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Revitalization & Business Conference to Shift Perspective on Detroit :: Video

1/9/2012 --

Topics include urban land usage and neighborhood building, the food economy, and entrepreneurship.

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ANN ARBOR, Mich.—The Michigan Ross Revitalization & Business Initiative (R&B) will host its second annual conference, Detroit SHIFT, Jan. 19 and 20, 2012. Events will be held in Detroit and Ann Arbor.

Leaders in the R&B Initiative are dedicated to raising awareness of and engaging students in the critical business issues that are shaping the Motor City's future. Detroit SHIFT will showcase local leaders, decision-makers, entrepreneurs, and innovators committed to progress and fresh thinking in the city.

"There is no better laboratory in this country right now for seeing how government, civil society, and the private sector can work together to create economic revitalization," says Michigan Ross Dean Alison Davis-Blake.

Perhaps that's because Detroit's revitalization touches so many areas—from entrepreneurship to design to finance to policy to manufacturing, notes Pia Kristiansen, MBA '12. "R&B wants not only to help tell these stories, but even more importantly, to get students to be a part of them."

Featured speakers include Toby Barlow, chief creative officer of advertising agency Team Detroit, and Annis Brown, executive director of Teach for America. In addition, the Model D-inspired IdeaLab will bring together a line-up of additional creative thinkers and doers who are shifting Detroit's economic landscape.

The interdisciplinary, interactive event will provide participants with new ways of understanding and appreciating the ideas that are inspiring the Detroit business community, says club founder Mark Jensen, MBA '11.

"Ross students fly all over the world, but many of them have never driven to downtown Detroit," Jensen says. "We wanted to showcase the interesting things going on there and the new businesses being created."

Register Now

For more information, contact:
Bernie DeGroat, (734) 647-1847,