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Dean Blount's Blog
Reflections on Kellogg, management education and life in the 21st century


Out in the World

The Wormhole to the New MillenniumThe Wormhole to the New Millennium
May 7, 2012

Since the start of the new millennium, the world order has undergone a powerful transformation process. Rarely in human history has such a major chronological marker coincided with a decade of such deep social, economic, geographic and political upheaval. In fact, I’d argue that humankind has been through a virtual socio-economic wormhole since 2000. Read more...

The Kellogg MosaicThe Kellogg Mosaic
April 13, 2012

Key to building Kellogg's global architecture is cultivating interconnections that span both within and across our many cultures, campuses, programs, global origins and intellectual perspectives. At Kellogg, we take pride in the rich mosaic that makes up our vibrant, multi-faceted community. Read more...

Kellogg NewsmakersKellogg Newsmakers
December 14, 2011

In several recent posts, I’ve written about the dynamism of the Kellogg culture —something that is not only evident within our walls but radiates outward, making a positive impact on business and society at large. Consider just the last two weeks as members of our community have been honored and acknowledged for their contributions as they’ve moved markets, organizations and communities.
Making Peace and Motivating ActionMaking Peace and Motivating Action
October 17, 2011

The Norwegian Nobel Committee recently sent a powerful message to the world when it awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to three women. The written statement was quite clear: “We cannot achieve democracy and lasting peace in the world unless women obtain the same opportunities as men to influence developments at all levels of society.” I am in awe of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman, who have taken on so much in environments far less supportive of women than I have experienced in my life. Read More...

While in São Paulo, I had the chance to meet with 80-plus Kellogg alumni based in the region.

August 23, 2011

I was in São Paulo, Brazil this past week. While there, I had the chance to meet with 80-plus Kellogg alumni based in the region. I also participated in a meeting of the International Advisory Board for Fundação Dom Cabral, a long-time Kellogg partner in Executive Education. Read More...

The Market and Mother Nature

March 24, 2011

In Sunday’s New York Times, Thomas Friedman wrote that “the market and Mother Nature” are “the two most merciless forces on earth.” That’s an unusual and very powerful analogy, one that made me stop and reflect. Both create enormous abundance and wreak ruthless havoc on humankind. Both are capricious as to when and where they strike—sometimes with force, other times with subtlety. And both are powerful forces that humans work imperfectly to tame. Read More...

March 16, 2011

I was in New York City last week, where I met with many Kellogg alumni and friends. We hosted our annual Kellogg IMPACT event that featured alumnus Pete Peterson ’47, former Secretary of Commerce, co-founder of the Blackstone Group and chairman of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation. I also had the chance to catch up with Judy Samuelson, executive director of the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Program. Read More...


February 2, 2011

2011 has been an amazing year so far—from ringing the bell at the New York Stock Exchange with a group of our alumni from the financial sector, meeting one-on-one with former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Hank Paulson who was on campus to give a talk to our students, and attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.Read More...


January 27, 2011

I am writing from Davos, where I am attending the World Economic Forum. It is humbling and such an honor to represent Kellogg and Northwestern — to be in the company of the world’s thought leaders from the public and private sectors as well as fellow academics. There are many from the Kellogg community here, including Ellen Kullman, CEO of DuPont (who is serving as co-chair of WEF), Shumeet Banerji, CEO of Booz & Company, and Gary Parr, vice chair and managing director of Lazard. Read More...

First 100 Days

November 11, 2010

These 100 days have flown by, and I have to be honest—I am still not fully settled in. The last of my boxes and furniture only arrived in Evanston last week, and my suitcase has been packed and on planes with me every week. But despite the frequent travel and hectic pace of the transition, I find myself deeply energized and excited by the challenges and victories that lay ahead. I’m feeling more convinced than ever about the critical role that business schools need to own and embrace in preparing leaders for the 21st century and the unique role that Kellogg can play in that task. Read More...


November 1, 2010

Well—the first 100 days are over. We marked the milestone with an incredible celebration on Thursday night in New York City. More than 500 Kellogg alumni gathered at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the room housing the Temple of Dendur. That night, we lit the temple and the whole room purple—literally. It was a great evening. Read More...

Civic Opera

October 20, 2010

Last week ended with a whirlwind of activity—the Chicago alumni hosted a terrific welcome event for me at the Lyric Opera house on Thursday. More than 500 alumni attended with standing room only. We all enjoyed a performance of "Toreador Song" from the opera Carmen, I shared a few words and people connected over hors d'œuvres and desserts well into the night. The enthusiasm of the crowd for Kellogg and our next chapter together was so gratifying. Several alumni came up to me or wrote afterward—commenting on how much they enjoyed the event and want to engage as we work to take the school forward into its second century. What a powerful testament the turn-out was to the energy and vibrance of the Kellogg spirit.  Read More...

Looking Back, Looking Forward

October 8, 2010

I had the privilege of attending the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington, D.C. this week, where I caught up with two Kellogg CEO alumni—Ellen Kullman '83 at DuPont and Barb Hulit '91 at Fluke, a division of Danaher. I also sat in a conference session led by Warren Buffett, who was filled with his typical candor, wit and insight. At one point, he made the thought-provoking observation that he's been alive for one-third of the life of our country—a vivid reminder of just how comparatively young the U.S. is. Read More...

Exploring Global Plays for the 21st Century

September 30, 2010

The bustle continues—another week full of travel and meetings in Chicago, Evanston and other key U.S. cities. I met some terrific alumni at a dinner in Minneapolis on Monday night and held my first faculty meeting yesterday at the Allen Center. One of the questions that keeps coming up in all of my discussions, both on and off campus, is that of Kellogg's global strategy—what will it be? Read More...

Alive and Well

September 23, 2010

It’s been two busy weeks of meetings and community building with students and alumni since I last wrote. The energy and curiosity that is shared by these groups around our next chapter is palpable –triggering countless interesting discussions. Last week, I met with many of our students in small groups. Some of the stories I heard were quite extraordinary. For example, one of our students was a founding member of an after school program for underprivileged kids. Read More...

It Takes a Village to Make a Dean

August 12, 2010

One of Kellogg’s less recognized, but clear, strengths is in its doctoral education and post-doctoral training. Consider my home department, Management and Organizations, which educates the faculty who teach management and strategy courses at some of the world’s best business schools. Students who join our department benefit from Kellogg’s broad-based approach that balances the study of management with the study of markets. Our graduates sit as tenured professors on the faculty of major business schools in the U.S. (e.g., Berkeley, Columbia, Cornell, Darden, Harvard, Stern, Wharton) and beyond (e.g., London Business School, Melbourne Business School, Rotman School in Toronto). I have personally benefitted from the power of this “Kellogg Network” at many points in my career. Read More...

August 10, 2010

After last week’s blog post, a friend forwarded me an article from Friday’s New York Times. It talked about the increasing popularity of Middle Eastern sites for student study abroad programs. She’d highlighted a great quote: "these are not the same kids who go bike touring in France.” In her note, she wrote, “That sounds like Haley." Read More...

Do More, Be More

August 5, 2010

I just got off the phone with Haley, my college-age daughter, who’s spending the summer traveling in Central America on a research grant from her college. She’s studying rural poverty in the region and the revolutionary movements it has inspired. In the process, she is visiting different types of farms, including some undertaking sustainable agriculture and eco-tourism projects. Read More...

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