Plenary Keynote Speakers


Martijn Cremers

Martijn Cremers is the Bernard J. Hank Professor of Finance at the Mendoza College of Business of the University of Notre Dame, where he has been a faculty since 2012.  Prior to that, he was a faculty at Yale School of Management for ten years, from 2002 – 2012. He obtained his PhD in finance from the Stern School of Business at New York University in 2002 and hails from the Netherlands. His research areas are investment management, corporate finance, corporate governance and corporate law, and he teaches 
classes in investments, corporate governance and Catholic social teaching.

His co-authored paper “How active is your fund manager? A new measure that predicts performance” (published in 2009 in the Review of Financial Studies) introduced a novel measure of active management termed ‘Active Share’, which measures how different fund holdings are from the benchmark holdings.

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Mary Hirschfeld

Dr. Mary Hirschfeld has taught economics and theology in the Department of Humanities at Villanova since 2011. She received her first doctorate from Harvard University, before teaching economics at Occidental College for fifteen years. Following a conversion to the Catholic faith, she resigned her position and pursued the doctorate in theology at the University of Notre Dame. Her book Aquinas and the Market: Toward a Humane Economy is forthcoming with Harvard University Press.

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Clemens Sedmak

Clemens Sedmak holds a joint appointment in the Keough School of Global Affairs and the Center for Social Concerns at the University of Notre Dame. He is a professor of social ethics and advisor in Catholic social tradition.

Born in Austria in 1971, Clemens Sedmak has undertaken studies in philosophy, theology, social theory and development theory at the University of Innsbruck, the ETH Zurich, at Maryknoll (New York) and the University of Linz. After having completed doctorates in philosophy, theology and social theory, Clemens Sedmak spent two years in Chicago as a research fellow and took up a Chair for Epistemology and Philosophy of Religion at the University of Salzburg in 2001, a position he held till 2005 when he came to King's College London as FD Maurice Professor for Moral Theology and Social Theology. Since 2005, Clemens Sedmak has been Director of the Center for Ethics and Poverty Research at the University of Salzburg, and since 2008 President of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Social Ethics in Salzburg. Clemens Sedmak has been visiting professor at the Jomo Kenyatta University in Nairobi, at the Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines, at the University of Jena in Germany, the Vienna Business University, and at the Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City. Clemens Sedmak is married with three children.

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Stefano Zamagni

Stefano Zamagni is a retired professor of economics from the University of Bologna and adjunct professor of International Political Economy at Johns Hopkins University, Bologna Center, teaching in areas of international trade theory, macroeconomics, microeconomics, and public sector economies.  The author of numerous books and articles, Professor Zamagni is also an extremely active administrator on a variety of international organizations and committees, including being member of the Executive Committee of International Economy Association (1989-1999) and the Steering Committee of Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Sciences of Milan, the Academy of Sciences of Bologna and the Academy of Sciences of Modena as well as a Fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences, New York. He was President of ICMC from 1999 to 2007 (an NGO based in Geneva dealing with migrant and refugee issues) and fellow of “Human Development and Capability Association” (Harvard University). He was appointed (2007) President of the Italian Commission for Non Profit sector, Milan, a member of the Advisory Board of EURICSE, Trento. 

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Plenary Respondents

Robert Kennedy

Robert G. Kennedy is Professor in the Department of Catholic Studies at the University of St Thomas (St Paul, MN). He formerly held a joint appointment (as professor in the Department of Management) in UST’s Opus College of Business, where he served as Chair of the Faculty in 2004-05. From 2003-2011, he was co-director of the Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law, and Public Policy, a joint project of the Center for Catholic Studies and UST’s School of Law.  He received his PhD in medieval studies from the University of Notre Dame and also holds master’s degrees in biblical criticism and business administration.

Kennedy has been a visiting professor in theology at the University of Dallas, and in business ethics at the Instituto Panamericana in Mexico City. He is the author of some 200 essays, book reviews and articles on a variety of topics, published in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe.

