2023 Best Undergraduate Professors: Chou-Yu (Joey) Tsai, Binghamton University School of Management

Chou-Yu (Joey) Tsai
Binghamton University School of Management

“He is one of the most caring professors at Binghamton campus and puts 110% into everything he teaches. One of the most amazing teachers I’ve had and will remember him for years to come in the professional world.” – Daniel Gavi

Chou-Yu (Joey) Tsai, 42, is Osterhout Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship at Binghamton University School of Management.

His research interests encompass various aspects of leadership, including entrepreneurship, virtual teams, human capital resources emergence, coaching, and robotic technology. His research findings have been published in academic journals, such as The Leadership Quarterly, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Journal of Organizational Behavior, and Journal of Applied Psychology. He has been honored with the SOM Award for Excellence in Research and the Lois B. DeFleur International Innovation Award.

Before starting his academic career, Tsai accumulated valuable experience as a managerial consultant for several business organizations, including Adidas Group and Tsingtao Brewery. His consulting projects spanned organizational culture, leader selection and development, organizational change, and intrapreneurship. Recently, Tsai has collaborated with Waseda University in Japan to establish a leadership framework to enhance entrepreneurship programs and foster innovation within the greater Tokyo ecosystem. 


At current institution since what year?  2018

Education: Ph.D., Binghamton University, State University of New York; M.S.,  National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan, Experimental & Cognitive Psychology

List of Undergraduate courses you teach: Entrepreneurship, Team Leadership, and Management and Organizational Behavior


I knew I wanted to be a business school professor when … During my consulting work, I observed that leadership plays the most critical role in achieving success in businesses and organizations. These insights have reinforced my belief in the transformative power of education and motivated me to start my academic journey.

What are you currently researching and what is the most significant discovery you’ve made from it? I am currently researching the future of leadership and its implications in entrepreneurship. Our findings indicate that leadership can be significantly enhanced through collaborative efforts between humans and robots propelled by advancements in AI technology. This technological evolution has the potential to become a powerful tool for augmenting leadership capacity, thereby fostering innovative business possibilities at multiple levels within organizations and communities.

If I weren’t a business school professor, I’d be … I would work for a social startup, supporting people within organizations in discovering their purpose and significance and their contributions to the community and society at larger scales.

What do you think makes you stand out as a professor? Respecting everyone is fundamental in fulfilling my role as a professor. I appreciate the distinct needs of my students and all research collaborators, and I consistently learn from each of them. I am grateful for the chance to collaborate closely, which has instilled in me a strong commitment to prioritizing the well-being of others in my academic career. 

One word that describes my first time teaching: Excited and enthusiastic!

Here’s what I wish someone would’ve told me about being a business school professor:Providing unconditional mentoring and developing an inclusive environment open to new insights and diverse opinions.

Professor I most admire and why: Professor Shelley Dionne at Binghamton University and Professor Bor-Shiuan Cheng at National Taiwan University have been great role models for me in understanding the essence of education. They taught me that educators should believe in students and encourage them to reach their full potential.


What do you enjoy most about teaching business students? Intellectual conversations and creative problem-solving through group interactions

What is most challenging? Students have diverse needs and motivations for learning, and it takes time to get to know them and identify each individual’s learning requirements.

In one word, describe your favorite type of student: Go-Getter.

In one word, describe your least favorite type of student: Self-contented.

When it comes to grading, I think students would describe me as …In terms of grading, students would characterize me as fair and consistent. I set well-defined grading criteria and offer constructive assignment feedback to support students’ learning strategies.


What are your hobbies? Reading and volunteering for nonprofit organizations 

How will you spend your summer? Travel and interact with people from different cultures and backgrounds.

Favorite place(s) to vacation: Pasadena in California, Tokyo in Japan, Taipei in Taiwan, and Lhasa in Tibet.

Favorite book(s): “Atomic Habits” by James Clear & “Novelist as a Vocation” by Haruki Murakami

What is currently your favorite movie and/or show and what is it about the film or program that you enjoy so much? Les Misérables is my favorite show because it portrays the complexity of human nature and emphasizes the potential for redemption, the transformative power of love, and compassion in people’s lives for social justice.

What is your favorite type of music or artist(s) and why? Marcel Duchamp is my favorite artist because he challenged and disrupted traditional norms in art, changing the conversation of what is considered art.


If I had my way, the business school of the future would have much more of this … The future business school would have more emphasis on analytical thinking and adaptability to cope with change.  We need leaders with strong analytical skills to enhance their agility and adaptability. This can help people overcome the disruptions and impacts that technology can bring to our organizations and social systems.

In my opinion, companies and organizations today need to do a better job at …Companies and organizations today need to make more efforts to create inclusive environments that support a diverse range of human capital.

I’m grateful for … I am appreciative of my family’s support in my professional journey. In addition, I am deeply thankful for the chance to collaborate with students throughout my career, as they have been influential in shaping my academic path.


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