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La Trobe Business School

Category: Events (page 2 of 4)

La Trobe Business School hosted successful start-up My Big Idea Bootcamp!


On 8 October 2016, La Trobe Business School hosted a successful start-up bootcamp delivering on its My Big Idea promise to train 500 Australians to be positive change makers.

The day was coordinated by La Trobe Business School’s Professor of Entrepreneurship, Dr Alex Maritz, who gave the welcoming presentation to participants in the morning. He spoke about ways for participants to refine, pitch and build on their idea and encouraged participants to share their idea with others in the room, using Pollenizer techniques such as ideation, proof of problem discovery and pitching for influence.

Several La Trobe Business School staff members, including academics and PhD students, acted as mentors for participants throughout the day, offering their feedback and advice on several ideas. LBS Staff included academics Associate Professor Vanessa Ratten, Dr Quan Nguyen, and Professor of Practice Antony Jacobson, and PhD students Anne Brouwer, Claudia Shwetzer and Anna Amirsardari. “Giving the participants the chance to interact about their idea with our experienced staff one-on-one is a very valuable opportunity,” Professor Alex Maritz said. “We put quality over quantity, in the favour of our aspiring Big Idea participants.”

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Participants enjoyed the day and hoped to use the tools to take their idea to the next level: “I personally was very pleased to get tools to test my idea and see if it is logical and all in all achievable as a concept.” Bootcamper Hanna said. “I feel like I now have more knowledge to critically evaluate my idea and determine which direction I want to go in. Big thank you for la Trobe, all the mentors, My Big Idea Australia and fellow bootcampers!”

La Trobe Business School is looking forward to see participants unpack their ideas in the future!

Women’s Leadership in Business Schools Event: Opportunities and Challenges


Click to enlarge image.

Ever wondered why there are so few women as Head of Business Schools or Vice Chancellors?

Ever asked yourself if women face extra challenges on their way to leadership roles?

Join our workshop and have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss issues with our successful academics and highly regarded panel members including Head of La Trobe Business School Paul Mather, Professor of Accounting and Associate Head of La Trobe Business School Jane HamiltonLBS’s Professor of Practice Susan Inglis, LBS’s Associate Professor Suzanne O’Keefe, Dr Jeanette Fyffe, and Associate Pro Vice-Chancellor Professor Amalia Di Iorio (panel chair). This workshop focuses on PhD students, early career researchers and staff of the La Trobe Business School, but we welcome anyone who is interested.

Afternoon Tea is included.

Preliminary Programme

Time Sessions
2:30 pm – 2:40 pm Welcome note: Introduction of panel members
2:40 pm – 3:30 pm  A short speech by panel members (10 minutes each)
3:30 pm – 4:00 pm Question and Answer Session
4:00 pm – 4:05 pm Concluding Speech by the project members
4:05 pm – 4:30 pm Networking with afternoon tea

Time and Date

Date: 20 October 2016

Time: 2.30pm – 4.30pm

Venue: John Scott Meeting House Chamber, La Trobe University, Plenty Road & Kingsbury Drive, Melbourne, Victoria 3086

Cost: Free

Register: Please register via Eventbrite.

LBS academics showcase their research at the Academy of Management conference in California


By Dr Sajad Fajezi

The Conference

The 76th Annual meeting of the Academy of Management was held in Anaheim, California from 5-8 August this year. The world’s premier conference for the management discipline attracted over 10,000 scholars from all over the world, with over 2,500 sessions and activities to choose from.

This year, four LBS management academics attended the conference and their participation ranged from chairing symposia, and attending professional development workshops, through to presenting their research at paper sessions.

The Participants

In line with this year’s theme, ‘making organisations meaningful’, Associate Professor Suzanne Young presented her research on corporate governance, health governance and corporate reputation and legitimacy management. Dr Jennifer Spoor and Dr Jillian Cavanagh chaired a symposium entitled ‘Supporting Employment Outcomes for Individuals with a Disability’. Dr Sajad Fayezi presented a paper on flexible and sustainable procurement, and Dr Swati Nagpal presented her research undertaken with three other LBS academics into corporate reputation and legitimacy management.

