News & Highlights

  • MAY 2018

Alumni Achievement Award

Harvard Business School conferred its most important honor, the Alumni Achievement Award, on five distinguished graduates as part of the Class Day ceremony for the MBA Class of 2018. One of the recipients was Claudio Hadda (OMP 1987), chairman of Insper Institute of Education and Research, a university he helped launch in São Paulo, Brazil. Haddad’s career began in academia and includes serving as director of Brazil’s Central Bank and building Banco Garantia into one of South America’s most prestigious banks. Together with a group of Brazilian investors, in 1999 he acquired Insper and has since expanded it into one of Brazil’s leading educational institutions.
  • MAY 2018

Cuban Artist, Yoan Capote, Loans Sculpture to HBS

Three new sculptures have arrived on campus as part of Harvard Business School’s ongoing contemporary sculpture exhibition, which features works on one-year loan (begun in April 2016, and now in its third iteration). The first sculpture is by Cuban artist Yoan Capote, who was born in Havana, where he currently lives and works. His experience as Cuban shapes much of his work, which explores themes of migration and the human condition. As Capote has stated, “The common thread in all my work is that it is weighted in the condition of the human psyche.” Naturaleza Urbana, which was installed on Spangler Lawn in late April, consists of a large pair of handcuffs that connect two trees. The sculpture explores a range of issues, including captivity, fate, and human struggles, and is meant to inspire conversation. Capote represented Cuba along with three other artists at the Venice Biennale in 2011, and Naturaleza Urbana was previously on view at Art Basel Miami Beach in 2017. He has received numerous awards, including an International Fellowship Grant from the Guggenheim Foundation, a UNESCO Prize, and a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant.
  • APRIL 2018

Sowing the Seeds of Leadership

Arturo Condo (DBA 2000), President of EARTH Univeristy, is bringing his entrepreneurial mindset, global perspective, and firm belief in the power of young people to change the world to his Costa-Rica based institution. EARTH is a private, nonprofit school that offers a four-year undergraduate degree in agricultural sciences and natural resources management and a master’s degree in agribusiness. The innovative university focuses on developing leaders who will seed sustainable, socially responsible development projects in economically challenged communities. Students come from 48 countries, predominately in Latin America and Africa.

New Research on the Region

  • June 2018
  • Teaching Material

LabCDMX: Experiment 50

By: Mitchell Weiss and Matt Higgins

There were probably 30,000 public buses, minibuses, and vans in Mexico City. Though, in 2015, no one knew for certain since no comprehensive schedule existed. This was why el Laboratorio para la Ciudad (or LabCDMX) had spawned an effort to generate a map of the labyrinth system that provided an estimated 14 million rides a day. Gabriella Gómez-Mont, the lab’s founder and director, had led her team in a project to crowdsource the routes from volunteer riders in what came to be known as Mapatón CDMX. After four pilots and a two-week “mapping marathon” later, she wondered exactly what to make of the lab’s 50th experiment? Was Mapatón successful?

  • May 2018
  • Case

Argentina Power – Don’t Cry for Me Argentina

By: Nori Gerardo Lietz and Sayiddah Fatima McCree

In 2016, Bruce Wayne, Managing Director of Energy Finance Corporation (“EFC”), was refining the Investment/Credit Committee materials for the development of up to 10 power generating plants in Argentina. As a subsidiary of the much larger International Conglomerate Corporation (“ICC”), EFC had to convince ICC’s Investment/Credit Committee to provide capital despite the many risks associated with investing in Argentina.

  • 2018
  • Working Paper

Business, Governments and Political Risk in South Asia and Latin America since 1970

By: Geoffrey Jones and Rachael Comunale

This working paper provides a new perspective on how businesses have responded to political risk in South Asia and Latin America over the last half century. The existing business history literature on political risk is focused on the experiences of Western multinationals in the 20th century, especially in Nazi Germany and the post-colonial developing world. This working paper is instead focused on perceptions of political risk by domestic business leaders active in Latin America and South Asia since the 1970s. Employing data from the Creating Emerging Markets oral history database developed at the Harvard Business School, the working paper identifies five major sources of political risk: macroeconomic and policy turbulence, excessive bureaucracy, political instability, corruption, and violence. Employing NVivo coding, marked regional differences were identified. Macroeconomic and policy turbulence was the biggest perceived source of risk in Latin America. Excessive bureaucracy was the biggest source of perceived risk in South Asia. There were regional differences also in how leaders in different regions responded to the same risk. In both regions business leaders reported having to dedicate significant time to navigating government regulations, but interviewees in South Asia frequently reported attempting to steer clear from highly regulated industries, while many interviewees in Latin America discussed how they adapted to heavier government oversight by forming closer ties or working relationships with incumbent administrations.

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