Management Education General Trends presented by GMAC globally and in the EMEA Region
As an expert in Business Education Market Intelligence, the General Management Admission Council GMAC has presented some numbers to illustrate the general trends in the GME (Graduate Management Education). The outcomes of their research confirm the expectations and assumed ideas. For example, in terms of gender and age, surveys show that women are making strong gains in the candidate pipeline of graduate business studies. The research also shows that younger candidates are more involved in the pipeline.
Regarding mobility and international application trends, international candidates interest in the US has waned in the current political climate. However, application trends show no negative effects of Brexit to date. At the same time, most programs in Asia Pacific, Canada and Europe received more applications this year than last year.
It also seems that the Masters of Finance are the most demanded ones as well as Full-time MBA programs.
In general, supply is global, candidates have the choice and selection is both ways, which puts more pressure on Business Schools, especially considering that the MOOCS are competitive alternative.
However, The GMAC surveys show that there are still many reasons for candidates to apply for GME in general and MBAs in particular. In this regard, 7 segments of global candidates were identified, with different motivations, going from Respect Seekers to Impactful Innovators, Skill Upgraders or Global Strivers. Consequently, the market is still very large and continues to increase globally.
In the EMEA region in particular, figures show some specificities, such as, 60% of faculty are Male, 77% of deans are Male, 44% of sources of budgets of B.Schools come from Tuition and subsidies, versus only 2,5 % from Grants and Gifts compared to almost 4% globally, 79% graduate programs are now offered online.
In terms of BS Program Trends in the EMEA region, Data / Analytics programs are developing significantly; and regarding enrolment trends, 56% master students are Specialized master degree students, while in America, master students are more attracted by MBAs and EMBAs.
Middle East and North Africa Affinity Group Meeting
Entrepreneurship and Innovation Education in MENA
A way of dealing with the current changes, specifically the fourth revolution of disruptive technology, is to transform MENA using Management / Business lifelong learning by integrating entrepreneurial projects as a way of having better economies.
The trend is also that we are moving from vertical to horizontal, which means that it is not a question of one course in entrepreneurship but a transversal approach in various courses, bringing mentors and offering platforms…
Experiences were presented on venture labs developed in universities, university-based incubators and accelerators, such as the American University in Cairo. Also, presentations and discussion showed how the women entrepreneurial endeavors and social entrepreneurship activities are encouraged.
Competitions, Entrepreneurship expos, entrepreneurship societies are also ways of fostering the culture of entrepreneurship.
20% of the faculty at the AUC are involved in entrepreneurship and innovation programs.
Some new initiatives include:
-Innovation and Entrepreneurship as a new « Concentration » (une filière spécifique)
-AUC partners with a collaborative international member “Babson”
-Building and Developing external ecosystem. What is needed is A Forward-looking ecosystem, government facilitator and private system supported and innovation/ knowledge driven.
-Research papers and intellectual contribution in the subject are also very important
Other ideas are:
-Develop an ecosystem including other universities
-Internship can be replaced in some cases by mentorship by companies for young entrepreneurs
-Diversify BS students’ profiles through facilitating access to dual degree (ex: engineering / Business)
-Developing MOOCS on entrepreneurship
-Focus on investing in youth, innovation, ICT, future learders and entrepreneurs
-Supporting startups and SMEs
-Insist on the « Doing well » by « Doing Good », or « Doing Good » by « Doing well »
-University-based and industry-based platforms for entrepreneurial activities: Incubators / accelerators
-Linkage with industry through degree and executive education programs and internships
However, it seems that what is done is not sufficient. The new business models are about intangible, everything is linked to human capital!!! At the moment, we, in our BS don’t teach our students how to deal with this, take it as an opportunity and be part of this new culture, not only as users but as creators of value.
It also seems that the most difficult and complicated one part is linked to developing the activity of incubators and accelerators (and get faculty involved).
The buying of the project is the most difficult part, unfortunately.
The challenge is to build a team buttom-up (faculty, staff members, corporate partners, alumni), to get a group of champions who are buying the idea.
Tuesday, Oct 2018
The Impact of Company Digital Transformation on Business Education
General Director of ESCP Europe, Frank Bournois, gave a brilliant opening presentation on “Digital Talent by 2030”. A survey called Talent Forsights conducted by ESCP identified 10 areas of Digital Impact:
And clearly this has consequences on career paths, asdigital experts and talents buy into the meaning of projects and their social impact, with multidisciplinary aspects.
