Monday, February 21, 2022

Reaffirming the Benefits of Interdisciplinary Discussions

Last week, I had the privilege of presenting at the first of three sessions in an academic research symposium cohosted by George Mason's institute for Humane Studies and Florida Atlantic University's Madden Center for Value Creation.  The symposium, Contemporary Challenges in Corporate Governance, has two spring semester online (Zoom) components and an in-person session in August in Seattle, Washington.  The program in which I was featured, "Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives," also included two management scholars (Siri Terjesen from Florida Atlantic University and Aaron Hill from the University of Florida).  We each had the opportunity to talk about our work in the DEI space, engage with audience questions, and (in breakout rooms) discuss ongoing research projects and questions with other participants.  The format was very engaging.  And friend-of-the-BLPB Paul Rose was in attendance saying nice things about our blog.  (Thanks, Paul!)

We should do more of this.  And when I say "this," I mean getting together with scholars from other fields.  Paul and I ended up in a fun conversation with a philosopher who is working on issues involving the purpose of the corporation, which led us into a productive discussion of the nature of fiduciary duties--to whom they are owed in context and how enforcement through derivative litigation works.  The exchange felt fresh.  The philosopher's questions were good ones, and he was honestly interested in our answers.

I have the opportunity to engage in similar, rich discussions through my work in our Neel Corporate Governance Center (and sometimes even through my teaching in the Professional MBA program at the Haslam College of Business Administration on our campus).  Talking to people in different, but related, fields always opens my eyes to more things in my own field.  Truly, it is at the heart of what makes universities great--the free exchange of ideas in a nonjudgmental environment for the purpose of acquiring and building knowledge.

'nough said on that (she says while stepping off her soapbox momentarily).  But I will note that if you want to join in on the interdisciplinary fun as it relates to your research agenda in corporate governance, you can still apply to participate in the last two sessions of the academic research symposium series on Contemporary Challenges in Corporate Governance here.  The second session focuses on "Regulations Concerning Stakeholdering" and the third (the one in Seattle) focuses on "Corporate Governance: Composition and Strategy" (and features friend-of-the-BLPB George Mocsary).  I do think academic forums like these help us to be better legal scholars.

Corporate Governance, Joan Heminway, Research/Scholarhip | Permalink


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