Prof. Lyal White is the Senior Director of the Johannesburg Business School (JBS) at the University of Johannesburg. He has been tasked with establishing and building JBS into a world-class institution with a Pan-African focus.
Before joining UJ, Prof. White was the founding director of the Centre for Dynamic Markets (CDM) at the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS), University of Pretoria, where he was an Associate Professor in International Business focusing on political economy and strategy in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Prof. White is widely published in news media, academic journals and books, most recently as co-editor of the Academy of International Business (AIB) Sub-Saharan Africa Book series with “The Changing Dynamics of International Business in Africa” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015) and “Africa-to-Africa Internationalization: Key Issues and Outcomes” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). He has worked in a range of sectors covering themes from investment rationale, strategy, competitiveness and general management in Dynamic Markets to reform, growth and development, and comparative politics in Africa and Latin America. He is also coordinating research and dialogue geared toward improving Africa’s political and commercial relations with Latin America and understanding the role of new players in Africa and the world.
Comparative political economy and strategic thinking in the context of International Business in Africa and Latin America are his principal areas of focus. Related to this, a key area of interest lies in understanding the exciting but complex environment of business, and what is required by firms and individuals to improve their competitive performance in new markets. Through the lens of institutions and how institutional evolution underpins economic performance, Prof. White developed the GIBS Dynamic Market Index (DMI), a bi-annual publication which measures and compares institutional progress and performance in markets across the globe. His research and writing emphasises context-driven strategy, which is evident in the many academic and executive programmes he runs, not to mention his advisory work.
Prof. White has a vast experience in ‘on-the-ground’ research and advices on strategy, political economy, policy and general business practice in new markets – especially in Africa and Latin America. To this end, he has championed a diversity of initiatives and publications, and worked with a wide range of clients in various countries seeking fresh opportunities, always deeply conscious of the social, cultural and political dimensions (and implications) in their implementation.
Prof. White has lived and worked in South Africa, Rwanda, Argentina, Colombia, Morocco and the US, and is associated with a number of institutions across the globe. He has also taught at the University of Cape Town in South Africa, Universidad de Los Andes in Colombia, Al Akhawayn University in Morocco, Science Po – Bordeaux, France, and the Kelly School of Business - Indiana University. Prof. White lectures regularly at CEDEP in Fontainebleau, France, Strathmore Business School in Kenya, is faculty on the Global Leadership Programme, which provides executive education to some of the largest firms in the US and Europe, and was a Visiting Scholar at the Center for Latin American studies (CLAS) at UC Berkeley in the US.
Prof. White is committed to enhancing cultural understanding between countries and building commercial and developmental ties between Africa and the world. He is of the firm belief that strong institutional and cultural understanding will harness development and long-term prosperity in these regions across the globe.