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C. K. Prahalad
  C. K. Prahalad

C. K. Prahalad Receives University's Highest Honor

10/6/2005 --

"Guru of strategy" named Distinguished University Professor.

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—The academic title Distinguished University Professor, the highest honor conferred upon a faculty member at the University of Michigan, has been awarded to C. K. Prahalad, the Paul and Ruth McCracken Distinguished University Professor of Corporate Strategy.

Prahalad, who has been the Harvey C. Fruehauf Professor of Business Administration and professor of corporate strategy and international business at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business, was one of seven scholars named Distinguished University Professor and one of 29 faculty members recognized for teaching, scholarship, service and creative activities at an Oct. 5 dinner in Rackham Assembly Hall.

Distinguished University Professors have attained national and international recognition for originality and scholarly achievement, and have demonstrated teaching skills and breadth of interest, as well as depth of achievement in their fields.

An Oct. 3 article in The University Record, the U-M's faculty and staff newspaper, reported:
"One of the most influential scholars in the field of management, Prahalad has been called the 'guru of strategy.'

"He is a visionary whose ideas have commanded respect from the academic, corporate and public sectors. His 2004 book, "The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profit," was named book of the year by The Economist, and Fast Company, and already has helped people to look at the poor as consumers and to view the problems and opportunities in developing countries in a fundamentally different way.

"Prahalad has co-authored other award-winning books, "Competing for the Future" and "The Future of Competition," and he is a three-time winner of the McKinsey Prize for the best annual paper published in Harvard Business Review. For him, thinking beyond the confines of existing research and then producing a remarkable and original perspective that completely re-characterizes a problem in fundamental ways has been a standard operating procedure.

"Prahalad's ideas are being recognized and acted upon by governments, public development institutions, civil society and the private sector. In 2003-04 he was a member of the U.N. Commission on Poverty and the Private Sector. He has been inducted into the Academy of International Business, and the University of Chicago created a special award in his honor. In 2004 he was named Global Indian of the Year.

"Prahalad twice has won MBA Teaching Excellence Awards. An inspiration to legions of faculty and students, he also has been generous in including students in his work. One section of "The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid" consists of case studies of students' field investigations with companies, and a video of their interactions is compiled in a DVD. The project gave students an opportunity to work on one of the most important problems in the world and provided them with the kind of exposure that undoubtedly will further their careers."

Robert J. Dolan, dean of the Ross School of Business, praised the selection of Prahalad as Distinguished University Professor, noting that Prahalad "is one of the most innovative people in our business. We are most fortunate to have him at Michigan where his work and insightful inquiry stimulate us all."

For more information, contact:
Mary Jo Frank,
Phone: 734-647-4626,