The Happiness Doctor  

It would not be far-fetched to call Associate Professor Siok Tambyah the “happiness doctor”. She does research about happiness and wellbeing and even teaches a course called ‘The Pursuit of Happiness’. In real life, she is happiest when exploring new ideas and places, as well as spending time with family and friends.

She is the go-to person by the media for matters relating to the Singaporean psyche, having co-written several books bearing titles such as “Happiness and Wellbeing: The Singaporean Experience” and “Understanding Singaporeans: Values, Lifestyles, Aspirations and Consumption Behaviors”.  Her other research interests include consumer culture, ethnicity, gender and cross-cultural consumer behaviour.

Assoc Prof Tambyah obtained her bachelor’s degree from the NUS Business School, her PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and then returned to teach at her alma mater. We asked her about life then and now…

How long have you been with the Business School?

A long time — I get a kick out of telling my students that I was once a BBA Marketing Major just like them!  I joined NUS as a senior tutor in 1992, went away for graduate studies during 1993-1999 and started formal teaching in August 1999.

Some of my favourite memories here include having lunch at the Business School canteen with my friends, first as an undergraduate (now, with colleagues), and pottering around the Hon Sui Sen Memorial Library before the advent of digital library resources.

Honors Year Classmates

With Honours Year classmates in 1988 outside the Honours Room in BIZ 2 (from left to right): Pang Kiah Jee, Tong Pik Yi, Sum Yim Ling, Christine Goh Lee Eng, me, Leong Sow Fung (standing), Philip Lim Wei Tong and Mark Chan Boon Kiong.

If I were a student again…

I would probably not have made it to the NUS Business School because I am not a straight-A student!  It’s getting more competitive nowadays and I think many undergraduate students are just trying to keep up with their classes. I am not sure how much they are learning though, and whether they are enjoying their time at the university.

Continue reading

The wind in his sails

Justin Liu, our third-year business and economics student is currently in Rio de Janeiro with teammate Denise Lim, to represent Singapore at the Olympic Games. They will be sailing the catamaran Nacra 17 class.

What an opportunity, and what an honour! Follow them on https://www.facebook.com/JustinAndDenise

justin july circles justin july frontOutside In spoke with Justin last year when he first qualified for the Rio Games at http://outside-in.nus.edu/justin-liu-strikes-gold-at-sea-and-at-school/. Ten months on, we catch up with him to see how he is preparing for the Games. Continue reading

Former dean Chris Tang remembers Business School

Some will remember Chris Tang, Dean of the Business School from 2002 to 2004. He was also Senior Advisor to the President of NUS from 2000 to 2002.

Prof Christopher Tang pic

Prof Tang when he was Dean with us, in 2003, at the Staff Lounge in BIZ1.

Today, Prof Christopher Tang is a UCLA Distinguished Professor and the holder of the Edward W. Carter Chair in Business Administration.  Prof Tang has been on the faculty at UCLA for 30 years. He has consulted with numerous global companies including HP, IBM, Nestlé, GKN and Accenture; published 5 books and over 100 research articles in various leading academic journals; as well as written articles for Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Fortune, Los Angeles Times, and The Guardian.

He was back with us last month at the invitation of the Department of Decisions Sciences. We took a walk with him down memory lane:

Back in those days, Business School was well-known locally but little known beyond Asia. He also noticed that unlike overseas universities, our students did not interact much with the school beyond their curricular time and upon graduation, maintained little ties with their alma mater.

Prof Tang recognised that all this had to change for the Business School to develop a strong identity and an international standing. It was a diamond in the rough that could be pushed to a higher potential. He also recognised that while NUS was already one of the top Universities in Asia, the Business School could not rest on its laurels.

Continue reading

Exchange student enjoys life at NUS and Singapore

Oddbjørn Bjerkvik is spending a term with us as an MBA exchange student, as part of his executive programme at the Norwegian University for Science and Technology:

He shares about his time here:

Why did you choose NUS Business School?

I had the option of going to MIT or Stanford in the US, Chalmers in Sweden or NUS in Singapore.  I chose to come to Singapore because I believe that Asia will become more and more important in the years to come and I wanted the cultural aspects as well as going to a reputable university.  I also chose this program since it comprises one full term abroad compared to the short trips offered in other MBA programs.

At NUS, I have selected BMA5105 “Global Strategic Management”, BMA5108″Technopreneurship”, BMA5112 “Asian Business Environment and BMA5420 “Leadership in Asia”.  All of them are highly enjoyable classes with outstanding professors.

giraffe

With son Paul and daughter Maren at the “World’s best zoo. It’s good to be back after six years.”

I also have a personal interest in choosing Singapore since I have lived here before.  I was an expatriate here in 2008 and 2009 working for my current employer, FMC Technologies.  It was an opportunity to meet old friends from some years back and colleagues currently on an expat contract.

How has it been so far?

It has been a great experience. I am very happy with the classes I am attending – I feel that I learn something every day. I appreciate that all the classes are multicultural and there is a mix of both full time and part time students.  This allows for a lot of good discussions, and I constantly get reminded of the fact that there are always several perspectives to any issue, many of them very different from mine.

NUS is also a very active university – there is always something happening somewhere.  I have attended a few of the speeches and events announced on Facebook and WhatsApp.  In particular I would like to mention the presentation by Eric Feng about “Redefining Career”, which offered an interesting perspective on how your career can develop as you gain work experience and take on new challenges.

Continue reading

Faculty Profile: Prof Vivien Lim

We are delighted to kick off our 2016 Faculty Profile series with Professor Vivien Lim.

