Berkeley's New XLab Tests Economic and Social Science Theories to Help Business
Prof. Dorit Hochbaum to Receive Honorary Doctorate
July Start Builds Bonds Among New Undergraduate Students
Joint UN/MOT Research Program Sends Students Around the Globe
Haas School Teaches Business to Undergraduate Non-Business Majors
Evening & Weekend MBA Students Learn about International Business in South Africa
Assistant Dean for Budget and Operations Brings Varied Experience to Haas
Nominations Sought for New Berkeley Award to Honor Financial Reporting
Three Haas Students Recognized for Making a Commitment to Community
Undergraduate Beta Alpha Psi Chapter Awarded "Superior" Status
Executive Learning Classroom Awarded Grand Prize by Presentations Magazine
Haas in the News
Happening at Haas
|Professors Akerlof, Morgan, and Ho in the XLab during construction.|
XLab, a new Haas School research facility, is helping to lead a scientific revolution by bringing controlled laboratory experiments to social science fields that have until now not made much use of experimentation.
Economists, political scientists, anthropologists, and other social scientists at UC Berkeley have begun testing their theories in the new high-tech XLab to determine whether they can be applied to real world problems, including those in business. The facility's principal investigators at UC Berkeley include Haas School professors Teck Ho, Barbara Mellers, and John Morgan as well as Nobel-winning economist George Akerlof.
Morgan, who served as the director during the XLab's launch, recently conducted an experiment in the facility to find out what produces greater revenue for sellers when a company is put up for sale asking for payment in shares of stock or cash. The test supported the theory that shares bring in more revenue for the seller in a bidding contest. "This idea comes from the economic literature, but it was never really known outside of the ivory tower," says Morgan. "With XLab, we try to prove or disprove the theory and show whether it will have a big strategic payoff in the marketplace."
XLab, which opened earlier this year, uses the latest in wireless and notebook computer technology and can accommodate up to 40 participants as experimental subjects. XLab is short for Experimental Social Science Laboratory.
In Morgan's experiment, students took on the roles of corporate chieftains bidding against one another to buy a firm. The students adopted a variety of strategies in deciding how much to offer for the firm, using laptop computers that provided real time information on bids to all participants and helped to calculate the consequences of various decisions. Students who won could earn as much as $50 for themselves providing incentive to play competitively.
Morgan wants Berkeley's XLab to become the premier center of its kind and transform the social sciences by integrating the fields with experiments involving human behavior and decision-making. Says Morgan "There is growing recognition of importance of the field as well as recognition that XLab is a critical tool to help us discover new knowledge."
XLab is being funded by a seed grant from the National Science Foundation, with additional money from the campus's vice chancellor for research, Haas School of Business, California Management Review, Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS), and Hewlett-Packard.
Teck Ho will succeed John Morgan as director of the lab in 2004/05.
For more information, visit the XLab website at http://xlab.berkeley.edu.
Prof. Dorit S. Hochbaum will be awarded a doctor scientiarum honoris causa (honorary doctor in natural sciences) by the University of Copenhagen at a ceremony this fall.
The degree recognizes Hochbaum's ground-breaking achievements and leadership in optimization in general and in the field of approximation algorithms for intractable problems. This area of study focuses on obtaining good solutions to problems that are theoretically and practically difficult to solve and often impossible to solve. The goal of approximation algorithms research is to develop methods for solving problems quickly while guaranteeing that the solution will be close to the optimum.
The ceremony will take place on November 11, 2004, and the title will be conferred in the presence of the queen of Denmark. Hochbaum is chair of Haas' Operations and Information Technology Management Group and director of the UC Berkeley Supply Chain Management Initiative. She has been a member of the Haas School faculty since 1981.
The academic year is off to an early start for undergraduate business majors at the Haas School, who begin their studies in July for the second year in a row.
This year's incoming class of 348 students was selected from an applicant pool of 1,668, up from last year's 1,439, and was welcomed to Haas at an orientation on July 16. The students take two required core courses in the summer, "Business Communication" (UGBA 100) taught by Haas School instructors Julie Hemker, Jamie Keller, Arthur Perez-Reyes, David Robinson, and Bill Sonnenschein; and "The Social, Political, and Ethical Environment of Business" (UGBA 107) taught by Haas School instructor Alan Ross.
"Beginning in July enables our newly admitted students to get off to a cohesive start by increasing opportunities for academic integration and community building," says Dan Himelstein, executive director, Haas Undergraduate Program. "We found from a survey of last year's freshmen that the students really enjoyed meeting one another early and starting the program together."
"Our first year of beginning the program in July went very well last year," says Himelstein. "We were able to admit a larger number of qualified undergraduate students, while participating in the UC-system-wide effort to accommodate increasing numbers of college students over the next few years-the offspring of the baby boom generation."
Eight teams of Haas School and UC Berkeley students are traveling to developing countries to put theory into practice this summer as UN/Management of Technology fellows.
The fellows are part of the research portion of the new collaboration between the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and UC Berkeley's Management of Technology (MOT) Program, titled "Bridging the Divide."
Recently returned from Ghana is a team that implemented and tested a Distributed Searchable Cache system (DiSC), which speeds up Internet access by "caching" (storing) frequently viewed web pages on the local area network and creating a searchable index to assist users in answering their search queries. DiSC was created by Computer Science Ph.D. students R.J. Honicky and Omar Bakr. From the Haas School, Ph.D. student Aaron Chatterji and MBA student Samir Mehta, round out the team.
In June, the team spent three weeks in Accra, Ghana, installing DiSC at universities and at a popular Internet cafe "I cannot overstate what a wonderful opportunity the UNIDO fellowship is for Haas students, especially those interested in technology, to implement and test their ideas," says Chatterji. "Being in Ghana, or any developing nation, makes you think critically about the conditions that foster technological progress and economic growth. Our long-term goal is to help move Ghana and other developing nations towards wider Internet adoption in hopes that it will lead to greater economic and political development."
The students, called MOT/UN Fellows, formed their own teams, selected a field destination, and prepared a research plan built around a sustainable solution for economic development in a developing country to be considered for a grant. The eight teams selected to receive a grant spend at least three weeks in a developing region conducting field research.
Another UNIDO team departs August 7 for three weeks in Cape Town, South Africa. The team is composed of four students from the combined MBA/Master's of Public Health program: Doris Chang, Lori Chelius, Mona Gavankar, and Rashell Young. The four will research whether women in South Africa might be able to self-collect samples to test for Human Papillomavirus (HPV), one of the more common sexually transmitted diseases, and one for which high-risk strains can develop into cervical cancer if untreated.
Interviews with women from rural parts of Cape Town will provide the information this team seeks in identifying barriers to self-collection. "To understand what could facilitate-or prevent-use of this tool by women, we need to look at everything from the mail system and transportation to literacy and cultural issues," says Young. "Most exciting is the feeling that if we can impact even one or two women by making them more aware of the value of prevention, the trip will be well worth our time and attention."
There are Berkeley MBA or Haas School Ph.D. students on four of the eight teams selected to receive grants. Team members also come from the College of Engineering, the School of Information Management and Systems, the School of Chemistry, the School of Public Health, the Department of Economics, the Department of City and Regional Planning, the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, and the Energy and Resources Group. The research results of these teams will be published in a new journal created for this program, and presented at the Bridging the Divide 2005 conference set for April, 2005.
For the seventh consecutive summer, students from universities such as Cornell, Duke, Princeton, and Wellesley have arrived at the Haas School to participate in the six-week intensive program for non-business majors known as BASE (Business for Arts, Sciences and Engineering).
From July 6 to August 13, these 43 undergraduate students and recent graduates will gain a competitive edge by adding management fundamentals to their existing skill set. "Developments in global business dictate that young professionals become better equipped with the skills necessary to operate in increasingly complex environments, says Dan Himelstein, undergraduate program executive director.