Digital tech will eventually be a default with big data collection.However, the excellent news is that it will not replace human talent:
“We don’t expect planes to fly as birds, we will not expect AI to think like us”.
In this context, Frank Bournois presented the 7 skills needed. A student / graduate should be:
Imaginative and creative
Focused and persistent
Sharing and coalescing (working in an ecosystem, with people from inside and outside)
Trusting and liberating (in terms of values)
And “There is an even longer way to go”, he added. How are we going to deal with this everlasting transformation?
Artificial Intelligence AI and Big Data BD are major issues for the companies.
Technological issues are considered less important than organizational, cultural and managerial issues. Actually, appraisals of executives’ commitment and their ability to change operating methods vary greatly. The weight of habits is a hindrance to change in corporate culture. So there will be no change if the culture doesn’t change. Resistance of change is still a big issue.
The conventional organizational model and its efficiency are questioned: digitalization doesn’t happen without organizational change. Everybody in the organization should be actor of change.
The key side of digital transformation is co-opération. For example: People shouldn’t be praised individually but collectively. This way, nobody has to be the best player in a team, but a team player.
There should be an awareness of digital ecosystem: Contractual management of suppliers dominates in the absence of relevant new approaches.
So, organization, management and leadership are important.
But time is also important. We should be more in the present, focused on the very next step instead of the future that nobody knows how it will look like. `
However, in a digital transformation process, finding a tech Geek is not the most important thing. What matters is to find a “technological pragmatist”, “the pedagogue” and the right “Trans-disciplinary Digital Transformation Groups” (pilots).
Actually, there are 10 transformation facilitation levers, according to Frank Bournois:
1-Renew cooperative culture
2-Make opportunistic project management possible through an evolving, multifaceted organization
3-Rethink talent-spotting as our resources are internal
4-Invent new relations to benefit from the required external skills
5-Move from a conventional organizational structure to a culture of transdisciplinarity and cooperation
6-Review the motivation process: desire and the ability to do more important than competence and organization
7-Pivot from a culture of confidentiality to a culture of conversation
8-Don’t decree agility start by trying
9-Adapt the organization to the changing environment
10-Opt for interpersonal, interdisciplinary relations in an ecosystem
12 skills to facilitate digital transformation in companies (see details in the Anticipation (1-observe, 2-test, 3-validate)
Agility (4-disrupt, 5-bounce back, 6-pivot)
Ecosystem (7-share, 8-coalesce, 9-negotiate)
Team (10-propose, 11-listen, 12-drive)
Today “Fast fish eats slow fish” instead of “Big fish eats small fish”
To quote Alexandre Tissot, Senior Fellow from ESCP Europe
And if everything is going faster, we have to change. Human are made to change. Transformation is a survival imperative for humans, human organizations and B.Schools.
To my question about regulations in some countries that don’t facilitate agility and transformation, the answer of the speaker was:
Adaptative or Transgressive!?? That’s the issue. The top student of yesterday (the most adaptative) is not the best student of tomorrow (transgressive). What about the best Business Schools? Should we adapt to regulations or should regulations adapt to our needs?
This is the food for thought to take away!
Mini TED Talk-Style Presentations
Through Mini Ted Talk-Style presentations, presenters delivered five-minute talks on social impact, diversity and inclusion, values that are at the heart of B.Schools mission.
The lesson to draw from the different experiences is that:
1-Sustainability is an integrated set of actions including ecological concerns, ethics, diversity, creativity and innovation.
2-Managers in B.School should be the doctorshow prescribe “Fruitfull Inclusion” to take advantage of diversity and have a sustainable social impact.
Entrepreneurs are makers
We now make entrepreneurs for Africa
EM Lyon presentation on the subject was about their experience in Morocco.
Here are some numbers presented to support the interest for Africa:
-200 million Africans are aged between 15 and 24
-By 2040, Africa’s young workforce will be the largest in the world
-22% of Africa’s working-age population are starting new businesses, which is the highest rate of nay region in the world (according to the African Economic Outlook report in 2017)
-The total early-stage entrepreneurial activity rate in Uganda for example is 35% and in Ghana is 25%, while the job creationexpectation doesn’t exceed 6% in both countries.
