Going Global - Spring 2012


Welcome to the Spring 2012 online newsletter from the Carlson Global Institute! The academic year of 2011-12 continues to be exciting and successful. In January, over 200 graduate and undergraduate students directly experienced some part of the world through one of our Global Enrichment programs. Through our exchange partners, we welcomed 32 students from 14 countries to The Carlson School this spring. A new program focused on medical technology sent undergraduate students to South Africa for a fulfilling exposure to the promises and challenges of doing business in Africa.

The excitement reached new heights when the next dean of the Carlson School was announced. Professor Srilata Zaheer, a 20-year veteran of the Carlson School faculty, was selected as the new dean. Professor Zaheer is an expert in international business and committed to the global identity of the Carlson School. She has taught in our Global Executive MBA Programs in China and Poland. CGI looks forward to moving ahead with Professor Zaheer at the helm of the school. You can learn more about Dean Zaheer's appointment on our website.


Michael Houston, Associate Dean of Global Initiatives

Anne D'Angelo, Assistant Dean of Global Initiatives

Residency Program for Indian MBA Students Provides Real World Experience

Hands-on, or experiential, learning in a global context is something the Carlson Global Institute knows well, having pioneered the Virtual Team Project, a key component of the Carlson School's Executive MBA curriculum and the "live case" program for MBA and undergraduate business students. Last fall, the Institute welcomed a group of 19 Indian MBA students as part of a custom-designed international residency. The students, from partner school XLRI in Jamshedpur, had information technology backgrounds and were mid-way throughtheir general management degree program at XLRI when they arrived in Minnesota.

Students were divided into four teams and worked on real-world projects for International Dairy Queen, Chopper College, Cora Cove, and Multi-Tech Systems at the companies' locations. The experience provided these visiting students from India with an inside look at business and management practices in the United States while Minnesota-based companies, both large and small, gained insights into India and a set of actionable recommendations for real-world projects. Both students and sponsoring companies reported that they benefited from the experience.

"Multi-Tech Systems was excited when it heard about the opportunity to participate in the [residency] program this past November. The timing of the program was perfect for us as we just started work on a new strategic initiative. The five students we hosted from the XLRI School really helped jump start the market research phase of our initiative and provided significant insight in the areas we asked them to focus on," said Rick Bailey, senior product manager with Multi-Tech Systems.

The Carlson Global Institute anticipates hosting another group of XLRI students from India in November of 2012. If you or your organization are interested in future opportunities to engage students from XLRI, the Carlson School, or another partner business school on a project for your company, please contact Jennifer Hawkins at hawki044@umn.edu or 612-624-4334.

Strong Lenovo Partnership Enables Valuable Student Learning

Global electronics manufacturerLenovo has been an important corporate partner for the Carlson Global Institute, sponsoring a live case program in southern China for the last three years. The live case program model provides an opportunity for students to hone cross-cultural team skills and international business acumen by working to develop recommendations around a live business question posed by a corporate partner.

For this year's program with Lenovo, the focus was on supply chain resiliency, an extremely relevant business topic considering the globalization of supply chains and the risks and rewards for companies that accompany such globalization.

"Lenovo lives in a global economy, so natural disasters and all kinds of things around the world are disrupting them," says Kevin Linderman, Carlson School associate professor, Supply Chain and Operations, and lead instructor of the China program. "They wanted students to look at best practices across companies and help them think through how they can better manage their supply chain resiliency."

The program began on the Carlson School campus last fall and then continued in Hong Kong and Southern China in early January 2012. Similar to prior years, Carlson MBA students participating in the program worked in cross-cultural teams with MBA students from partner business school Lingnan College at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou.

"Part of the student experience is that they're working on a business project across the global environment, so you've got language and cultural differences to overcome," says Linderman. "It's a great experience for them."

"China was the second time I participated in the global enrichment program. The first was India," says Kelly Jorgensen, a Carlson MBA student who participated in the live case with Lenovo. "Both country visits enabled me to better understand the impact of culture and government."

While abroad for two weeks, the students worked to test their assumptions through corporate visits in Hong Kong, Shenzhen, and Guangzhou; and during lectures from Chinese b-school faculty. Student teams presented their final insights and recommendations to Lenovo leaders in China.

"A key finding was that companies that are really good at managing these disruptions actually use it as an opportunity," says Linderman. "The successful companies that are really prepared are not only saying 'how can we survive this event, they're saying how can we use this event to beat our competition?' "

The Southern China program is one of several live cases offered through the Carlson Global Institute.

Undergraduate Honors Students Participate in International Business Research Circle

In fulfillment of its mission, the UMN Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER) is directly enhancing the quality of international education and research experiences for students in many ways, one of which is supporting undergraduate seniors who are writing theses on international business topics as part of the University Honors Program. The honors thesis, the capstone of the honors program, requires high-achieving students to synthesize the knowledge and skills they have gained throughout their undergraduate careers.

Six Carlson School honors students, whose research focuses on international business, have participated in a series of CIBER-sponsored research circles designed to provide a forum for presenting findings, sharing successes and challenges, and seeking tips from peers and faculty experts. Global thesis topics this year include microfinance in international markets, the costs and benefits of adopting the Euro, a comparison of the culture of problem-solving in American and Asian university students, a comparison of the financial risk preference of Chinese and U.S. consumers, private military corporations, and venture capital in Latin America. After a final research circle discussion in April, students will present their theses at a poster event at the Carlson School before submission in May.

