Peter F. Drucker understood the study of management to be a liberal art – “liberal” because management deals fundamentally with human nature, knowledge, and wisdom; and – “art” because it is concerned with practice and application.

Building upon the wisdom of Drucker, at CiAM we believe that knowledge, self-knowledge, wisdom, and leadership are essential to developing the individual as well as society. At CiAM we firmly believe that ‘management as a liberal art' (MLA) helps support personal development, organizational effectiveness, community development, and the realization of human dignity.

As a result, CiAM has formed the MLA Research Institute (MLARI), an institute that is dedicated to the study and application of management as a liberal art within organizations. With the purpose of advancing our understanding and application of MLA in organizations, the MLA Research Institute develops educational content, publishes its research, and offers training workshops.

The MLARI develops MLA-specific course assignments, class exercises, and case studies through which CiAM's students gain a solid understanding of MLA as well as learn how to apply MLA in real-life organizational settings. The MLA Research Institute also works with organizations to develop their knowledge of MLA and help improve their overall effectiveness.



To promote human dignity in life, work, and community to build a functioning society.


To expand knowledge and practice of Management as a Liberal Art (MLA) globally by conducting and disseminating collaborative research, and developing educational content.


  1. To advocate Management as a Liberal Art (MLA)
  2. To develop educational content relating to MLA
  3. To showcase community leaders and organizations who practice MLA
  4. To offer training workshops
  5. To promote freedom and liberty and resist those who oppose these values

CiAM’s ‘management as a liberal art’ approach helps students and clients to think critically about management responsibilities, and to see the interrelationships that exist between knowledge, moral leadership, personal development, organizational development, and a functioning society.



karen-linkletter(600x800).jpgDr. Karen Linkletter is a researcher with the Joseph A. Maciariello Management as a Liberal Art Institute (MLARI), where she develops curriculum for CiAM and conducts research to advance the work of Peter F. Drucker. She and Dr. Maciariello co-authored the book Drucker’s Lost Art of Management: Peter Drucker’s Timeless Vision for Building Effective Organizations

Dr. Linkletter has published over 20 articles and essays on a variety of historical topics. She has an M.B.A. and a PhD in History from Claremont Graduate University and received her A.B. from U.C. Berkeley.  Dr. Linkletter taught in the American Studies Department at Cal State University, Fullerton for fifteen years. She is also a professional cellist, performing throughout southern California and teaching private students. She is an avid horseback rider and enjoys time with her horses, Spencer and Chance.


phillip-pan.jpgPhillip Pan has over 35 years of executive management experience where he built, grew, and improved a diverse pool of organizations across various industries. With extensive experience in many business disciplines and especially in strategy, he has aligned disparate groups to work collectively toward a common goal.

He has held a variety of senior positions such as Executive VP and COO for a large investment corporation; COO of an international sports entertainment provider; COO of a high-tech digital printing provider; VP of Sales & Business Development for a multi-media firm and VP of Business Development for a large frozen yogurt company. In Taiwan, he educated grades K-12 in Taipei. Through his positions with Ming Lo Shao and CiAM, he is able to devote himself to learning and disseminating Peter F. Drucker’s teaching and values, especially in Management as a Liberal Art.



Dr. Byron Ramirez is an applied economist with experience in quantitative research, industry analysis, and policy analysis. A former strategy and management consultant, he developed expertise in economic analysis, statistical analysis, forecasting, and analytics. Earlier in his career, Dr. Ramirez worked in senior analyst roles for Caltech, Bank of America, Lennar Corporation, and Envirogen. After completing his M.S. in management and strategy from the Drucker School, he went on to complete a PhD degree in economics at Claremont Graduate University. Through a series of econometric models, Dr. Ramirez’ dissertation explored the nexus between entrepreneurship, innovation, and economic development.

Dr. Ramirez has worked as a macroeconomic and international trade analyst at Wikistrat, and as a consultant for CENTRA Tech. He has worked on international development projects and performed trade analysis for US government agencies. He has published papers on entrepreneurship, innovation, technology, international trade, macroeconomics, economic development, management best practices, and sustainable development. Dr. Ramirez has completed advanced certificate programs at the World Bank, Columbia University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and USC Marshall School of Business.


