Business school deans discuss globalization's impact on education
HANOVER, N.H.-Deans from business schools in Eastern Europe, Spain, and the United States recently gathered to discuss the differences in international models of business education and the impact of globalization on their industry. The event was the latest in a series of roundtables held around the globe and organized and moderated by Paul Danos, dean of the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, and Santiago Iñiguez, dean of Instituto de Empressa Business School.
(Media-Newswire.com) - HANOVER, N.H.—Deans from business schools in Eastern Europe, Spain, and the United States recently gathered to discuss the differences in international models of business education and the impact of globalization on their industry. The event was the latest in a series of roundtables held around the globe and organized and moderated by Paul Danos, dean of the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, and Santiago Iñiguez, dean of Instituto de Empressa Business School. This latest assembly was hosted by Dean Paul Garrison of the Central European University Business School in Budapest.
"Globalization is changing business education just as surely as it has changed international business," says Danos. "These roundtable discussions have been a valuable tool for comparing regional business school models and ensuring that our MBA programs reflect the realities of the modern marketplace."
Deans from more than 20 schools around the world, senior faculty members, business education reporters, education consultants, and professional development executives from top corporations have joined together for the four roundtable sessions held to date.
At the meetings the deans discussed the unique traits of each region's business education system, compared them with other international models, and discussed the impact of globalization on business schools. In Germany, the discussion focused on the Bologna Accord, which has established a model and standards for higher education in Europe. In Brazil participants discussed how Brazilian schools differ from the U.S. and European models in their standards, curriculum, and degree of focus on faculty research. In France, the deans talked about how the implementation of the Bologna Accord is converging business education systems across country borders and how market forces are prompting some convergence in issues like experience requirements, faculty models, and business school financing. And in Hungary discussion centered on models of public versus private business schools in Eastern Europe and the role of faculty in the business schools of the future.
Specific experiences and issues ranged from one region to the next, but all four discussions reported that globalization is influencing the curriculum and strategy of today's business schools. Particularly in Europe and China, deans reported that international political entities and NGOs are affecting business education through standards and accreditation. They also noted that market forces are bringing schools closer to corporate partners and highlighting the importance of faculty research. As prospective students consider schools across country borders, top schools must show that their faculty can compete not just within their region but also with schools from around the globe.
Roundtable in Germany: Alfred Kieser of Mannheim University reflected widespread concerns that the Bologna Accord was "initiated by government, by the European ministers who agreed in Bologna to change the system; a major goal was to save money." Participants noted that the reforms might decrease dropout rates but weren't sure that broad standards or accreditation would necessarily improve a business education model for graduates of the programs. Derek Abell of the European School of Management and Technology said, "We have got to be extremely careful here in Germany in trying to import bits and pieces of what has seemed to work in the past in the U.S. The world is pressuring for faster changes, [but] at the same time we should not ditch our, let's say, thoroughness." Several speakers, such as Manfred Schwaiger of the Munich Business School, noted some positive reforms coming out of the Bologna Accord as well, such as "transparency and compatibility."
Roundtable in Brazil: Antonio Batista of Fundacao Dom Cabral explained that in Brazil, "The MBA is not a sanctioned degree. Anyone can use the term MBA and there are no regulations that say what it is." That being said, Claudio Haddad of Ibmec São Paulo pointed out that "the market is slowly recognizing the need for more sophisticated MBAs." While several speakers mentioned that research is not emphasized at many Brazilian schools, they noted that globalization will foster applied research that will be relevant to companies that compete internationally. Of course, just as globalization is bringing some international standards to Brazil, it as also expanding the market available to Brazilian students, leading Heitor Penteado of Business School Sao Paolo to say that "those who want a prestigious faculty go to the U.S.A. for education."
Roundtable in France: Santiago Iniguez de Ozono of Instituto de Empresa summed up the thoughts of many participants about the growing cross-border standardization in noting that "Europe is a region of great diversity and we must respect this diversity.... The Bologna process can be considered the equivalent of the Euro in higher education, meaning we have to homogenize not only information and programs from the point of view of the demand but also the side of supply—professors." Michel Raimbault of HEC pointed out, "If you look at how the Bologna Process is currently implemented in the different European countries, you see different ways to interpret the so-called standards, and you still have great diversity." Deans and reporters agreed that the ongoing changes in business education models were driven not just by the Bologna Accord, but also by market forces. When asked by Danos whether a PhD will become a requirement to be a full faculty member in Europe, Raimbault pointed to the demands of the market, commenting, "I feel that we have no choice but to require the PhD because of the pressure that every business school will feel if they want to compete internationally." Similarly, Bing Xiang of the Chung Kong Graduate School of Business also credited the market demand for top-caliber faculty for prompting recent policy changes, saying that "the Chinese government just drafted regulation for opening up the education sector to private investment.... We have no choice but to bring in the very best faculty from the U.S., Europe, and other parts of the world."
Roundtable in Hungary: Tuck's Dean Paul Danos posed the question: Will the future business schools in Central and Eastern Europe be public or private? Andrei Volkov of the Skolkovo School of Management explained that in Russia, new business schools tend to be private institutions. The business-education industry in Russia is just 17 years old, he said, and "the sector gets no money from the government because according to the law it is a postgraduate education." Danica Purg of Bled School of Management in Slovenia said that government accreditation of private schools poses a challenge because with this accreditation, schools sometimes have a hard time retaining independence. The deans also discussed funding for management education. Arpad von Lazar of Instituto de Empressa explained the European model varies greatly from the American. In his region, he said, "There is no culture of corporate or alumni giving." The next business school deans roundtable will be held on June 11, 2008, at China Europe International Business School. This series is one piece of Tuck's sustained international outreach in recent years, which includes initiatives for Europe, Latin America, and India as well as the Tuck Ambassador Program with representatives in 25 countries.
Founded in 1900, Tuck is the first graduate school of management in the country and consistently ranks among the top business schools worldwide. Tuck remains distinctive among the world's great business schools by combining human scale with global reach, rigorous coursework with experiences requiring teamwork, and valued traditions with innovation.
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