Richard Locke ’81 was named director of the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. On leave from the MIT Political Science Department, he was previously deputy dean of MIT’s Sloan School of Management. Locke’s current research focuses on improving the safety and environmental conditions for workers in global supply chains. The author of four books, he most recently published The Promise and Limits of Private Power (Cambridge University Press, 2013).
In a recent Q&A for the Brown Magazine, he spoke on his hopes and expectations that the Watson Institute will build on Brown’s strong foundation as well as strengthen its focus on current issues, including development and global health. When asked about the recent news stories on unsafe labor practices at overseas factories, he was adamant in his call for education: “What works is when the managers, workers, and companies have the capabilities they need to succeed in running a good business. These aren’t evil people. They were just never trained in modern business and human resource management. As a result, they’re running their businesses in a very old-fashioned way that doesn’t lead to good labor practices.”