Posted By Guy Pfeffermann,
Friday, August 19, 2016
In 2012 GBSN partnered with the Association of African Business Schools and two foundations in launching an exciting organization, the African Management Initiative. Its ambitious aim: to help train African managers on a significant scale.
In June AMI asked 136 Kenyan Human Resources professionals : “If you could help grow the staff in your company in a few key areas of personal competence, what would they be?” Their responses are at the heart of a fascinating report: Training Talent – Best Practice in Workplace Learning and Management, which also draws on previous research. The report focuses particularly on management and entrepreneurship. To me, one of its main merits is that it helps understand why traditional training courses have had little measurable impact on company performance.
Here are the eight principal “takeaways”:
Effective managers and entrepreneurs hold the key to Africa’s prosperity.
Demand for training is greatest for job entrants, entrepreneurs and junior to middle managers. The need is often in small companies that do not have the resources to send their managers to expensive business schools - 99.6% of firms in Nigeria employ fewer than ten workers and in Kenya alone it is estimated that there are 750 000 small and medium sized companies.
What managers and entrepreneurs need most are soft skills. Twenty-first century work-readiness skills and management ability are more important than technical and functional skills, but much of learning and development spending is focused on technical and functional skills.
Embedding effective management practices into the routine of the company has more impact than focusing on individual competencies. The implication for learning and development practitioners is that they need to focus less on teaching knowledge to individuals and more on transforming what organizations actually do, or “company habits”. Survey respondents cited change management as the highest priority outcome from their learning programs.
In order to change behavior we need learning methodologies that incorporate experience, practice, feedback and accountability, not just content and theory. This calls for approaches such as the flipped classroom, action learning and blended learning. These draw on the 70:20:10 principle: we learn most from experience on the job, then from interaction with peers, and least from content in lectures and texts
Rapid developments in technology support these methods through virtual communities, engaging content, and data to individualize learning. They allow for company feedback, accessibility on mobile phones, and simple ways for users to create and share their own content. Users can now access learning and business toolkits when they need them, anywhere, any time and at minimal cost.
The preferred solution is blended learning in which the economy, scale and convenience of online learning is managed through the intensity, practice and shared insight of face-to-face interactions. This works best in customized company programs with peer learning and accountability processes that integrate learning and performance at work.
AMI data show that performance can indeed be transformed. Of those who participated in AMI blended learning programs, 97% state that they apply what they learn at work and 86% report improved effectiveness. Among entrepreneurs/business owners, 85% report improvement in operating efficiency since engaging with AMI. A large majority report that the AMI blended method was more helpful than others they had experienced.
I congratulate Jonathan Cook and Rebecca Harrison, who invented and started AMI.
One of GBSN’s most impactful roles is being “midwife” to other initiatives such as the Association of African Business Schools, which share its vision: improving access to quality, locally relevant education for managers and entrepreneurs for the developing world.
Guy Pfeffermann is the Founder & CEO of the Global Business School Network
Posted By Administration,
Thursday, August 11, 2016
The Global Business School Network (GBSN) and the National University of Management in Phnom Penh held a summit to explore experiential learning approaches to management education in the Asia Pacific Region
PHNOM PENH – On August 1, 2016 nearly 60 leaders in business education and industry gathered at the Raffles Hotel le Royal to participate in a summit on “Learning by Doing: The Power of Experiential Learning in Management Education,” hosted by the National University of Management in Phnom Penh. Delegates explored approaches to applying experiential learning to management education and opportunities to increase multi-sector engagement in management education in the Asia Pacific region, particularly with the private sector. The summit was sponsored by GGear Co. Ltd. and IDP Education.
"Around the globe we in the education community hear the drumbeat from employers that they want mature graduates who have the soft skills necessary to thrive in a work environment. And from GBSN members on every continent we see the impact that consequential experiential learning opportunities have on students’ development. I’m grateful to the National University of Management for helping us bring GBSN’s second ‘Learning by Doing’ summit to Cambodia as part of our effort to expand access to experiential education at business schools around the globe,” said Page Schindler Buchanan, Chief Operating Officer at GBSN.