-Female entrepreneurship rates in sub-saharian Africa are the highest in the world. 26% of working women are in entrepreneurial businesses
-90% of higher education students in Morocco want to create their own business after graduation. While they are only less than 1% creating their business.
-In Africa, the business failure rate is higher than any other place in the world.
The speaker presented many stereotypes about entrepreneurship perception in Africa:
Stereotype 1: Entrepreneurship = Business Creation
Stereotype 2: Entrepreneurship = for males
Stereotype 3: Entrepreneurship = heritage issue
Stereotype 4: Entrepreneurship = ideas (we need capacity to act, develop and perform in a sustainable way)
Stereotype 5: Entrepreneurship = money (social entrepreneurship creates wide-scale system change to improve lives)
The question is: whether potential business owners are being equipped with the skills they need to achieve true business growth?
According to the speaker, Entrepreneurship in Africa is about breaking the stereotypes.
EM Lyon initiatives in Africa:
-The entrepreneurship center: preparing 100 graduates from University Hassan II of Casablanca
-French-Moroccan challenge for entrepreneurship: 60 graduate students selected from the best BS and Engineering schools in France and Morocco to work together on a social entrepreneurship project
-Mooc Entrepreneurship in Morocco: An online course produced and designed by EM Lyon professors in Casablanca with testimonials and contribution of CEOs from different countries in Africa.
What is proper role of B.School in entrepreneurship development activities ?
By AUB (American University of Beirut)
Mentoring and coaching
Experiential entrepreneurial courses
Ecosystem and network development
What should be the KPI of Entrepreneurship intiatives?
What should a BS be doing vis-à-vis entrepreneurship? Is orthodoxy the way to go?
Food for thoughts on the role of BS regarding entrepreneurship:
Proposed KPI for entrepreneurship initiatives for BS?
Also, what comes out in general is the big challenge of how to get faculty involved. There is no magic solution at a time when a professor’s mission is teaching and research.
Some initiatives are:
-“Time release” for those interested in joining the champions (pilot team). It’s also challenging to find faculty with both academic and experience in Entrepreneurship.
-Alumni are also useful.
-Working in teams (academics and entrepreneurs or consultants) is a collaborative way to go to meet the special demand.
INNOVATIONS IN TEACHING
The Use of learning labs (by ESADE Dean and General Director)
For ESADE, the key of innovation is the Student First Project. The student is in the center of Faculty development, Finance development and Management change.
Living is the new way of learning.A lot is happening outside the classroom.
To illustrate this, ESADE developed a concept called the Rambla Innovation project. It integrates 5 learning labs, corresponding to the stages of developing a new product:
-Fusion Point (meeting point where ideas are generated)
-Decision Lab (feasibility tests, to validate the idea)
-Fab Lab (Where the student can create a Prototype)
-EGarage (Where mentors are, where to develop business plans)
-EWorks (Implementation of the validated ideas, with strong business plans)
All 5 labs are connected and it involves Students, Professors and Companies.
+ A course (Challenge Based Innovation CBI) of multidisciplinary students working on a project.
INNOVATION IN TEACHING : VR Case Study (by Neoma BS)
6netic VR Cases Study in Marketing
Avoiding the Kodak’s effect… K.O dak.
Students don’t master technology, they only use technology.
Neoma is using VR technology to immerse in specific experience for the student, through virtual casestudy. Example: Take a virtual trip round on the store, listen to the 6netic team present their store,…
According to the speaker, VR Case Study has a positive impact on education:
-Cancelling the learning routine
-Analysis of a whole system
-Import relevant managerial context into the classroom
-Individual experience of the situation + teamwork
-From knowledge to competence in action
With teacher contact hours and VR, theory and practice interact within very short cycles.
Unfortunately, ministers or whatever authorities a BS depends on, are in general not aware of how important it is to include innovation, as well as digitalization effort and entrepreneurship mentoring and accreditations in a professor’s mission. In Morocco, there is not even a way to compensate impactful research efforts…
And here comes the big challenge!
