In Brief

MBA Conferences Explore New Ideas

Wharton MBAs organized and ran a slew of conferences on a vast range of issues this fall. Global Business Forums explored emerging business themes in Africa and Asia, while the Whitney M. Young, Jr. Conference focused on African-American achievement and opportunities. In Philadelphia, the Wharton Energy Conference shed light on the outlook for the global power industry and investing in clean technology. In New York City, the Wharton Finance Conference hosted speakers including Neel Kashkari, WG’02, Interim Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Financial Stability; Paul Calello, CEO of Credit Suisse; and Teresa M. Ressel, CEO of UBS Securities, as well as garnering coverage by the Wall Street Journal.

FIC Wins Sloan Grant

Wharton’s Financial Institutions Center was one of four organizations nationwide to win recent Sloan Foundation grants that will study the ongoing financial crisis with the goal of providing institutional and regulatory reform. Wharton will act as a focal point for research on banking and for interaction between academics and practitioners.

The $1.7 million grant will be divided among the Wharton FIC, the Brookings Institution, and the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Prof. Smetters Named Boettner Professor

Kent Smetters, associate professor of insurance and risk management, has been named the Joseph E. and Ruth E. Boettner Professor of Financial Gerontology. An expert in Social Security and tax policy, Smetters has taught at Wharton since 1998 and has served as deputy assistant secretary of economic policy in the U.S. Department of Treasury, among other posts. He is the co-author of Fiscal and Generational Imbalances: New Budget Measures for New Budget Priorities and co-editor with Olivia Mitchell, International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans Professor at Wharton and director of the Boettner Center for Pensions and Retirement Research, of The Pension Challenge: Risk Transfers and Retirement Income Security.

President-elect Obama Appoints Wharton Prof. to FCC Transition Team

As co-chair of the team, professor Kevin Werbach is tasked with providing information on U.S. government Internet and telecom policies, along with advising on budgetary and personnel matters.

Financial Institutions Center Collaborates with Senior Financial Economists

Wharton’s Financial Institutions Center is now administering the Financial Economists Roundtable, a group of senior financial economists who focus on microeconomic issues in investments, corporate finance, and financial institutions and markets, both in the U.S. and internationally.

The Irrational Economist Conference Honors Kunreuther

The invitation-only conference recognized four decades of scholarly contributions made by professor Howard Kunreuther, Co-director of Wharton’s Risk Management and Decision Processes Center.

Wharton VIPs Susantio & Kim Win with WIN Fellowship

Women Inventing Next (WIN) has selected past WBPC grand prize winner and VIP member Irene Susantio, WG’08, and VIP member Eurie Kim, WG’09, as two of five WIN 2009 Fellows.

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