This paper investigates the teaching and research interests of professors of accounting, finance and marketing at U.S. colleges and universities pertaining to their specializations in multinational business. The stimulus for this study stems from several interconnected factors. First and foremost, the business environment has exhibited strong trends toward globalization in almost every aspect in the last 25 years. The internationalization of financial markets and the resulting 24-hour marketplace for numerous financial assets just serves as one glaring example of business globalization. Even in some fields where one could not have imagined a global market place and therefore, an existence of global competition just 5 years ago, such a possibility has become a reality. The markets for medical care, surgeries as well as post-operative recovery have also now become worldwide. In a newly emerging field called "Medical Tourism," patients from all of over the globe consider India and Thailand, among others, as viable alternatives to many highly developed and well established medical care locations.
Second, according to Kedia, Harveston and Bhagat (2001), "As businesses confront increasing international challenges, the need for developing managers who can understand and effectively meet the demands of the global marketplace becomes critical. While the responsibility of developing such international managers of tomorrow may lie in different sectors of the economy, we suggest that business schools have a special role in inculcating appropriate global mindset, knowledge base, and skills." Indeed, U.S. colleges and universities have accepted the challenge of training their students to enter and embrace the global market arena, and accordingly, more and more schools have created opportunities for students to choose international business as a major or a minor. By June 2005, of the 430 AACSB accredited U.S. schools, 81 were offering undergraduate degrees in international business (IB) and 48 were offering graduate degrees in IB. Third, presently 28 schools have been designated as Centers of International Business Education and Research (CIBERs) (see Scherer, et al., 2003). Fourth, numerous business administration colleges have created centers or institutes or divisions of international/multinational/global business to form alliances with multinational business organizations, or state and local world trade centers, etc. Fifth, the text books used in most required or core courses in business schools began addressing the globalization of business issues in the late 1970s or early 1980s. Now, even the textbooks of the elective courses, such as risk and insurance for example, have started integrating "International Perspectives" in as many chapters as feasible (see Trieschmann, et al., 2005). Given the issues raised above, it is understandable that business and government entities expect U.S. educators to play a vital role in preparing students to function and flourish in a global business environment. If so, one could logically ask the following two questions:
What percentage of business faculty in the U.S. are willing to teach courses in the international areas in their disciplines; and
What percentage of business faculty in the U.S. are willing to conduct research in the international areas of their disciplines.
This study attempts to answer these questions for three business disciplines, namely, accounting, finance, and marketing. We examine the data of three academic years, 1994-1995, 2000-2001, and 2002-2003 to meet the task at hand. To meet these objectives, we investigate the IB specializations within the teaching and research interests of two groups of business faculty. The first group consists of all the named or titled professors, including the endowed professors in each field, during each academic year as per the Hasselback faculty directories. Named professors' teaching and research interests are examined because they are generally the highest ranked academicians, and are considered to be the most renowned, most accomplished and elite educators in their fields. Moreover, one could argue that some of them set the tone and the direction for research in most fields. However, to fully satisfy the goal of this study, we felt that we should also consider the business faculty at large and not just the "experts" of each discipline. Accordingly, the second group is made up of randomly selected instructors from each field, for each of the academic years studied. By utilizing a random selection process, we believe that we are likely to achieve proportions of different academic ranks, different levels of experiences, different levels expertise, and different age groups representing the underlying population of faculty. As a result, we could expect findings to reflect the true levels of IB specializations of professors in each of the three disciplines within the margins of sampling errors.
In the next section, the relevant previous research is briefly reviewed. The methodology and the data underlying this study are discussed in the third section. The findings of the investigation are presented in the fourth section. A brief summary makes up the final section.
The body of literature on business globalization and international business education is extremely large and rich as well as diverse. Scores of articles have been published on the subjects such as the internationalization of the business curriculum or even specific courses (see for example, Aggarwal, 1989; Beamish,1989; Tung and Miller, 1990; White and Griffith, 1998; Yeoh, 2001; Sanyal, 2004; Zimmer, Koening and Greene, 2004; Laughton, 2005; and Danford, 2006; among others). White and Griffith (1998) compared 21 top U.S. graduate level IB programs with the help of telephone interviews and publicly available secondary data. They also consulted well-known scholars of IB education to ascertain the opportunities available for improving the curriculum of graduate level IB education in the U.S.
The literature search on the subject of IB education within doctoral degree programs identified several published studies in the last 20 years. Nehrt's survey (1987) of 53 largest U.S. doctoral programs found that an overwhelming percentage of doctoral students (85%) were not trained in IB courses. In many respects, Nehrt's disappointment with the progress of internationalization of U.S. doctoral programs was also expressed by Kuhne (1990). Kuhne's survey identified only a handful of doctoral business programs which offered an opportunity to major or minor in IB. In a 1997 volume edited by Cavusgil and Horn on internationalizing doctoral education in business, a survey of doctoral program directors by Myers and Omura was included. Myers and Omura expressed the view that the doctoral faculty did not embrace the challenge of blending international aspects and dimensions of the subjects they were teaching, possibly because of their lack of international expertise. More recently, Webb and Allen (2005) reported the findings of their survey of AACSB accredited doctoral programs. They concluded that "The majority of the doctoral business programs, for the responding schools, have no specific approach to internationalizing the curriculum" (2005).
In a 1994 paper, Kwok, Arpan and Folks presented the findings of their AIB (Academy of International Business) supported global survey to examine the status and trends in the IB education. The survey attempted to answer six sets of crucial questions concerning the internationalization of business education (pp. 607-608). Two of the questions they addressed are relevant to the present study. In one of their inquiries, they were trying to ascertain if different functional areas of business had accomplished different levels of internationalization. In the other, they were attempting to determine the level of IB expertise of business faculty. Various issues examined in their well …