, which included a ceremony at the same church where Fanitzi’s parents were married. Other highlights of the day included an appearance by the New York Police Pipe and Drum Corps, a major donation to The Fallen Soldier Fund (a charity close to the couple’s heart) and an opportunity for Fanitizi to trade her fatigues for a couture wedding dress.

After earning a doctorate in management from Case Western Reserve University, Dr. Daniel Cohen, MAAC, ’95, sold his business and move to academia where he is now a lecturer at Cornell University. He teaches entrepreneurship and business strategy and serves as entrepreneur-in-residence at Cornell’s Undergraduate Business Incubator. Recently he was honored as commencement speaker at his alma mater, Montgomery Blair High School. His family has also welcomed a new addition to the family: Jackson Bradley Cohen.

Charles Aschmann Jr., MS, ’65, retired from his law practice in March 2007 and is now writing westerns. His granddaughter Maria is in the pre-veterinary medicine program at Colorado State University and is a member of the rodeo team. His grandson George is a sophomore at Virginia Tech, where his daughter Althea is a library department head. His son Charles owns and operates Charles Aschmann Language Services, which specializes in translating Japanese to English. His son Frank is the other lawyer at Aschmann and Aschmann. Frank’s sons Benjamin and Alfred are active in karate and soccer.

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