U.S. News & World Report
Each year, U.S. News & World Report releases a ranking, based on peer assessments, of top undergraduate business programs across the country. This year the Tepper School’s Undergraduate Business Administration Program continued to climb that list, earning a #6 ranking — up from #7 last year.
The program also ranked within the top 10 in a number of specialty areas, including #2 in Management of Information Systems, #2 in Operations Management, #2 in Quantitative Analysis, #8 in Supply Chain Management/Logistics and #10 in Finance.
The New York Times
As the presidential race came to a head this summer, both candidates expressed interest in preventing corporations from leaving the United States and taking their operations overseas. Now companies have begun merging with international businesses, which is known as a “corporate inversion.”
In a recent paper co-authored by Brent Glover, assistant professor of finance, a study of 60 corporate inversions found that inversions benefit some shareholders at the expense of others. The study found that, while inversions reduce the corporate taxes collected by the Treasury, taxable shareholders lost 1 to 3 percent of the value of their shares.
When it comes to hiring new employees, it makes sense that corporations would be on the lookout for reliable, trustworthy candidates. But judging these characteristics can be difficult. Taya Cohen, Carnegie Bosch Junior Faculty Chair and associate professor of organizational behavior and theory, suggests that observing an applicant’s guilt-proneness during the interview process can help.
Her research has found that people who are more prone to feeling guilty are usually the more ethical candidates, and will likely be better team players. “The guilt-prone employee doesn’t need to be policed. She will act ethically because of her character,” Cohen explained.
At the Federal Reserve’s annual gathering of global central bankers at Jackson Hole, Wyoming, financial experts testified about the state of central banks, and whether they should be decreasing the amount of financial assets that they hold. Among these experts was Marvin Goodfriend, the Friends of Allan H. Meltzer Professor, professor of economics, who suggested an increased focus on interest rate policy in order to cut interest rates further below zero.
“Pressure to rely more heavily on balance sheet policy in lieu of interest rate policy will tempt central banks increasingly to exert stimulus by fiscal policy via distortionary credit allocation, the assumption of credit risk and maturity transformation, all taking risks on behalf of taxpayers and all moving central banks ever closer to destructive inflationary finance,” Goodfriend said. “Interest rate policy is far superior to these alternatives.”
Poets & Quants
The start of the new academic year saw big changes for the Undergraduate Business Administration and Economics programs, from program growth to new courses. One of the most impactful changes was the addition of concentrations within the economics program, including Market Design, Economics of Public Policy, Advanced Quantitative Economics Methods, Global Markets and Finance, and Economics of Global Change and Disruption.
“We wanted to communicate clearly to students how the courses interconnect. And we wanted it to be easier for students to convey to potential employers what they’re experts in,” said Chris Sleet, head of the program, regarding the motivations for new concentration areas.
Poets & Quants
Each year, more and more MBA students are setting out on an entrepreneurial path, spending their summers working on a startup rather than at a traditional internship. According to Dave Mawhinney, executive director of the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship and associate teaching professor of entrepreneurship, this comes from an increase in the number of students who are gaining an MBA in order to completely transform their careers by starting their own company.
One case study of this trend can be seen through MBA candidates Austin Webb and Daniel Seim, who spent this summer working on their company RoBotany.
The New York Times
For a sports fanatic, the Olympic Games can be both exciting and demanding — so many events, so little time. That’s why Victor Mather, a sports writer for the The New York Times, turned to analytics and optimization expert Michael Trick, senior associate dean of faculty and research and Harry B. and James H. Higgins Professor of Operations Research, for help in seeing as many events as possible during his time in Rio de Janeiro.
Despite dysfunctional transportation and other delays, Mather was able to see 13 events in 13 hours using Trick’s suggested schedule.
One of the reporter’s colleagues took the opposite approach, and did not optimize her schedule. See how her day turned out.
In a recent survey of admissions counselors, Business Because set out to compare the differences between the GMAT and GRE exams, and how important they are to the MBA application. Cindy McCauley, director of master’s admissions, provided the Tepper School’s perspective: “We prefer the GMAT because it was created specifically to evaluate business-school candidates. However, we will accept the GRE, and those applicants are evaluated in the same way. When evaluating applications, the graduate exam is just one of several important factors.”
U.S. News & World Report
According to a report from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, undergraduate business alumni from private schools had a starting salary that was 11.3 percent higher than that of public school graduates. Burton Hollifield, head of the Undergraduate Business Administration Program, spoke with U.S. News & World Report about how Tepper School graduates fare in the job market, sharing that of the 90 students who graduated in the spring of 2016, 83 had jobs as of Aug. 3, 2016.
Following a decline in sales, Nike announced this summer that it would end its manufacturing and selling of golf equipment. Although the company began creating its line of golf apparel more than 30 years ago, the brand really took off in 1996 when Nike signed a young Tiger Woods for its advertising.
A study by Tim Derdenger, assistant professor of marketing and strategy, found that — after a decade of sponsoring Woods, in which Nike’s golf ball sales added $91 million in additional revenue and 4.5 million new customers — the campaign saw a decline amid Woods’ 2009 scandal and temporary break from the industry. Derdenger’s study found that during that time the company’s golf ball category lost $10.2 million in revenue.
