a man in a white shirt and tie holding a folder

Massimo Acquaviva, 2R Capital Investment: The Hub at Columbia Business School

Massimo Acquaviva, 2R Capital Investment Management Limited co-CEO and co-founder, is a graduate of Columbia Business School. This article will provide an outline of the main goals of the Hub, a think-tank launched by Colombia Business School to solve some of the most pressing problems affecting societies around the world.

Oded Netzer serves as Arthur J. Samberg professor of business and vice dean for research at Colombia Business School. As he suggests, the last few years have shown that business leaders cannot stand on the sidelines when it comes to world events. In the face of increasingly complex challenges that require increased collaboration across stakeholders, the Hub at Columbia Business School was created to unite academia, government, non-profits, industry and the wider public, joining forces to combat these rising challenges and ultimately achieve true change and impact.

The Hub was created to provide a new think-tank to explore the most pressing issues affecting the world today. Centred in the belief that solving the most challenging questions requires the collaboration of scholars, policymakers, practitioners and the broader public, the Hub seeks to equip current and future business leaders with the tools required to achieve positive change through its events, research, community and curriculum. Created with the belief that the current societal climate demands timely attention and intervention, the Hub seeks to provide immense opportunities for businesses and policymakers alike to make a meaningful difference.

Adopting the theme of ‘Business and Society’ for its inaugural term, the Hub recognises the critical role business plays around the world and the significant impact business schools have on society. The think-tank seeks to encourage fresh thinking regarding the future of capitalism, business and democracy, as well as exploring other critical ideas, driving innovation for the betterment of society. Recognising the tremendous innovation and economic opportunities created by businesses all over the world today, the Hub seeks to identify ways that those opportunities can be shared, as well as examining the role of businesses in societal issues.

As high inflation continues to spark fears about a recession, there are concerns that the working class will fall even further behind while the top 1% continues to amass wealth. This begs the question: does capitalism really work for all of society? The Hub’s Future of Capitalism programme examines what capitalism is now and what it should look like going forward, exploring different strategies to ensure that no one is left behind. Professor Glenn Hubbard and Oren Cass address the pitfalls and potential solutions for an evolving capitalist system.

With hundreds of students graduating from business schools each year, many will go on to run multinational organisations, economies and even countries. As part of their education, a significant proportion of these graduates have studied theories of modern political economists like David Ricardo, Adam Smith and other exponents of classical liberalism, as well as prominent figures from the neoliberal school, like Milton Friedman and Fridrich Hayek. Professor Hubbard and Oren Cass seek to rethink capitalism, looking at how relevant it is and whether it is working in modern society.

Today, corporate leaders all around the world face unprecedented challenges, forcing many to learn new ways of doing business, enabling their organisations to keep pace with the demands of today. Whereas in the past many business leaders prioritised the needs of their shareholders and customers above all else, in recent years the emphasis has shifted, placing increased focus on a wider range of corporate stakeholders including suppliers, employees and society at large.

The role that businesses play in society is a theme that features prominently in many current MBA programmes. Indeed, corporate social responsibility is a top priority of every forward-looking chief executive and company. In the business world today, business leaders must find ways to address environmental concerns, as well as managing their company’s societal impact. Businesses all around the world are coming under increasing pressure to foster ethical behaviour in all of their activities in order to garner trust and build public confidence.

Centred in the belief that collaboration is the key to solving some of the world’s most vexing questions, Columbia Business School’s new think-tank aims to tackle society’s most pressing problems. As Oded Netzer explains, the Hub brings together scholars, policymakers and business leaders to address major issues facing both the business world and society. These issues include risks to democracy, how businesses can innovate effectively and the future of capitalism.

The overriding objective of the Hub at Columbia Business School is to equip business leaders with the right tools to achieve positive change. Every two years, the dean will consult with faculty and key stakeholders, identifying a new theme to serve as the Hub’s focus.

Housed in Columbia Business School’s new campus in Manhattanville, the Hub will serve as a centre of activity, hosting luncheons, seminars and broader audience events. In addition, the Hub will also provide a base for visiting scholars, as well as a venue for policymakers and business leaders to engage with the Columbia Business School community, sharing ideas on thought leadership with the world.

    Leave a Reply