skip main site navigation go to current site section navigation

Thought leadership

When it comes to the highest quality business research, theory and policy, the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin is a leader across the nation and a key player in the university's push to address some of society's most pressing problems. Strong academic departments are bolstered by preeminent centers with faculty who excel as topical experts and whose work influences the practice and teaching of business. To learn more about our research efforts and centers, click on the topics below.

Centers & Initiatives


Center for Research on Electronic Commerce (CREC)

The Center for Research on Electronic Commerce engages in interdisciplinary research focusing on developing technologies and applications that increase business productivity, consumer satisfaction, market efficiency, society's welfare and the effectiveness of government policies. The scope of the Center's research covers a broad range of activities characterized by the use of enabling digital technologies in communications infrastructure, computer and other enabling technologies that lay the foundation of the market. This foundation allows innovative digital processes (like intranets, extranets, virtual firms, online search and marketing, online auctions and market-making mechanisms, logistics-based distribution and real time consumption) and products (digital currency, smart products and remote/real-time services) to enhance, and replace, physical processes and products.

Center for Energy Finance Education & Research (CEFER)

The University of Texas established the Center for Energy Finance Education and Research in the Department of Finance at the McCombs School of Business in 1997. The Center serves as the focal point for the leading academic program in energy finance and financial risk management.

Energy@McCombs

The Energy@McCombs initiative aims to find new and innovative ways to meet our increasing demand for energy in a responsible, effective matter.  By encouraging professional collaboration, promoting honest debate and offering educational resources to the leaders of tomorrow, Energy@McCombs is working toward a better, brighter, and more efficient future for energy consumers around the world. In tandem with Energy@McCombs, the KBH Energy Center is a joint initiative among the School of Law and the School of Business.  It aims to provide the finest educational opportunities in the United States to students who wish to pursue careers in energy and to serve as a nexus for incisive, unbiased, and relevant research and analyses for policy makers, with a special emphasis on Latin America.

Herb Kelleher Center for Entrepreneurship (Kelleher Center)

Since 2001, Herb Kelleher Center for Entrepreneurship, Growth and Renewal has been dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship and innovation at The University of Texas at Austin. Its mission is to create the finest academic research and teaching center focused on entrepreneurship in the United States. To that end, the Herb Kelleher Center for Entrepreneurship brings together University resources, leading entrepreneurs, innovative industry partners, students and faculty from multiple disciplines and multiple colleges and universities to:

  • Develop and communicate new knowledge about entrepreneurship and the entrepreneurial process.
  • Publish case studies in current entrepreneurship.
  • Develop and deliver outstanding program in entrepreneurship.
  • Encourage and facilitate the development of successful entrepreneurs.

Hispanic Leadership Institute (HLI)

The Hispanic Leadership Institute measures emerging policy, business, and societal trends in the Hispanic community, develops and hosts relevant information, recognizes Hispanic leadership, and seeks to increase recruitment of students from diverse backgrounds to the University. HLI's six main objectives are:

  • Highlight the role of Hispanic Americans in civic leadership across fields, disciplines and professions
  • Recognize outstanding achievements in leadership by Hispanic alumni
  • Provide mentoring and networking opportunities for alumni and students
  • Encourage students to pursue leadership roles
  • Reconnect Hispanic alumni with the University of Texas on an annual basis to strengthen an ongoing relationship
  • Conduct research that informs and engages future leaders on emerging issues

Healthcare@McCombs

Healthcare@McCombs is a campus-wide initiative, led by the McCombs School of Business, to develop programs that will help society address the challenges of healthcare delivery and to create a community of scholarship on topics at the intersection of healthcare delivery, innovation, and information.

Center for Global Business

The University of Texas at Austin's Center for Global Business develops and supports internationalization within the McCombs School of Business, provides international business learning opportunities throughout the University, and serves as a change agent for internationalization of business education across the U.S. The Center fosters exchange programs for McCombs students, provides research and teaching programs for faculty members, designs international courses for the McCombs curriculum, and conducts outreach programs to businesses and academic institutions throughout the country.

AIM Investment Center

The AIM Investment Center is the nexus for integrating financial research, investment education and practice at the University of Texas at Austin, bringing together financial support, information resources, and intellectual capital in support of those who teach and learn, those who further knowledge in the field through research and those who use the efforts of both to enhance the practice of investment management.

Center for Customer Insight and Marketing Solutions (CCIMS)

The Center for Customer Insight and Marketing Solutions facilitates interaction between industry, students, and marketing faculty to enhance classroom experiences; enable real world problem solving; and facilitate faculty research opportunities. As a result, marketing students will be prepared to exceed industry expectations upon graduation, companies will have access to fresh ideas through faculty, student, and peer company interaction, Marketing will be a leading program at McCombs, and our faculty research will be informed by industry’s pressing challenges.

The Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst Center for Private Equity (HMTF)

The purpose of the Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst Center is to support curriculum development in a private equity specialization in the McCombs School MBA program. The center also fosters research and scholarship by finance faculty and graduate students on issues related to private equity finance, capital markets, corporate finance, investments, real estate, and other associated matter.

Real Estate Finance and Investment Center (REFIC)

The Real Estate Finance and Investment Center takes advantage of exceptional faculty to cultivate cutting-edge research and curricula on finance-related real estate issues, like the valuation of mortgage-backed securities, the financial structure of real estate investment trusts, the agency issues associated with real estate financing agreements, and the efficiency of real estate investment markets.

Center for Risk Management and Insurance (CRMI)

The Center for Risk Management and Insurance conducts and disseminates research relevant to the operational concerns and public policy implications of risk analysis and risk management. The mission of the center is to be the premier independent research resource for public policy decision makers within the state of Texas for issues related to risk, its analysis and management. The Center provides independent unbiased analysis of public policy issues related to insurance and risk, as well as rigorous examination of issues involving risk, uncertainty and insurance.

Supply Chain Management Center (SCMC)

The Supply Chain Management Center brings together financial resources, executives from leading corporations, and faculty and students from multiple disciplines in the McCombs School of Business to develop and communicate new knowledge about supply chain management, conduct and publish research findings, facilitate the development of outstanding academic programs in supply chain management, enable “real world” problem solving for our industry partners, and encourage the development of future industry and academic leaders in this field.

Center for Business, Technology & Law (CBTL)

The Center for Business, Technology, and Law brings together the distinct but related fields of Information Technology, Business Strategy, and Law and Public Policy to study the various aspects of Electronic Commerce. The Center complements and shares joint research projects with other leading centers at the Texas Business School, including the Center for Research in Electronic Commerce, the Center for Customer Insight, the Center for Computational Finance, the Center for International Business and Education Research, and the Center for Energy Finance.

Financial Education and Research Center (FERC)

The Financial Education and Research Center is a state-of-the-art trading, research and teaching facility in the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin. Its mission is to: 

  • Assist students, faculty, executives and the community to better understand the growing flow of financial data and to manage the impact of that flow on financial markets.
  • Enable center users to participate in the development of new applications of information technology to finance.
  • Provide technology resources and technical support for the AIM Investment Center, the Center for Energy Finance, Education and Research, The Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst Center for Private Equity Finance, and the Real Estate Finance and Investment Center.

Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs (TVL)

Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs at The University of Texas at Austin is a university-wide initiative to support technology commercialization, entrepreneurship, and innovation while providing a unique and directly applicable educational experience for participating graduate students. Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs provides the intellectual horsepower to promote new venture creation through education and mentoring; market and business plan validation; team building and networking; and direct links to resources and funding.