Every year Lauder students conduct research and interviews in order to write a short article on a business, economic, cultural, or political topic related to their summer immersion site. These articles present new perspectives on some of the latest developments in the global economy, and are published annually by Knowledge at Wharton, as part of the Lauder Global Business Insight Report series. Lauder Global Program student Emilie Esposito chose to explore cyber risk and cyber insurance topics following a lecture from Matt Hartley, a cyber security expert at iSIGHT in Washington D.C., which was part of her Global Program’s summer immersion. Her article, titled Cyber Crime: The Achilles Heel of the Business World, was recently republished on ParisTech Review. I caught up with Emilie to learn more about this fascinating topic and her experience at Lauder. – Meghan Ellis, Associate Director of Lauder Admissions
Meghan: Congratulations on having your work article reprinted in ParisTech! Tell us a little more how you decided on this topic and your research.
Emilie: The lecture opened my eyes on how much businesses are exposed to cyber risk, which contrasted with the fact that this risk was very rarely mentioned in my previous nearly 6-year-long investment banking career. In my Mergers & Acquisitions experience, IT issues were considered little critical for the success of a deal, and were usually discussed between IT professionals in separate workshops. With my article, I tried to understand how businesses protect themselves against increasing cyber risk, and why cyber insurance is not as widespread as it should be to properly protect businesses from tail risks. Key for my work was the ability to bridge between the languages used by cyber security experts, state prosecutors, insurance professionals and Wharton faculty.
Meghan: Your article was originally part of the Lauder Global Business Insight Report, along with the articles of your fellow Lauder classmates from the Class of 2015. The topics and research for these articles stem from summer immersion, which for the Global Program took you to locations ranging from Washington D.C. to Tanzania to Singapore. What was your favorite experience of this summer for you?
Emilie: Apart from Matt Hartley’s lecture, I really enjoyed meeting with Vodafone Tanzania, which is running a successful mobile payment solution. I realized that technology could help the poorest by including them in the financial system, and that developing countries sometimes could be more advanced than developed countries.
Meghan: If you can remember back to when you were applicant, what attracted you to Lauder and the Global Program?
Emilie: Lauder had the unique benefit of providing an intimate community within Wharton that encourages diverse experiences in terms of content and of geographic exposure. It was also very important to me to pursue my studies with classmates who have global backgrounds and interests such as mine. [Note: Emilie grew up in Tunisia, Nigeria, and Italy; studied in Italy and France; and worked in France and the United Kingdom before joining Lauder]. The Global Program was a perfect combination between business and social sciences, and I was strongly drawn to the idea of comparing and analyzing different cultures and socio-economic environments. My objective is to develop a framework that can help me navigating across cultures, also from a professional standpoint. Overall, the Lauder Institute and Global Program have been an invaluable way to dive deeply into understanding how the world “really” works using a multidisciplinary approach.
Meghan: Any tips for future students?
Emilie: Sleep before the program starts!