The Hallmarks

As one of the largest gatherings of management scholars, Academy of Management is comprised of 25 management disciplines represented by Divisions and Interest Groups. LBS staff have showcased their work across such divisions as Social Issues in Management (SIM), Health Care Management (HCM), Operations Management (OM) and Human Resources (HR). Through active engagement, LBS management academics have been able to discuss a number collaborative projects with some of the pioneering researchers in their respective areas of interest. Participating in various events associated with meeting editors of the leading management journals was another hallmark of this truly international forum. By way of example, the Operations Management Division had organised various sessions to meet editors and associate editors of Journal of Operations Management, Journal of Supply Chain Management, Journal of Business Logistics and Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management.

The Benefits

All in all, the conference has significantly contributed to further development and dissemination of the research undertaken by LBS academics with the ultimate goal that it will be published in some of the most prestigious journals of their respective management discipline. This will contribute to the international reputation of LBS, its research quality as well as visibility and can create new opportunities for international and multidisciplinary collaboration to address some of the pressing business and management issues of our time.

The Papers

Paper Session: Corporate Governance perspectives and CSR: Issues for Stakeholder Management

Author: Magalie Marais, Montpellier Business School
Author: Suzanne Young, La Trobe Business School

Paper Session: Backsourcing in Public Health: Towards a Model of Analysis

Author: Suzanne Young, La Trobe Business School
Author: Manuela M Macinati, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart 

Paper Session: Flexibility and Sustainability Priorities in Procurement: Practices, Relationships and Trade-Offs

Author:  Sajad Fayezi, La Trobe Business School 

Paper Session: CSR and social risk: from risk minimization to risk sharing

 Author: Swati Nagpal, La Trobe Business School
 Author: Suzanne Young, La Trobe Business School
 Author: Geoffrey Durden, La Trobe Business School
 Author: Timothy Marjoribanks, La Trobe Business School 

Symposium: Supporting Employment Outcomes for Individuals with a Disability

Chair: Jennifer R. Spoor, La Trobe Business School

Contact Chair: Jillian Cavanagh, La Trobe Business School

For further information, please contact the relevant LBS academic directly.




Does Business have a role in Human Rights? LBS Alumni engage in a challenging conversation about Business’s responsibility in society.

Business and Society Cafe

‘Does Business have a role in Human Rights’ was the philosophical question discussed at the inaugural La Trobe Business School-CPA Australia Business and Society Café on 12 July at Secret Society Café.

Kenneth J. McPhail, Professor of Accounting and Associate Dean, Social Responsibility at Manchester Business School and Dr Eva Tsahuridu, Professional Standards and Governance Policy Adviser, CPA Australia steered 25 LBS Alumni and academics through a thought-provoking conversation that began by presenting the idea that while historically business has often played a role in violating rights, the multinational corporation is perhaps seen as a vehicle for realising rights in countries with weak governance regimes. Does this mean that companies should regulate nation states?

The diverse views meandered from business simply operating within the bounds of the law, looking after its own interests, to the prerequisite for incentives and the challenge of objectively measuring value other than profits. It was also raised that corporations are a reflection of the values of the people within it and there is a growing trend for employees and consumers to preference their engagement with businesses that demonstrate sound social value.

Professor McPhail finished by stating that he believed in the power of education and that this means there is a fundamental role for universities and professional bodies, as educators, to raise awareness of the issues and be a part of the cultural shift.

The Business and Society Cafés are a program developed for graduates of La Trobe Business School who aspire to leadership in a context where business opportunities and addressing big global issues will be increasing intertwined. We are most grateful to CPA Australia sponsoring the cafes.

If you are interested in attending future Business and Society Cafes please contact Dr Geraldine Kennett, Professor of Practice in Management and Director of Industry Engagement via email.