Deer Park Lake View-HiroshimaProf Lim has been with Business School for over twenty years. She started as a Senior Tutor with the Department of Management & Organization. She became our first female full Professor in 2014. She is also Deputy Head of the department and Director of the Women in Leadership Program.

She is well-received by her students, and has received numerous teaching awards. As a three-time winner of the Annual Teaching Excellence Award, she has been placed on the University’s Teaching Honour Roll.

Prof Lim is a leading scholar in the areas of job insecurity, cyberloafing, information technology and work and workplace misbehaviour, and has received numerous research awards at both faculty and international levels. She was the Editor-in-Chief of Applied Psychology: An International Review.

We caught up with her: Continue reading

Carrying Deloitte’s flag on campus

Student ambassador programmes by organisations help develop students’ technical and soft skills. One such initiative is the Deloitte Student Ambassador Program.

Launched in 2014, the Program was introduced to recognise talented new staff. Its Student Ambassadors are those who have accepted priority offers to join the firm upon graduation and have excelled in their studies, co-curricular activities or their internships with the firm.

The 2015 edition of the Program saw Low Zhan Hao Pierre, BAC Year 3 and Ngui Jia Yi, BAC Year 2 joining Deloitte as the firm’s Student Ambassadors. Continue reading

Making numbers count

Many students will say it is a dry subject. And Dr Liu agrees it can be hard to engage the students, especially for those with a phobia of numbers.

Yet Dr Liu Qi Zhang of Decisions Sciences has managed to win an Outstanding Educator Award for his work with students. This award recognises dedicated and innovative teachers who set new benchmarks in teaching.

ski pic vertical

What is decision science? Dr Liu says, simply, that it is the “science of making decisions”. Every day, managers have to make many decisions.  They are faced with a mountain of data. If they know which data to collate and analyse, they can use the insights gained to make optimal decisions for their companies.

Continue reading

Faculty Awards

Congratulations to the winners of the 2014/2015 Outstanding Researcher and Outstanding Educator Award at the Faculty level. These awards honour and recognise members of the NUS Business School community who, through their performance and commitment, set new benchmarks in the areas of research and teaching.

Outstanding Researcher Award

Young Researcher Award

Qian Wen Lan web ver

Assistant Professor Wenlan Qian from the Department of Finance has published numerous studies in top journals over the past two years. Recently, she was nominated to serve as a fellow of the Homer Hoyt Weimer School of Advanced Studies in Real Estate and Land Economics. Wenlan also serves on the editorial board of Real Estate Economics. In addition, her work has earned research grants from external associations, as well as international awards at some of the world’s most prestigious conferences. Recently, she won the award for best paper in asset pricing at Society of Financial Studies (SFS) Cavalcade, and also the BlackRock research award for best paper on capital markets at the Australasian Banking and Finance Conference.

Outstanding Researcher Award

Remus Ilies web ver

Professor Remus Ilies from the Department of Management and Organisation has research published or accepted for publication in top tier journals. Remus’ research addresses issues that are highly relevant for organisations and society. A remarkable feature of Remus’ work is his creativity in combining significance with outstanding theoretical and methodological sophistication. He has enhanced the reputation of NUS by publishing impactful research, as reflected in the number of citations (over 4000 citations in ISI and more than 11000 on Google Scholar) and numerous international research awards. Recently, he won the Center for Creative Leadership Award for best paper on Leadership for 2013 and 2014 at the European Association Of Work and Organizational Psychology Congress in Oslo.

Outstanding Researcher Award

Hameed Allaudeen web ver

Professor Allaudeen Hameed from the Department of Finance has published extensively in influential finance journals. In 2015 alone, he had five papers published, or accepted for publication in Journal of Financial Economics(JFE), Review of Financial Studies(RFS) and Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis(JFQA). This recent achievement puts him among the most productive researchers in the field of global finance. His research achievements have elevated the standing of our finance department. Besides being an active research mentor in the department advising many junior faculty and PhD students, Allaudeen has also been integral in exploring opportunities for joint Finance Masters programmes with other universities.

Outstanding Educator Award

Faculty awards 2015 montage

 

Financial Literacy – an opportunity for women to take charge

panel and room

Members of the Panel: Prof Ang Swee Hoon (moderator), Ms Baljeet Kaur Grewal, Ms Andress Goh, Dr Owi S. Ruivivar, Dr Qian Wenlan

When it comes to female financial literacy, there is good news and bad.

The bad news is that women are falling behind men, especially in an increasingly complex financial world.  The good news is women are more aware of this shortcoming and can take action to bridge this gap.

During the Centre for Asset Management Research and Investments’ 3rd Women in Banking and Investments forum, the four panelists discussed issues pertaining to financial literacy and gender diversity, as well as shared their anecdotes about how they learnt to be financially savvy. The unanimous personality that all of them highlighted as their first financial mentor was their mothers, emphasizing the vital role women play in ensuring the transmission of financial literacy to their children.

Continue reading

Never look back

In front of office 1Entrepreneurship is not about wealth, freedom or prestige. There is only one reason to become an entrepreneur: the passion to run one’s own business, according to Kelvin Teo (BAC Hons 2010), Director, Funding Societies.

“You need to be 100 percent sure why you are venturing out. And you believe that you’re better off failing in a start-up than succeeding in a MNC. Then do it and never look back,” he said.

Kelvin left his consulting job at a multinational firm and early this year, he co-founded Funding Societies, a peer-to-peer marketplace for SMEs to secure loans for growth.

Continue reading