To learn more about the University Honors Program visit www.honors.umn.edu

CIBER and Enterprise Minnesota Help Regional Manufacturers Go Global

It's no secret that international markets represent a significant growth opportunity for manufacturing companies. Enterprise Minnesota's 2011 State of Manufacturing survey showed that 56 percent of participating executives say they sell none of their product internationally. Of companies that do export, many sell in just one country. Firms need practical knowledge, guidance on developing partner and distributor relationships overseas, and assistance in making international growth a proactive strategy.

To address these needs, Enterprise Minnesota, a non-profit business consulting organization, and the Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER) are co-hosting the three-month Global Market Strategy program at the Carlson School this spring. Seven companies from a range of industries - packaging machinery, tile installation, machining, medical device sterilization, and others - are participating. Planning tools help participants zero in on target international markets and identify key challenges. The program convenes experts to address the issues that companies say are most critical to their international growth. Coaches from the U.S. Commercial Service, the Carlson School, and Enterprise Minnesota also provide customized support to each company from February through April.

At the end of the program, companies present their export plans to their peers and a panel of global business experts. Participants walk away with a vetted international growth strategy and the knowledge to start implementing it. "What this plan does is take a strategic approach and let [companies] put some resources toward it. It's a strategic design, not a tactical approach," says Mary Connor, a business growth advisor for Enterprise Minnesota.

For Carlson School faculty David Bartlett and John Murray, coaching gives them hands-on experience and a connection to current challenges in international business. "It's great to see the enthusiasm of the companies we're working with as they grasp opportunities that international markets present," says Murray, an instructor in the marketing department. "These firms are really committed to making rapid progress."

For more detail on Global Market Strategy, please visit Enterprise Minnesota's website.

Carlson Global Alumni Gather in China

Did you know that the Carlson School has more than 50,000 alumni in over 70 countries? In an effort to increase the engagement of our global alumni, the Carlson School's Alumni Relations office, in partnership with the Carlson Global Institute and others, including the University's Global Programs and Strategy Alliance, Carlson's China Executive MBA program, and Vienna Executive MBA program, hosted two receptions last January in conjunction with two short-term graduate education abroad programs in Guangzhou and Shanghai, China. These events provided an unparalleled opportunity for current graduate students and global alumni to network.

Alumni Contribution Supports Student Scholarships: Jeanne M Voigt Foundation Scholarship for Study Abroad in Emerging Economies

Carlson School MBA alumna and successful entrepreneur Jeanne Voigt has generously provided funding to create the Jeanne M. Voigt Foundation Scholarship for Study Abroad in Emerging Economies. This scholarship is designed to cover the incremental costs associated with education abroad for Carlson School students pursuing credit-bearing, global experiences focused on international development or social entrepreneurship in emerging economies.

Voigt, who has been engaged in international development work in Kenya and Tanzania as a volunteer business development consultant to entrepreneurs in agriculture, was inspired, in her words, "to pay it forward," after she considered that her success as an entrepreneur was due in large part to the infrastructure that exists in the United States. She realized that this infrastructure, including training, capital, and legal frameworks, does not exist in many parts of the world. Lack of access to these tools limits entrepreneurs' ability to form and operate businesses that could help them rise out of poverty. Voigt, in her experience as a volunteer business consultant, came to realize that the business fundamentals are the same for all entrepreneurs and saw an opportunity to further inspire future business leaders to apply their education to further support development in emerging economies.

Jeanne's generous contribution will support the global experiences of up to eight students over the next two years. Students participating in eligible programs will be invited to apply for this scholarship.              

Upcoming Events
January 27, 2012

Cultural Collaboration Workshop, March 28, 2012
Hosted by the Minnesota Trade Office, in collaboration with CIBER.
Time: 1:00-4:30 p.m.
Location: Carlson School, room 1-122
Register now »

Globalization: The Promise and the Challenge, April 10, 2012
The Heller-Hurwicz Economics Institute will present "Globalization: The Promise and The Challenge." This event will feature Ernesto Zedillo, director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization and former president of Mexico, and Timothy Kehoe, Distinguished McKnight University Professor and adviser to the Federal Bank of Minneapolis. This event is free and open to the public.
Time: 5:30–7:30 p.m.
Location: Ted Mann Concert Hall, University of Minnesota
For registration and more information, see Heller-Hurwicz Institute

Introduction to Chinese Language and Culture for Business, April 20, 2012
Learn Chinese in the Year of the Dragon! Join CIBER and the Confucius Institute for a half-day Chinese language and culture orientation.
Time: 8:30 a.m.-Noon, followed by lunch at the Tea House
Location: University International Center, room 101
Learn more and register now »

Middle East Roundtable Discussion: Arab Spring Update: North Africa Markets, April 26, 2012
Hosted by the Minnesota Trade Office, in partnership with CIBER. This "Doing Business in the Middle East" roundtable discussion addresses Arab Spring updates for North Africa Markets: Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya.
Time: 9:00-11:00 a.m., registration begins at 8:30 a.m.
Location: Carlson School, Herbert M Hanson, Jr. Hall, room 2-245
Learn more and register now »

Other Ways to Engage with Us

The Carlson Global Institute provides a variety of opportunities for organizations and individuals to engage with us. Opportunities include hosting site visits here and abroad, live case sponsorships, guest speakers, and financial support for student scholarships, research, and program development. If you are interested in learning more, contact Jennifer Hawkins at 612-624-4334 or hawki044@umn.edu.