In the News
Innovation is about making the possible desirable and the desirable possible. But which direction innovation takes depends in large part on how we express those desires.
I wrote earlier about the market for lemons, in which information asymmetry prevents the emergence of market alternatives to Genetically Modified Organism-based foods.
Economist Debates – Fracking
Do the benefits derived from shale gas outweigh the drawbacks of fracking?
Proposer Amy Myers Jaffe defending the motion: “Energy is a fundamental service needed for daily living. Lack of access to fuel is a key driver of poverty and premature mortality. But as essential as energy is to human development, the reality is that all forms of energy production have environmental consequences. There is no single-source supply that can provide the benefits we need at the scale at which we need it without disturbing the natural world.
“The SacBee today has a nice description of MicroMidas, UCD and Child Family Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship alum: Micromidas plans to turn cardboard into oil substitute.”
Suckers or saviors? Small investors buy up stocks
Fund flows offer no guide to future stock moves, says one analysis
With the Dow hovering around 14,000 as individual investors pour back in, Prof. Brad Barber says the data on investor stock flows isn’t a reliable guide to market direction. “It’s not a signal about where the market is heading,” Barber says, noting that on some occasions fund flows have peaked just as the market prepared to tank.
Carl Schramm, an internationally known expert on entrepreneurship, innovation and economic growth, is coming to teach at the University of California, Davis, Graduate School of Management.
Schramm, called the “evangelist of entrepreneurship” by The Economist publication, will teach in the spring quarter, beginning March 28.
“A recent Kauffman report offers new and valuable insights into where venture-driven growth comes from. Literally. Not from what attributes of social media founders or which San Francisco coffee shops, but rather which sectors of the economy and which regions of the country. The findings are surprising and important for entrepreneurs thinking of starting a business, and policymakers thinking of helping them.”
“I’m not a big fan of ideas. Sure, ideas are great — some of my best friends are ideas. But managers tend to let our national obsession about having new ideas distract them from the hard work of building good products and successful ventures around what are almost always old ideas. So it was fun to see the great design OXO have at a competitor who claimed to ‘own’ an idea that both had built products around.”
CalPERS has launched the Sustainable Investment Research Initiative aimed at advancing the pension fund’s understanding of the impact sustainability factors have on financial performance, confirmed Anne Simpson, CalPERS senior portfolio manager and director of global governance.
“Submitted for your consideration: the Nightingale Ratio as the number of people helping others do something to the number of people actually doing that thing. In this case, the number of people helping entrepreneurs start something relative to the number of entrepreneurs actually starting something.”
When Shell started buying leases to drill in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas in 2005, the company was betting on Americans’ thirst for any oil locked under those Arctic waters, which could replace declining crude production from Alaska’s North Slope and other onshore resources.
Flash forward eight years, and the scenario has changed dramatically. Global energy expert Amy Myers Jaffe weighs the risks and return of drilling in the arctic.
An Idea Whose Time Has Come
It's not just Obama -- the entire world is ready to get serious about climate change.
Global energy experts Amy Myers Jaffe and Danielle Sperling share an exciting revelation in this Foreign Policy piece, “the entire world is ready to get serious about climate change.”
The Eberhardt School of Business at University of the Pacific is adding new programs in accounting for the fall term.
New programs of a master’s degree in accounting and a bachelor of science in accounting will launch in August 2013.
Last fall, the University of California Davis Graduate School of Management became the first school in the UC system to offer a master’s degree in accounting.
Crying at Work: Why the Stigma Is Wrong
Tears have long been verboten at the office, but they could be more beneficial than you think.
Is the negative stigma of crying at work wrong? Interesting piece in Inc. Mag about how an employee getting misty-eyed at the office may not necessarily be the disruptive disaster you imagine. Professor Elsbach is cited.
Can small-dollar loans paired with free financial education or rewards for saving/paying down debt truly motivate our financial choices? Dean Currall comments on two new SF startups – LendUp.com and SaveUp.com, led by bright, young, socially-conscious CEOs who believe that deploying behavioral economics can do just that.
NPR story about efforts to block the Keystone XL pipeline quotes Amy Jaffe, executive director of energy and sustainability: “It feels very invasive, but the reality is that it happens all around the United States. It’s not limited to just Texas . . .The bottom line is, it’s public good because we use so much oil in this country that we cannot afford in our current lifestyle to turn down infrastructure. We’re all participating in that by getting in our car.”
Starting January 1, New Securities and Exchange Commission rules, though under challenge by industry groups, are to require companies to start disclosing the use of certain conflict minerals. Professor Griffin comments on the affect that this will have on the price of affected goods as well as additional global implications.
If you own Apple stock, odds are good you bought it for the wrong reasons. Don’t sell it for the wrong reasons, too.
“Attention is a scarce resource. When there are many alternatives, options that attract attention are more likely to be considered,” wrote Brad M. Barber, a professor in the Graduate School of Management, University of California, Davis. There’s certainly no shortage of media coverage about Apple, which is still up nearly 30 percent for the year in spite of its recent slide.
California, even as it seeks to be the greenest U.S. state, stands a good chance of emerging as the nation’s top oil producer in the next decade, helping America toward what once seemed an unlikely goal of energy independence.
“There’s a strident environmental community that’s always very concerned about the possibility of ecological damage,” says Amy Myers Jaffe, executive director for energy and sustainability at the University of California-Davis. “It’s going to be a much more intense operating environment” for companies drilling in sensitive areas.
Wall street’s disproportionate sway over the U.S. economy has caused big problems in recent years, from the subprime crisis to high-frequency-trading debacles. But here’s one you may not have noticed: it’s crippling innovation. To understand how, look at the latest victim, the once mighty Hewlett-Packard. It’s hard to think of a company that’s been as loved and, more recently, loathed. Professor Elsbach is cited in this enlightening article about HP.
The New York Times op-ed on U.S. energy independence by Roger Cohen quotes Amy Myers Jaffe, executive director of energy and sustainability: “This is a transformative development . . .We see ourselves increasingly as this weakened country dependent on faraway events. But as we become energy independent our sense of our own power and freedom of movement will change — and with it our foreign policy in ways that are hard to predict. Oil is a different issue when it is not your own problem anymore.”