List and description of lectures available
Copies of any of these lectures are available upon request. Some topics are covered in more than one lecture.
1. CULTURE AND BUSINESS.
A. Cultural Differences in Business between the US and Europe. This lecture begins with an examination of the overwhelming ignorance of the average American of people and cultures outside the US. It continues by presenting the stereotype of the European businessman as American businessmen view him - and how to overcome it. It considers how two aspects of American history - the immigrant past and the pioneer spirit - shape the way Americans look at the business world. It discusses some specific differences in the ways Americans do business compared with Europeans - the notion of time, the American approach to relationships, the importance of sports and teams, and the division between life at work and life away from work. It concludes by reviewing with some specific areas where foreigners often err in dealing with American businessmen, and some parting thoughts on how to succeed in business with them.
B. The Role of Culture in International Business - and Cultural Issues for Americans. This lecture provides an introduction to culture and its role in international business. It defines culture in this context and provides some characteristics. It presents the metaphor of culture as an iceberg. It reviews the role of language and religion in culture and business. It examines some specific areas of cultural differences between countries - the importance of context, the acceptance of hierarchy, individual vs. collective decision making, acceptance of/resistance to change, notions of time, the importance of relationships, trusting vs. distrusting cultures and the importance of business meals. It then presents the American stereotype - generally and in business - and how to overcome it. It concludes with some observations on ways in which Americans can deal more comfortably in a multi-cultural environment.
2. THE INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT.
A. The Political and Legal Context for International Business. This lecture looks at the different types of political risk in international business and the steps that can be taken to mitigate such risk. It then considers the legal environment of international business, discussing the administrative steps to starting a business abroad, marketplace behavior laws, country of origin laws, product safety and liability laws, and choice of law and dispute resolution issues. It concludes with an overview of intellectual property laws.
B. International Business and Globalization -The Economic Perspective. This lecture presents a brief introduction to international business and its 21st century context. The majority of the lecture involves an overview of globalization - particularly from the economic perspective. It discusses some of the changes that globalization has brought in the way business is being conducted. It then briefly presents the arguments for globalization, with a longer presentation of the economic and sociopolitical critiques of globalization - and the response of globalization advocates to these critiques. It concludes with a brief discussion of the Fair Trade movement
C. Globalization -The Non-Economic Perspective. This lecture presents a brief introduction to international business and its 21st century context. The majority of the lecture involves an overview of globalization - particularly from the economic perspective. It discusses some of the changes that globalization has brought in the way business is being conducted. It then briefly presents the arguments for globalization, with a longer presentation of the economic and sociopolitical critiques of globalization - and the response of globalization advocates to these critiques. It concludes with a brief discussion of the Fair Trade movement
D. The World Political Context for Business. This lecture presents a brief survey of the political/economic situations in the major regions of the world, with a view to highlighting their interest for potential business in the 21st century.
E. The European Union - an Introduction. This lecture presents an introduction to the European Union (EU). It begins with a brief summary of what the EU is, what makes it unique, and why it is important for American citizens and businessmen. It then looks at the EU’s history, describing how the EU has arrived at the 27 members today. Next, it provides a brief description of the principal EU institutions - the Parliament, The European Council, the Council of the European Union, the Commission and the European Central Bank - as well as the changes in these institutions that have occurred with the adoption - at long last - of the Treaty of Lisbon. It briefly examines the types of EU legislation - very different than those in any traditional government. It looks at some of the major EU policies - and the controversies surrounding them. I conclude this section of the course with a discussion of some of the major issues facing the European Union and some reflections on its future.
3. CURRENT AND RECENT WORLD ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL EVENTS.
A. The Current Economic Crisis. This lecture provides an introduction to the current economic crisis. I start with some background elements - how banks create money and the definitions of “business cycles”, “asset bubbles” and “securitization”. I then look at some of the causes of the crisis - the 2001 recession, the housing and credit bubble and deregulation. I discuss the events in how the crisis unfolded. I consider the current economic situation, the “shapes” of recessions, the differences between normal “business cycle” recessions and those caused by financial crisis, and what we can look to going forward.
B. The future of the euro and the euro zone. This lecture discusses the current crisis in the euro zone and tries to provide some guidance as to what the future directions of the euro zone may be. It is divided into two parts.
In Part 1, I present how we got where we are today. I provide an introduction with some history and background and a presentation of the euro zone members and some of the other major “players” in the crisis. I then discuss origins of the crisis and the “original sins” at the time of formation of the euro for which the bill must now be paid. I then consider some of the reasons why this crisis is so complex - the situations in certain of the “weak” euro zone states and the multiple crises that we tend to conflate.
