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January 26, 2004

Doing Business in Brazil:
Study Tour Highlights Opportunities

A January educational trip to Brazil explored aspects of conducting business with the largest country in South America. Organized by the Illinois Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), the study tour gave participants a chance to discover the impact of culture, economics, and management on the business climate.

Supported by stipends awarded by CIBER and the Lemann Endowment, fourteen graduate students from the Urbana campus participated in the tour which was led by Werner Baer, professor of economics and the Jorge Lemann Endowed Chair in Economics, and Lynnea Johnson, associate director of CIBER. The students included nine MBA, three MS, and two doctoral students, most of whom also attended an international business course taught by Professor Joseph Cheng in preparation for their trip.

The tour included stops in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro for lectures at the University of Sao Paulo and visits to Brazilian-owned companies such as Natura, a natural cosmetics company, and Embraer, an airplane manufacturer, subsidiaries of US firms including Ford, Brazilian banks, the stock exchange and futures market, as well as offices of Brazilian and US government agencies.

Cultural events included visits to a samba school, several street fairs, a fruit market, the subway, and the beaches in Rio. During the lectures and company visits, participants had a range of cultural and recreational opportunities to meet with managers and government officials to learn about Brazilian customs and culture.

Above is a panormaic view of Rio taken from Corcovado by one of the students on the study trip.



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