B-School Bulletin: Bowling For Fascism & More

Bowling For Fascism: Exploring The Dark Side Of Social Capital

News from UCLA Anderson School of Management 

“History books are filled with theories about why Germans were so receptive to Adolf Hitler’s mantra of racial purity and hatred. Some argue the lack of a vibrant civic life created a vacuum that the Nazi Party exploited, filling the moral and spiritual void with a powerful appeal to restore the country’s greatness.

“But new research published in the Journal of Political Economy suggests the opposite: that Germany’s dense network of clubs and social organizations — everything from bowling clubs to animal breeders — provided the social milieu that the Nazis used to spread their ideas and build membership, particularly in the early days of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party.

“These findings by New York University’s Shanker Satyanath, UCLA Anderson’s Nico Voigtländer and Hans-Joachim Voth of the University of Zurich offer an important lesson for civic leaders seeking ways to get out their message in an increasingly polarized climate. While building social capital is generally perceived as a positive way of ensuring a community’s health, this work highlights a moment in history when the opposite occurred.”

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Forecast: Employment Gains Will Fuel Economic Growth In 2018

Bill Witte, associate professor emeritus of economics at IU

News from Indiana University Kelley School of Business

“While continuing a nine-year trend of tepid growth and modest gains since the end of the Great Recession, the Indiana economy should outpace the nation in 2018, following stronger performance this year driven by strong auto sales and other manufacturing output.

“The 2018 forecast, presented November 2 by Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, suggests Indiana’s gross state product is expected to grow by as much as 2.8%, slightly higher than the national GDP rate of 2.6%.

“Nationally, labor markets this year exceeded many economists’ expectations, a factor contributing to the forecasters’ ‘small tinge of optimism’ for the coming year. Economic output matched expectations of about 2% for this year, but job creation over the first nine months of 2017 has performed well above the forecasted monthly rate of 150,000.”

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Europe’s Single Resolution Mechanism Is Creating Instability

News from INSEAD
“As of January 2016, Europe’s Single Resolution Mechanism (SRM) has been in force for banks in the Eurozone. On paper at least, the SRM is supposed to privatise risk and losses by ‘bailing in’ shareholders, bond holders and private creditors to rescue failing banks, taking states off the hook from using taxpayer’s money to do so.

“There is no doubt that the SRM fundamentally changes the way banking markets have functioned until now. In principle, the SRM can help states avoid racking up budget deficits due to costly bailouts. They can also be absolved of acting as a public backstop for any bank deemed ‘too big to fail.’ Fully exposing shareholders, bondholders and creditors to losses should increase incentives for the industry to self-monitor.”

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The Most Successful Startups Have Hands-On Founders

News from Harvard Business School

“Startup founders with a hands-on management style are more likely to retain employees and see their firms thrive, new research shows.

“The results are particularly applicable to knowledge-intensive technology firms, where human talent is the main resource that affects firm performance, the researchers say.

“Founders are usually very busy people—they recruit key employees, raise funds, find a board, develop partnerships, set strategy, and design the organization, to name a few responsibilities. What often falls by the wayside as founders get pulled in all directions, according to the researchers, is intensive mentoring and monitoring of staff.”

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Harvard Borrows Yale Model

News from Yale School of Management

“After a decade of unsatisfying endowment returns, the Harvard Management Company is reconfiguring its methods to align more closely with those employed by its counterpart at Yale.

“In the ten years leading up to 2016, Harvard’s endowment saw an annualized return of 5.7% — a figure well below the university’s 8% expectation and the 8.9% return on the US 60–40 mix of stock and bonds, a traditional low-risk portfolio often used as a market indicator.”

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