In Part 2, I look in detail at different aspects of the current crisis, propose some solutions and then give my best guess as to what will happen. I discuss the possibility of default, and what that might mean. I look at the consequence of one or more of the euro zone members leaving the euro. I then consider how we might avoid default - why Germany and the other strong countries are hesitating and the constraints on the European Central Bank (ECB). Next I present Eurobonds as a possible solution - what problems they can and cannot solve, and some of the proposals that have been presented to make their use more palatable and effective. Finally, I conclude with what I think a solution should include - and my thoughts on how it might turn out.
4. INTERNATIONAL TRADE.
A. Theories of International Trade. This lecture examines the theories of international trade. It begins with a short discussion of the advantages and the some of the background for international trade theory. It then presents numerical examples of both absolute and comparative advantages, and then discusses some of their “real-world” limitations. It concludes by examining other factors which may affect international trade, including country size, the factors of production, process technology and other factors determining which countries others will trade with.
B. The Dynamics of Trade and Factor Mobility. This lecture considers how trade patterns can change over time. It defines factors of productions and examines how they can change over time for a country. It looks briefly at the product life cycle theory and the diamond of national advantage. It then looks at the controversies surrounding the movement of two of the factors of production, capital and labor.
C. Government Intervention in International Trade. This lecture considers the role of government in trade and the arguments governments use to justify policies that interfere with free trade. It begins by examining two useful notions from economic theory - the “principal-agent problem” and the notion of “rents” and rent-seeking behavior. It then looks at some of the specific economic arguments used - preventing unemployment, protecting “infant industries”, developing an industrial bases, reciprocal relationships with other countries, anti-dumping - as well as non-economic arguments.
D. Tariffs, Subsidies and the World Trade Organization. This lecture examines various types of government intervention in world trade - and the steps being taken to eliminate them or reduce their effects. It begins by examining tariffs and some of the issues involved in their calculation and implementation. It then examines subsidies and some of the more visible controversies. It considers the various types of non-tariff barriers to trade. It presents the World Trade Organization and its efforts to lower trade barriers and resolve trade-related disputes. It concludes with an examination of the Doha Round trade negotiations currently underway.
E. Cross-National Cooperation and Preferential Trade Agreements. This lecture examines various cross-national and regional agreements (“preferential trade agreements”) to promote economic development and trade. It begins with an examination of the notions of trade creation and trade diversion - and how bilateral and regional arrangements can undermine global efforts such as the World Trade Organization (WTO). It then defines the various types of trading agreements. Next it considers the United Nations and various regional agreements, starting with the North American Free Trade Organization (NAFTA), Latin American and Caribbean trade groupings, Asian and African organizations, as well as non-governmental organizations. It finishes with an examination of a commodity-based international group, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
5. FOREIGN EXCHANGE AND FINANCIAL MARKETS.
A. Global Foreign Exchange Markets, Methods of Payment and Derivatives. This lecture considers the global foreign exchange markets and two related domains - methods of payment in foreign transactions and the derivatives markets. It begins by an introduction to the foreign exchange markets. It then considers the various participants, the types of foreign exchange transactions and where foreign exchange transactions occur. It then examines two common means for commercial business to pay for goods in foreign transactions - drafts and letters of credit. It concludes with an examination of the derivatives market and its role in unleashing the Great Recession.
B. Exchange Rate Systems, The International Monetary Fund and the Euro. This lecture examines the different types of exchange rate systems, the organization set up to oversee the development and functioning of monetary flows - the International Monetary Fund - and looks at the specific case of the euro, particularly its efforts to meet the challenges of potential debt defaults by certain members of the euro zone.
C. Exchange Rate Determination and the Future Direction of the International Monetary System. This lecture examines the foreign exchange market and their importance. It looks at purchasing power parity and the Big Mac Index. It examines different types of currency regimes - non-free floating and floating currencies. It then discusses the future directions of the international monetary system, including the problems of the disproportionate influence of the dollar, the accumulation of large currency reserves and increasing volume and scale of capital flows, and concludes with a discussion of the undervaluation of the Chinese yuan.
6. INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS STRATEGY AND MANAGEMENT.
A. Value Chains and International Business Strategy. This lecture considers the concept of value chains within corporations and the development of strategies to create value using those value chains. It begins with an introduction to strategy and to value chains. It examines value chain configuration and coordination. It considers the tension between global integration and local responsiveness and discusses some of the types of strategies that corporations have developed to address these issues. It concludes by considering some aspects of globalization that are currently impacting strategy and value chain development, including improvements in communications, data mining and management, three-dimensional printing and “series-of-one” manufacturing, social networking and trends in outsourcing/offshoring.