“Overall, the GBSN Summit on Experiential Learning was a success and we look forward to introducing more experiential and action learning projects into our business school curricula at the National University of Management in Phnom Penh,” said Dr. Hor Peng, Rector of National University of Management.
The Keynote Discussion featured H.E. Dr. Hang Chuon Naron, Minister of Education, Youth and Sport who was interviewed by Kerry Laufer, Director of OnSite Global Consulting at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.
“The conference provides a platform for business schools, business leaders and policy-makers to meet and discuss to find ways how to improve management education to meet the needs of the rapidly changing landscapes of global business of the 21st century,” said H.E. Dr. Naron.
Following the summit, delegates from the US, Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, India, Singapore, South Korea and gathered for a reception with Julie Chung, Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Cambodia.
“The U.S. Embassy is proud to support this important summit that brings together the best of American business schools with their colleagues in Cambodia and throughout Asia. Experiential learning in particular is a significant innovation that will help future business leaders bridge borders and thrive in their own communities. By fostering international dialogue and information transfer through events like this, the Global Business School Network is helping to strengthen ties between our schools, our students and our nations," said Ms. Chung.
Summit speakers and facilitators included top U.S. and Asian business educators, prominent Cambodian entrepreneurs, and the Cambodian Minister of Education, Youth and Sport, providing varied perspectives on experiential education in Cambodia and across the globe.
Featured speakers included:
Bryan Andriano, Executive Director, Global & Experiential Education, George Washington University School of Business (USA)
Chang Bunleang, Co-Founder & Managing Director, Brown Coffee (Cambodia)
Michellana Jester, Lecturer & Faculty Course Manager, Global Economics & Management Group, MIT Sloan School of Management (USA)
Marc Johnson, Executive Director, Center for Global Initiatives, Darden School of Business, University of Virginia (USA)
Deepa Krishnan, Professor, S.P. Jain Institute of Management & Research (India)
Ravi Kumar, Associate Provost, Special Projects, Nanyang Business School (Singapore)
Kerry Laufer, Director, OnSite Global Consulting, Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth (USA)
Zoe Ng, Managing Director, Raintree Development (Cambodia)
Stephen Paterson, Senior Advisor &Program Coordinator for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, National University of Management (Cambodia)
Hor Peng, Rector, National University of Management (Cambodia)
Okhna Sok Piseth, CEO & Co-Founder, GGer Co., Ltd. (Cambodia)
Kristiana Raube, Executive Director, International Business Development Program
Executive Director, Institute for Business & Social Impact, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley (USA)
Eric Shih, Vice Dean for Faculty & Research, SKK Graduate School of Business (South Korea)
About GBSN The Global Business School Network is a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening management, entrepreneurial and leadership talent for the developing world through better access to quality, locally relevant education. GBSN harnesses the power of a network of over 70 leading business schools that share a dedication to our mission to build management education capacity for the developing world. Through international events and local capacity building projects GBSN facilitates cross-border networking, knowledge sharing and collaboration. GBSN programs tap the expertise of our member schools to advise, train and mentor developing world institutions and educators. More information is available at www.gbsn.org.
About The National University of Management
The National University of Management is the leading public university in Cambodia focusing on management and business administration. Currently, there are approximately 12,000 students enrolled in bachelor, masters and doctoral programs in areas such as finance & banking, accounting, management, marketing, entrepreneurship, tourism & hospitality, information technology, foreign languages and business law.
Last week I was in Phnom Penh, Cambodia for GBSN’s second “Learning by Doing” Summit, this one held with the National University of Management. The day-long dialogue explored the power of experiential education in management education. Nearly 60 participants from a dozen countries – including Myanmar, South Korea, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, the US and India – joined us for an insightful, interactive and practical conversation about how business schools can work with industry to develop meaningful and effective action-learning projects for their students.
In addition to highlighting diverse models from leading business schools in Asia, the summit featured discussion about the unique context of Cambodia and the particular relevance and challenges of experiential learning for their society.
