Media Releases

Rotman Associate Dean joins new research network to study and design innovative ways of solving public problems

March 5, 2014

TORONTO, ON — A noted researcher and associate dean of the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management is one of the founding faculty members of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Opening Governance, which will seek to develop blueprints for more effective and legitimate democratic institutions to help improve people’s lives.

Prof. Anita McGahan joins a prestigious group of 12 researchers in the Research Network which was announced today by The Governance Lab (The GovLab) at New York University.

Convened and organized by the GovLab, the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Opening Governance is made possible by a three-year grant of $5 million from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation as well as a gift from Google.org, which will allow the Network to tap the latest technological advances to further its work.

Combining empirical research with real-world experiments, the Research Network will study what happens when governments and institutions open themselves to diverse participation, pursue collaborative problem-solving, and seek input and expertise from a range of people. Network members include 12 experts in computer science, political science, policy informatics, social psychology and philosophy, law and communications. This core group is supported by an advisory network of academics, technologists, and current and former government officials. Together, they will assess existing innovations in governing and experiment with new practices and how institutions make decisions at the local, national, and international levels.

Support for the Network from Google.org will be used to build technology platforms to solve problems more openly and to run agile, real-world, empirical experiments with institutional partners such as governments and NGOs to discover what can enhance collaboration and decision-making in the public interest.

Anita M. McGahan is Associate Dean of Research, PhD Director, Professor and Rotman Chair in Management at the Rotman School of Management. She is cross appointed to the UofT’s Munk School of Global Affairs; is a Senior Associate at the Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness at Harvard University; and is Chief Economist at the Massachusetts General Hospital Division for Global Health and Human Rights. Her credits include two books and over 100 articles, case studies, notes and other published material on competitive advantage, industry evolution, and financial performance. Prof. McGahan’s current research emphasizes entrepreneurship in the public interest and innovative collaboration between public and private organizations. She is also pursuing a long-standing interest in the inception of new industries, particularly in global health.

Further information on the Research Network is online at www.opening-governance.org.

The Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is redesigning business education for the 21st century with a curriculum based on Integrative Thinking. Located in the world’s most diverse city, the Rotman School fosters a new way to think that enables the design of creative business solutions.  For more information, visit www.rotman.utoronto.ca.

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