STEM Shoutout: Dr. Manuel Montoya

Dr. Manuel Montoya, an associate professor in the Anderson School of Management, is leading a student group on campus to publishing their second book focused on conflicts linked to mineral mining. 


“So much of our consumption is connected to armed conflict and human exploitation,” Montoya said. “This book is going to connect with major global stakeholders to propose ways to improve our management of these resources and to better connect the average consumer to the effects of those practices.” 


The student group, International Business Students Global (IBSG) is based on the intersection of international management issues and engagement with the global community. 


IBSG has already published one book, Outside the Margins: The Blue Book on the Global Refugee Crisis, and an array of other globally focused projects in the works. 


“The wonderful students that participate in IBSG build relationships with people working on important and urgent global issues by incorporating and applying strategies and skills learned in the classroom and in the learning community the organization has built through its own curriculum,” Montoya said. 


Montoya, along with former MBA student Adam Grieper and five other students, put together the idea of having a “small cohort based consulting organizations that served the University and the world,” and IBSG became a reality eight years ago.  Today the organization has 16 members and typically has 15-20 members at any given time. 


“My observation was that in comparison to students at “elite” schools, UNM students are just as capable and in fact have the advantage of more diverse experiences, social, economic or otherwise,” Montoya said. 


Another project IBSG is pursuing includes its binational business program and consulting consortium, which aims to give students experience in the consulting profession. Through this event, group members have established relationships with the New Mexico Trade Alliance and Global Ties Albuquerque.  


Through these internships, students have helped establish two direct flights from Albuquerque to Guadalajara and Chihuahua City, and have planned a crucial Sister Cities meeting for the mayors of Chihuahua and Albuquerque. 


Some IBSG students are also working with the local non-profit Woman 2 Be in order to create more access to feminine products for young women in Zambia and are working with the King of the Bembe people Montoya said.  


“These students represent a tradition of IBSG students dedicated to travelling in the world and combining social innovation with international management strategies,” Montoya said. 


For the past year, Montoya has been on a sabbatical during which he has been working on a continuation of his graduate work — a book on a concept he calls “global legibility.”


“I’m interested in the way that people make the body of the planet a meaningful part of their social and economic realities,” Montoya said.  


“These projects will keep me pretty busy,” Montoya said. “Hopefully I’ll get them done in good time.”