How Can Deans Support Research Impact?

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Wednesday, October 25, 2023
Deans can take specific actions to ensure that the research coming out of their business schools not only is relevant but positively impacts society.
Featuring Ann Harrison, University of California, Berkeley
  • Support faculty requests to take leave and engage in real-world business projects, enhancing their impact on research and teaching.
  • Incentivize faculty to integrate their sustainability research into courses, which will help inform sustainable practices in business.
  • Empower business as a leading force in achieving net zero goals through academia-industry collaborations.


Ann Harrison: I really believe that our research is already very relevant. I think it's relevant, but it could be more impactful and there are two concrete things that we could do as deans. The first thing we can do is we can really enable and encourage that movement back and forth between business and academics.

[0:37] When your professor asked you for a leave to go to the World Bank, to go to Wall Street, give them the leave, give them that opportunity because you know when they'll come back, they'll be even more impactful. 

[0:48] The other way [is] we can generate, of course, additional incentives. One of my main goals is to mainstream sustainability into all aspects of business. I believe that business is a leading force in getting to net zero. One of the things we've done at Berkeley Haas is we have actually provided faculty with incentives to incorporate sustainability into the core required courses. Often that's their own research or it might be other faculties' research.

[1:23] We've done this through a variety of mechanisms, we've provided seed funding, we've held celebrations to celebrate those who have made changes to the curriculum. Our hope is that the entire curriculum will soon be diffused with what it means to be sustainable in business.

The views expressed by contributors to AACSB Insights do not represent an official position of AACSB, unless clearly stated.
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