Mike Davis, senior lecturer of strategy and economics, writes that the success of a country’s exports depends on the price that foreigners buying the goods actually see. He argues against currency devaluations: “If currency devaluations really made a positive difference, Venezuela would be booming. … Instead of gaining strength and power, Venezuela is an economic disaster and the human suffering is almost too horrific to think about.” – U.S. News & World Report, “What Venezuela Can Teach Us About Currency Devaluations”, 07/05/19

Bernard Weinstein, associate director of the Maguire Energy Institute, reports that the state’s power grid relies on wind for nearly one-third of its electricity. He says a growing population and a steadily growing demand for power poses reliability issues. “That is why it’s so important to maintain a healthy reserve margin with baseload plants, which supply electricity continuously,” he contends. “Texas needs coal, nuclear and large gas plants.” – Houston Chronicle, “Renewable Energy Can’t Keep Texans’ A/C Humming”, 07/18/19

Robin Pinkley, Janet and Craig Duchossois Endowed Professor of Management and Organizations, offers several key tips on the best way for employees to ask for a raise. One thing to remember? “Don’t assume that your boss or HR keep track of your contributions. Make sure that you keep track of the value that you have made to the organization and be prepared to talk about this and the contributions you plan to continue to bring in the coming year and beyond.” – Business Insider, “Here’s the Right Way to Ask for a Raise”, 07/29/19

Tom Fangyun Tan, associate professor of information technology and operations management (ITOM), explains that tabletop technology in restaurants can expedite service and enhance customer satisfaction. “We estimate the one percent sales lift per check translates into $2 million in extra sales or $1 million in profit per month in the short run … and that’s a conservative estimate.” Tan’s coauthored research on this topic is forthcoming in Management Science. – Phys.org, “Tired of Waiting on a Waiter?”, 07/29/19

Bruce Bullock, director of the Maguire Energy Institute, comments that in an everchanging global industry, he’s not surprised by the announcement that BP plans to sell its interests in Alaska’s once-prodigious North Slope to Hilcorp Alaska, an affiliate of Texas-based Hilcorp Energy Company. Bullock anticipates that Hilcorp will likely “want to invest more money to keep the assets producing longer.” – Associated Press, “BP to Shed Alaska Assets, Sell to Hilcorp Alaska for $5.6B”, 08/27/19

SMU Cox Dean Matt Myers names longtime Caruth Institute Associate Director Simon Mak as the new executive director after the retirement of veteran executive director Jerry White. Founded in 1970 by the Caruth family of Dallas, the Institute is the oldest academic entrepreneurship center in the world. According to Mak, “We want to build out infrastructure to be more intentional in encouraging student startups at SMU Cox — both undergrads and grad students and also students in our certificate class who are from the local Dallas community — and especially tech startups in partnership with the Lyle School of Engineering.” – Dallas Innovates, “SMU Names Mak to Lead Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship”, 10/4/19

David Jacobson, professor of practice and executive director of online education, says new Chinese cybersecurity laws for foreign corporations give the Chinese government access to files, contracts, business strategies and more with no permission asked. Jacobson warns, “Foreign companies will have to decide whether it is worth the risk to sell or manufacture in China. This could lead to diversification of supply chains or decoupling.” – Forbes Magazine, “Social Credit Scoring in China Extends to Foreign Businesses, Creates New Risks”, 10/8/19

Don Shelly, professor of practice in finance and director of the Kitt Investing and Trading Center, explains that the Cox School’s Portfolio Practicum provides students with the opportunity to apply concepts of equity research, valuation and portfolio management to a real-world investment fund of about $4 million for undergraduates and $6.5 million for graduates. Shelly says, “This whole class is about teaching students to present, to research and to write.” Dean Matt Myers emphasizes that students “are working with ‘live ammunition.’ These are real dollars, dollars that have been given by key donors that want our students to have the investing experience.” – Fox Business Network, “College Gives Students Money to Invest in Stock Market”, 10/29/19

Vishal Ahuja, assistant professor of ITOM, worked with researchers from the SMU Lyle School of Engineering, UT Southwestern Medical Center and Parkland Health & Hospital System to devise a statistical model that can predict for diabetes up to 10 years before the patient experiences symptoms. “There is no new technology,” Ahuja clarifies. “You already know how to screen it. This just makes your resources a bit more effective.” – D CEO, “SMU Research Could Change the Way Diabetes Is Treated”, 1/9/20