The Institutional and Global Origins of Inequality on the African Continent
As many Americans have been grappling with racism, police brutality and systemic inequality domestically, later in June, students and faculty tuned in for a virtual panel discussion that discussed racism and racial inequality globally, specifically in African nations. Moderated by UCLA alumnus Stephen Cheung (B.S. ’00, MSW ’07), president of the World Trade Center Los Angeles, panelists discussed the unfair treatment of African nations by corporations and international institutions. Unequal health outcomes in many African nations during the COVID-19 pandemic, due to the unequal global allocation of health resources, is just one pressing example of present-day anti-blackness and the legacy of colonialism. The discussion focused on historic and contemporary examples of institutionalized racism toward the continent of Africa within global economic structures and business practices, as these are key modern drivers of anti-black racism and oppression. Arikana Chihombori Quao, African Union ambassador to the U.S. (2016–2019); Ben Murray-Bruce, former Nigerian senator (2015–2019) and founder of the Silverbird Group; and Grant Harris, CEO of Harris Africa Partners and former senior director for African affairs at the White House, joined the conversation.
Confronting Racism: A Pandemic Within a Pandemic
In the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis, this moment in the United States has been described as, “a pandemic within a pandemic.” In June, students listened to a livestreamed conversation with Los Angeles leaders, who addressed the current national conversation on racism, police brutality and criminal justice reform. They also examined COVID-19’s disproportionate impact on minorities and their communities, and touched on the medical, economic and cultural impact of the COVID-19 crisis — as the pandemic and subsequent shutdown exposed and reinforced issues of racial and ethnic inequality, discrimination and barriers to health care and economic success.
Man of Tomorrow: The Relentless Life of Jerry Brown
In May, students joined virtually to hear author Jim Newton and Jerry Brown, former governor of California, for a discussion of his political career and a commentary on protecting the nation’s health and reestablishing its economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Governor Brown also addressed his time governing California, what he learned and what he wished he could have done differently, and he provided advice for U.S. governors now facing the toughest decisions of their political careers. In his new book, Man of Tomorrow: The Relentless Life of Jerry Brown, award-winning journalist Newton reveals the complex and often contradictory nature of Brown’s personality and politics — and how Brown’s leadership stood up to the Trump White House’s policies on climate change, immigration and more. The book also explores the unconventional arc of Brown’s career. In addition to being the longest-serving governor in California history, Brown was a three-time presidential candidate, a two-term mayor of Oakland and the California attorney general.
Los Angeles: The Global City
Students from the full-time MBA, FEMBA and EMBA programs had the opportunity to meet and hear from Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. He joined Terry McCarthy, former president of the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, for a moderated discussion on Los Angeles as a premier global city and international gateway for the 2028 Summer Olympics. Garcetti described the benchmarks for a safe, livable and prosperous global city, as well as the role that climate change plays. He also addressed the homelessness issue in the city and the importance of housing, infrastructure and transportation.
The Value of an Inclusive Economy
Students attended a lunchtime discussion hosted by the LAWACTH with Mary C. Daly, president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Daly addressed the value of an inclusive economy, from rural populations with limited job opportunities to lower-income Americans struggling to access education. She discussed the value of having these communities more fully participating in our economy and why inclusive success is essential to America’s future economic competitiveness.
Asia’s Future is Now
For years, Western observers and media have been talking about the rise of Asia in terms of its massive potential. But the time has come for the rest of the world to update its thinking. The question is no longer how quickly the region will rise; it is how Asia will lead. The CGM supported students from the full-time MBA, FEMBA and EMBA programs to attend a discussion and hear expert perspectives on the Asian Century and how Asia, more than any other region of the world, will shape the next phase of globalization. The discussion featured Jeongmin Seong (pictured, far left), senior fellow at the McKinsey Global Institute, who shared insights from McKinsey’s research series on the future of Asia and deciphered the region’s many facets, from trade flows and the corporate ecosystem to technology and the Asian consumer.
Walter Wang (second from right), head of, head of operations at TSM, and Terry Kramer, adjunct professor and faculty director of UCLA Anderson’s Easton Technology Management Center, joined the conversation that also addressed how business leaders can better develop new strategies and thrive in the Asian Century. The discussion was moderated by Ira Kasoff, a board member of the Asia Society Southern California.