George Serafeim

Associate Professor of Business Administration

George Serafeim is an Associate Professor of Business Administration in the Accounting and Management Unit. He teaches in the MBA and doctoral programs and co-chairs the Executive Education program "Aligning Sustainability with Corporate Performance." His work on how organizations integrate sustainability issues into their business models, integrated reporting, and sustainable investing has won numerous awards and he has presented it at more than 100 conferences and seminars in over 20 countries.

Professor Serafeim's research interests are international, focusing on equity valuation, corporate governance, and corporate reporting issues. His work has been published in prestigious academic and practitioner journals such as the Strategic Management Journal, Journal of International Business StudiesReview of Accounting Studies, Journal of Accounting Research, Journal of Finance, Contemporary Accounting Research, Management Science, Financial Analysts Journal, MIT Sloan Management Review, Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, Harvard Business Review and has also appeared in media outlets including Bloomberg, Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, The Economist, and NPR. He has written more than thirty business cases on organizations from around the world. He is the co-author with Professors Richard Macve and Joanne Horton of a book on the transparency and valuation of insurance companies and the co-author of a study, commissioned by the European Union, that evaluated the relevance of public information disclosed during the transition of European companies to IFRS.

Professor Serafeim's work with Professor Ioannis Ioannou on corporate sustainability and sell-side investment recommendations received the best paper award from the Academy of Management, and their work on corporate sustainability and access to finance received the best paper award from the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment network. Professor Serafeim's research with Professor Paul Healy on anticorruption efforts and firm performance was awarded the Hermes Fund Manager best paper prize (second place), his work with Professors Mo Khan and Leonid Kogan on the effects of price pressure on equity issuance and corporate acquisitions was awarded the Whitebox Prize (runner up), and his work with Robert Eccles on "The Performance Frontier" was recognized as "The Big Idea" at Harvard Business Review. He has served on the Technical Review Committee of the Global Initiative for Sustainability Ratings and on the Standards Council of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board. He has been an advisor to numerous organizations around the world and he is a partner at KKS Advisors.

Professor Serafeim earned his doctorate in business administration at Harvard Business School, where his dissertation was recognized with the Wyss Award for Excellence in Doctoral Research. He received a master's degree in accounting and finance from the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he was awarded the Emeritus Professors' Prize for best academic performance.

Academy of Management 2012 Panel Symposium: The Path towards a Sustainable Society

Join us this year, at the Academy of Management Annual Meeting in Boston, to discuss critical issues of Sustainability with thought leaders

Title: The Path Towards a Sustainable Society
Date: August 6th, 2012
Time: 4:45pm – 6:15pm
Place: Hynes Convention Center, Room 306 

Organizers:

Ioannis Ioannou, London Business School

George Serafeim, Harvard Business School

Panelists:

Tima Bansal, University of Western Ontario

Robert C. Eccles, Harvard Business School

Amy C. Edmondson, Harvard Business School

Rebecca M. Henderson, Harvard Business School

Joshua D. Margolis, Harvard Business School

Anita McGahan, University of Toronto

Maurizio Zollo, Bocconi University

Panel Theme

Over the past few decades most countries have experienced unprecedented levels of economic growth. Meanwhile, urbanization has been accelerating, the bulk of economic activity has been shifting from agriculture and industrial production to the supply of services, and globalization has removed barriers to freely moving labor, financial capital, and products. These macro trends have placed strong pressures both on the environment and society; the scarcity of natural resources and increasing CO2 emissions constitute a serious threat to both our economies and our societies. Moreover, unemployment, especially amongst young people, as well as social inequality have increased despite the tremendous economic progress. Government debt over GDP has also been increasing, suggesting that governments might not have the capacity to provide many of the often necessary public goods and services.

By various estimates, the next 20 years will also witness an unprecedented growth in global demand for output, in the form of products and services. At the same time, ever rising productivity levels are accelerating the global GDP growth while generating further significant social and environmental pressures, making some of the already existing challenges even more acute. It is expected, for example, that in the next decade the global middle class will double, with 70% of this increase coming from outside the developed G7 countries. Therefore, financial capital scarcity will become more severe as emerging economies rapidly shift towards more industrialization and urbanization, and therefore require massive amounts of fixed capital investments. Not only financial resources but also an estimated doubling of global demand for commodities in the next 20 years will significantly intensify the pressure on ever more scarce natural resources.

These macro trends radically reshape the global landscape, and bring fundamental questions to center stage: How can we ensure that the means and ways we use for generating society’s wellbeing today are not compromising or even jeopardizing the wellbeing of societies of future generations? What are the implications of this global transformation that we are already witnessing, in the way we design our cities, establish our organizations, and visualize the global society of the future?