Whether you manage investments in London, run a division of a manufacturing company in China, or teach economics in an office building near Washington Square Park in New York City, it’s hard not to feel that you’re part of the global economy. The world may not yet be entirely flat, in the words of New York Times columnist and author Thomas Friedman, who visited campus in the spring. But it is certainly a lot less hilly than it used to be. Information, experiences, best practices, and relationships today transcend national borders and time zones. This mindset informs the way we study the world, the way we teach, and the way we envision NYU Stern’s mission.

This issue of STERNbusiness focuses on aspects of interconnectedness – on how NYU Stern benefits from being a part of the global community, and how NYU Stern alumni take what they learned at Stern with them as they set out to make their way in the world, and to improve it. This issue’s cover story, on Abraham George, is both inspiring and humbling. Last January, I had the opportunity to visit with Dr. George in India and to see some of the fruits of his philanthropic efforts first-hand. In December, with Dr. George’s assistance, we’re planning a conference on sustainable development with our Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship, which hosts so many of our initiatives on social entrepreneurship. The notion that business – and businesspeople – can be a force for social change isn’t merely a talking point or a matter of public relations. Through the work of our professors, students, and alumni, it is something we see every day. In April, the Berkley Center brought together experts and practitioners at its third annual Conference of Social Entrepreneurs. And it’s exhilarating to note that members of the Stern family who have just embarked on their careers, such as Noah Dinkin, have already adopted this mindset.

Even as we examine the way the world is changing, and embrace those changes, it’s useful to sit back and recognize the constants in our life. We’re pleased to recognize in this issue the incredibly long and fruitful career of Ernest Kurnow, who has gently and expertly introduced generations of students to the world of statistics, and to feature the work of Ed Altman, who this year marks his 40th year as a valued member of Stern’s faculty.

Looking through the magazine, I found myself impressed with the variety and range of activities, people, and events on campus. I invite you to come and see for yourself.

Thomas F. Cooley