A summary of the summit content will be posted separately. Here I wanted to reflect on three themes that echoed throughout the day’s dialogue for me: consequence, maturity and context.
The fundamental nature of the value that “learning by doing” holds for students is that it involves both experience and consequence. Dr. Kristiana Raube from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley (USA) opened the proceedings by defining experiential learning as a “results-focused method” that “addresses actual business and leadership challenges” in a way that engages the learner in reality, not just theory. As the featured speakers from Nanyang Business School (Singapore), SKK Graduate School of Business (South Korea) and S.P. Jain Institute of Management and Research (India) explained their schools’ experiential learning approaches, I heard a recurring theme underlying their distinct programs. Namely, that a key factor of success is the existence of real consequence – social, personal and business – related to the lesson.
Dr. Ravi Kumar (Nanyang) described the transformation his former students from southern California experienced when they traveled to Asia or Latin America. Experiencing life and work in a foreign culture, these students had to quickly grasp local norms and adjust their behavior, or risk immediate social consequences.
Prof. Deepa Krishnan (SPJIMR) shared how a student mentoring a girl in a Mumbai slum had to assess her willingness to challenge status quo and be personally uncomfortable in order to advocate for what she thought was right. There were real personal consequences for this woman in the project at hand. She had to examine herself and make decisions that would affect her and the girl she was mentoring.
Vice-Dean Eric Shih (SKK) explained that action-learning projects need to be fully supported by the school’s business partner, as a project that has no real importance to the company does not provide a valuable learning opportunity. The pressure of a student’s work having real consequence on the activities or profits of someone’s business gives them an incentive beyond a class grade to learn and perform.
All of the programs these schools offer put students in supervised “real-world” scenarios where they have an emotional experience tied to the intellectual one. By introducing consequence into the learning process through experiential education, schools give students cognitive tools to process and assimilate theoretical lessons. In addition to improving knowledge transfer, these kinds of programs contribute to the development of maturity in students, a concept that stood out as another key theme at the Summit.
NUM's Stephen Patterson moderates a panel of Industry representatives at the summit in Phnom Penh on August 1, 2016.
Every one of the featured industry representatives mentioned the need for maturity in business school graduates. Okhna Sok Piseth, CEO of G Gear – a young electronics company – talked about the need for work-ready students who have good communication skills and the ability to apply academic knowledge to a local business environment: “Theory isn’t different [around the world], but the execution is.”
By providing real consequences to students on social, personal and business levels, experiential learning programs develop maturity in students in a way that an isolated classroom-only curriculum cannot. This call for maturity and work-readiness in graduates is not new or exclusive to Cambodian businesses, but because of its turbulent recent history and fledgling business environment, experiential learning does have special role in Cambodian society. “If a business owner is over 50 they didn’t graduate from [business school], they graduated from war,” said G Gear’s Piseth. “They learned by experience, themselves.”
The Cambodia Minister of Education, Youth and Sport, H.E. Dr. Hang Chuon Naron, emphasized that the most important thing for business schools to do is to prepare and encourage students to address the region’s problems in an increasingly complex world. New technology is changing business, increasing opportunity while enabling a clash of cultures that is relatively new to Cambodia. If Cambodia is to continue to build and thrive, education will need to modernize, developing links between policy, academic research and practical application.
Higher education in Cambodia parallels the youth and growth of the business community. According to Dr. Naron, in 1998 there were 9000 students in the public higher education system in Cambodia. Today there are 118 universities with 260,000 students. However, he said, there is a skills mismatch between graduates and jobs. Society changed rapidly – from an agrarian economy to a modern one – but the educational system has not caught up. With the youngest population in Southeast Asia, Cambodia has a growing need for management and STEM skills.
Dr. Naron further explained that most business in Cambodia is family business and people learned by doing things themselves – “by imitation and by making mistakes.” Today these business owners are sending their children to top universities where they are learning by study and research, but they do not have the know-how or innovative spirit that their parents were forced to develop.