Executive Education event: Navigating Boardroom Unpredictability

In partnership with the La Trobe Business School, Governance Institute of Australia are holding a hypothetical board meeting, providing strategies to manage difficult situations that commonly arise in boards.

Whilst we know that good governance extends beyond the Boardroom, the Board ensures that the organisation is on purpose, staff are accountable and there is a culture of transparency, stewardship and integrity. This simulation will explore how to effectively guide the Board to ensure good governance, and is useful for those with limited exposure to Boards.

An experienced panel will simulate a boardroom discussion and help you learn how to:

  • facilitate and manage a functional board
  • ensure legal compliance
  • create a productive environment
  • manage time
  • manage conflict of interest
  • distribute information
  • understand the agenda


Debra Connor, Company Secretary, NBN Co Limited

Douglas Gration, Barrister, Castan Chambers

Brooke Haigh, Senior Governance Manager – Head Office Advisory, Bupa Australia Holdings Pty Limited

Fotini Kypraios, Senior Associate, Meerkin & Apel Lawyers

Jeffrey Luckins, Director, William Buck Audit (Vic) Pty Ltd

Melissa Nolan, Compliance Manager, Ballieu Holst Ltd

Matthew Rowe, Corporate Governance Advisor, Mertons Corporate Services Pty Ltd

Event Details:

 Date: Wednesday 13th July 2016

Time: 12pm  to 2pm (lunch will be provided)

 Venue: La Trobe University City Campus, Level 20, 360 Collins St, Melbourne

Register: Register online

Cost: $55 for La Trobe Alumni, Staff and Students and/or Governance Institute Members, $65 for Governance Institute Subscribers, $85 for non-members.

LBS Yunus Centre’s Social Business Symposium now open for registration!

Dialogue in the Dark Andreas Heinecke
La Trobe Business School’s Yunus Social Business Centre
is preparing for its Social Business Symposium to be held 19 and 20 August, 2016, in TLC Lecture Theatre 115,  at La Trobe University’s Melbourne Campus.

The Keynote Address will be given by Dr Andreas Heinecke, Founder of Dialogue in the Dark Social Business Franchise. Since its first opening in 1988 over six million visitors from more than 25 countries have experienced Dialogue in the Dark, which has provided jobs for over 6,000 for blind or low-sighted people.

Registration is now open and is free to Staff and Students of La Trobe University (Booking is required for catering purposes).

The Call for Papers and Case Studies has been extended to 20 June by popular request.

LBS Professors of Practice: How to develop effective representative boards

Catherine Ordway Michael Wildenauer Governance La Trobe Business School

Recently, La Trobe Business School’s Professors of Practice Michael Wildenauer and Catherine Ordway attended the 32nd National Conference of Contemporary Governance, where they conducted a workshop on ‘The Challenges of Representative Boards’.

The workshop, aimed at an audience of governance professionals including lawyers, corporate secretaries and board members, mostly consisted of attendees who currently worked on or with representative boards, keen to discuss challenges they faced, and strategies they could develop to confront those challenges.

“Most of the members attending came from a governance background with years of experience.” Michael Wildenauer says. “In that context, there isn’t anything new I would be able to teach them about how boards worked and what is required of them as directors. But what we could do was present them some really relevant research findings to spark a discussion, identify challenges in representative boards across sectors to see what they may have in common, and how these challenges could be overcome.”

“When you are a member of a representative board, elected or appointed” Michael explains, “it is important to remember that you are representing more than just your constituents. The board is responsible as a whole for every decision the governing body makes.” According to Michael, there are numerous factors that contribute to a well-functioning board, some structural and many cultural. One of the big issues is diversity, both on the board itself and within subcommittees.

Representative boards structurally create the opportunity for some diversity through providing a seat at the table for particular interests. While this structural diversity is important, as Michael explained, the workshop also explored the need: “to ensure that there is diversity within the various ‘factions’ on representative boards. For example, if all the employer appointed directors on a superannuation trustee board are 60 year old males and the union appointed directors are 35 year old women, the ‘us vs them’ dynamic can be very powerful. Furthermore, if boards have a token member from a diverse group, it’s possible that this token member will not have the confidence to speak up if they feel isolated. Or maybe they will speak, but they may not be heard.” For these reasons, Catherine Ordway points to the significant amount of research that supports that idea that a board that better represents the community in terms of gender and the range of education, culture, language, religious and life experiences can assist in: “more robust, creative and innovative decision-making”.

