Economics and Business

Notable Faculty & Student Achievements

April 2024

  • Two East Asian Studies faculty members, Associate Professor of Art History Allison Miller and Visiting Professor of Economics Maorui Yang, and two students attended the ASIANetwork conference in Atlanta, Georgia from April 12-14. Natalie Davis ’27 presented her poster titled, “Dueling Depictions: Zhang Zhixin and the Politics of Femininity in Chinese Scar Art.” Kate Medlock ’26 presented her poster titled, “Reviving the Past: A Mid-Western Zhou Jade Pendant and its Neolithic References.” Maorui presented on the panel, “Teaching and Research in the Liberal Arts: ASIANetwork-Luce Postdoctoral Fellows.”

  • Olivia Bakke ’25, Logan LeBlanc ’25, and Abby Ryan ’25 competed in the National Collegiate Digital Marketing Championships hosted by Baylor University on April 10-11. They competed in all the events and demonstrated outstanding team camaraderie. Logan won the Viral Competition on YouTube marketing.

March 2024

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi and Student Researcher Abigail (Abby) Ryan ’25 presented their research project, “Proactively Leveraging Generative AI Tools in Marketing Courses: A Process for Prompt Engineering Assignments” at the Marketing Management Association’s Spring Educators Conference on March 21-22.

  • Assistant Professor of Economics Chandrayee Chatterjee presented her co-authored paper titled “Spillover Effects of Advertising: Do TV Advertisements for Non-Food Health Products Promote Healthy Food Choices?” at the American Marketing Association Winter Academic Conference at St. Pete’s Beach, FL, on February 25. The paper was accepted for a session in the competitive paper category.

  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Theatre Amy King wrote, directed, and produced a staged reading of her new play Finger Lickin’ Goodat the Jones Theatre in February. The cast included students Jason Bui ’27 as Raymond, Kyle Bussone-Peterson ’24 as Kevin, and Connor Bustos ’26 on stage directions. They were joined by guest Gina Houston in the leading role of Alice and Director of Business Internships and Assistant Professor of Business Andy Ross as Jim, etc., in his acting debut! The reading was also performed at Austin Community College in Highland Park.

February 2024

  • Assistant Professor of Economics Chandrayee Chatterjee was invited to present her work in the Economics Seminar Series at the Department of Economics and Decision Sciences at Western Illinois University. She presented her paper titled “Spillover Effects of Advertising on Health Behavior and Nutritional Choices” virtually on February 16th.

November 2023

  • Assistant Professor of Economics Chandrayee Chatterjee jointly organized a session called “The Economics of Risky Behavior” and presented her paper titled “Vaping Regulations and Mental Health of Teenagers” at the 2023 Annual Conference of the Southern Economic Association in New Orleans from November 18th to 20th.

November 2021

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi published her coauthored paper “Implementing Big Data Analytics in Marketing Departments: Mixing Organic and Administered Approaches to Increase Data-Driven Decision Making” in Informatics. The paper examines different strategies utilized by marketing departments to become more data-driven in their decision making.

October 2021

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi participated on a panel about innovations to connect students with industry practice at the Marketing Management Association Conference, held virtually October 13–15. Sihi also presented her research project titled “Remaining Relevant and Renewing Perceptions: The Use of Interactive Marketing by Small Businesses during Operational Disruptions” at the Interactive Marketing Research Conference, held virtually October 20–22 and 25–26 and hosted by the Gabelli School of Business at Fordham University.

  • Assistant Professor of Business Raji Kunapuli’s co-authored paper titled “Seeking Input When the Train Has Left the Station: The Decoupling of Participative Strategic Decision-Making Processes and the Role of New Technology in Symbolic Management” was published in the journal Strategic Organization.

August 2021

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi helps different organizations develop marketing campaigns to highlight the importance of budgeting and financial literacy, stemming from her days as a volunteer with Junior Achievement. Recently, she shared insights about budgeting for college students in U.S. News & World Report.

June 2021

  • Southwestern University alumni Jose Melendez ’20 and Mikayla Miller ’19 graduated from the Rice University master of accounting program this May.

May 2021

  • Part-Time Assistant Professor of Economics Mohammad Khan had an article titled “Household Evacuation Planning and Preparation for Future Hurricanes: Role of Utility Service Disruptions” accepted for publication in the journal Transportation Research Record.

  • Please join us in congratulating the recipients of the following awards:

    • 2021 Teaching Awards
      • Tenured: Associate Professor of Education Alicia Moore
      • Tenure-track: Assistant Professor of Business Gabriela Flores
      • Visiting, part-time, and staff with faculty rank: Director of General Chemistry Labs Willis Weigand
    • 2021 Jesse E. Purdy Excellence in Scholarly and Creative Works Award
      • Tenured: Associate Professor of Communication Studies Bob Bednar
      • Tenure-track: Assistant Professor of History Joseph Hower
    • 2021 Excellence in Advising Award
      • Professor of Spanish Laura Senio Blair

April 2021

  • Business and biology major Andrew Vergote ’21 gave a talk titled “Novel Bioinks: The Gateway to Bioprinting Complex Biological Tissues” at the 2021 BBB South Central Virtual Regional Convention. The talk resulted from research that Vergote completed with Assistant Professor of Physics Cody Crosby in spring 2021. They plan to continue this research as a funded Faculty–Student Project this summer.

