Ruth V. Aguilera, the Darla and Frederick Brodsky Trustee Professor in Global Business and Distinguished Professor of International Business and Strategy at the D'Amore-McKim School of Business, was recently elected as an Academy of Management (AOM) fellow. The AOM is the world's largest society of management scholars, and fellowship is an honor bestowed to members for outstanding service to the discipline who have significantly advanced the fields of management and practice.
Since Aguilera is also a fellow of both the Strategic Management Society (SMS) and the Academy of International Business (AIB), she has earned entrance into what she calls the “Triple Crown” – an exclusive group of professionals who have made a mark in the domains of strategy, international business, and management. She says this praise for her work and service from her peers and fellow members is “truly really humbling.”
“Ruth exemplifies the kind of high-impact scholars we've attracted to the D'Amore-McKim School of Business in recent years,” says Olubunmi (Bunmi) Faleye, Interim Associate Dean of Faculty and Research. “Her work at the intersection of corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, and global business breaks new ground in multiple fields and commands the respect of her peers. It's well-deserved that she's now a fellow of three major scholarly societies.”
Aguilera believes her most significant contribution to the industry is her ability to pose and analyze empirical questions about pressing societal problems, which helps her better understand how businesses can and should respond to them. For instance, she and her colleagues recently surveyed firms about issues like the #MeToo movement. “More often than not, we find (people ask) questions about the role of employees in the organization, which are important to ask, but it's also key in this day and age to question the role of organizations in relation to their stakeholders and society as a whole,” she says.
The level of enthusiasm and passion her team of research assistants, doctoral students, and colleagues have to work together, accomplish the same goal, and succeed as a unit is one of her major driving factors. She attributes creating this culture to Northeastern University President Joseph E. Aoun because she thinks it all starts at the top. She also enjoys the diversity of the Northeastern student community. “Teaching my students about global challenges and how to be responsive to them in a global ecosystem is a fantastic experience. The fact that our students relate to these challenges is very encouraging,” she says.
With both a passion for business history and a doctorate from Harvard, Aguilera has spent time living almost all over the world, including Spain, the UK, Singapore, South Korea, Mexico, and a few other Latin American nations. Through these experiences, she learned how to raise relevant questions at the right moment, which she believes contributed to her scholarly success.
She is now working on the three key areas for the Chair she now holds—one of the most prestigious chairs at Northeastern University—the Darla and Frederick Brodsky Trustee Professor in Global Business. These include working with her colleagues in further developing D'Amore-McKim's International Business and Strategy research agenda, ensuring that international business activities are a center of excellence in the school, and helping to create programs that enhance international business education. She also hopes to keep giving our international students an outstanding education and assisting them with their research and professional careers.