When government professor Marc Busch read in Forbes that his “Business, Government and the Global Economy” was named one of the year’s 10 most innovative business school classes, he said he was surprised – even if there was rumor the honor was on its way.
The first hint at his selection came in August, when Busch discovered the McDonough School of Business administration had nominated the course and requested a syllabus. Next, Forbes magazine requested pictures of the Rafik B. Hariri Building. But it wasn’t until the list’s publication on the business publication’s website that Busch scrolled to find his course, paired with a shot of the Hariri building.
“I was delighted and most grateful to the business school for having nominated the course,” Busch said in an email.
Busch, who designed the class and teaches it himself, explained the concept behind his course.
“I wanted to give students a sense for how politics, economics and law come together in shaping international business,” he said. “There is a big emphasis on trade in the course, the focus being on the opportunities for commerce, as well as the many challenges, particularly with respect to protectionism.”
The course examines the interaction between politics and various market forces, according to the Forbes article.
In the fall, Busch teaches the course for undergraduate students and in the spring it is geared toward graduate students. Taught in module four for the McDonough School of Business, it is also part of the International Business Diplomacy program in the School of Foreign Service.
The class includes an introduction to regional trade agreements and the World Trade Organization and follows up with group debate and individual research on topics such as the U.S.-Vietnamese catfish trade dispute and the role of pharmaceutical copyright and patent rules in HIV and AIDS health care in Africa, according to the Forbes article.
Busch said he enjoys watching students give case-specific presentations in which they are assigned to solve a challenge of globalization for a certain firm or industry.
“The case teams live these
presentations for weeks. It is very rewarding to watch them grapple with issues that many had never given much thought to before the course, all with my onerous expectations in mind,” Busch said.
Yolande Bornik (MSFS-JD ’12), a graduate student who took the class in the spring of 2009, said she enjoyed Busch’s approach to teaching.
“Professor Busch is a phenomenal lecturer. He presents complex concepts in a very tangible way, and adds a good dose of humor as well,” she said.
“I would say Professor Busch was probably the most important faculty mentor that I had at Georgetown,” said Matthew Sharp (SFS ’10).
Busch says students benefit from the class even after taking it, thanks to a support network of students who have taken it in the past.
“Case teams from years past will check in on current teams, offer advice and sometimes come back to watch presentations of the case they gave while at Georgetown. The course has an impressive alumni network, and many of these graduates come back to recruit directly from my class,” Busch said.