His research interests have focused on topics in professional ethics and the application of the Catholic social tradition to problems in contemporary society. He has written articles on corporate social responsibility, professionalism, spirituality in the workplace, wealth creation, and ethical investment, as well as a variety of issues related to culture and public life. His book, The Good that Business Does, was published by the Acton Institute in 2006. He is also a named contributor to the “Reflection on the Vocation of the Business Leader,” published in 2012 by the Pontifical Council on Justice and Peace.

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Fr. Martin Schlag

Fr. Martin Schlag holds the Alan W. Moss endowed Chair for Catholic Social Thought at the Center for Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas. He serves as the Director of the John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought.  Fr. Schlag earned his Doctor iuris at the University of Vienna in 1991. In 1996, he was ordained to the priesthood in the Prelature of Opus Dei, and in 1998 he received his Doctor Theologiae from the Pontifical University of Santa Croce. From 2008 to 2017, he was a professor for social-moral theology at Santa Croce, as well as cofounder and Director of its Research Centre Markets, Culture and Ethics. In 2012, he was appointed as a Consultant to the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, in 2013 he was appointed as a full professor at Santa Croce, and 2014 as Fellow at the Centre for Enterprise, Markets and Ethics in Oxford. Since 2015, he also served as a professor for Business Ethics at the University Roma Tor Vergata, and since 2016 at the IESE Business School in Barcelona. 

He has authored over 80 publications, most notably: Humanism in Economics and Business. Perspectives of the Catholic Social Tradition (New York: Springer 2015), co-authored with Domènec Melé; The Handbook of Catholic Social Teaching: A Guide for Christians in the World Today (Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 2017); and The Business Francis Means: Understanding the Pope’s Message on the Economy (Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 2017).

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Alejo Sison

Alejo José G. Sison, Ph.D., holds appointments from the School of Economics of the University of Navarre, and accreditation as Catedrático (Full Professor) from the Spanish state university system. He is also Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Business and Society of IESE Business School. He was formerly Director of the Rafael Escolá Chair of Professional Ethics at the School of Engineering (TECNUN) from 2003 to 2007. Previously, he worked at the University of Asia & the Pacific (Manila). He was President of the European Business Ethics Network (EBEN) from 2009 to 2012.

In 1997, he was appointed Fulbright Senior Research Fellow and Visiting Scholar at Harvard University. Since then, he has received other fellowships from the 21st Century Trust Foundation (London), the Academic Council on the United Nations System (Yale University), the American Council of International Law (Washington, DC), the Salzburg Seminar, Bentley College (Waltham, MA) and the Policy and Leadership Studies Department of the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University (Singapore). He sits at the Editorial Board of the “Business Ethics Quarterly” and is section editor of the “Journal of Business Ethics”.

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Andreas Widmer

Bio is forthcoming.

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Andrew Yuengert

Bio is forthcoming.

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Stefanie Lenway

Bio is forthcoming.

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Mike Naughton

Michael Naughton

Michael Naughton is the director of the Center for Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas.  He holds the Koch Chair in Catholic Studies and is a full professor in the department of Catholic Studies.  Dr. Naughton is the co-author and co-editor of 9 books and over 50 articles.  He helped coordinate and write the Vocation of the Business Leader issued by the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development (formerly the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace), which has been translated into 18 languages.  His most recent co-authored book is Respect in Action: Applying Subsidiarity in Business.  He is also the co-author of Managing as if Faith Mattered.  

Dr. Naughton serves as board chair for Reell Precision Manufacturing, a global producer of innovative torque solutions for transportation, consumer electronics, medical and office automation products with offices in the U.S., Netherlands, and China.  

He is married to Teresa and has 5 children.  He received his Ph.D. in theology from Marquette University (1991) and an MBA from the University of St. Thomas (1995).

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