Over the course of the program, the students will learn to conduct business research, analyze product and financial markets, address human resource management issues, and utilize technology resources with competence.
To improve their marketability, BASE participants will blend classroom study of accounting, marketing, and organizational behavior with career workshops and company-related field trips that give practice in interacting with business professionals. This year's schedule includes planned trips to Cisco Systems, Goldman Sachs, and Mervyn's. The students also work with Haas career counselors to strengthen resumes and job interviewing skills.
For more information on BASE, please refer to the program's web site at http://groups.haas.berkeley.edu/undergrad/BASE.asp.
On July 10, twenty Evening & Weekend MBA students enrolled in the International Business Seminar embarked for South Africa to study the country's traditional and new economies, from underground goldmines to venture capital firms just taking flight.
Taught by Adjunct Professor and Executive Director of the Clausen Center Sebastian Teunissen, the seminar is designed to teach Evening and Weekend MBA students about the challenges and opportunities of doing business internationally. Among their many activities, students will visit a winery, meet with the general manager of Pfizer, and head 3,000 meters below the Earth's surface for a tour of the Tau Tona mine.
This summer's course began with classroom study that featured guest speakers such as Gideon Granville (MBA 04), an associate with McKinsey & Company in Johannesburg, Lisa Butler, who is conducting post-doctorate work with UCSF's Center for AIDS Prevention Studies, and Sean Lance, chairman of Chiron.
While the program typically visits a few countries each summer to take in a wide range of economic circumstances, Teunissen believes that South Africa alone provides that breadth. "South Africa is the leader in sub-Saharan Africa and gives a good picture of the continent. We expect that economic contrast will be readily obvious at every turn-from tourist resorts in high-end suburbs to the shantytowns of Soweto."
Teunissen believes that the tenth anniversary of the end of apartheid makes this a particularly opportune time for a visit. "The world is looking closely at South Africa to see if the return to democracy is actually working and if the country will be able to take its place in the world economy after being ostracized for so many years," he says.
The AIDS epidemic also provides a context for this year's studies. "One aspect of concern to the country's economy is the spread of HIV and AIDS, which now affects more than 20% of the population. This, of course, has a serious impact on the physical health of the people, and results in a severe impact to labor and the economy as well," says Teunissen. "We want to find out how companies are working to help employees deal with this health crisis. We are also meeting with Pfizer to learn about accessibility to AIDS-related medications-a very hot topic."
For a look at how South Africa's future corporate leaders are being shaped, IBS students will also visit two business schools-University of the Western Cape, previously an all "colored" institution, and Wits Business school, historically an all white school. "It will be interesting to see them now that both are now fully integrated," says Teunissen.
Alice Kubler, the new assistant dean for budget and operations, joined Haas School in late June.
Kubler comes to Haas from UC Berkeley's University Health Services, where she most recently served as finance and data operations manager for both the Health Services and the Student Health Insurance Plan. Prior to working at Cal, Kubler spent 18 years in the corporate world, having served as a treasury operations manager for Sierra Capital Companies and as a business operations manager at Bechtel Corporation. She is a UC Berkeley alumna, with a BA in Environmental Design.
Kubler has been volunteer member of the Land Trust of Napa County for ten years. In this capacity, she served for five years as chair of the stewardship committee for the Archer Taylor Preserve, a 400-acre parcel of land on the west hills of the Napa Valley named in honor of a Berkeley professor. "I grew up adjacent to the preserve and regularly spend weekends there," says Kubler.
Kubler's office is in S522C in the Dean's Suite, and her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Her phone number is 510-642-3325.
With all the focus on how the accounting profession has failed in light of recent corporate scandals, the Haas School's Center for Financial Reporting and Management wants to shine a light on those who have made significant contributions to the advancement of financial reporting.
Initiated by Haas School Professor Emeritus George Staubus, the Berkeley Award for Distinguished Contributions to Financial Reporting will be presented by the Center for Financial Reporting and Management and the Haas School's Accounting Faculty to recognize courage, leadership, or other meritorious performance in the interest of providing financial information useful to investors in making investment decisions.