Other factors influencing the efficiency of a leadership board can be more straightforward, such as the size of the group and length of tenure. If there are too many directors, it creates room for passive members, who want to join a board for prestige purposes, but don’t necessarily play an active role in the board’s deliberations. Catherine’s experience with sports boards echoes this and she believes that: “the current scandals at the international level in tennis, football, the AFL and athletics relate back to self-interested board members who fail to put the organisation’s interests before their own”. Michael agrees: “A lot of the feedback we received from workshop attendees did relate to size and to long tenure. When attendees were asked to map out the challenges they encountered on sheets of butcher’s paper, the same topics resurfaced again and again. The group was very engaged in discussions around overcoming these challenges, and were very keen to share their own ideas and listen to those of others. That’s a good start.”

Kate Doughty’s advice to Business School Students: “Do what makes you happy, and always set goals.”

Kate Doughty La Trobe Business School
Kate Doughty is an Australian elite athlete, motivational speaker, mentor and registered psychologist. Kate represented Australia at several international equestrian events, including the World Equestrian Games. She has recently been collaborating with La Trobe Business School students to support several charity events benefiting organisations like Cancer Council Victoria.

Less than 12 months ago, Kate made the dramatic change to Triathlon. Kate is now positioned 3rd in the ITU World Para-Triathlon rankings. In the following interview, Kate reflects on her outstanding career and also has some words of advice for Business Students.

When did you get involved in professional horse riding?

I always loved horses. My mother used to ride horses as a young child and retired from the sport when she moved up to the city to pursue her career in the stock market in her early 20’s. My father is also been involved in the industry, but from a horse racing perspective so it was in my blood. I always had a dream of representing my country at the Paralympics, so for me (being born with out a right hand) if I wanted to attempt this in the equestrian sport of dressage, it meant I had to figure out how to hold the reins. To ride at the highest level and to compete for my country, I had to learn how to ride with 4 reins. This was years of trial and error as a child, however I was selected to represent Aus at an International level in 2006, and successfully competed at this level up to and including the World Equestrian Games, in the USA in 2010, before I retired.

You recently made a dramatic change to triathlon. What inspired you to switch directions professionally?

 Less than 12 months ago, I made the dramatic change to triathlon. This was an ambition born from personal loss, with the death of my mother spurring me to make a fresh start within a new sport. Unexpectedly, the results of this transition have been astonishing as I am now positioned 3rd in the ITU World Para-Triathlon rankings. I never lost sight of one day representing my country at the Paralympics, however it just happens to be in a sport I would have never believed possible… I now firmly have my eyes set on winning Gold at RIO, 2016.

What are your Triathlon plans for the coming year?

 After winning Bronze at my first World Championships in October this year, all training is focused on selection for RIO Paralympics. I am almost there, however I need to win or podium at the following races early 2016 (no pressure!): Nationals (QLD) in January, Oceania Championships (Tas) in February, and two international races to be held in Aus in April. This will solidify my spot on the team and ultimately allow me to live my dream of competing at the Paralympics.

One of your current projects is your new skincare line, Nx2, focussing on a natural line of products and ingredients. What inspired to you start this project?

Nx2 is born from a very special and memorable part of my life. My mother, who was my mentor and best friend, taught my many interesting things about wholefoods and super-foods, which we are now seeing everywhere… my mother became one of the first accredited ‘raw’ food chefs in Australia, however sadly was unable to live her dream of opening a café and wholefoods store after loosing her battle with breast cancer in 2010. Sharing my mother’s passion for health, organic food, and awareness of protecting the body from the harsh realities of everyday living, I soon became aware that it is not only what we put IN our body, but also what we put ON our body that matters. Our largest organ in our body is our skin. By acting as an interface between the outside world and our internal bodies, the skin plays a very active part in protecting our internal world. Nx2 utilises the benefits of natural ingredients by supplying nurturing skin products. Nx2 products assist with the optimal functioning of your skin against external influences, as well as penetrating the skin to nurture your body internally. From Nature, to nurture, made with love.