B. International Business Organization. This lecture presents an overview of current thinking on international business organization. After a brief introduction defining business organization, it sets out the 21st century context for organizational development, highlighting some of the challenges posed by the rapid change characterizing this century. It then discusses organizational structure, mentioning the differences between vertical and horizontal differentiation and then considering the different types of structures that may result from different business strategies. It then looks at coordination and control systems and concludes with a consideration of the changes in corporate culture.
C. International Marketing Considerations. This lecture presents an overview of international marketing issues. After a brief introduction, it discusses various marketing strategy orientations and marketing segmentation and targeting issues. It examines the alterations necessary for international sales and then considers various pricing, promotion, branding and distribution strategies. It briefly presents the changes caused by the Internet and e-commerce and discusses the concept of gap analysis. It concludes by highlighting some of the specific challenges of smaller companies in international marketing.
D. Global Manufacturing and Supply-Chain Management. This lecture offers an introduction to the major issues in international supply chain management. After a brief definition and introduction, it first considers various international manufacturing strategies. It next examines some of the information technology and software advances in supply-chain management (including a discussion of areas that go well beyond supply chains). It discusses quality management systems, in particular ISO 9000 and ISO 14000. We look at global sourcing, considering the advantages and disadvantages, supplier configurations, supplier relations and purchasing. It concludes with an examination of various inventory management issues, including lean manufacturing, just-in-time inventory management, free trade zones and logistics.
E. International Accounting Issues. This lecture examines various issues in international accounting. It begins with an examination of the international accounting function - and the role of the controller. It then examines financial accounting, starting with the differences in international accounting systems. It considers different accounting standards and the organizations that have proposed them, followed by a discussion of the trend towards convergence in these standards. It reviews the problems in accounting for foreign exchange transactions. It then turns to management accounting, discussing performance evaluation and control, budget and foreign exchange rates, transfer pricing and the balanced scorecard. It concludes with a discussion of corporate governance issues.
F. The Multinational Finance Function. This lecture examines international finance. It looks first at the task of the chief financial officer and compares the role of the treasurer and the controller. It discusses some basic taxation principles. It considers the question of companies’ capital structure - the balance between debt and equity and the factors influencing that balance and how the two are raised. It discusses offshore finance centers and tax havens. It presents briefly the different criteria for making capital budgeting decisions and the factors that complicate such decisions in an international context. It looks at foreign exchange risk management and hedging strategies. It concludes with a brief examination of the taxation of foreign source income
G. Human Resource Management. This lecture considers human resource management (HRM) issues for multi-national enterprises (MNEs). It begins by examining the HRM function -- why it is increasingly important and then certain trends in HRM and the different frameworks for HRM. It then discusses different issues in managing expatriates - the price and the causes of failure, the selection and preparation of expatriates, expatriate compensation and repatriation problems. It concludes with a review of international labor management issues - labor’s perceptions of MNEs, their responses to MNE labor policies, some barriers to labor’s effectiveness in confronting MNEs, and finally some trends in international labor relations.
7. EXPORTING GENERALLY.
A. Selecting International Markets. The lecture examines the process that multinational enterprises (theoretically) go through in selecting countries for international development and expansion. It begins with an examination of the evaluation process - scanning and detailed analysis, the different factors that go into evaluating sales development and resource acquisition, the risks in international expansion, the problems involved in data evaluation and the sources available to multinational enterprises and the use of grids and matrices. It then examines three different strategies for lowering risk in allocating resources among existing international investments. It then considers (skeptically) how investment decisions really occur, particularly in a small business context. It concludes with a brief examination of which countries are “hot” and which are “not” in attracting foreign investments in different regions of the world.
B. Import and Export Strategies and Preparations. This lecture provides an introduction to importing and exporting. We begin by looking at importing, considering some of the strategies and reasons that companies important; we then examine the role of customs brokers. Turning to exporting, we first raise the question “why export?”. We then examine the different forms of exporting - indirect and direct exporting, as well as countertrade. We discuss preparing for exporting, raising some key questions to answer before beginning an export program, the export plan, preparing the products for exporting, additional export costs and pricing strategies. We conclude by looking at some of the common errors exporters make and some steps prospective exporters can take to avoid these errors.
