Nancy Adler (1991)

adlerAffiliation at the time of the award: McGill University, Organizational Behaviour.

Citation: Nancy J. Adler was the Faculty of Management’s first recipient of McGill’s Distinguished Teacher Award, recognizing her excellence in teaching both undergraduate and graduate students at McGill University. She is the only person to win this award for both levels of teaching. In 1990, McGill University again awarded the Distinguished Teaching Award to Professor Adler. This was the first time that the Faculty had given the award twice to the same professor. Her courses, including required courses considered to be particularly difficult, are consistently rated among the highest in the Faculty. As one student (once discouraged with the subject but now a faculty member himself) put it: “Her teaching tools were new and completely different… Our interest, motivation and level of participation flourished … Our enthusiasm for learning increased dramatically … “

Dr. Adler’s leadership in working with her peers has been remarkable. She has coached colleagues in North America, Europe and Asia on ways to design and teach courses. For example, she has been selected twice as a faculty member for the International Teacher’s Programme in Milan to help university teachers from around the world develop and use a range of teaching methods. This work complements the many faculty workshops she has led in Canada and the USA. As a recognized authority on integrating international issues into the curriculum, she has led faculty workshops, presented special sessions at pedagogical conferences, designed experiential exercises, cases and simulations, written a textbook used by over 100,000 students, produced a video movie used around the world, and worked as resource person with professional colleagues on the design and redesign of curricula. A “new” faculty member, coached by Dr. Adler as he began to teach university students after 30 years experience as a consultant and trainer, wrote: “Professor Adler contributed much more than the mechanics (of) course content and methodology. She exemplified true leadership qualities by influencing me to deliver excellence and to use multi- faceted methods.” Television Series

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) selected Professor Adler’s research and teaching on international and cross-cultural management to include in their latest series on multinational organizations, and featured Nancy’s work in the film “World Without Borders”, and in two films on multinationa teams “It’s a Jungle Out There” and “The Survival Guide”. The BBC filmed Nancy in Montreal in 1994 and will release the new series for television and classroom use in 1995.


Professor Adler’s research and teaching on international management has received wide recognition from her colleagues. She was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Management in 1994 and a Fellow of the Academy of International Business in 1992. She is the only professor in Canada to be honored by both Academies. In 1992, Women in World Trade honored Professor Adler with their Outstanding Achievement Award and in 1991, the Society for Intercultural Education, Training, and Research selected Nancy for their Outstanding Senior Interculturalist Award.