The award will be given to an individual, corporation, or other entity for making investor-oriented choices in accounting methods and reporting, actively encouraging transparency in financial reporting, or improving the financial reporting culture of an organization.
The deadline for nominations is August 31, 2004. A nomination form can be found at http://groups.haas.berkeley.edu/accounting/award/.
A selection committee consisting of distinguished business members from industry, the accounting profession, the investment profession, and academia will select the winner. The recipient will be honored at the November 5, 2004, Conference on Financial Reporting in San Francisco.
Making a difference in the lives of others, whether locally or across the globe, was the goal for each of the three Haas School students who were recognized at the Haas School Commencement in May.
These three were the top achievers of the 35 who were recognized by the new Haas Community Fellows Program that was started this spring to promote and recognize the volunteer efforts of Haas students.
Each outstanding fellow served many hours with the organization of their choice:
Throughout her tenure at Haas, Amita Agnihotri, BS 04, engaged in many hours of community service in the Berkeley community. A large portion of these hours came from her involvement as a coordinator for the Y-Scholars program at Berkeley High School. Y-Scholars is an extension of UC Berkeley's Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP) run through the downtown Berkeley YMCA. She worked with 15 first-generation college-bound juniors to help them become academically eligible and aware of both high school graduation and college entrance requirements.
Linh Do, MBA 04, served on the Board of Advisors of CôVietnam, which stands for Creating Opportunities in Vietnam. CôVietnam is a nonprofit organization with a mission of improving the quality of life of poor women in Vietnam. Do helped CoVietnam create a sustainable microlending model and connect CoVietnam with local partners for successful implementation.
Recent graduate of the Evening and Weekend program, Sean Housley, MBA 04, volunteered as a bishop, overseeing all aspects of serving roughly 600 members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Petaluma. In just fifteen hours a week, he ministered; provided financial counseling, self-reliance training, mentoring, family counseling; and worked with the youth leadership of the church.
The Lambda Chapter of Beta Alpha Psi at UC Berkeley, the national honors fraternity for accounting and financial information professionals, was awarded a "superior" status by the group's national office.
All chapters achieving this rating -- the highest given -- receive a financial award from the KPMG Foundation. "Having achieved superior status and won the Best Practice award in the Western Region, these are remarkable times for Beta Alpha Psi," says Victor Tong, president of the executive board. "Our chapter is more committed to the community and professional realm than ever as we have dedicated more than 1,500 community and professional hours this year, put on events such as our career fair and "Meet the Firms," and hosted executive leaders from various industries."
Eligibility requirements for Beta Alpha Psi are a GPA of 3.0 or higher and enrollment in or intent to apply to Haas with a concentration in accounting, finance, or information systems. Non-business majors with intent to enroll in UGBA 102A, 103, or 140 are also eligible.
In its annual recognition of the best presentation rooms, Presentations magazine has awarded the 2003 grand prize for classrooms and training facilities to the Executive Learning Classroom at the Haas School of Business.
Hailed by the May 2004 issue of the magazine as "a beautiful and comfortable facility that's all about learning," the Executive Learning Classroom was built to handle distance learning as well as face-to-face instruction. It features state-of-the-art technology including two ceiling-mounted Panasonic projectors, each matched to a 120-inch projection screen; an in-ceiling document camera; and a dedicated camera that follows the instructor. The room was designed by Goring & Straja Architects.
The classroom renovation was funded by a $715,000 donation from Cal parent Dong Koo Kim and his company, BP industries. Kim's sons, Joon Kim and Richard Kim, received economics degrees from Cal in 1994 and 1998, respectively. The SBC Foundation provided a $900,000 gift for state-of-the-art distance-learning capabilities for the classroom.
Presentations magazine, a publication that provides information on technology and techniques for communication, issues the presentation awards annually. Facilities are judged on their abundance of technology, functionality for meetings and presentations, and overall aesthetics and beauty.
