Oct 23, 2020

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How to Bridge Social Justice and the Financial Markets

Publicly traded companies that want to get in good with Adasina Social Capital should know upfront that San Francisco-based advisory firm does its homework on social justice — and it doesn’t grade on a curve. Having a female chief executive officer or women on the board of directors isn’t enough to get included in a prospectus. Adasina investigates each company’s specific policy on sexual harassment and workplace safety. If the company practices forced arbitration for sexual harassment, which is outside a courtroom and usually requires a nondisclosure agreement, it isn’t making the list. “The core issue […]Read full article >
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Will Consumers Spend or Save This Holiday Season?

In a tough year for retail, experts are using one word to describe the upcoming holiday shopping season: uncertain. What happens between November and January depends on how pandemic-weary consumers spend their money. Consulting firm Deloitte predicts that consumers at the lower end of the income spectrum, especially those who have lost jobs or health insurance during the COVID-19 crisis, will tighten their belts through Christmas as they wait for the battered economy to fully recover. Meanwhile, those at the higher end of the income scale will spend freely as they continue to be financially unaffected by the pandemic. “The whole idea […]Read full article >
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How Data Science Can Win the Debate on Police Reform

The recent deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Philando Castile and a number of other Black citizens who have lost their lives during an interaction with law enforcement officers have put the topic of police reform at the top of the national agenda. The phrase “defund the police” became a rallying cry across many American cities over the summer as protesters marched for social justice. But police reform isn’t as simple as a catchphrase. Two scholars who have been studying the issue for years say solving the problem starts with better data. Dean Knox is a Wharton professor of operations, information and decisions, and […]Read full article >
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When Should Schools Reopen?

Few doubt that reopening schools would cause a rise in COVID-19 infections, but policymakers have had little more than trial-and-error for a strategy here. A new Penn Wharton Budget Model analysis has taken the guesswork out of estimating the cost-benefit threshold for keeping schools closed. The findings of the PWBM study in a nutshell: If reopening schools in October leads to an increased COVID incidence of greater than 0.355 new community cases per month for each student (or 355 new cases for every thousand students), then schools should remain closed. “We try to calculate the cost of a COVID infection in terms of life lost, […]Read full article >
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Leading on the Road Less Traveled: My First 90 Days at Wharton

September 28, 2020, marked Erika James’ 90th day as dean of the Wharton School. Here, she reflects on starting the position remotely amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the lessons she has learned about becoming a new leader. There is really no road map for becoming a dean. Sure, most of us came up through Academia, but I dare say none of us dreamed about taking on such a role as a 10-year-old child (or even a 30-year-old professor). At 10 years old I didn’t know what a dean was, and at 30 I was pretty certain I didn’t want to be one. We each have our own story about how we got to this place in our career, but we are united in […]Read full article >