Tensions: Business, Civic Society and Politics

Leadership for Society
Tensions: Business, Civic Society and Politics

Professor Brian Lowery dares to ask the questions that demand answers in our provocative speaker series examining the significant opportunities and major challenges of balancing short-term return on investments with long-term goals of sustainability, equity, and social stability through the theme Tensions: Business, Civic Society and Politics.

Join the Stanford Graduate School of Business’s Leadership for Society Program this winter to explore Tensions: Business, Civic Society and Politics. Conversations air on Mondays at 6:30pm PT via YouTube.

Session 1
January 8, 2024 6:30 PM PT

HOW FAST FOOD FRANCHISES SHAPE COMMUNITIES

Join us as we explore the complex relationship between fast food franchises, civic engagement, business opportunity, and communities in the United States.

Marcia Chatelain

Marcia Chatelain

Penn Presidential Compact Professor of Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Franchise: The Golden Arches in Black America

Session 2
January 15, 2024 6:30 PM PT

THE ECONOMICS OF INEQUALITY

Nobel laureate Sir Angus Deaton addresses the crisis of “deaths of despair” in the United States. Americans without bachelor’s degrees are dying at much higher rates than those who hold a bachelor’s degree. Who should be responsible for addressing this crisis? What is the role of the government? What role does economics play?

Sir Angus Deaton

Sir Angus Deaton

Senior Scholar and the Dwight D. Eisenhower Professor of Economics and International Affairs Emeritus at the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs and the Economics Department at Princeton University.

Session 3
January 22, 2024 6:30 PM PT

THE FIRST AMENDMENT AND ITS SOCIAL DISCONTENTS

Are government officials’ social media accounts private or should they be considered “state action”? Stanford Law School Professor Pam Karlan discusses the recent case that she argued before the US Supreme Court in this conversation about the First Amendment and social media.

Pam Karlan

Pam Karlan

Stanford law professor; co-director Supreme Court law clinic;

Session 4
January 29, 2024 6:30 PM PT

BUILDING BRIDGES: THE YMCA’S ROLE IN A DIVIDED AMERICA

What role can and should civic organizations like the YMCA of the USA play at a time of intense political polarization, demographic segregation, and rising socioeconomic inequality? Suzanne McCormick, President and CEO of the YMCA of the USA, discusses their opportunities and challenges in creating a space that is welcoming to all.

Suzanne McCormick

Suzanne McCormick

President and CEO, YMCA of the USA

Session 5
February 5, 2024 6:30 PM PT

GOVERNING TECH: INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION AND COMPETITION

When regulating something as complex as artificial intelligence, how should countries work together? What are the responsibilities of private citizens, civic organizations, and governments in regulating and governing technology? How do you balance profit with national security? Mariano-Florentino (Tino) Cuéllar, President of the Carnegie Foundation for International Peace discusses these important questions in the next Leadership for Society conversation with Professor Brian Lowery.

Mariano-Florentino (Tino) Cuéllar

Mariano-Florentino (Tino) Cuéllar

President, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Session 6
February 12, 2024 6:30 PM PT

BEYOND THE CHECKERED FLAG: WHAT F1 TELLS US ABOUT SPORT AND SOCIETY

Formula One is a global sport. It has teams that cost many millions to operate, it races at some 24 venues around the world, and it hosts an array of sponsors. F1 is big business that arouses fans’ passion and entices countries and sponsors that want a piece of its glow for a variety of reasons, which can lay bare the tensions between business, civic society and politics. Toni Cowan-Brown, an F1 commentator, addresses these challenges and the opportunities for the sport in this Leadership for Society conversation.

Toni Cowan-Brown

Toni Cowan-Brown

A San Francisco-based tech and Formula 1 commentator examining the crossovers with tech, politics, F1 and internet culture.

Session 7
February 19, 2024 6:30 PM PT

WHEN THE WELL RUNS DRY: TENSIONS, SOLUTIONS, THE FUTURE OF WATER

Water is critical for life on Earth to survive but there is a finite amount of water and many stakeholders who want it. Who should determine who has access and who doesn’t? What does equitable water access look like? How much should we pay for a natural resource like water? Pacific Institute Co-Founder and Senior Fellow Peter Gleick discusses the tensions inherent in determining who should have access to water, how much businesses, agriculture, and communities should have, and how to plan for a future with less water.

Dr. Peter Gleick

Dr. Peter Gleick

Internationally recognized environmental scientist and communicator and co-founder of the Pacific Institute in Oakland, California.

Session 8
February 26, 2024 6:30 PM PT

THE DIVIDED STATES OF AMERICA

The United States has become deeply polarized along political party lines. In a country where most people choose to surround themselves with like-minded individuals, finding common ground between those with different beliefs becomes increasingly difficult. New York Times columnist Thomas Edsall addresses these tensions and other challenges to the future of democracy in this conversation.

Thomas B. Edsall

Thomas B. Edsall

The New York Times opinion columnist and Columbia School of Journalism adjunct professor

Session 9
March 4, 2024 6:30 PM PT

TECHNOLOGY, FOREIGN POLICY AND NATIONAL SECURITY

How do we balance tensions between business interests and national security in a deeply connected world? We benefit from immigration and in some cases rely on manufacturing capabilities and investment from countries like China but still need to be mindful of national security concerns associated with geopolitical competitors. H.R. McMaster, 25th United States National Security Advisor discusses these challenges and more in this conversation on technology, foreign policy and national security.

H.R. McMaster

H.R. McMaster

25th United States National Security Advisor

More Session Details Coming Soon!

This site will be updated weekly with upcoming sessions. In the meantime, please register below and explore past sessions on our YouTube playlist from this “Tensions: Business, Civic Society and Politics” series.

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After registering by completing this form, the Leadership for Society Program will send you a calendar invitation and reminder email to join sessions live via YouTube.

With any questions, email: gsb_leadershipforsociety@stanford.edu

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