B-School Bulletin: Yale In Paradise Papers

What Employees Get Out Of Giving Back

News from INSEAD

“Though corporate social engagement is on the rise, its place within business culture remains uncertain. Sceptics argue that enshrining social impact as a core value contradicts the basic nature of a for-profit enterprise. They insist that social concerns should stay separate from, and secondary to, primary business needs.

“One compelling counter-argument is that while the common good may not always be a top business priority, attracting and retaining top talent absolutely is. And valued employees — like human beings in general — love to feel that they are helping others.

“Research literature tells us that acts of generosity might even make us feel good regardless of the extent of their impact, in what has been called the ‘warm glow’ effect. Altruism is its own emotional reward, which presumably pays off for firms that offer employees opportunities to apply their social conscience at work.”

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Who Is Responsible For The Future Of Cities?

News from Harvard Business School 

“On a rainy afternoon in late October, Mohsen Mostafavi stood before a packed auditorium at Harvard University and considered the history of cities in terms of three cooked eggs.

“Mostafavi, the Dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Design, described an analogy created by the late architect Cedric Price, who bottom-lined thousands of years of urban history into a breakfast order. The ancient city was a hard-boiled egg, surrounded and protected by a wall. Next came the fried egg, representing the city of the 18th and 19th centuries; with no wall to protect it, the core was surrounded by an expanding ring of residential and industrial growth.

“And finally, the scrambled egg — a delicious mess but a mess nonetheless: the modern city, sprawling with opportunity, technology, and confusion. ‘Somehow,’ Mostafavi said, referring to the current state of the urban landscape, ‘we have to make sense of this.’”

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Kenan Sahin

This Startup Developed A Promising New Battery Material — And A Novel Survival Strategy

News from MIT Sloan

“As Kenan Sahin walks through the labs at Tiax, an energy technology development firm located along Boston’s tech beltway, he points to a row of little muffle furnaces in a small beige room. The company’s researchers use the ovens to heat mixtures of metals, producing slight variations of a nickel-rich cathode recipe that Sahin believes will improve the energy density, cycle life, and price of lithium-ion batteries.

“If he’s right, it would represent a rare genuine advance in battery materials, one that could help tip electric vehicles into the consumer mainstream. It’s the result of 15 years of research and tens of millions of dollars of personal investment, reflecting Sahin’s patient and deliberate approach to the innovation process.”

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Forecasting The Future At The Vanderbilt Business Healthcare Conference

News from Vanderbilt University Owen Graduate School of Management 

“On November 3, health care students and industry professionals convened at the Aertson Midtown hotel for the Vanderbilt Business Healthcare Conference. Organized entirely by Owen MBAs, this year’s conference focused on ‘Disrupting Healthcare: The Radical New Ways to Consume and Deliver Healthcare.’

“Attendees gained insights from five different speakers, as well as an MBA career panel featuring healthcare recruiters and talent developers. Each presentation focused on a different aspect of the disruptions coming to the health care industry.”

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As MBA enrollments decline and other programs shutter, the UMN’s program is being proactive in response

UMN’s Business School Bucking National MBA Trends

News from University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management 

“As declining enrollment has forced universities across the country to shake up their master of business administration programs, the University of Minnesota has tried to be proactive.

“Business schools ranging from the University of Iowa to Virginia Tech to Wake Forest University phased out their full-time MBA programs in recent years, and many other schools across the country have adapted in response to the low enrollment.

“Specialized master’s degree enrollment almost doubled from 2006 to 2016, according to a report by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Conversely, full-time MBA enrollment dropped by 20 percent.”

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Bad Habits Are Holding Businesses Back

News from London Business School

“Businesses are harming themselves by continually using so-called best practices that are no longer useful, according to a London Business School academic.

“Freek Vermeulen, associate professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at LBS, makes the statement in his new book Breaking Bad Habits: Defy Industry Norms and Reinvigorate Your Business.

“He explains how businesses can identify bad practices, eliminate them from their organisation and then create new sources of innovation and growth by out-thinking competitors.”

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