Academic Track (session I)

in partnership with AIB, Graduate Institute-CFD, CEPR, NYU, UNU-WIDER, SIEL, CCSI
Session Type
Session Themes
Academic Track
Room number
Hall 2 Room 7
Contact Email
Background Documents
17 October 2023
16:30 - 18:00 Abu Dhabi

The WIF 2023 Academic Track is organized in partnership with leading academic institutions and associations in disciplines related to investment and development. The track includes a series of thematic events (elsewhere on the programme) integrating research and ideas from leading scholars, researchers, executives from global companies and senior policymakers. It will cover a broad spectrum of issues related to foreign investment, MNEs and development, including themes such as the energy transition, sustainable infrastructure, FDI and women empowerment, SME internationalization, and industry 4.0 and the future of global investment.


16:30 - 17:10 International Business: International Business and Social Challenges 

Multinational enterprises (MNEs) are well placed to help address some of the world’s largest social challenges, such as poverty, inequality, malnutrition, refugee migration, and discrimination; however, questions remain on when and how MNEs’ actions are most successful. 

  • What are the greatest obstacles to withholding MNEs’ investment in addressing social challenges? 
  • How can we overcome social washing? 
  • How does ESG commitment influence the social performance of MNEs? 

In this session, leading academics and practitioners will provide their views on these questions.

17: 20 - 18:00 International Business: MNE Innovation for Sustainability

With time running out to achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (the midpoint for implementation is this year), there are growing calls on multinational enterprises (MNEs) to act with renewed urgency to intensify their contribution to a sustainable future by providing innovative solutions that avoid further harm and actively do good. 

  • How is MNE innovation for sustainability best boosted? 
  • Which policies and institutional environments are most conducive to MNE innovation for sustainability?  

In this session, leading academics and practitioners will provide their views on these questions.


Associate Professor in the Department of Marketing, Management and Supply Chain, University of Texas
Professor of International Business and Director for Latin America, Thunderbird School of Global Management
Managing Director, New Women Connectors
Head of the International Business Department and Professor of International Business and Sustainable Competitiveness, University of Leeds
Professor of International Business, University of Glasgow
Associate Professor of International Business, University of Leeds
Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) of International Business and Innovation in the Department of Strategy and International Business, University of Surrey
Founder, SmartFactory EU