In meeting its mission, the UCLA CIBER grant supports programs that have an educational reach off the UCLA campus to the business and local community, and partners with a variety of organizations such as the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, the Asia Society and the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) on some key programs that effectively meet this charge. For more information on these particular programs, please contact Robert Spich, UCLA CIBER Faculty Director of Programs.
In September, the fourth America's Business Forum (ABF), a joint UCLA Anderson and Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce program will be held on the UCLA campus. The two-day program invites senior commercial officers from U.S. embassies in Latin America to present country business opportunities to a group of over 200 invited California manufacturing and service companies. The first day includes a series of reviews of specific country market conditions and opportunities for export and foreign direct investment. On the second day, the ABF organizes one-on-one meetings for businesses to connect personally with the commercial officers to discuss their particular situation. This year, the ABF has received a State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) grant from the Small Business Administration to increase the number of companies attending the event, to enrich the program with local expertise and to help defray the private sector costs of running the program.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced the formation of the Los Angeles Regional Export Council (LAREC), a partnership between the city and local business groups, including the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, UCLA Anderson and USC's Marshall School of Business. Robert Spich (far left), UCLA CIBER's faculty director of programs, is a founding and board member of LAREC. The National Export Initiative, launched by the White House last year, identified the need to restructure the mature U.S. economy by placing an emphasis on export growth for small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) as a source of both economic growth and job creation. The Export Champions program, partially the result of LAREC meetings, is a new initiative that pairs a UCLA Anderson MBA field study team with a California technology manufacturing company to develop an export-focused business plan for SMEs that are willing and able to internationalize their business models. The funding for UCLA Anderson's involvement came as part of a California Centers for International Trade Development (CITD) STEP (State Trade and Export Promotion) grant. This $320,000 STEP grant will fund two projects: Export Champions and the aforementioned America's Business Conference.
UCLA Anderson successfully applied for the grant support so that California companies could participate in UCLA Anderson's field study programs. The school has already been working with foreign companies with the same purpose in mind through FEMBA's Global Access Program. A secondary goal of the Export Champions program is to create an experienced talent pool of MBA students who could be available and attracted to working with SME companies to grow their businesses internationally. The first companies to benefit from this grant, which supports student data collection in target markets, will be those participating in the full-time Applied Management Research field study program for 2012-13.
UCLA CIBER is a one of the founding partners and sponsors of the Pacific Cities Sustainability Initiative (PCSI). PCSI is a collaborative forum of Pacific Rim institutions with metro development interests. A fundamental assumption of the PCSI is that global development over the next 50 years will be concentrated in Pacific Rim cities, which will represent both the problems and solutions to many commonly shared environmental concerns, such as clean water, energy efficiency, air pollution, urban space use, transportation and security. PCSI aims to foster substantial change in both the thinking and practice of sustainable urban development by creating opportunities for government, business and academic sectors, as well as the public at large, to both showcase and share best practices in dealing with development issues. Other founding partners include the Asia Society's Northern and Southern California Centers, the CIBER at the University of Southern California and the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU).