Institute for Business in the Global Context

Where the World of Business Meets the World

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The Art of Curry Diplomacy

Infosys’ curry diplomacy was, no doubt, inspired by Donald Trump’s “Buy American, Hire American” order and his threat to revise the H-1B visa programme. I am not convinced that extravagant job-creation programmes in the US are the best use of Infosys’ increasingly scarce resources. While the Bengaluru-based IT giant may know how to mix its spices, to “curry favour” is a phrase that, oddly enough, has little to do with treating someone to a mean curry. Its obscure origins are in the grooming of horses: “To curry” is “to brush”. By spending resources on creating thousands of tech jobs in a country where the administration is gutting resources for science and technology programmes in an industry rapidly being automated, it seems Infosys is bringing the wrong curry and backing the wrong horse.

Read the full op-ed from Dean Chakravorti in The Indian Express

The End of Money
by Emily Cashen

Bhaskar Chakravorti, an economics scholar and Executive Director of the Fletcher School’s Institute for Business in the Global Context, said: “The initial argument made by Modi was that these bank notes were demonetised to flush out the underground economy – known as the ‘black economy’ in India – or to flush out the illegal activities carried out by underground groups and terrorist groups.”

Read the full piece at World Finance

Student Research: Stronger Links: Strengthening the adaptive capacity of Guatemala’s coffee supply chain

by Adam Houston (MIB 2017)

A leaf affected by drought and coffee rust at high altitude in Chimaltenango district

As the climate changes, so will the coffee industry. In Guatemala in particular, the amount of suitable land for growing coffee and the livelihoods of thousands are projected to change profoundly due to climate change. According to current models, increasingly unpredictable weather patterns, increased temperatures, and extended reach of traditionally lower-altitude diseases like coffee rust are likely to be proof of this change, reducing yields for approximately 93% of Guatemala’s current coffee growing land by the year 2050. As the country’s third largest export, this threat to coffee will have a very real economic affect on the country’s GDP; the ability — or lack thereof —  to adapt to these predicted changes will threaten the livelihoods of the more than 100,000 largely smallholder coffee producers. Without the financial means or technical knowledge to adapt to a changing climate, or even a more basic recognition of the gravity of the threat itself, the entire value chain of the Guatemalan coffee industry faces a bleak future.

To better assess the links among actors in this value chain, I traveled to Guatemala to interview smallholder farmers, large-scale farmers, exporters, traders, and experts in the country’s national coffee association, Anacafe. These cases help paint a more holistic picture of what the greatest obstacles are to better adaptation as a form of prevention.

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Professor Moghalu to Address Swiss Business Leaders

Fletcher School Professor Kingsley Moghalu will deliver the keynote address at the 2017 edition of the prestigious Le Rendez-vous du Commerce International (International Business Conference) on January 10, 2017 at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland. The high-level annual conference is jointly organized by the Swiss bank Credit Suisse and the Swiss state corporations Swiss Export Risk Insurance (SERV) and Switzerland Global Enterprise (S-GE). Professor Moghalu will speak on the topic “Outlook Africa 2017: How to Cope with Weak Commodity Prices”.

The conference, the fifth since its inception in 2013, will be attended by 200 chief executives of major Swiss international companies, and will be moderated by the Swiss television anchor Olivier Dominik of RadioTelevision Suisse (RTS). Keynote speakers at previous annual editions of the conference include Yannis Varoufakis, former Minister of Finance of Greece, Manuel Barroso, former President of the European Commission and Dominique de Villepin, former Prime Minister of France.

Dr. Moghalu served as Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria from 2009 to 2014 prior to joining the Fletcher School faculty, where he is Professor of International Business and Public Policy.

Read more on This Day Live