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DIRECTOR'S WELCOME                                                                                               Archives
about image June 11 , 2007

I want to begin by congratulating the KSG graduates who were awarded their degrees on June 7. Among them were leaders of the Center’s affiliated student groups: Heather Franzese, Stéphane de Messières, Jessica Droste Yagan, and Sherman Zemler Wu, from the Corporate Responsibility Council; and Kavita Sridhar from the Business & Government Professional Interest Council. The work of these students has been exceptional in raising awareness of business and government activities, contributing to research projects, organizing events, and honing their own and their peers’ professional skills. We wish them well.

We also say farewell to our Asia fellows and a number of senior fellows. A few career transitions should be noted: senior fellow Leigh Williams, who studied the regulation of privacy and security during his tenure at M-RCBG, has been named the President and CEO of BITS, the business and technology division of the Financial Services Roundtable in Washington DC, created to foster the growth and development of electronic financial services. Dr. Qiaobin Feng, a former Asia Fellow, was named the executive dean of finance and taxation at the Southwestern University of Finance and Economics in China.

Some students leaving the campus are embarking on M-RCBG-sponsored internships. The Vietnam Program is hosting three Harvard interns at the Fulbright Economics Teaching Program in Ho Chin Minh: Cristina Arango (MPA-ID), Tomás Recart (MPA-ID), and Patrick Behrer ( Harvard College) will work on research into affordable housing, mortgage markets, urban transportation and higher education. The Hefner China Fund will support seven students in China on projects ranging from internships at international organizations and NGOs to research on Special Economic Zones, sustainable development, and urban renewal.

In other student news, we are pleased to have announced the winner of the first annual John T. Dunlop Undergraduate Thesis Prize: Pablo M. Tsutsumi, who studied economics, won for his thesis entitled “Domestic Intentions: International Repercussions: An Empirical Study on the Impact of Sarbanes-Oxley on Latin American ADRs.” Our panel of judges also awarded an Honorable Mention to Elina Tetelbaum for her thesis: “A Sobering Look at How Minimum Legal Drinking Age Laws Affect Traffic Fatalities.

Though the students have left campus for the summer, M-RCBG’s programs continue to be active. The Harvard Electricity Policy Group (HEPG) held its 47 th plenary session May 31-June 1, meeting in Cambridge to discuss the restructuring of the electricity sector, transmission expansion, and climate change. The opening session, titled “ All the King’s Horses and All the King’s Men: Can Humpty Dumpty Be Put Together Again,” examined whether a retreat to the monopoly model of electricity production and transmission, or some variation of it, might be more effective in producing lower prices and a more reliable supply.

M-RCBG’s Asia Programs is hosting the fourth annual Beijing Executive Public Management Training Program , May 28 – June 15. Thirty-four senior officials from Beijing are learning with Harvard professors and discussing methods of improving the city’s planning practices, physical infrastructure, public services, and management. Some of the ideas discussed during these sessions will likely find their way into China’s preparations for the Summer Olympic Games in 2008.

Our Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative (CSRI) continues to be busy. On March 14, together with the World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation and the International Business Leaders Forum, it convened a small group of leading practitioners to discuss opportunities and challenges in the practice and scale-up of business linkages between large companies and small-medium enterprises in developing countries. See Business Linkages: Lessons, Opportunities, and Challenges andBuilding Linkages for Competitive and Responsible Entrepreneurshipfor more details.

On April 11-12, CSRI hosted a multi-stakeholder workshop as part of a project entitled Corporations and Human Rights: Accountability Mechanisms for Resolving Complaints and Disputes. Participants explored how to enhance the effectiveness of dispute resolution mechanisms in the business and human rights arena. In other CSRI news, Mark R. Kramer, CSRI Senior Fellow, and Michael E. Porter, Bishop William Lawrence University Professor at Harvard Business School, were named winners of the McKinsey Award for the Best Harvard Business Review Article in 2006 for their article, “Strategy & Society: The Link between Competitive Advantage and Corporate Social Responsibility.” David Grayson, another of CSRI’s Senior Fellows, was appointed founding chair at the new Doughty Centre for Corporate Responsibility at Cranfield School of Management in the United Kingdom. CSRI Director Jane Nelson was appointed as board member to the World Environment Center.

The Harvard Environmental Economics Program (HEEP) wishes Pre-Doctoral Fellow Jing Cao well, as he has accepted a position as an assistant professor in Beijing at the Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Tsinghua University. We also congratulate HEEP Pre-Doctoral Fellow Robyn Meeks, who was awarded the 2007 Vicki Norberg Bohm Fellowship by the Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program and the Environment and Natural Resources Program at the Kennedy School. Her project is titled “Investigations into Integrated Water Resource Management and Development: Linkages between Local, National, and International Levels.”

Our faculty and researchers have been widely quoted in the media. Linda Bilmes’ work on the long-term costs of the Iraq War continues to receive widespread attention, having been cited in the cover stories of U.S. News & World Report, Congressional Quarterly Magazine and Veterans of Foreign Wars Magazine. Rob Stavins has been a frequent media guest for his input on President Bush’s new global climate change proposals. Ashley Brown was interviewed on CNN to discuss the US summer electricity forecast. Links to these, and other appearances by our faculty and staff in the media, can be found under “Events and News ” on our website.

For my part, I am very pleased that the final communiqué of the recently concluded G8 Summit expressed support for my UN business and human rights work (Declaration). I expect to spend much of the summer and fall concluding this project.

Thank you for your continued interest and engagement. Have a great summer, and I look forward to being in touch again this fall.

Cheers.

Signature

John G. Ruggie

Frank and Denie Weil Director, Center for Business and Government
Kirkpatrick Professor of International Affairs