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Research in climate change suggests that even an incremental increase in average global temperatures can trigger disastrous effects around the world. Although efforts are being made to curb carbon dioxide emissions and sustain stable environments, climate scientists warn that “there will still be consequences" if more drastic actions are not taken. Global businesses that depend on vast energy usage are now paying attention to new corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives.

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Second Shift captures the dynamic, collaborative management model that essentially saved a U.S. manufacturing city - Lansing, Michigan. The "Second Shift Model" has now been codified in a book and a documentary.

When car-making giant General Motors decided to close its plant in LansingMichigan, in 1996, one person – the city’s newly elected mayor, David Hollister – stood up and said “no.” Hollister’s “no” began a five-year competitive, collaborative, strategically intricate process to keep GM in town.

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This blog is about Second Shift: The Inside Story of the Keep GM Movement, a business trade book coauthored by Tomas Hult, Director of Michigan State University’s International Business Center, which is the developer of globalEDGE. The book was coauthored with David Hollister, Ray Tadgerson, and David Closs, and published by McGraw Hill Professional in 2016.

The Second Shift Model discussed in the book was “the dynamic, collaborative management model that saved a U.S. manufacturing city." When car-making giant General Motors decided to close its plant in Lansing, Michigan, in 1996, one person—the city’s newly elected mayor—stood up and said “no.” Initially, it was the cry of a man in the wilderness. Not once in its century-long history had GM reversed a decision to close a plant. But Mayor David Hollister quietly went to work building the ”Lansing Works! Keep GM!” movement and succeeded in defying all the odds.

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On Monday, October 5, the OECD published a new package of international corporate tax standards that is expected to be approved by the G-20 nations. One of the main goals of the new standards is to limit “profit shifting”, which occurs when companies develop legal structures to report profits in the lowest tax jurisdictions available. If the new standards are enacted by the G-20, it is estimated that governments around the world will recover between $100 and $240 billion in lost revenue per year.

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For more than three months now, the online retailing giant Amazon has been locked in a feud with the publishing company Hachette, which is part of the French media group Lagardère. At first, the feud seemed to start as a pricing dispute over e-books distributed by Hachette. Soon, the disagreements began to multiply and cover even more issues, leading to drastic courses of action by both companies. Booksellers everywhere are nervously anticipating this battle, for whatever decision the two rivals come to will set an important precedent for the relationship between Amazon and publishers. However, it is unclear when this war will end.

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Yesterday, our latest blog post examined the business effects of the new tuition reimbursement plan of Starbucks at a macro-level. Today, we will cover the plan in more detail to learn how it could affect workers on an individual level. In attempts to decrease employee turnover, many large companies are seeking new retention strategies. Starbucks is using an education incentive to achieve this goal. Its new “Starbucks College Achievement Plan” will help qualified workers pay their full tuition for online courses taken through Arizona State University. And although the program has impressive benefits, some critics believe that it will not help workers as much as it promises.

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For many corporations in the US, having to pay the high corporate tax rate is a problem worth avoiding. In order for these companies to avoid having to pay these taxes, they are reporting profits under the holdings of offshore subsidiaries. There is a lot of speculation that if companies could bring the money back over to the US, it would stimulate the economy and help the United States. In order for this to become reality though, the current tax rate would have to be much lower. There is in fact some myth to this. In order for the money to be considered "offshore" on the financial statements, the money simply has to be under a foreign subsidiary, even if it is invested in a bank in the US like a lot of companies' profit currently is. This allows them to avoid having to pay the US corporate tax rate on their offshore profits, while still having the money accessible in the US.

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Economist Milton Friedman once said, "responsibility... generally will be to make as much money as possible while conforming to their basic rules of the society, both those embodied in law and those embodied in ethical custom". Business ethics reflect the fundamental purposes of a company and are extremely important for multinational corporations, especially when trying to expand their brands into new countries and cultures. As globalization further expands, multinational corporations find that business integrity is perceived differently in different countries and often poses a challenge for business expansion.

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It is almost undeniable that cloud computing is the future. And when it comes to technology the future is now. Cloud computing is the ability to store, manage and process data in a remote server that is hosted on the internet. Essentially, it is your hard drive but out on the internet so you are able to access it anywhere from any device that is outfitted with internet. The possibilities of this technology are seemingly endless and multinational businesses want in.

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Southeast Asia set high expectation for 2013 despite the global crisis, but it was Thailand that caught my attention.  The country’s economy is expected to grow 5.7% in the coming year.  One cause is the substantial increase in public investment for higher quality infrastructure, education, energy and health.  Furthermore, there has been an flood of foreign ventures by not only large corporations, but also small business on Thailand’s resources, technology, and human capital.  This stream of assets has, in turn, created a new consumer base and multinational companies that are quietly looking outward.

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On almost any business team, confrontation is something that is part of every meeting. It is a way to get ideas out on the table, and usher in new innovative solutions. Even at the university level, students are taught how to confront peers in correct ways, to empower team members and not scare them off. However, in the context of a team made up of multiple cultures, this typical American stance on confrontation could be viewed as downright rude and inconsiderate.

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The deals and sales offered during this year’s holiday season captured us all, but companies have been shopping as well. In fact, Japan’s multinational corporations seem to have gone on global shopping spree. This past year, Japanese companies spent a record $80 billion on approximately 620 foreign companies. These international investments could be seen as not only a sign of economic strength, but also as an indication of domestic weakness.

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When you think of a major international business hub, densely populated metropolitan areas such as London, Tokyo, and New York City come to mind. They are home to many multinational corporations’ headquarters and countless commercial offices; business never seems to cease in these cities. The relentless rise of electricity prices and a growing demand for high-quality power could drastically change the geography of these international business hubs in the next decade.

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One of the critical factors of having a large, successful international operation is having “feet on the street” in the country where multinational companies do business.  Recently, an article from ChinaDaily.com featured some staggering statistics about expatriates and the duration of their stay in the country.  Although business demands often dictate relocation by executives and their families, is this the most efficient use of resources?