07/29/2020 ASHLAND, Ohio -- Diversity – the type that goes beyond gender, age, race and ethnicity – can often be underestimated.
There also is a diversity of thought, wrote Dr. Sivakumar Venkataramany in Spring 2020 edition of Perspectives: A Look at Diversity and Inclusion, a new publication of the International School of Management. And it is that diversity, he said, that paves the way for innovative methods and sustainable solutions.
Perspectives is part of the Paris- and New York City-based ISM’s new initiatives to better represent diverse communities.
Venkataramany, AU’s Burton D. Morgan Chair Professor of International Business in the Dauch College of Business and Economics, teaches global finance, global strategy, and global management, while his research interests are risk management in global banks, emerging financial markets, and
foreign direct investment in developing economies.
“Educational institutions are the best places to foster diversity and nurture inclusion from an impressionable young age,” he wrote. “Youths educated in such a healthy environment naturally become the best citizens to serve their employers and society, thus easing the burden on human resources departments.”
Venkataramany grew up in the rich cultural and religious diversity of India, and wrote of his surprise when he arrived in 1999 in then largely-homogenous Ashland. “Though I
was the only person from a different nation and culture, my neighborhood and workplace never hesitated to include my family and me among them,” he said. “On my part, I did not waste any time to assimilate either.”
Since that time, Venkataramany said he has seen the AU MBA and undergraduate business programs attract a more culturally and ethnically diverse population and offers more and more international study experiences. And, in keeping with AU’s “Accent on the Individual”, he wrote, “some of my international students have been pleasantly surprised when I greet them on their holidays. … It is a simple gesture but one that I find crucial to ensuring a productive, respectful, and engaging environment, whether it is a classroom or workplace.”
“Diversity Is central to us at Ashland University's College of Business and Economics,” said AU COBE Dean Elad Granot. “This publication is testament to Dr. Venkataramany's passion for and successful experience in fostering diversity and building programs that encourage inclusion. As dean, I'm proud that we all bring a commitment to this mission and an understanding of its complexities. We participate in, encourage, organize, and lead efforts to enrich the educational experience of all the students in an even more inclusive and welcoming community.