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John Ruhnka, Bard Family Term Entrepreneurship professor, Academic Director of the Entrepreneurship Program


  • Legal Aspects of International Business INTB 6060 
  • Introduction to International Business INTB 6000 
  • The Business Plan ENTP 6020 
  • Ethical & Legal Dimensions of Business XBUS 6670 
  • Legal & Ethical Dimensions of Business BUSN 6540


  • International law
  • International Business 
  • Entrepreneurship & Structuring & financing of new business 
  • Financial market regulation 
  • Business ethics

Teaching Philosophy

Real World Experience & Orientation

I am fortunate to have had extensive real world experience in all of the areas in which I teach, and so as much as possible I try to connect the business knowledge I am imparting to real world events, rather than just rely on text book examples. I have been overseas almost every year with the CU Executive MBA Program or a faculty member on Semester at Sea, visiting the operations of U.S. and foreign companies in the European Union, Asia, S. America & Africa, which has given me an opportunity to talk with people actively involved in international business in the current economic circumstances. For example I visited with the management of Hong Kong Disneyland in May, to discuss problems they were having in adapting U.S. Disney characters and popular themes to a very different Chinese marketplace which is unfamiliar with Disney characters and many U.S. holidays.

I used this information to prepare a PowerPoint case on “Hong Kong Disneyland” which I used in my Introduction to International Business class three months later to discuss the importance of adapting to cultural differences in global markets. I have also done ethics consulting for Janus Capital Group, Celestial Seasonings, and the U.S. Olympic Committee, among other organizations, and I am able to use some of the insights gained in helping real organizations deal with ethics issues in discussing strategies of dealing with ethical issues in business.,/ Use of Outside Speakers & Practitioners

In all of my graduate courses (ENTP 6020 The Business Plan, INTB 6000 Introduction to International Business, INTB 6060 Legal Aspects of International Business, XBUS 6670 Executive MBA, and BUSN 6540 - 11 Month MBA) I invite outside entrepreneurs/ business founders, international trade and intellectual property experts to my classes for presentations to students about what they do, and their specific experiences in activities (business start-ups or international business) relevant to the objectives of the course. Many of these outside experts volunteer to answer questions or invite further contact from students who are interested in their particular areas of expertise. These interactions also provide the Denver business & professional community with an opportunity to meet current UCD Business students and see what the Business School is doing.



  • LL.M. International Law, Cambridge University, 1991 
  • J.D. Securities Regulation, Yale Law School 
  • M.B.A. Finance, Wharton Graduate, Division - University of Pennsylvania 
  • B.A. Political Science, Swarthmore College


  • Academic Director Entrepreneurship Program – since 2004 
  • Bard Family Term Professor of Entrepreneurship 2006 
  • Business School- Full Professor since 1992 
  • Partner – Hall & Evans, Denver CO 
  • Chief of Research – National Center for State Courts

Selected Consulting Experience

  • Ethics consultant to U.S. Olympics Committee, Colorado Springs, CO 
  • Ethics consultant - Janus Capital Group, Denver CO 
  • Ethics consultant - Celestial Seasonings, Boulder CO 
  • Ethics consultant - JP Morgan & Co, New York, NY

Achievements & Honors

  • Outstanding Teacher – University of Colorado Denver (twice), UCD Business School (twice 
  • Outstanding Teacher – CU Executive MBA Program and UCD 11 Month MBA Program (multiple times) 
  • Outstanding Researcher – UCD Business School 
  • Bard Family Term Professor of Entrepreneurship 2006 
  • Academic Chair – University of Colorado Executive MBA Program 2007-2009 
  • Principal Investigator on two National Science Foundation Research Grants on improving the U.S. Justice system.


Journal Articles

  • “Using ESI Discovery Teams to Manage Electronic Data Discovery”, Communications of the ACM, Vol.53, No.7, July 2010. 
  • “Forensic Implications of Metadata in Electronic Files”, The CPA Journal, Vol. LXXVIII, No.6-68-71 (June 2008) 
  • "Litigation Support and Risk Management for Pre-Trial Discovery of Electronically Stored Information", The CPA Journal, Vol.LXXVII/No.5:50-56 (May 2007). 
  • “Qui Tam Claims: Threat to Voluntary Compliance Programs in Health Care Organizations.” Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, Vol.25, No.2:283-308 (April, 2000). 
  • “Governmental Incentives for Corporate Self-Regulation.” Journal of Business Ethics, 17:309-326, 1998 (Kluwer Academic Publishers, Netherlands). 
  • "The 'Living Dead' Phenomenon in Venture Capital Investments." Journal of Business Venturing*, Vol.7, No.2:137-156 (March, 1992). 
  • "Some Hypotheses About Risk in Venture Capital Investing." Journal of Business Venturing*, Vol. 6, No. 2:115-133 (March, 1991). 
  • "A Venture Capital Model of the Development Process for New Venture¬s." Journal of Business Venturi¬ng*, Vol. 2, No. 2:167-184 (Spring, 1987). 
  • "Corporate Disclosure Obligations Under Extraordinary Conditions," Securities Regulation Law Journal, Vol. 15, No. 1:69-104 (Spring, 1987). 
  • "Disclosure: Dammed if you do, dammed if you don't," Harvard Business Review, Vol. 64, No. 5:3-8 (Sept. - Oct. 1986).

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