In this context there is enormous opportunity for experiential learning to both modernize education and provide a link between generations. Those who learned by doing when formal education wasn’t available can benefit from and mentor today’s students who have a firmer grasp of business theory, but a looser understanding of how to apply it.
The generational differences in education and the relative youth of the business environment combine to form Cambodia’s unique context for experiential learning. Due to the scarcity of large established corporations for business schools to work with on consulting projects, educators need to be creative in designing experiential learning projects that connect and add value to the local small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that make up the Cambodian economy.
Raintree Development’s Ng encouraged the development of forums to create relationships between academia and SMEs in order to identify ways that students could work with them. And they do want students to work with them. While Ng conceded that foreign students usually have a more experiential background, Cambodian students have local context and therefore face lower barriers to action in the regional context. The challenge, she said, is to structure projects so students can work with growing companies that may not have the capacity to host and mentor them in the same way large corporations do in traditional student consulting models familiar to business schools in more developed countries.
Many thanks to NUM Rector Hor Peng (center) and the entire GBSN Experiential Learning Advisory Committee for their work in making the summit a success.
While there are issues unique to the Cambodian environment, it is clear to me that these questions of context are relevant in many countries around the world where large corporate partners are few and far between, and where business schools are more likely to be preparing students for entrepreneurship and management in local businesses than for work in multinational corporations.
Around the globe we in the education community hear the drumbeat from employers that they want mature graduates who have the soft skills necessary to thrive in a work environment. And from GBSN members on every continent we see the impact that consequential experiential learning opportunities have on students. These programs are often the most difficult and the most rewarding of their academic careers. The challenge for business schools is to design effective experiential learning programs that match their programs’ learning objectives with available resources and project opportunities.
We know this isn’t always easy, which is why GBSN will continue to work with our Experiential Learning Advisory Committee to provide opportunities to learn, share and explore experiential learning around the globe.
I’m grateful to our hosts at the National University of Management for helping us bring this special event to Cambodia, and I look forward to further collaborations with them. Coming up next GBSN will host an Experiential eLearning Summit in Berlin on November 30, and will soon launch a new online course on building a student consulting program at your business school. I look forward to more regional Summits like this one as well, giving GBSN members and others in the business school community a forum to advance and strengthen management education around the globe.
Page Schindler Buchanan is the Chief Operating Officer for the Global Business School Network.
Posted By Administration,
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
GBSN Advisor, Austin Okere recently wrote an article, Millennials, Zero Distance and Grassroots Innovation published on his blog austinokere.com. He touches on the impact the generation Millennials has on grassroots innovation and the importance of infusing them within organizations as Millennials hold fresh innovative ideas imperative to continued sustainability of a business.
"As the sun is setting on old ways of tacking social problems, millennials may well save us from our broken socio-economic system. They certainly possess the attributes of what Harvard professor Joseph Nye refers to as tri-sector athletes or multilingual leaders; these are individuals and organisations that nimbly cross traditional spheres of influence to translate and broker these different institutional logics into private-public, government-civil and civil-private partnerships and solutions." - Austin Okere
Austin Okere is the Founder of CWG Plc, the largest Systems Integration Company in Sub-Saharan Africa & Entrepreneur in Residence at CBS, New York. Austin also serves on the World Economic Forum Business Council on Innovation and Intrapreneurship. Austin Okere also sits on the GBSN Advisory Board.
First and foremost I would like to thank GBSN for awarding me a Scholarship to the course. I was a wonderful and extremely fruitful course. I am currently working on my proposal. My area of interest is public management.
I enrolled for 2 courses. The first course was Qualitative Data Analysis. It was taught by Paul Mihas. He is truly a master of the subject. Above all, the lecturer was very kind and always answered all the questions regardless of how simple they looked. I learnt a lot and I have already started applying many of the concepts and techniques that I learnt.
The other course was Mixed Methods by Johnson Burke. I simply loved this course. The course was intense and we had lots of reading to do. These readings have done me a lot of good. The class was very interactive and I learnt a lot form my classmates. One of the requirements of the course was to develop the research methodology chapter of the proposal. This was so useful for me. I have given me huge start! At the end of the course my classmates thought that the lecturer deserved a gift. We presented him with a Swiss knife.
