New Projects

An open-access journal to advance wine business practices and pedagogy, funding for a project exploring how minority-owned banks can attract “unbanked” populations, an examination of the experiences of women administrators in business and academia who serve on corporate boards and university governing bodies, and a grant to support Palestinian economic development.


The Wine Business Institute at Sonoma State University in California has launched a new Wine Business Case Research Journal, an open-access electronic journal dedicated to advancing wine business practices and pedagogy. The journal should release its first issue in spring 2016. The editorial board includes participants from Kedge Business School in France, the University of Cape Town in South Africa, ESADE in Spain, Hoch­schule Ludwigshafen in Germany, and Bay­lor University in the U.S. The editorial team hopes to publish at least one student-au­thored case per year, because writing case studies helps students “develop compe­tencies in interpersonal skills, information literacy, and digital media creation,” says Armand Gilinsky, Sonoma State’s Korbel Professor of Wine Business and founding editor of the journal.

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Two faculty members from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater have received a two-year, US$400,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Michigan, for a project exploring how minority-owned banks can attract “unbanked” populations. Russ Kashian, a professor of economics, and Richard McGregory, assistant vice chancellor for multicultural affairs and student success, will conduct the study in partnership with the National Bankers Association of Washington, D.C. Kashian and McGregory will look for ways to prevent home mort­gage foreclosures; identify “bank des­erts” where minority-owned banks could expand; and explore bank policies, fees, marketing strategies, and fiscal education programs. “Our objective,” says Kashian, “is to determine mechanisms that encour­age the use of banks where a bank and an alternative, such as a payday lender, are both available.”


The Centre for Diversity Policy Research and Practice (CDPRP) at Oxford Brookes University in the United Kingdom will investigate the experiences of women administrators in business and academia who serve as nonexecutive directors on corporate boards and as independent directors on university governing bodies. Co-funded by KPMG, the research will be led by Simonetta Manfredi, director of the CDPRP; Louise Grisoni, assistant dean for research and knowledge exchange in the faculty of business; and Norma Jar­boe, author of the report "Women Count: Leadership in Higher Education" and an advisor to the CDPRP. The researchers hope to make women leaders more aware of the opportunities for board service, explore the effects of the transfer of skills between business and academia, and find ways to eliminate barriers between the two sectors. They plan to present their findings in early 2016.


The U.S. Department of State has awarded a US$300,000 grant to Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business in Bloomington to support Palestinian economic development through the school’s Young Entrepreneurship Live­lihood Program. Over 18 months, students in the Kelley Direct online MBA program and undergraduate students at Bethlehem University School of Business Administration in Palestine will collaborate as consultants for 12 growing Palestinian businesses. They’ll work with Palestinian entrepreneurs in areas such as cash flow management, marketing, control of growth, account­ing methods, pricing, product launch, and strategic planning. Kelley students will travel to Israel for one week to meet with Bethlehem students face to face, make client visits, and offer follow-up recommendations.

The international consulting program doesn’t just promote growth among the 12 businesses in the program. The experiential activity also prepares the Bethlehem students to support such firms after they graduate and could “encourage some of the participants to start thinking of starting their own busi­nesses,” says Fadi Kattan, dean of the business school at Bethlehem University.

The Young Entrepreneurship Livelihood Program is an expansion of another Kelley Direct consulting course, which trained students in 2014 to provide con­sulting to small businesses in Ramallah. The grant from the Department of State will allow students to expand their services to small businesses in Bethlehem and other cities on the West Bank. The funding also supports Kelley faculty’s work with Palestine Polytechnic University, a two-year vocational and technical engi­neering school, to develop a self-sufficient business incubator. Faculty currently mentor students there to help them turn their ideas into businesses.

“Everywhere in the world, it is the private sector—not the government— that is the engine for economic growth,” says Richard Buangan, U.S. consul for press and cultural affairs. “Building business and creating jobs means more people can live a dignified life.”