While more companies are appointing female leadership, research by Anita Williams Woolley, associate professor of organizational behavior and theory, suggests that they may not be using this diversity to its full advantage.
Woolley’s study examined the concept of “collective intelligence,” or the ability to perform group tasks, within teams that had stable leadership, and teams in environments where individuals consistently fight for positions and interrupt one another.
With groups that fell into the latter category, it was found that female-dominated teams did not achieve an increase in collective intelligence, disputing the findings of previous relevant research. “Gender diversity benefits do not materialize if the atmosphere is too cut-throat,” Woolley explained of the findings.
In the modern world of entertainment, the success and planning of a television program — from the number of episodes to the advertising rates — are determined based on the expected viewership of that particular show. A research team including Param Vir Singh, Carnegie Bosch Junior Faculty Chair and associate professor of business technologies, and Kannan Srinivasan, H.J. Heinz II Professor of Management, Marketing and Information Systems, recently compared Twitter content to Google searches in terms of forecasting the success of a television program, analyzing more than 1.8 billion tweets versus 113 million Google searches of about 30 U.S. TV shows and NFL games during the 2008–2012 seasons.
The results: Tweets significantly outperform Google searches at predicting program viewership. Singh and Srinivasan also noticed discrepancies in how viewers interact with the different websites, reporting that while tweets peaked during the show’s airtime, Google searches peaked after the episode had ended.
The Washington Post
While one’s fashion choices often serve as a form of self-expression, some people may also use clothing and accessories as tools to fit in and stay on trend with those around them. Research by Jeff Galak, associate professor of marketing — which analyzed changes in women’s shoe purchases when they moved to a new city — shows that when American women relocate to wealthier cities, they adopt the fashion preferences of those around them. But when moving to poorer cities, they stick with their previous wardrobe style and heel height, no matter the local norm.
U.S. News & World Report
For the modern-day MBA applicant, there are several options for program formats: on-campus, fully online or a hybrid program that blends the two — and there are many questions to consider when selecting a program format. For example, Kate Barraclough, head of the MBA program and Distinguished Service Professor of Finance, suggests that prospective students consider their other obligations and the time commitment of the various options, asking themselves, “Do I have family or work commitments that would make that a challenge?”
For Part-Time Online Hybrid MBA graduate Josh Eickmeier, MBA ’16, the Tepper School’s hybrid program was a perfect fit. “Even though I was looking for something flexible, it was important to me to get to know the people in my class,” Eickmeier said.
Los Angeles Times
Election season can be a particularly delicate time for the independent Federal Reserve, as it attempts to continue supervising the economy without appearing in favor of one presidential candidate over another. It is for this reason — many financial experts say — that as the election drew nearer, it became increasingly less likely that the Federal Reserve might raise the short-term interest rate.
“The Fed tries very hard not to do things in the months of September, October and November before the election ... so they don’t appear to be helping one candidate or the other,” said Allan Meltzer, the Allan H. Meltzer University Professor of Political Economy.
Six years ago, Senior Associate Dean Laurie Weingart — along with the Carnegie Mellon Heinz College’s Linda Babcock; the University of Pittsburgh’s Lise Vesterlund; Amanda Weirup, MBA ’05 and Ph.D. candidate; and Maria Recalde, an associate research fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute — developed the “I Just Can’t Say No” club, a self-created club that helps women assess the value-add when asked for a favor and how to politely decline ones that wouldn’t impact their career advancement.
In the years since, the team has also conducted research related to why women spend more time at work taking on responsibilities that are outside of their core job description — that is to say, doing workplace “favors.” This research found that when a favor is requested, a woman is more likely to volunteer than a man, especially in a male-dominated group.
Many MBA students come to the Tepper School hoping to expand their knowledge in operations management, and ultimately land a job in the field — like Jay Haugen, MBA ’12, who now works as a product manager for Eaton’s Electronic Miniature Circuit Breakers division.
Sunder Kekre, director of the PNC Center for Financial Services Innovation and Bosch Professor of Operations Management, explains that, at the Tepper School, big data and analytics are key parts of the operations curriculum in order to prepare students for these types of jobs: “Operations managers are being asked to look at data and to meaningfully craft strategies, whether it’s running the production of goods and services or whether it’s related to serving the consumer after the point of sale.”
The Tepper MBA program is also preparing students to approach operations jobs with a global perspective. “The roles have a broader global focus than just domestic responsibilities and graduates are expected to have not just solid technical backgrounds, but be able to effectively manage large multi-cultural teams,” Kate Riley, associate director of the Career Opportunities Center, shared with TopMBA.com.
The New York Times
A recent decline in the demand for electricity and the rise in fracking have caused wholesale prices of electricity to fall, posing problems for the nuclear industry. Many nuclear plants, which have been operating for as long as 80 years, have a need for repairs and maintenance, and the decline in revenue is making it increasingly difficult for them to upgrade their equipment.
“At these prices, they can’t save up enough to have cash on hand for periodic capital investments,” explained Jay Apt, professor of technology and director of the Carnegie Mellon Electricity Industry Center.