Webinar: Oceania: International Business, geopolitics and engaging with the ocean of our future

The Pacific Ocean is our planet’s single biggest feature. If western civilization was shaped by the Mediterranean Sea, and industrialization and hyper-globalization were marked by the Atlantic Ocean, it is clear that an important part of our future will play out in the Pacific, in environmental, security and economic terms. With the Indo-Pacific becoming a new epicenter of world affairs, a new kind of 21st century “Great Game” is taking place among global superpowers in the South Pacific. Home to fewer than 13 million inhabitants, yet covering 15% of the world’s surface, the South Pacific Island nations have been, for a long time, seen as “simply a bunch of small remote islands”, marred by the triple tyranny of colonial history, remoteness and size. Capturing human imagination and sparking geopolitical discourse for centuries, going back to James Harrington’s utopian commonwealth of Oceana (1656), the South Pacific remains one of the “neglected locations” within the international business discipline, despite its growing security, economic and environmental relevance. Joined by three experts on and from the region, the panel will seek to provide answers to the following questions:

  • What do international business scholars, policymakers and practitioners need to understand about the South Pacific? How do we need to think about the region – and why?
  • How does the colonial history of the region influence current geopolitical tensions involving global superpowers? Are we seeing a repeat of history, or a new “Great Game” on the horizon?
  • What are the most important social, economic and environmental challenges and opportunities that the region, and individual island states, are facing?
  • What are the goals of China and the United States in the region, and what role does the Pacific Island Forum play? What roles are played by Australia and New Zealand?
  • How can research about/from the South Pacific help to advance the international business discipline, international (business) policy, global environmentalism and politics.
  • What role do multinational enterprises and their global value chains play in the South Pacific

Thursday, September 8th, 2022

4:00 – 5:30PM EST


About the Speakers:

Matevz Raskovic (Moderator)

Matevz Raskovic, or Matt as he has come to be known, is an Associate Professor of International Business & Strategy at Auckland University of Technology in Aotearoa New Zealand. He is also a visiting professor at Zhejiang University in China and at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. Matt was a 2017 Fulbright Fellow at Harvard University, FAS Sociology and is the recipient of the 2019 Victoria University of Wellington’s Teaching Excellence Award. He currently serves as Vice-President Marketing at the Australia and New Zealand International Business Academy (ANZIBA), is a member of the Academy of International Business (AIB) Diversity & Inclusion task force and serves as a Senior editor for the European Journal of International Management. Matt has guest co-edited a special issue on doing business with Central and Eastern Europe in Journal of Business Research and a special issue of AIB Insights on “Engaging with Oceania” (Vol. 21, No. 1, 2021).

Damon Salesa

Professor Damon Salesa is the Vice-Chancellor of Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makaurau – Auckland University of Technology (AUT). Damon is a prize-winning scholar, specialising in history, society, and politics in New Zealand and the other Pacific Islands. After obtaining his MA with First Class Honours at the University of Auckland, he completed his doctoral studies at Oxford University. He is the author and editor of many books and academic articles including Island Time: New Zealand’s Pacific Futures and Racial Crossings: Race, Intermarriage and the Victorian British Empire, which won the international Ernest Scott Prize in 2012..Previously, he has been Pro Vice-Chancellor Pacific at the University of Auckland, where he was also Co-Head of Te Wānanga o Waipapa (School of Māori Studies and Pacific Studies) at the University of Auckland. He worked at the University of Michigan for ten years, including in roles as Director of the Asian Pacific Islander American Studies Program.

Arun Elias

Prof Arun Elias is the Dean of the College of Business, Hospitality and Tourism Studies (CBHTS), Fiji National University (FNU). Prior to joining FNU, he was associated with Victoria University of Wellington for 22 years. There he held the position of Associate Dean (International and Accreditation) with the Wellington School of Business and Government from 2017. Before that he was the Director of MBA and Post Experience programmes and an Associate Professor in Management. He also serves as an AASCB mentor and AMBA panel member for business schools seeking international accreditations. He holds a PhD in Management from Victoria University of Wellington, and two Master’s degrees, one in Industrial Engineering and Management from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur and the other in Agricultural Engineering from Allahabad University, India. His main teaching and research interests are in the areas of systems thinking, stakeholder management, and sustainable supply chains.

Elizabeth Rose

Elizabeth L. Rose is Research Chair in Business Policy & Strategy at the Indian Institute of Management Udaipur. She has held academic appointments in the U.S., New Zealand, and Finland. Beth’s research addresses various aspects of how firms internationalize and compete across borders. Working at the intersection of international business, international entrepreneurship, and strategy, she is especially interested in the internationalization activities of firms from emerging markets – particularly smaller firms. She is an AIB Fellow, and was named the WAIB Woman of the Year in 2019. Currently, she is co-editor of Academy of Management Collections and deputy editor of AIB Insights. Beth was also the founding Chair of the Academy of International Business Australia and New Zealand Chapter (now AIB Oceania) and has guest co-edited an AIB Insights special issue on Engaging with Oceania (Vol. 21, No. 1, 2021).