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In this week’s blog I will be discussing my favourite class during my first semester. I suppose my favourite class is the class that I have done all the pre-reading for, the one I arrive to on time regularly, and the one that holds my attention for the entire 90 minutes; those are fairly tough criteria to align. On a more serious note, I would have to say that the one class that I have found consistently interesting (and am fairly surprised about) is International Corporate Governance. It is one of the classes that I am almost always prepared for, including the respectable amount of reading, which is usually a Harvard business case and is a good 20 plus pages in length. Additionally, I always manage to arrive to all the classes on time, as I do not want to miss out on the first crucial minutes where the Professor sets the scene for the remaining 87 minutes. And then finally, I have remained active in the discussion for the entire 90 minutes.
You might be wondering what kept me focused and alert for the whole 90 minutes. Firstly, the class was not full of theoretical model after theoretical model with attempts to apply it to real life cases. On the contrary, we approached it from another angle altogether, using a case study (real life governance issues in real companies) where we applied theory to real circumstances. If you stop to think about that for a moment, you will appreciate how challenging that can be and how useful and enlightening the results are. Although that said, without all the theory learning from my Bachelor studies this approach more than likely would not have been possible. Nonetheless it was a refreshing approach to examining corporate governance successes and in other cases failures due to inappropriate use of governance. There was always a fair bit of discussion during class and many opinions aired, although often openly and critically refuted by others. And due credit must be given to the Professor for encouraging and facilitating this constructive discourse during his classes. For me the most important learning that I am taking away from this class is that governance is not straight forward and one should always look below the surface of the corporation at its structures in order to begin to understand its unique version of governance.
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