  • Nereida Zarco ’16 and Associate Professor of Economics and Business Debika Sihi were selected as members of the inaugural Marketing EDGE Ambassador program, a select group of corporate professionals, students, and academics that help connect students to opportunities in the field of marketing.

  • Associate Professor of Economics and Business Debika Sihi  was invited to join the editorial review board for the Journal of Business Research  under the Big Data and Analytics track.

Feburary 2021

  • Assistant Professor of Business and Director of Business Internships Andy Ross presented “Designing a Study Abroad Program for Business Students” at the 13th annual Virginia Tech Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy on February 5, 2021.

January 2021

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi provided insights about Netflix’s audio-only version of its content in an article for Lifewire, a technology information website (ranked a top-10 tech information site in 2017). Read the article here.

  • Part-Time Assistant Professor of Economics Mohammad Khan presented a paper titled “The Deadly Connection between Hurricanes and Sinkholes: Analyzing Market Responses to Multiple Environmental Risks” at the virtual Allied Social Science Association 2021 Annual Meeting on January 3.

November 2020

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi presented a coauthored project titled “The Use of Social Media and Social Interaction in Crowdsourcing in the FFE (fuzzy front end) of NPD” at the Society of Marketing Advances Annual Conference November 4–7, 2020. This project examines the impact of online versus offline mechanisms of crowdsourcing on idea generation during the new product development process.

October 2020

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi presented and chaired a panel titled “Calm during Crisis: Creating Classroom Environments that Foster Learning and Collaboration” at the Marketing Management Association Conference October 28–30, 2020. She and two colleagues (from a private and public university) led a discussion on different initiatives to support and engage students during a challenging academic year.

  • Associate Professor of Business Hazel Nguyen and economics graduate Diana Trevino ’20 presented their research titled “They’ve Figured It out! Gender Differences in Executive Language Styles through Shareholders’ Letters” at the virtual Financial Management Association Annual Meeting on October 23. The presentation was based on work conducted as part of SCOPE 2019. In their project, Nguyen and Trevino  ask whether there are differences in language and communication styles used by female versus male CEOs and how these language differences represent differences in leadership styles. They find that there are significant differences in thematic tones between female and male CEOs. Female CEOs’ languages are more comprehensible and emphasize transformational changes, optimism, mutual understanding, and rapport more than those of male CEOs while also being more resolute and authoritative.

  • Part-Time Professor of Economics Jim Christianson was one of three Austin certified public accountants selected via a random drawing to serve on the the City of Austin Applicant Review Panel. This panel will select 60 applicants for the City of Austin Independent Citizens Redistricting  Commission, which is charged with redrawing the 10 City of Austin Council districts after the 2020 census is complete. Christianson teaches Accounting and Business Law at Southwestern. 

  • Associate Director of Admission Rebecca Rother and Associate Professor of Economics and Business Debika Sihi presented a session about business degrees in the liberal arts through the Colleges that Change Lives virtual program.

September 2020

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi  was interviewed, along with the vice president of brand at E.l.f. Cosmetics and faculty from the University of Virginia and Carnegie Mellon, for an article in Retail Dive  on what the future of TikTok means for retail. Read the article here .

August 2020

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi taught a class on August 4, 2020, titled Marketing for Start-Ups during COVID-19 for 25 entrepreneurs. She offered guidance on developing and adapting marketing strategies in the current economic environment. On August 7, 2020, Sihi was an invited speaker at the virtual Summer Stukent Digital Summit, where she conducted a session titled “Cookies, Clicks, and Credit Cards: Teaching Students How Their Data Is Used and Protected.” The session covered how to structure multiple class lessons on data use and privacy. Specific topics included the consumer privacy paradox and the current regulatory environment (e.g., the General Data Protection Regulation and the California Consumer Privacy Act).

July 2020

  • Five Southwestern students, Tanmai Korapala ’21, Melanie Lim ’21, Cassidy Mayfield ’20, Thuymi Phung ’23, and Blake Stilwell ’22, completed the Marketing EDGE Summer Series, in which they participated in interactive sessions with the director of graduate development at Equifax, the vice president of marketing for the Brooklyn Nets, the CEO of FishUSA, Inc., and university students around the country.

May 2020

  • Emeritus Professor of Economics Emily Northrop’s op-ed about climate change and COVID-19 was featured in It can be read here.

January 2020

  • Associate Professor of Business Debika Sihi served as a judge for the American Marketing Association (AMA) Collegiate Case Competition in collaboration with Cotton Incorporated. The competition includes submissions from student teams from different universities across the U.S.