C. Practical Aspects of Exporting. This lecture examines some of the practical aspects of exporting. It will begin by looking at representatives and distributors, how to select them and the agreements with them. It will then look at logistical issues, including the role that a freight forwarder can play, packing, labeling and export documentation. It will conclude with an examination of methods of payment and financing.
D. Direct Investment and Other International Collaboration Strategies. This lecture considers international business strategies other than exporting. It examines the reasons why exporting may not be the best long-term solution for international companies. It looks at direct foreign investment. It then presents other types of international collaborations, including the reasons for entering into international collaborations, the types of such collaborations, the problems encountered and some considerations to consider in setting up international business collaborations.
8. ENTERING THE UNITED STATES MARKET.
A. Are you ready to do business in the United States? This lecture presents the questions companies should ask and the preparations they should undertake before beginning a serious activity with the United States. It first considers why European companies should do business in the United States. It then examines the challenges that the US market presents - and the commitment required to meet those challenges. It proposes some specific preparatory “pre-commitment” steps for the US market entry (Lecture 6 discusses certain “post commitment” preparatory steps). Finally, it reviews some of the factors that will determine whether the export campaign will be successful.
B. Finding and keeping a US partner. This lecture provides an overview of the process for European companies to get an initial foothold in the US market. It begins by examining in more detail the preparations to enter the US market once the study phase has been completed. It considers the need for a US partner and describes the different types of partners (concentrating particularly on representatives and distributors and the differences between them). It presents the process of presenting and marketing a European company to an American partner. It concludes with some ideas on organizing presentations for an American audience.
9. STARTING A BUSINESS.
A. Should you start your own company? This lecture discusses some of the issues potential entrepreneurs or business founders should consider in deciding whether to start their own business. It asks, “Why start a company?” and looks at some of the satisfactions and risks involved. It discusses some of the personality traits that make successful entrepreneurs and the elements they should consider in making the commitment to start a business. It proposes ways of defining and vetting the business idea and suggests the need for a written plan. It examines the different types of business entities, the issues that influence the choice among them, and the timing for the entity’s creation. Finally, it reviews the types of expertise a start-up company will need and the entities in which they will work.
B. The Business Plan. This lecture discusses in detail the logic and process of developing a business plan, emphasizing the point of view of the potential investor reviewing the plan. It begins by examining why writing a business plan is important and what you should get out of the process. It then discusses the process of preparing a business plan. It describes the elements of a “business plan package” - all of the items that a sophisticated potential investor will expect to see in evaluating the investment opportunity. The remainder of the chapter examines the contents of the business plan, with particular emphasis on what investors will be looking for and how they will be analyzing the information presented.
C. Financing Methods. This lecture considers the various methods of financing a business. It presents the difference between debt and equity funding and some of the factors in choosing between them. It looks at the different forms that equity investment may take. It discusses the difference between unsecured and secured debt financing and describes the different types of security available as collateral for debt. Finally, it looks at the different types of debt financing methods.
D. The Money Raising Process. This lecture presents various aspects of the process of raising equity capital for a start-up business. It reviews the various investment stages for start-up businesses and presents the amounts of equity investment typically required at each stage and the types of investors are likely to provide these funds. It next provides a more detailed presentation of the types of investors, concentrating on business angels and venture capitalists. It then offers some suggestions on how to sell an investment in a start-up business, discussing how to get the appointment, make the presentation and negotiate the deal.
10. LEGAL ASPECTS OF INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS
A. Introduction to international law. This lecture presents an overview of international law in a business context. It begins by examining the forms of international business (import/export, licensing direct investment) and the types of risk to which they are exposed. It defines international law and looks at some of its sources. It then considers two types of international law - humanitarian/human rights law and criminal law. It then reviews some basic concepts in international law - comity, sovereign immunity and acts of state. It discusses some of the international organizations that may impact international businesses. It presents a brief discussion of codes of conduct. It concludes with a brief presentation of the three major systems of law in the 21st century world - civil law, common law and Sharia law.
B. International Commercial Dispute Resolution. This lecture considers the resolution of international commercial disputes. It begins with some brief background information on international disputes. It then looks at litigation and its complexities in the international arena, highlighting the differences between legal systems in different countries and some of the issues that must be decided in international litigation - jurisdiction, venue, choice of forum and choice of law. It then discussed the problems of enforcing judgments internationally. It concludes with a discussion of alternative dispute resolution. After briefly looking at mediation and dispute review boards, it concentrates on international arbitration - the advantages of arbitration over litigation, arbitration bodies, arbitration rules, arbitration clauses and enforcement of arbitration awards.
