Eastern Michigan plays host to conference on advances in global business communication

Experts to speak at fourth annual event include authorities on DNA analysis and handling communication at disaster sites, and on communication between differing cultures

by Geoff Larcom, Published June 06, 2012

One of the world's foremost experts on DNA analysis and the difficulties of mass identification at disaster sites, and a world authority on global business communication will be among the featured speakers at an international business communications conference to be held at Eastern Michigan University this week.

The fourth annual Tricontinental Conference on Global Advances in Business Communication will be held at Eastern Michigan University from June 6-9. Giving plenary talks will be Howard Cash, founder of the Gene Codes Corporation; and Rob Simon, Vice President of Business Development at LMC Automotive.

Cash will speak from 9 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. Thursday in Room 300 of the Student Center. His talk will discuss the challenges dealing with culture, language and jurisdiction in the face of tragedy. Such challenges stem from dealing both with government organizations and families of the lost, each with their own needs, expectations and communication challenges.

Simon will speak on Friday, June 8 from 9 to 10:15 a.m. in Room 300 of the Student Center. His talk will touch on why global communication is so Important to international businesses.

The conference, which began at Eastern Michigan University in 2009, is returning to its initial site, after being rotated among its two other cohosts, in Belgium at the University of Antwerp in 2010 and at Johor Bahru at the Technological University of Malaysia last summer.

The conference brings academics and practitioners from around the world to consider ongoing scholarly activities and business practices arising amid the rapidly climate of global business communications. The conference will be help in Antwerp next year and return to Malaysia in 2014.

Cash has been at the forefront of commercial bioinformatics development since 1984. In 1988, he founded Gene Codes Corporation, where he remains as President and CEO. He designed and developed the "Sequencher" program used in thousands of academic and commercial DNA sequencing labs.

Shortly after the 9-11 terrorist attacks, Cash was asked to put his company at the disposal of the New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner and to develop new software for DNA analysis and data handing for the purpose of identifying the remains of those killed at the World Trade Center.

The Mass-Fatality Identification System was created, and remains the most advanced tool in the world for combining different DNA technologies for human identification.

In January 2005, following the Boxing Day earthquake and tsunami, Cash and Gene Codes Forensics helped to identify those killed in Thailand.

Current work at his company includes identifications after the Guatemalan civil war and the DNA Shoah project, working to reunite Holocaust survivors and family members.

Simon notes that doing business in a global economy is much more than having global locations that service local markets. Globalization is about sharing resources, designs and suppliers while taking into account differences in cultures, currencies and language.

In his position Simon is responsible for directing the North American and South American sales team in developing sales and marketing strategies for the automotive forecasting group, as well as providing tactical direction for the analytical staff.

He is an EMU graduate, having received a bachelor's degree in political science from Eastern.

Mary Kramer, publisher of Crain's Detroit Business, will be the featured speaker at Friday's luncheon in the Student Center.

Other topics covered at the conference will include:

  • International and cross-cultural business communication and negotiations
  • Global aspects of integrated marketing communications.
  • Communication aspects of international law and global business ethics.
  • Languages and business communication.
  • E-Semantics, that is, cross-cultural, language-based international issues associated with search terms, string searches, web design, web site user friendliness and electronic advertising keywords.

For more information, visit the conference website at http://www.cob.emich.edu/include/templatesubpage.cfm?id=1232





Geoff Larcom



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