Business & economics

Economic History of Poverty and Wealth
This is the most important story in economic history which is neglected in the standard history curriculum. Why did the world stay so poor for most of history and why have some countries break away from poverty only in the last two centuries?
Jonathan Andreas

Energy economics
Why are gasoline prices so volatile? What will happen to energy prices in the future? What is the impact of energy markets upon the economy?
Jonathan Andreas

Economics of food security
What causes famines? Can the world feed itself as population doubles to 10 billion people within the lifespan of the next generation? What is the relationship between fossil fuels and food prices?
Jonathan Andreas

Old toys and value: trash or treasure?
Old and collectible toys are shared to illustrate the valuable roles that toys play in our lives and society. All participants are encouraged to bring an old toy and share its values story with the group.
Ronald L. Friesen

Ohio toy producers over the years: Who were these characters?
Examples of old and collectible toys produced by Ohio businesses over the years are the basis for a discussion of the history of toy production in Ohio. Stories of unusual and interesting, even weird, Ohio inventors and entrepreneurs are shared. All participants are encouraged to bring toys and share what they know about the producers of these toys, whether made in Ohio or elsewhere.
Ronald L. Friesen

Chocolate Pioneers: Business practices from the early years of the Cadbury and Hershey chocolate companies
The British chocolate firm Cadbury was founded by Quakers. Hershey was founded by Milton Hershey who had strong Mennonite connections. This lecture explores the business and ethical practices of both firms in their founding years near the end of the 19th century and how these may have been influenced by their religious beliefs.
George Lehman

Understanding the rapid growth of the Chinese economy
Many discussions of the Chinese economy tend to focus on how the U.S. is being impacted by China's growth. This lecture focuses more on understanding how China is being impacted by its own rapid growth. The material for the lecture is grounded in a Bluffton MBA program study trip to China.
George Lehman

The peaceable manager
An exploration of issues we must consider if we seek to apply the ethical standards of peacemaking to the practice of management.
George Lehman

Swings of the pendulum: How management theory alternates between control and innovation
Some see the task of management as creating control. Others see the task of management as creating innovation. Organizations and management gurus have gone back and forth between these extremes for decades. Which is the best? The answer, unfortunately, is "it depends on the situation."
George Lehman

How a "flat world" is impacting organizations in northwest Ohio
All over northwest Ohio organizations are making use of this new "flat world" to streamline processes and cut costs out of manufacturing, accounting and even certain kinds of medical diagnostic procedures. Some see this change primarily as a threat, but the "flat world" is also allowing organizations to serve their customers more effectively at a lower cost than they were able to do in the past.
George Lehman

Why the ability to collaborate is replacing competitiveness as a core strength of successful organizations
Particularly in areas related to new technology, the strongest organizations today seem to be those that can establish collaborative relations with suppliers, customers and even competitors. Innovation requires a range of specialized knowledge that no single firm is able to generate and manage, hence the need for collaboration.
George Lehman

Leadership: Profit and Non-Profit
Twenty eight years of lessons on leadership: Life, Love, and Learning from Procter & Gamble and Ten Thousand Villages.
Ron Headings

For more information or to schedule a speaker, contact the public relations office at news@bluffton.edu at least two weeks prior to your meeting.