Melodena Stephens Balakrishnan (Phd), is the Founder and President of the Academy of International Business – Middle East North Africa Chapter, a nonprofit social initiative founded in 2009 in Dubai under the University of Wollongong in Dubai (UoWD), UAE. It is a self-financing volunteer organisation. The purpose of the organization is to act as an ambassador and champion for the MENA region by fostering research and teaching in the field of international business. She is the Dean of Performance and Management, Professor of International Marketing Strategy and Entrepreneurship and Head of Degree Program International Business, Karlshochschule International University in Germany. Previously, in UoWD she held the position of Deputy Dean and program head of MBA, leading multiple accreditations. She is a non-resident research fellow of Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government She has 20+ years of industry and education experience, and a multi-cultural perspective (India, USA, Taiwan, UAE & Germany). She is a winner of several teaching and research grant awards, including two UAE National Research Foundation Grants. She is the series editor of the Actions and Insights: Middle East North Africa Series – and has five books published. She is passionate about emerging markets especially the MENA region, actively working with industry and is frequently invited to panels and discussion forums. Her areas of research are brand strategy, social entrepreneurship and crisis management.