Business school education is alive and well. On April 29, 2010, I attended The University of Chicago’s 58th Annual Management Conference at Navy Pier. A beautiful setting overlooking Lake Michigan, this seminar showcased leading academic and industry practitioners who discussed a variety of current business issues ranging from the effects of fiscal imbalances—our annual deficit for the next couple of years is projected to exceed $1 trillion!–to the regulation of financial markets.
The speakers at these conferences are typically thought-leaders who provide insights that have aided me in my thinking about current business topics. For example, Raghuram G Rajan, Professor of Finance, Chicago Booth, stated that economists have ignored the role of financial institutions in developing their macroeconomic theories. This worked for a while in terms of developing useful theories about how the economy functions; however, it has been a mistake. Case in point: the demise of firms such as Lehman Brothers has had a major impact on macroeconomic activity. Macroeconomics must change, recognizing that if you ignore the “plumbing” too much, it backs up, and you can “smell it.” Rajan believes that there will be substantial future research about the role of financial institutions in our economy, largely as a result of the most recent financial crisis.
So, next year, if you happen to be in the Chicago area during the end of April, be sure to attend this useful seminar. At a cost of $175, it is a bargain. Plus, there are ample opportunities for networking.