How did you get involved with the La Trobe Business School Students and what compelled you to help them?

I have been a university student for many years, and I know what it is like when it comes to needing support and assistance. I was more than happy to help out after a friend who is associated with La Trobe approached me.

How do you think management students, and managers in general, can integrate the values you advocate in the nx2 line (an emphasis on natural ingredients and personal health) in their daily lives? Do you think this is something they should keep in mind when organising events and finding suppliers etc?

Just to keep in mind what your ‘take home message’ is. Make sure that you get involved with events and suppliers that inspire you, that you are passionate about, and that you are keen to become an advocate for. I also believe inspiration; passion and advocacy should fuel our activities and choices we make daily.

Have you got any advice for Business School students, to overcome academic and personal challenges?

Do what makes you happy. Always set goals. Life will bring challenges, but if you do what you love, and have goals to strive for, you will get there. Don’t hurry life, and be open to opportunities, especially when you least expect them.

For more information on Kate’s career, see her M5 Management profile. For more information on NX2 Skincare products, visit the NX2 website.

Public Administration in a globalised world: La Trobe Business School’s Zahirul Hoque takes leading role at 2015 Greater China Australia Dialogue

La Trobe Business School Zahirul Hoque

Zahirul Hoque (far right) at the 2015 Greater China Australia Dialogue Conference.

On 14, 15 and 16 November 2015, leading Australian academics were invited to attend the 2015 Greater China Australia Dialogue Conference, to share their knowledge with Chinese and Taiwanese scholars and practitioners working in public sector administration.

Why from Australia?

The public administration sector is changing rapidly in a globalised world. Creating structures in the public administration sector to ensure government programs and organisations use their funds efficiently and effectively has been shown to be crucial as a means to nurture good practices within a community. In Australia, the government has developed a highly efficient model that in time has also cultivated government agencies to start generating their own funds. By introducing performance audits along with performance management practices, not unlike companies in the private sector, Australian government agencies are no longer required to fall back fully on government finances.

In rapidly expanding economies such as China or Taiwan, these auditing and management structures are largely still being established. Government agencies are still heavily reliant on government money, often without being assessed thoroughly enough. By initiating the Greater China Australia Dialogue Conference, China and Taiwan want to sharpen ties with eminent Australian academics so as to exchange knowledge on the public sector, thereby equipping Chinese and Taiwanese scholars with the tools they need to engage with public sector reform.

Professor Zahirul Hoque

Professor Zahirul Hoque, who is La Trobe Business School’s Head of Department of Accounting, as well as the Executive Director of the La Trobe University Centre for Public Sector Governance, Accountability and Performance (CPSGAP), has more than twenty years’ experience in the Public Sector. During a workshop themed ‘Value for Money’, he presented two papers on performance auditing, performance management and parliamentary oversight.

In his presentations Professor Hoque highlighted how the use of performance auditing and performance management can create a strong sense of accountability at all levels of a public sector organisation. By introducing this auditing process that independently evaluates the effectiveness and efficiency of government undertakings, parliaments can not only see how much government initiatives are costing them, but also how those initiatives benefit the country’s economy and, in turn, the community.

The positive effect of performative auditing is notable around the world, with performance auditing increasingly become international best practice. As Professor Hoque concluded in his paper, there is a lesson in this for other nations. But the road is long: developing and implementing new practices takes significant work and effort over many years. Having guidance from experts in such a situation is invaluable. For China and Taiwan, sharing knowledge with scholars like LBS’s Professor Zahirul Hoque is an important step in this process.

La Trobe Business School Zahirul Hoque

La Trobe Business School Zahirul Hoque

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