Thursday, September 02, 2004

Interesting Insights on B-Schools

Had lunch with a faculty member today, and he had this incredible insight into business schools.

Having went through Berkeley computer science PhD program, I had somewhat of an idea on how influential US News and World Reports was in terms of their rankings of grad programs. However, things seem far worse with business schools.

The basic issue here is that all business schools want to be in the top ten. However, one of the factors influencing rankings is how much money people make after they finish business school. Given this, what motivation do business schools have to really emphasize ethics? To encourage people to go into non-profits (who probably really could use the help of MBAs in developing feasible strategies)? To support people in going overseas and make a real difference in developing countries? Very little, because it would likely hurt their overall rankings.

I remember David Patterson once said in class, "For better or for worse, metrics define a field." This seems to be yet another hidden case of metrics just continuing the status quo.