Fox school professors competitive in business research

There are more than 150 faculty members associated with the university’s Fox School of Business and Management. Professor Ed Rosenthal is only one, but he is not alone in taking a well-publicized approach to his

There are more than 150 faculty members associated with the university’s Fox School of Business and Management. Professor Ed Rosenthal is only one, but he is not alone in taking a well-publicized approach to his professorial research.

The Fox School is home to a number of professors who, like Rosenthal, have been nationally recognized for their work outside the classroom.

Rosenthal, who is a management science professor with research interests in decision-making and game theory, had his first book, titled The Era of Choice: The Ability to Choose and Its Transformation of Contemporary Life, published in September.

He is not the only Fox professor who is active in research. Dr. Arvind Phatak, executive director of Temple University’s Institute for Global Management Studies, authored his own book in 2004. He received attention for his research into outsourcing and the specific coverage that CNN correspondent Lou Dobbs gave on the subject.

Dr. Daniel Fesenmaier, another Fox professor, has been working on a study on the use of technology for Tourism in Canada and in the United States. Each of these professors have offices in the Fox School, and they are all are nationally, if not internationally, recognized for their work in various areas.

“Like any good program, it’s competitive,” Rosenthal said, “you pass someone in the hall and you probably know some work they’ve done.”

Julie Fesenmaier, associate director of the Cochran Research Center, which houses much of the research done in Fox, characterizes work done by Fox professors as more “collaborative than competitive.”

“[Fox professors] compete with faculty from other universities, but within the school, research is too unique to have professors fighting for the same funding,” Fesenmaier said.

Still, Rosenthal said that a lot of the motivation comes from within the Fox School, and the competitive environment fostered by a highly talented faculty likely helps fuel already active professors.

David Reeb, an associate professor and Fuller Research Fellow, said that productivity is more about the hiring and not about the rewards.

Reeb said that Fox administration must have considered that when hiring for the last five to ten years.

“It’s harder to hire people who research; it’s more costly and takes longer too,” Reeb said.

That means there is more competition between schools to hire research-oriented professors such as Mosaaki Kotabe. Kotabe, a Fox professor, was called the “most prolific international marketing researcher in the world” by the Teaching in International Business in the 10 years preceding his joining Temple in 1998.

Although Julie Fesenmaier said the funding for the research of professors does give opportunities to hire students to gain practical business and research experience, some students aren’t even aware of the productivity at Fox.

Shari Cumberbatch, a junior marketing major, said she hasn’t heard about any professorial research. Jonathan Evans, a sophomore undecided major, said while some professors mention work they’ve done, he hasn’t heard about any current projects.

Rosenthal, the professor who recently published his first book, said many of his colleagues make a separation between research and their work at Temple.

“We all have a day job, but the very nature of this job demands that we be active outside of the classroom,” Rosenthal said.

Professor Mike Leeds said beyond the demands of his job, he researches “because it’s fun. I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t like to.”

Fox has weekly announcements about research that professors are conducting and at annual roundtables, individual professors can be recognized for particular distinction in field work.

“[Most professors] get a sense of who is good. Every university is competitive,” Rosenthal said. “The more competitive, the better the university. More than title or salary, here this notion of productivity is really the most important capital we carry around.”

Christopher Wink can be reached at

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