Denise Baden (PhD, Soton) followed her first degree in Politics with Economics, with several years in industry, then returned to academia to do a doctorate in psychology, which was awarded in 2002. Denise worked in the area of social psychology for 3 years, and then joined the University of Southampton Business School as an Associate Professor, where she has been engaged in research and teaching in the areas of business ethics, sustainable business, entrepreneurship and corporate social responsibility. Denise is no ivory tower professor and is passionate about ensuring research has an impact in the real world. Her mission is to explore how business can be part of the solution, not part of the problem of the challenges of sustainability we all face.
Dr Denise Baden visited Cuba several times, eager to find out how this tiny island, with a GDP a fraction of that of countries in the West, could match or even outperform countries such as the US on factors such as life expectancy, infant mortality, pharmaceutical innovation, gender and racial equality and environmental sustainability. She found the leadership of Fidel Castro was central. She was also struck by the stark mismatch between Western views of Cuba as an oppressive dictatorship and the perceptions of Cubans themselves. Were Cubans all brainwashed, or have we in the West been victims of US propaganda? Denise will address this question and share her insights into this unique island and its leader through a mixture of personal insights, extracts of interviews with Cubans, photographs, theatre and music!