Standard 15: Faculty Qualifications and Engagement
Usually, the starting point for a BS seeking AACSB accreditation is:
-No criteria is in place
-Faculty composition is significantly below standard 15 requirements and arguments of this is based on national / historic circumstances
-The only inputs are guidelines for standard 15 and internal / national rules
In a word: Lack of Faculty qualification management
The school must:
-Develop appropriate criteria consistent with its mission for the classification of faculty
-Comply to standard 15
Major issues for compliance with standard 15 are:
Groupe definition, criteria definition, alignment with the mission and incentives.
But the biggest issue is what happens if a BS doesn’t…?
The BS keeps on doing things the same way, it keeps on turning around instead of using AACSB to structure its BS strategy, including faculty qualification management. AACSB is the best opportunity to “Turn the Tide” and shape up for the future; and that’s how it should be presented to all parties.
Wednesday, Oct 31st
Designing and Managing
The Assurance Of Learning
The first thing to do when a B.School starts intend to start an accreditation process, is to communicate with faculty about the meaning and purpose of AoL. Faculty resistance to getting involved in the process is often down to a lack of understanding of AoL. So, simple, clear explanation is needed.
Second, about the process of AoL and the role of faculty, it’s important to introduce faculty and program teams to AoL, from an early stage, and incorporate information on AoL, into orientation materials for new staff.
Third, about the AoL plan, key timelines and what it means for colleagues are needed. Plans should include collecting and analyzing data, implementing improvements and measuring their impact. AoL should be considered as a standing item on meeting agendas. That’s why continuous communication and keeping everyone in the loop is necessary.
Also, you need a champion to maintain momentum and drive a sustainable AoL process. For that you need the right person, someone who appreciates the kinds of challenges/ demands a process like AoL may place on colleagues. It should be someone who steps in to inform, assist, coordinate, then steps back because each program coordinator should be responsible.
However, there are some areas of contention to keep in mind and avoid, such as ownership of the process and bureaucracy.
Last and not least, most Business Schools start with a lot of papers; that’s why many end up having digital platforms based on the AoL approach.
Qualities of Effective Leadership for Professionals
The presentation started with the communication of ETS representative on the importance of “Transferable Skills”, skills that are valuable assets the professional takes with him, in his suitcase, wherever he goes “Soft Skills”. The issue is how difficult to measure those qualitative skills, compared to technical or language skillsassessed through ETS tests such as TOELF or TOEIC.
ETS suggests Top leadership competencies, based on research on survey with 195 global leaders, in 15 countries and 30 organizations:
1-Strong ethics and safety (high ethical and moral standards, clearly communicates expectations)
2-Self-organizing (provides goals and objectives with loose guidelines / direction)
3-Efficient learning (Accepts criticism, admits mistakes, has the flexibility to change opinion, is open to new ideas and approaches, provides safety for trial and error)
4-Nurtures growth (helps others grow into a next-generation leader)
5-Connecting and belonging (communicates often and openly, creates a feeling of succeeding / failing together)
To summarize, according to Jim Collins, the Top level of leadership is the one that “Builds enduring greatness through a paradoxical combination of personal humility plus professional will”.
ETS developed an assessment test of qualitative qualities for professionals.
For more detail, see https://www.ets.org/s/workplace/37429_wf-development-demo-2017.html
A presentation by the Dean of Sheffield Hallam University (GB) was about their approach to “Human Change”.
Their mission is stated clearly as: “Changing Lives” of “Learners” at all ages from 18 and above. They focus on a multidisciplinary approach of a Business School, a work-based learning, based on personal commitments.
Some ideas to keep as food for thought:
Gain deaper learning through assignments and cohort discussions
Do it and reflect on it
The B.School also uses the mentorship of big companies, such as PwC, Nestlé…
General update info
Task Force: Standards and Processes
A task force is working on updating AACSB accreditation standards and processes.
Potential changes will hopefully include specificities of different regions, such as MENA. 2 to 3 years implementation period starting from 2020 are planned. MENA region BSchools input would be appreciated and very usefull if they want their voice to be heard. Input from the region is expected, possibly through a BAFT webpage at :
Next ICAM in April: Developing Case study writing in MENA region
The MENA region AACSB affinity group is working on developing case studies with local content.
Groupe ISCAE International Newsletter
Groupe ISCAE International Newsletter is very much appreciated and have a great positive impact