Apart from the classes we also had excursions and outings. I went to the chocolate factory in Zurich. I had a chance to make chocolate. It was educative and at the same time fun. There were also sporting activities at the end of the day and the opportunity to go to the gym. We also had opportunities to experience the Swiss culture for example there were a number of festivals at marketplatz, a concert at the Abbey Library and Kathedral etc
Overall, this was a life changing experience both from a personal and cultural perspective. My interactions with the students in the course were quite insightful. I am still in touch with most of them. I hope that as many people s possible get the opportunity for this splendid and unforgettable experience.
Irene Ngunjiri is from Strathmore Business School.
As part of the Global Business School Network’s (GBSN) collaboration with the Global School in Empirical Research Methods (GSERM), I was privileged to take part in this year’s GSERM at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland. I am a Ghanaian by nationality, and I am 26 years old. Currently, I am a doctoral student in Development Finance at the University of Stellenbosch Business School, Cape Town in South Africa, where I also double as a Teaching and Research Assistant on the MPhil Development Finance program. My research focus is on “Aggregate and Sector-Specific Threshold Inflation Non-Linearity: Implications for Inflation Targeting” In the near future, I hope to be a development and macroeconomic consultant with one of the Bretton Woods Institutions.
This year’s GSERM had over 350 students from over 50 different countries, which shows both the scale of expansion of the GSERM, as well as a presentation of a myriad of possibilities for networking among participants and lecturers.
While St. Gallen boasts of a very well developed transportation network of trains and buses, I personally always enjoyed the daily 25 minute hike from my accommodation at 47 Wassergasse to the University of St. Gallen campus, which is located on top of the scenic and sunny Rosenberg hill, overlooking the picturesque Altstadt of St. Gallen and the Alps. Each time I walked uphill, I was constantly kept transfixed by the remarkable integration of art and architecture throughout the uphill stretch of land.
While at the GSERM, I studied in Tim McDaniels’ ‘Regression II – Linear Models’, as well as in Michael Berbaum’s ‘Multivariate Data Analysis’ classes. Both professors proved beyond doubt, their immense expertise and dexterity in their respective subject areas. Tim and Michael gave me a much deeper understanding of the varied underlying concepts, as well as varied possible research applications of the respective methodologies presented in their modules. Also, their availability during lunch and coffee breaks, and even after class hours, to interact with students regarding our research was highly impressive.
Through the well-organized social activities at the GSERM, networking opportunities were not limited to the classroom. Even for the most devoted book worm, the social activities served as a well-deserved break from continuous research. Some of the activities I personally cannot forget include the ‘Do it yourself: Swiss Chocolate Truffes’, the trip to the famous Appenzeller Schaukäserei, the guided city tour of St. Gallen, the unforgettable weekly leisure times at Drei Weiheren, as well as window shopping at the flea market and the musical concerts on varied musical genres especially the infamous New Orleans meets St. Gallen jazz festival. Finally, thanks to the GSERM being very instrumental in providing free access to the gym for all GSERM participants, I was able to take great advantage of the opportunity to work out.
As the GSERM came to a successful conclusion, I could confidently rub my hands in glee because I knew I had definitely benefited from all that this year’s GSERM had to offer. Without hesitation, I recommend the Global School in Empirical Research Methods to every academic, irrespective of one’s research focus or discipline.
From right: Me, Prof. Tim McDaniel (my Regression II professor), and Timothy Aluko (a friend I made)
Me and Prof. Michael Berbaum (my Multivariate Data Analysis professor)
Networking at GSERM: Me and my newest network of friends
First day at the GSERM - myself with Monde Nyambe and Timothy Aluko
GSERM weekend beach volleyball
Me with Prof. R. Burke Johnson (lecturer of mixed methods research)
Posted By Nicole Zefran,
Monday, July 25, 2016
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2016
For the third year in a row, The University of St. Gallen offered 10 scholarship opportunities to Ph.D. students from GBSN member schools in developing countries, to attend its Global School in Empirical Research Methods (GSERM.)
