University of South Carolina to Hold International Business Strategy and Trade Forum

Monday, April 1st, 2019

The Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina will hold a public forum, International Strategy in an Era of Trade Uncertainty, on Thursday, April 18, from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Hosted by the Folks Center for International Business at the Darla Moore School of Business and co-sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, the forum will focus on recent shifts in the global trading sphere and the subsequent impact on U.S. trade policy and practices.

Lead panelist John Murphy, senior vice president for international policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, will speak about current trends in international trade and investment. He will be joined by Wendy Cutler, vice president and managing director of the Asia Society Policy Institute and former Acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative; Jim Barber, chief operating officer, UPS; and George Jurch III, general counsel, global expert teams (digitalization, OE relations, product liability/product integrity) and the Americas region, for Continental.

“We have convened leading experts who are advocating for U.S. firms’ global business interests,” says Gerry McDermott, professor of international business at the Darla Moore School of Business, who will be serving as moderator during the discussion. “These panelists are among the most experienced in transnational business strategy, investment and policy and will provide business leaders with the insights they need to navigate this new environment.”

McDermott says South Carolina was chosen as the location for this forum because of the importance of international business and trade in the state. South Carolina has one of the highest per capita incomes of foreign direct investment and one of the highest export rates in the United States, making international trade and investment a primary driver of state economic growth for the last 25 years.

Ted Pitts, president and CEO of the South Carolina Chamber, agrees, “The state of South Carolina is as closely tied to the global economy as any state in the U.S. Being a leader in foreign direct investment and in exports has created an abundance of opportunities for workers and driven our economy.”

Beyond current international trade and investment trends, the panel will discuss market fragmentation and cross-country collaboration and its impacts on international business strategy and growth.

According to McDermott, it’s crucial that firms and investors consider how market fragmentation and trade disputes will affect growth, technology flows and cross-national alliances if these companies are to remain competitive in this rapidly changing landscape.

John Murphy, senior vice president for international policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, says that

“The benefits of international trade are clear — trade supports 39 million American jobs, including half a million jobs in the Palmetto State alone. To keep our economy growing, we must continue to reach beyond our borders and sell our products and services to the 95 percent of the world’s population that lives outside the United States.”

The International Strategy in an Era of Trade Uncertainty forum is free and is open to UofSC students, faculty, staff and the public. Advance registration is required. To register or learn more, visit

Financial support for this event is made possible by The Rachel and Jim Hodges Fund and the Sonoco Department for International Business.