University of Vermont

University Communications

Sanjay Sharma Appointed Dean of the School of Business

Sanjay Sharma, dean of the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University, has been appointed dean of the School of Business Administration at the University of Vermont, effective July 1, 2011.

Sharma comes to UVM with a unique background in both the private sector and academia including 16 years of senior management experience with international corporations and more than a decade of proven leadership within higher education. During his four-year tenure at Concordia, the sixth largest university in Canada with more than 45,000 students, JMSB established itself as one of the top business schools globally with its MBA program ranked among the top 100 in the world by The Economist and its EMBA program ranked among the top 100 by the Financial Times. He facilitated a strategic focus at JMSB on educating managers with excellence in traditional knowledge and an ability to manage for the future in a global, complex, multi-stakeholder and sustainable business environments. This focus was recognized by JMSB’s ranking as 34th in the world in the Beyond Gray Pinstripes Survey by the Aspen Institute in 2010 and the school’s inclusion among the top 300 business schools out of 13,100 globally by the Princeton Review. Sanjay enhanced the research profile of JMSB via external fundraising for research centers (including the David O’Brien Center for Sustainable Enterprise), several research chairs and professorships, and increased external research grants.

“We are extremely fortunate to have one of the most respected business school leaders in North America bring his expertise to the University of Vermont,” said Jane E. Knodell, provost and senior vice president.  “Dr. Sharma’s rare combination of practical experience, extensive research and leadership skills within higher education was extremely compelling and should serve UVM’s School of Business well as it continues to establish itself as one of the top small business school programs in the northeast.”

UVM President Daniel Mark Fogel also noted that, “Dr. Sharma’s scholarly record and leadership achievements will help us further strengthen our quality and reputation, not only in the School of Business Administration, but across the university as a whole. I could not be more pleased that he has agreed to help us fulfill our vision as one of the nation’s premier small research universities.”

Prior to his arrival at JMSB, the largest English language business school in Canada with more than 8,500 students and 350 full time and part time faculty, Sharma held the prestigious Canada Research Chair in Organizational Sustainability and was professor of policy in the School of Business & Economics at Wilfrid Laurier University. He also conceived and served as the first director of the Certified Management Accountant’s Centre for Responsible Organizations, an interdisciplinary center focusing on research and practice in the areas of organizational sustainability, corporate social responsibility, ethics, environmental management, social issues, and corporate governance.

A 2001-2002 Fulbright Scholar, Sharma has won several research grants and has expertise in corporate environmental strategy, corporate sustainability, competitive strategy, stakeholder engagement and organizational innovation. His research has been widely published in top management journals including Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Executive, Strategic Management Journal, and Journal of Marketing, among others. He has co-edited six books on corporate environmental management and sustainability.

Sharma began his academic career as an associate professor and director of the Executive MBA Programs at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax where he improved the national ranking of the EMBA program in Canadian Business from a ranking of tenth to third-place. Sharma earned his doctorate in management in 1996 from the University of Calgary and his MBA in 1976 from Panjab University, India, where he received the University Gold Medal. He completed his undergraduate work in 1974 at the University of Delhi.

“I welcome the opportunity to work with the leadership team at UVM and the BSAD faculty and staff to build on the strengths of the school and realize its potential as a globally recognized unique destination for excellence in management education and research,” Sharma said. “I also look forward to actively engaging the BSAD alumni and the Vermont business community in achieving this mission, attracting new resources, and helping to strengthen the economic vitality of the state. I could not be more excited at the prospect of joining such a vibrant academic community, and I deeply appreciate the confidence that has been placed in me by the university. Be assured that I will do my utmost to ensure that this confidence is well placed.”

Prior to his academic career, Sharma was a senior level manager at multiple international corporations. He served as managing director of Chanrai International Plc. UK (1986-1992); chief executive officer of Sanraj Group Ltd. in India (1981-1986); financial controller of Vardhman Spinning and General Mills Ltd. in India (1979-1981); and assistant manager (finance) of J.K. Synthetics Ltd. in India (1976-1979).