Michael-Cortrite.jpgDr. Cortrite has 30+ years of experience, education, and training related to subjects being taught. He is currently teaching at the MBA level at California State University in Northridge and is also an Educator at the Simon Wiesenthal Center Museum of Tolerance. He was a professor of Administration at Santa Monica College where he developed a new Ethics in Law Enforcement class. He has held many positions at the Santa Monica Police Department rising to the rank of Sergeant. His publications include “What Is the Best Method of Evaluating a Police Training Program?” (Vol.4) as well as co-authoring “Ethics Training: A Passing Fad or Sustaining Component.” He has also volunteered at various organizations including his current Board of Directors position at the Santa Monica Police Activities League. Specialization: Management and Organization Behavior.





MLARI holds regular events advocating 'Management as a Liberal Art' (MLA). At CiAM we firmly believe that MLA helps support personal development, organizational effectiveness, community development, and the realization of human dignity.

Past Events:

post-images2.jpgLeadership In Times of Crisis
How Tomorrow's Leader Navigates the Current Crisis While Taking Care of Their People

Date And Time:
Fri, April 24, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM PDT

Learn More:



Here you will find answers to the most common questions received on MLA and MLARI.

What is Management as a Liberal Art (MLA)?

Management as a liberal art is a philosophy which argues that successful and durable organizations support self-development and moral growth in their people. An organization is the means through which an individual, as a member of the community, finds both contribution and achievement. 
The philosophy of ‘management as a liberal art’ (MLA) suggests that managers must seek knowledge and nurture an organizational environment where its members find meaning and opportunities to learn and contribute. Through the collective contribution of its members, the organization is able to achieve its mission and objectives. The organization’s growth and development allow it to make a positive contribution to the community and society. Click here to learn more about the History of MLA.

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Who developed this philosophy?

In his book, The New Realities, Peter F. Drucker discursively introduced the philosophy of management as a liberal art. Drucker argued that management deals with people, their values, their growth and development, and that management comprises the fundamentals of knowledge, self-knowledge, wisdom, and leadership. Drucker also posited that management involves practice and application. 
The philosophy of management as a liberal art was further advanced by Dr. Joseph A. Maciariello, Emeritus Professor at the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management. After working with Peter Drucker for several years, Dr. Maciariello along with his co-author Dr. Karen Linkletter, published a book, Drucker’s Lost Art of Management, where management as a liberal art is further explored.

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What does MLA explore?

Management as a liberal art examines the connections between ethics, leadership, character development, human dignity, human empowerment, human performance, the role and responsibilities of managers in society, and the social role of organizations.

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Who practices MLA?

Organizations across different industries and sectors practice management as a liberal art. Since management as a liberal art embodies values such as ethics, human development, dignity, empowerment, and social responsibility, we can surmise that there are organizations in society which currently employ this philosophy.
Management as a liberal art can be used by any organization, in any industry, in any sector of society. This philosophy is not solely used by for-profit organizations, but rather any organization is able to practice MLA.

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Why practice MLA?

Drucker believed that successful and durable institutions support self-development and moral growth in their members. Moreover, he affirmed that an organization is the means through which an individual, as a member of the community, finds both contribution and achievement.

The philosophy of ‘management as a liberal art’ (MLA) suggests that managers must seek knowledge and nurture an organizational environment where its members find meaning and opportunities to learn and contribute.

MLA argues that it is possible for organizations to be ethical, socially responsible, and profitable. Moreover, organizations which genuinely care about the well-being of their people and the community, are likely to be recognized and appreciated by their customers, employees, and society in general. 

It is possible to serve the customer, earn profits, and also be an ethical, socially-conscious organization that contributes to the betterment of society.

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Contact MLARI

Contact MLARI

If you have any questions about the MLARI or MLA in practice, we would love to hear from you! For general inquiries, please contact:

Byron Ramirez, Ph.D.
Email: byron.ramirez@ciam.edu
1000 South Fremont Avenue - Unit#45
Building A-10, 4th Floor, Suite 10402
Alhambra, CA 91803