The GSERM Global School in Empirical Research Methods is a new flagship programme on methodology at the University of St. Gallen. It is a new and high-calibre integrated programme teaching methodology for PhD students, postdocs and practitioners from leading universities all over the world. GSERM offers an attractive course-based learning atmosphere on different aspects of empirical research.
After enduring the competitive application process, 7 applicants were chosen from our member schools:
Timothy Aluko, University of Stellenbosch Business School
Monde Nyambe, University of Stellenbosch Business School
Emmanuel Oduro-Afriyie, University of Stellenbosch Business School
Andrew Ojong Tarh, University of Witwatersrand
Oluwayemisi Olomo, Lagos Business School
Olusegun Shogbanmu, Lagos Business School
Irene Wanjohi Ngunjiri, Strathmore University Business School
The students were invited to blog about their experience attending GSERM in Switzerland. Click on the links below to read their blogs:
GBSN would like to thank Jürgen Brücker, Head of External Relations & Development, Dr. Hans-Joachim Knopf, Program Director, and Dr. Peter Gomez, former President of the University of St. Gallen, for presenting GBSN with the opportunity to provide scholarships to Ph.D. Students from our member schools. Dr. Gomez serves on our Board of Directors and has been a long time supporter of GBSN.
Posted By Noreen Rozario, Communication intern,
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
The three-day eLearning Africa networking event that took place in Cairo, Egypt this May was a success.
With GBSN being proud partner at this event, we were glad to know that over 1,045 delegates attended the event. There was 204 conference speakers, who gave presentations exploring latest innovations, best-practice examples and issues regarding technology and education. These presentations were designed to engage the audience thus stimulating interaction between participants.
It was interesting how the event was divided into four sessions. It was a good way of organizing the event. The first session was the opening session, which reviewed the range of initiatives being planned or currently undertaken by both the African Union and individual countries. The second session was the first panel discussion that discussed how technology is affecting our culture of learning and working. The third session was the second panel discussion that focused on how governments can collaborate with other stakeholders in order to facilitate innovation and encourage investment.The fourth session was the closing panel. It encouraged everyone to exchange ideas on best practice examples of successfully implemented innovation and education policies in their own countries.
During the fourth session, a plenary debate occurred; the room was packed full of learning enthusiasts that came together to listen to four education experts on the motion: “This House believes inclusivity is more important for Africa’s future than tradition.”
Moreover, some keynote speakers that caught our attention were:
Elham Mahmood Ahmed Ibrahim, African Union Commissioner of Infrastructure and Energy
Dr. Ibrahim is responsible to lead the infrastructure and energy department to realize its mandate to enhance regional and continental efforts for accelerated integrated infrastructure development and effective sustainable development of energy resources, and to carry out its core functions.
Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji, Founder and CEO of RISE NETWORKS
Akerele-Ogunsiji is the founder/CEO of RISE NETWORKS, a Leading Social Enterprise in Africa, with a deliberate interest in technology and its relevance to youth and education development across Africa.
Moses Oketch, Professor of International; Education Policy and Development at UCL
Oketch is a professor of International Education Policy and Development. His research focuses on the connection between the theory of human capital and implementation of policies.
Thierry Zomahoun, President and CEO, African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS)
Thierry is a global development expert with a successful 22 year track record in educational and scientific programs administration, not-for-profit business startups, and growth and microenterprise development in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.
Guy Pfefferman talks with AACSB's executive vice president and chief operating officer, Dan LeClair, about the opportunities for business schools in sub-Saharan Africa to be innovative and create entrepreneurs who will help the local economy.
MOOCs guide for policy-makers in developing countries
Massive open online courses, or MOOCs, have been expanding rapidly throughout the world since the ‘Year of the MOOC’ in 2012, offering higher education, often free, to millions of learners – especially in developed countries with wide access to the right technology and resources.