Ranin Kazemi Selected New Director of the International Business Program

Ranin KazemiRanin Kazemi, associate professor of history, will be the new director of the International Business program, effective January 1, 2022.

SDSU’s IB program is ranked No. 2 in the nation among minority-serving institutions, No. 4 among public universities, and No. 8 overall among undergraduate programs by U.S. News & World Report. The program integrates coursework in business administration, foreign languages, and regional/cultural studies. 

Because it draws from courses in many departments in CAL and Fowler College of Business, it is truly a collaborative effort. An interdisciplinary gem managed within CAL, IB benefits significantly from the involvement of an advisory board of practitioners from around the world. The board is currently chaired by Gail K. Naughton, Ph.D., founder and scientific advisor of Histogen.

With broad international and interdisciplinary experience, Professor Kazemi is superbly qualified to direct IB and to lead the program into the next phase of its growth. His research focuses on the histories of trade, capitalism, and international business, including a project on British tobacco interests and nationalist protest in nineteenth-century Iran. He teaches courses that engage with the global history of commerce and socioeconomic development and is also affiliated with the Center for Islamic and Arabic Studies and Women’s Studies. 

He is fluent or conversant in multiple languages, including Persian, English, Arabic, Turkish, French, Urdu, Kurdish, and Azeri Turkish. He brings to the directorship fundraising experience and some excellent ideas about expanding IB to previously untapped regions, including the Middle East. In addition, he has experience working in a bank!

Professor Kazemi shared this statement about his new role: “I am delighted to join a wonderful team of colleagues who have made International Business one of the top-ranking programs in the country. IB is interdisciplinary and global, and thus it is highly relevant to educating our students for the 21st century. The program allows students to gain global opportunities, cultural awareness, and language appreciation, while also preparing them for a diverse workforce. IB also does much to internationalize our campus. I am eager to enhance and expand the global connections of the program and to position it as a vital resource in the university and something that we are all proud of. I look forward to building on IB’s strengths, continuing the enviable legacy that John Putman is leaving behind.”

George (Joe) Belch, Interim Thomas & Evelyn Page Dean said, “We are very grateful to Professor Putman for his outstanding work as the director of the International Business program for the past six years. John has worked closely with faculty in the Fowler College of Business as well as CAL to help make the International Business program one of the best in the nation. We are excited to have Professor Kazemi assume the leadership role and look forward to working with him.”

Dean Monica J. Casper said, “I want to express my deep appreciation for Professor Putman.  Among his many accomplishments were creating a dues-paying advisory board, adding a 4+1 degree (B.A. in International Business/M.S. in Global Business Development), and launching the annual SDSU IB Case Competition. In joining us as associate dean, Putman leaves behind a strong foundation upon which Professor Kazemi can build.”