Business schools form global alliance to revolutionise online education and flexible learning

1 November 2018

Six of the world’s leading business schools will launch a new digital learning platform that combines faculty expertise with cutting-edge technology, to meet growing demand from students and executives for a more flexible, bespoke and globally accessible study experience.

The Future of Management Education Alliance is the first collaboration of its kind in the business education sector and aims to transform the future of management education. Comprising Imperial College Business School, ESMT Berlin, BI Norwegian Business School, the Lee Kong Chian School of Business, EDHEC Business School, and Ivey Business School, the Alliance will enable partner schools to enhance the student experience through face-to-face, experiential and online learning methods.fome 3

Francisco Veloso, Dean of Imperial College Business School said: “Demand is rapidly growing, from business school applicants and employers alike, for programmes which provide the greater flexibilities and access that today’s modern technologies can afford. New pedagogical models and greater governance are needed to ensure business schools can step up to the challenge. The Future of Management Education Alliance brings together a network of forward-thinking business schools who share this vision.”

A key aim of the partnership is to challenge the perception of digital education as a sub-standard alternative to classroom-based programmes. The Alliance’s custom-built online education platform, designed by Insendi, an edtech enterprise founded at Imperial College Business School, will enable each member school to redefine and digitise their portfolios of existing programmes – from flagship degrees such as the MBA to executive-level short programmes and MOOCs – to best suit their own students’ needs.

For faculty, the Alliance will also provide access to expert digital training, consultancy and programme development support to ensure greater ownership over their own online offerings, and the necessary skills to develop new courses individually or in collaboration with colleagues at other member institutions.

Commenting on the benefits of the Alliance, Nick Barniville, Associate Dean at ESMT Berlin said:  “Developing a platform that is built upon real executive education client needs with experienced partners will give us a great advantage as we continue to digitize our programmes. This new alliance will allow us to retain full control of our intellectual property on the back of a long term sustainable business model, based on a shared technology platform. It helps us avoid the path taken by many others to outsource their entire digital delivery to online program providers.”

Inge Jan Henjesand, President of BI Norwegian Business School said: “The need for more flexible learning models to face new demands from individuals and from businesses, and to be attractive in a more competitive global executive market, requires business schools to think differently. Our collaboration brings digital experience, perspectives and skill-sets from six institutions together to shape and design cutting-edge flexible online programmes.”

Gerard George, Dean of SMU’s Lee Kong Chian School of Business said: “This innovative model turns the traditional format around by providing students with greater choice of what to learn, how to learn and where to learn. Through this collaboration we aspire to set new standards for online business education, positioning SMU as an educational technology leader in Asia.”

Emmanuel Métais, Dean of EDHEC Business School said: “This initiative reflects our commitment to be at the forefront of innovation, not only to provide students with a better learning experience but to make them succeed in a fast-changing world. At EDHEC, we believe that excellence and innovation are the two pillars on which our people build their own personalities and careers to make an impact on the world.”

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