Professors Levine and Leonard Win Award for Paper on Diversity and Business Performance
A paper co-authored by professors David Levine and Jonathan Leonard (among others) has just won the Ulrich and Lake Award for Excellence in Human Resource Management Scholarship for 2004.
"The Effects of Diversity on Business Performance: Report of the Diversity Research Network" (Human Resource Management Journal, 42) presents the conclusions from a five-year, multi-university study commissioned by the Business Opportunities for Leadership Diversity Initiative (BOLD), a group of industry chief executives and human resource professionals who have been working together to help corporations learn how to leverage their cultural diversity for competitive advantage.
The paper was co-authored with Thomas Kochan, Katerina Bezrukova, Robin Ely, Susan Jackson, Aparna Joshi, Karen Jehn, and David Thomas. The full text of the paper can be found here: http://faculty.haas.berkeley.edu/levine/Papers/Diversity%20&%20Perfomrance%20Review.pdf
Haas Alumnus Inducted into the Accounting Hall of Fame
Alumnus Jerry Feltham, Ph.D. 67, professor emeritus at the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia, has been elected to the Accounting Hall of Fame. The induction will be held on August 9, 2004, at the Annual Meeting of the American Accounting Association. Feltham is considered a pioneer in information economic theory in the analysis of the decision-influencing and decision-facilitating roles of accounting. For more information, visit http://www.sauder.ubc.ca/news/releases/2004/july/20040708.cfm.
New Staff Roundup
Robert Bezydlo Joins Media Services as Evening Audio Video Technician
Robert Bezydlo starts work July 19 as evening audio video technician with media services. Bezydlo replaces Alex Garcia, who recently left to pursue a graduate degree. Originally from the east coast, Bezydlo earned his BS in Communications/Media from Fitchburg State College, Fitchburg, MA, in 1992. He then gained experience in video production while working in both technical and managerial positions at a number of community access television stations. He joined Haas most recently from Pacifica Community Television where he served as technical coordinator and trainer. He is also a member of Pacifica's board of directors where he has input on new technologies and equipment the station implements.
Bezydlo's e-mail is email@example.com, his phone number is 643-0431, and his office location is at the Computer Center in Media Services, S300.
Jeff Hicks Oversees After-School Programs for YEAH
Jeff Hicks joined the Young Entrepreneurs at Haas program (YEAH) as director of After-School Programs on June. He works with Haas undergraduate mentors to operate five clubs in local middle schools. The clubs aim to help seventh and eighth graders build a more positive outlook on school. "The different jobs in my career have always included developing programs for teenagers," says Hicks. "My degrees in Communications (CSU Chico BA-1980) and Education (Simpson College MA-1982) have served me well in this endeavor." When not restoring his 1880s home, Hicks, the father of Ashley (21) and Benjamin (18), kayaks and camps.
Hick's e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org, his phone number is 643-8906, and his office location is F410.
Nicole Gehrmann Manages Recruiting Relationships for Financial Services and Real Estate
Nicole Gehrmann joined the MBA Career Services team on June 7 as the account manager for Financial Services and Real Estate. She works closely with companies and alumni to maintain and grow MBA recruiting relationships in these areas. Originally from Chicago, and a graduate of Purdue University, Gehrmann moved to Washington, DC, where she worked for a lobbyist firm, before entering the hospitality industry with Choice Hotels International. She recently relocated to the Bay Area with her husband, who attends the Master's of Financial Engineering program at Haas, and loves to play softball, lacrosse, and flag football.
Gehrmann's e-mail is email@example.com, her phone number is 643-3530, and her office location is S330D.
Kim Dixon Responsible for Room Reservations and Keys
On May 25, Kim Dixon joined the Facilities unit, in charge of room reservations and keys. Dixon worked most recently with a law & economics consulting group, and previously with Merrill Lynch. She holds a BS in Industrial Psychology from California State University, Hayward, and is licensed in securities, real estate, investment advising, and life insurance. She is a history buff and loves to travel.
