Puffin Thanksgiving Hours
The Puffin Foundation will be closed for November 22 and... more
Don't miss out on this great Puffin-sponsored event at the Museum of the City of New York
When Thursday November 8 630pmPrice $15 General Admission | $10... more
October Events Online!
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Make your reservations today!

Email tix@puffinfoundation.org or call 201-836-3499

September Events Online!
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Make your reservations today!

Email tix@puffinfoundation.org or call 201-836-3499

Gallery Closed in August
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The Puffin Cultural Forum gallery will be closed during August for routine maintenance. We will resume gallery hours and performances after Labor Day.

See you in September!

Eunice Lipton Book Discussion at Puffin & MCNY
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The Puffin Foundation is proud to sponsor two events with Eunice Lipton talking about her new memoir about her uncle's participation in the Spanish Civil War. Join us at the Puffin Cultural Forum on June 24, 7:00pm or see Ms. Lipton at the Museum of the City of NY on June 22, 6:30pm. Click here for more info about her appearance at the MCNY.

Michael Ratner
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The Puffin Foundation notes with sorrow the loss of our esteemed colleague and friend, whose devotion to equal justice and human rights led to the bestowal of our highest honor, the Puffin-Nation Award for Creative Citizenship. A highly principled man, Michael Ratner was a warm and caring individual whose life’s work has left our community stronger. We extend condolences to his wife, Karen Ranucci, and his family.

Perry Rosenstein, President
Gladys Rosenstein, Executive Director
Neal Rosenstein, Vice President

Remembering Mayor Parker
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The Puffin Foundation and The Teaneck Creek Conservancy offer our condolences to the family of Mayor Lizette Parker. She was a steadfast friend of Puffin and a former member of TCC's Board of Directors. Lizette had a extraordinary love and commitment to Teaneck. You can read more about Lizette's remarkable life here.

The Triangle Fire: An Opera in One Act
Posted in Blog

Coming to Puffin on September 11, 2016 at 4pm

Professor Moseh Baani shares insights at home and abroad
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Management expert says ignore the propaganda and stick to the facts
JEWISH STANDARD Article by Lois Goldrich April 7, 2016, 3:54 pm

Read more: Professor shares insights at home and abroad | The Jewish Standard http://jewishstandard.timesofisrael.com/professor-shares-insights-at-home-and-abroad/#ixzz45caaxc6h

What do you do with a master’s degree from Tel Aviv University and Ph.D. in management from the London Business School?

Well, you can teach at Tel Aviv University, the London Business School, InterAmericana University in Puerto Rico, Kazan State University in Russia, Kiev National University of Design and Technology in Ukraine, University of Salzburg for Applied Sciences, Shanghai University of Science and Technology, and the Sydney Business School in Australia.

Or, perhaps, you can conduct comparative studies of domestic and multinational corporations — visiting Austria, Belgium, Britain, China, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Morocco, Netherlands, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine — and you can publish your findings in 80 academic journals and books.

Or, you can do it all. That’s what Israeli-born Moshe Banai of Teaneck does. Dr. Banai now is a professor of management at Baruch College and the chief editor of the academic journal “International Studies of Management and Organization.”

Dr. Banai’s resume is daunting, listing as areas of expertise “International Management, Management of Multinational Corporations, International Human Resource Management, Cross-Cultural Behavior, Organizational Strategy and Design, Management Development, and Management in Transitional Economies.”

Still, as I recently learned at lectures Dr. Banai has given at Teaneck’s Puffin Center, he is approachable, understandable, and clear-sighted about the business and financial issues facing our country and our world, today. Even more, he is married to Rachel Banai (a former photographer for this paper), who joins him in all his travels, launching photography exhibits in the countries they visit. The couple has two daughters, Noit and Moran.

Actively involved with the Puffin Center since its inception 18 years ago, Dr. Banai sits on the advisory board of the Puffin Foundation and recruits artists for the organization’s cultural center. Ms. Banai has run the group’s photography classes for more than a decade.

While Dr. Banai’s lectures at Puffin focused mainly on the business climate of other nations — notably Russia, China, and the European Union — he has definite views on what our own country ought to be doing. He bemoans the “ignorance” of those who preach or believe what he calls “propaganda.”

For one thing, he believes that “the government should get heavily involved in the creation of jobs. There’s no other choice.” Sometimes, he says, we have an efficient market but unhappy people; at other times, it’s just the reverse. “We can’t have both all the time.” He also believes that our economic culture will change because there are increasing numbers of women, Hispanics, and other minorities in the marketplace.

“You need to have a long-term view to understand the current situation,” he said. “People shouldn’t be swayed by propaganda but should stick to the facts and scientific evidence” — as reflected in statistics and economic theories of trade — “and make their own judgments. The dichotomy between Republicans and Democrats is superficial and has no real meaning. The consultants for the candidates know it, but the candidates want to be popular and tell the people what they want to hear.” And at least one candidate, he added, has bragged that he consults only with himself.

We should care about economic issues, like free trade, because “they have a major influence on our lives,” Dr. Banai said. “Because of free trade, the price of products and services go down. Future presidents criticize this and promise to limit or diminish it. It doesn’t make economic sense.” As for outsourcing, “we outsource some jobs and people in foreign countries make money and can buy our products.” And yes, he said, we are still major producers in some areas, including, for example, medical care, aircraft, entertainment, and communications.

Eliminating free trade “won’t fix the economy because prices will go up. When we put a tariff on foreign products, they put it on us, and the price goes up for everybody.” In addition, if we maintain protection for our industries, “we become inefficient because there’s no competition.”

Between 1993 and 1996, Dr. Banai, who was assigned to oversee the building of a business school in Russia, spent about seven months in that country under a joint program between City University and USIA (now USID). “My biggest challenge was that I had to stand in line for food,” he recalled. While his team was able to finish the school, “it was stolen by the administration,” he said, “hijacked to generate revenue for the professors.” As a state university, it was meant to be free, “but I found out they were charging students $7,000.”

After that venture, he served as a founding professor of an international business school in Israel, “but it didn’t last.” Its success, he said, “was premised on peace, on drawing students from all over the Middle East. But Rabin was assassinated and peace didn’t materialize. They couldn’t see how to generate students.” Dr. Banai continues to visit Israel at least once or twice a year.

The winner of three Fulbright awards — two for projects in Austria and one for Ukraine — Dr. Banai said he’s probably gotten more of these grants than anyone else in the United States. His assignments, often through invitations from universities, have taken him all over the world. For 12 years, he and Rachel spent summers and winters in China.

“I found that when it comes to the individual, people are pretty much the same,” he said. “But when it comes to systems, they differ to a great extent. The greatest difference is between China and the U.S. They have a one-party government, a business monopoly, no freedoms, and no democracy.”

Nevertheless, he said, he was happy to spend the time there, because not only does he enjoy Chinese food, “but I felt good about sharing the principles of a free market with people who needed it the most.” In addition, he said, “The Chinese people are nice hosts, and the reception was always outstanding. I’m interested in their culture, and this gave me motivation.” He said what surprised him most was that “despite my knowledge of the big difference in culture, it was still very difficult to adjust my own behavior. You may know about it, but it’s hard to execute it. It was hardest in China. We are short-term thinkers and executors. It doesn’t work like that in China,” where the norm is long-term thinking and planning.

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