UW News

April 15, 2004

Business School presents sixth annual Global Business Challenge

Students from universities around the globe are converging in Seattle this week to compete in the UW Business School’s sixth annual Global Business Challenge.

Keeping in step with today’s intercontinental trade environment, the Global Business Challenge includes 64 undergraduates from Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand and three American business schools, including the UW. In addition to participating in the competition, the four-person teams have had a chance to tour local corporations and share their respective cultures with students at Seattle’s Hamilton Middle School.

Crunch-time starts today, when teams are given a business case for which they must develop a solution within 48 hours and then present their findings to a panel of corporate judges. Organizers said it provides a challenging opportunity for students to put into practice the global business knowledge they’ve acquired in the classroom in a situation designed to simulate the real business world.

“Our main goal is to create more cross-culturally competent students,” said Pete Dukes, associate dean for undergraduate programs at the UW Business School. “They learn the finer points of leadership, teamwork, business case analysis, technology utilization, research, international communication, cross-cultural competence, networking and corporate presentation skills.”

The Global Business Challenge is produced and supported by the school’s Global Business Center and students in the nationally ranked Certificate of International Studies in Business program. Teams will be judged on quality, creativity and professionalism in presenting their analysis of the business problem. Final rounds will be held Saturday, April 17, and are open to the public. The winning team will be announced at an awards banquet that evening.

Last year’s winning team, from Seoul National University, created an international expansion strategy for Starbucks Coffee Co. Since its inception six years ago, 58 business schools from 32 countries and 11 states have participated. Past winners hail from Brazil, Germany, Singapore, South Korea and the United States.

Sponsors include Boeing, ConocoPhillips, Costco, Expeditors, Ford Motor Co., Microsoft, Starbucks and Washington First International Bank.

Global Business Challenge 2004 participating schools:


Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, China

University of Auckland, New Zealand

National University of Singapore, Singapore

Seoul National University, South Korea

Thammasat University, Thailand


D. Tsenov Academy of Economics, Bulgaria

Copenhagen Business School, Denmark

Grenoble Ecole de Management, France

Universitat Kaiserslautern, Germany

Universita Commerciale Luigi Bocconi, Italy

Latin America

University of Sao Paolo, Brazil

North America

McGill University, Canada

Simon Fraser University, Canada

University of Oregon

University of Washington

Georgetown University

For more information see http://depts.washington.edu/bacisb/gbc/index.shtml