C. Contracts and the International Sale of Goods. This lecture considers international contract law as it relates to the sale of goods. It considers the sources of such law, including the lex mercantoria, common law and the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC). It reviews the United Nations Convention on the International Sales of Goods (CISG) and the UNIDROIT principles. It then considers the bases of international contract law -- some basic rules of creation and interpretation, the principles of offer and acceptance, issues concerning performance, breach of contract and its remedies, and concludes by examining excuses for non-performance.
D. International Sales and Deliveries - Risk of Loss, Incoterms and Payments. This lecture considers the mechanics of international trade. It begins by examining the different types of transaction risk to which parties to international sales are subject. It looks at various documents and practices international traders have developed to facilitate international trade. It considers how buyers and sellers allocate the risk of loss in international sales transactions and the terms (“incoterms”) they have developed to describe such risk and responsibility allocation. It reviews marine insurance. It concludes by examining the documentary sales process, discussing drafts, bankers’ acceptances and letters of credit.
E. Imports and US Import Administration. This lecture considers the US framework for import regulation. After an introduction discussing the challenges facing 21st century governments, the reasons for regulating trade and some economic background concerning trade regulation, it examines the administration of customs in the US. It next reviews the dutiable status of goods and the principles according to which US tariffs are imposed.
F. The World Trade Organization and Global Trade Regulation. This lecture considers the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the regulation of global trade. It starts with some background on the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, showing how it evolved by setting up the World Trade Organization and the current structure for regulating and promoting world trade. It examines the WTO -- its functions, basic trade principles, some of its rules and agreements and its methods for dispute resolution. It then considers the safeguard principle, allowing states to impose temporary trade barriers, before reviewing the different types of trade barriers that states may impose. It concludes with an examination of the Doha Round and the current impasse in negotiations.
G. United States Export Regulation. This lecture reviews United States export controls. After an introduction, it covers the International Traffic in Arms Regulations, which control weapons and military systems. The bulk of the lecture considers commercial products. It looks first at the reasons for export controls and then the administrative framework. It considers multilateral cooperation for controlling technology access, the Export Administration Regulations, the export licensing process, extraterritorial jurisdiction of export regulations, antiboycott rules and compliance/enforcement issues. It concludes with an examination of the President’s powers to regulate commerce during a national emergency.
H. The North American Free Trade Area. This lecture looks at the North American Free Trade Area. After reviewing briefly the pre-NAFTA situation, it provides an introduction to the NAFTA agreement and then discusses the complicated NAFTA rules of origin. It considers other non-tariffs barriers in NAFTA and then examines how various sectors have been affected by NAFTA’s adoption. It discussed NAFTA administration and dispute resolution procedures. It then looks at production sharing through the maquiladora factories before presenting some concluding comments on the effects and future of NAFTA.
I. Representatives, Distributors and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. This lecture considers the law of marketing products and services internationally. It starts by examining the differences between representatives and distributors. It next considers the negotiation of the agreement with a representative or distributor, mentioning the importance of defining the representative’s or distributor’s territory, as well as some of the other terms to go into the agreement. It examines national laws that may protect representatives and distributors dealing with foreign exporters, as well as the other types of national laws that exporters may be exposed to through such relationships. It looks at restraints on advertising and labeling. It concludes with a discussion of the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other international conventions and efforts to limit international bribery.
J. Licensing and the Protection of Technology and Intellectual Property. This lecture discusses the licensing of technology and the protection of intellectual property rights (IPRs). It presents an overview of licensing -- basic structure, types of IPRs covered, reasons for licensing and its advantages and disadvantages. It considers franchising, and how it differs from other types of licensing transactions. It lists the types of provisions that a typical licensing agreement will contain. It then examines the various types of international protections for IPRs, discussing the Paris Convention, various conventions and controversies concerning patents, trademarks, copyrights, geographic designations, and the impact of the GATT TRIPS Agreement. It looks at various methods countries may use to regulate licensing and technology transfers. It concludes with a consideration of the problems of non-enforcement of IPRs and the gray market.
K. Foreign Controls on Investment, Takings and Privatizations. This lecture discusses the impact of host country laws on investments in their countries. After an introduction showing the scope of such laws, the lecture examines the laws concerning passive and active investment. It reviews certain tax issues involving foreign investments and activities, including foreign tax credits, e-commerce transactions, transfer pricing and enforcement of foreign tax laws. It then considers how to control currency risks - both the fluctuations in value and problems of inconvertibility. It looks at the issues raised by privatizations by foreign governments. It then looks at the problem of state takings - the theori