Henry Hernandez Joins Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA Program
Henry Hernandez joined Haas as assistant director of the Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA program on May 11. With UC Berkeley since 2000, Hernandez came to Haas from the Office of Student Life, where he served as assistant director of Student Group Advising and Events Management. Among other talents, Hernandez is a certified mediator, a climbing instructor, and he holds a BA from Florida State University in Music, specializing in classical guitar.
Hernandez's e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org, his phone number is 642-0307, and his office location is S440.
Valerie Gilbert Contributes to Marketing Publications
Valerie Gilbert joined Marketing Communications as a part-time publications coordinator on April 19. Gilbert supports the MarCom team in producing program brochures, Haas Newswire, and Cal Business. She has worked as a human resources manager for Mervyn's corporate headquarters, as a theatrical press agent, and as a marketing communications manager for the active vacation company, Backroads. Most recently she has been full-time mom to her son, Stanley, and is now delighted to be exercising another part of her brain.
Gilbert's e-mail is email@example.com and her phone number is 381-5416.
Zoe Scheffy has Award-Winning Paper Published
Zoe Scheffy, manager of Accounting and Personnel Services, had her paper, "Sami Religion in Museums and Artistry," published in the book "Creating Diversities: Folklore, Religion, and the Politics of Heritage" edited by Anna-Leena Siikala, Barbro Klein, and Stein Mathisen.
In 2001, this paper won the Don Yoder Prize from the American Folklore Society. Scheffy received an MA in Folklore from Indiana University, and is currently working toward a Ph.D. in Folklore at Indiana, with minors in Central Eurasian Studies and Museum Studies.
The Contra Costa Times published a front page business section feature on XLab on July 17. The article, "New lab probes 'dismal science'," quotes John Morgan, professor in the Economic Analysis and Policy Group, and Barbara Mellers, professor in both the Marketing and Organizational Behavior and Industrial Relations Groups at Haas. For the full text, see
http://www.contracostatimes.com/mld/cctimes/business/9178184.htm? template=contentModules/printstory.jsp (free, but requires registration).
The San Francisco Business Times feature on XLab quoted John Morgan on July 14 in an article titled "Berkeley Lab to Test Social Theories for Business."
For full text: http://sanfrancisco.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/stories/2004/07/12/daily31.html? t=printable.
Severin Borenstein, E.T. Grether Professor of Business Administration and Public Policy, was quoted in the East Bay Business Times on July 9 in an article titled "State Pumps Oil Giants for Market Data." Borenstein commented on competition in the oil industry. For full text:
Dean Tom Campbell was quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle on July 7 in an article titled "Corporate Reaction Cool: Kerry's Choice of Edwards Plays Better with Consumers." Campbell commented on perceptions of John Edwards. For full text:
Peter Sealey, adjunct professor in the Marketing Group, was quoted in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette on July 4 in an article titled "Marketing Academe: Catch Phrases Part of Universities' Pushes to Brand and Sell Themselves." Sealey commented on marketing and branding schools. For full text:
Hal Varian, professor in the Operations and Information Technology Management Group, was quoted in USA Today on July 3 in an article titled "U.S. Oracle Merger Case Moves to Post-trial Phase." Varian commented on the accelerated nature of today's technology. For full text:
Peter Sealey, adjunct professor in the Marketing Group, was quoted in the Los Angeles Times on July 2 in an article titled "Have You Seen What's on TV-Shirt Today?" Sealey commented on a new advertising concept that will promote a movie through models wearing T-shirts with built-in television sets. For full text:
David Teece, Mitsubishi Bank Professor of International Business, was mentioned or quoted in the following publications for his role as final witness in the Oracle anti-trust case:
The Haas NewsWire is the electronic news weekly for the Haas community published every Monday by the Marketing and Communications Office at the Haas School. Send your news, feedback, and suggestions to Haasnews@haas.berkeley.edu.
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