Dr James Otter has supervised the dissertations of over 100 graduate students at MBA level. His teaching and research experience includes contract positions at the University of Natal, UNISA, Mancosa and Regent College. He has particularly strengths in the fields of applied business ethics and corporate governance, extensive knowledge of corporate, commercial and property law and considerable practical experience in financial management.
His MPhil in Applied Ethics at Stellenbosch University focussed on case studies and analyses concerning the ethical aspects of businesses, while his PhD at Knightsbridge University, Denmark, earned via distance learning, covered sociological and economic aspects of the residential property business in South Africa. These followed a Diploma in Management Studies at what is now Sheffield Hallam University and a BA in social sciences from the Open University in the UK. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and the Chartered Management Institute, and a Member of the Institute of Valuers (South Africa) and the the Institute of Estate Agents (South Africa).
Earlier in his career, Dr Otter worked as an internal auditor, accounting supervisor and management accountant with major commercial concerns such as the National Coal Board (UK), Mobil Oil West Africa, Firestone Plantations (Liberia), Marshall Refractories Group (UK) and Anglo American Gold Division (South Africa). He moved into management consultancy with Stevenson, Jordan and Harrison (UK) and was a financial controller and director of a subsidiary of BBA Group plc (UK). Latterly he was Financial Director and Company Secretary of Scottish Cables (South Africa), Ltd.
Between 1987 and 2009, Dr Otter established and ran Otter Estates, with an annual turnover of R100 million, and from 1993 worked with clients on business ethics and corporate governance through Otter Consulting.
Outside these areas, Dr Otter developed his interest in opera through the publication of his 2002 book Tenors (Athena Press) which has since been referenced on South African radio. This compliments his many published articles in academic and professional journals.