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Global Business Forum

The Global Business Forum (GBF) is an engaging MBA class and discussion forum where professionals from around the world share their insights into the complexities of doing business globally – differences encountered, obstacles overcome, advantages discovered, and solutions developed.

The GBF is intentionally designed to connect students directly with global business leaders. Students are offered opportunities to lead Q&A discussions, summarize presentations for speaker follow-up, and engage in 1:1 meaningful conversations with speakers.

Who can participate in GBF?

MBAs, graduate students from other UW departments, faculty, and staff are welcome to participate. Enrollment for credit in the Global Business Forum (IBUS 579) during two academic quarters, for Full-time MBAs and Evening MBAs, is a requirement for the Global Business Program Certificate.

GBF schedule

The Global Business Forum takes place Mondays, 5:00-5:50 PM. Each quarter offers diverse discussions under a uniting global business theme. Christina Fong is the lead faculty for GBF.

Autumn 2022: Data-driven Global Leadership

Data and information have become key drivers of power and opportunity in the global economy. This fall, we will take multiple views on how companies are using data, creating data, and finding business opportunities as a result of our increasing reliance and fascination with data. Advances in computing power have yielded new practices, currencies, and metrics to help inform (or confuse) global leaders. We will ask executives to share how they are making sense of the data they receive, and how this is impacted by international differences in data privacy, artificial intelligence and machine learning, and data security. How do data drive global strategies and decisions? How do data impact companies’ abilities to make decisions that are equitable, efficient, and excellent?

Winter 2023: Doing Business with the Middle East

Global attention has shifted to the Middle East as a source of entrepreneurship, technology, innovation, and energy. To further our education about the new Middle East economy, the GBF will host executives who have worked in the Middle East or have built and maintained significant relationships with companies in the Middle East to share their insights, perspectives and experiences. Speakers will be asked to compare and contrast their experiences in middle Eastern countries with business experiences in the US and other countries, to discuss and identify opportunities in the Middle East, as well as the possible pitfalls of doing work in the Middle East.

Spring 2023: Global Food Systems

Analyses show that the current global food system lies at the center of a nexus of global issues from poverty to environmental degradation. We will explore the governance and economics of food production across the world. We will invite leaders from public and private organizations to share their expertise on how global corporations impact food sustainability, waste, and production. We will also ask leaders to discuss how personal, private, and public policies and actions impact our natural environment, individual and population health.

For more information on registration and earning credit for GBF, check out the course page!