Doing and Teaching Business Across Borders

Kodjo Adovor, a 2019 AACSB Influential Leader honoree and graduate of the Yale School of Management, reflects on the challenges and opportunities in cross-border business collaborations, particularly in his current work in Africa.


Kodjo Adovor: [0:15] I think it's important that businesses are involved in business school education. The purpose of our education is to solve the problems that we have, especially business school education.

[0:29] It's important that the teachers in business school stay in touch with what the issues are and the challenges are, and that business schools are informed in their education by the problems that society seeks to solve.

[0:44] In business today, there are several challenges, especially in Africa where I am from and where I do business now, we're dealing with many borders. Ghana, where I live, is surrounded by all French-speaking countries and with their borders.

[1:04] Africa is fragmented into many different countries, so doing business across countries becomes a challenge. Thankfully, that is changing with the recent collaboration with all the other African countries to create a free zone, where you can do business across borders.

[1:27] Obviously, when you have those challenges, you're going to be dealing with cross-border regulatory issues. I think it's very crucial especially in our time again, I go back to the region in which I'm doing business, which is Africa. There are a lot of business cases. There are a lot of studies. A lot of them over time are from a very Western perspective.

[1:50] If you study the Harvard business case, you're probably studying what somebody did in New York or Boston, but not necessarily what somebody did in Lagos, which might face different sets of challenges. What I want to do in the future is create business cases, very unique situations within the continent of Africa, that business students can learn from.

Filmed at AACSB Co-Lab: Connecting Industry With Business Schools, May 2019.