A. What do you consider the most significant developments in MBA/management education and the international business school market as a whole this year?
New era in e-learning and growing demand for distance-learning, especially in Executive MBA programs
- New technologies are implemented more (blogs, multimedia resources, videoconferences, etc.) in the teaching methodologies of master programs, and e-learning programs are in increasing demand, as technologies are getting better and allow more interactivity. Many executives cannot take a year off to do an MBA, and prefer having at least the option of doing it partly on-line.
- Virtual networking vs. class room contact - since increasing number of executives are opting for an e-learning program, networking has also gotten a new meaning. The experience has shown (e.g. in IE's International Executive MBA) that sometimes the work groups bond even more on-line (deeper discussions of each case, becomes a lifestyle to be connected also after the MBA experience... etc.) than in a normal presential MBA. Therefore, schools will have to offer more and more virtual conferences, forums, networking opportunities for their distance learning students.
Increased globalization of top schools
- New international alliances, new joint programs across continents. Some schools opt for setting up campuses abroad.
- Internationalization of the executive education customer portfolio , many schools are organizing exec.ed. sessions abroad.
- Focus in Asia: new schools from China coming up in rankings , and all top schools .
A challenge for European higher education providers. It will be interesting to see how the homogenization of the European higher education market will affect the mobility of students across boarders and unify the curricula and loan schemes etc of different business schools. What will be the benefits for the future MBA students? Will the Bologna process give advantages for US schools (who already have a very homogenious MBA market in place)?