Future Proof

IMD Business School's new strategic direction for its MBA program aims help MBAs explore and address current and future business trends, so they can “obtain the big-picture view needed to pave the way for real progress,” explains Ralf Boscheck, IMD’s MBA director.
IMD Business School in Lausanne, Switzerland, has adopted a new strategic direction for its MBA program called “Navigating the Future.” Launched in 2014, “Navigating the Future” was created to help MBAs explore and address current and future business trends, so they can “obtain the big-picture view needed to pave the way for real progress,” explains Ralf Boscheck, IMD’s MBA director.

As part of the “Navigating the Future” initiative, the school asked senior business leaders and MBA students what trends they believe will most shape business. IMD faculty also will research the impact of, and business response to, 15 global trends in areas such as digital technology, the global regulatory environment, and energy consumption. The school planned to release the results of that survey at a conference at its campus in June.

The initiative also inspired the school to offer five new scholarships—totaling 250,000 Swiss francs (about US$262,500)—earmarked for students in emerging markets. The Scholarships for Emerging Markets will go to candidates from Latin America, Southeast Asia, and Africa who otherwise would not have access to financial aid for higher education.

Ultimately, the school wants its MBA students to understand “why business does what it does, and at which value and costs to whom,” says Boscheck. He adds that the school also wants students to recognize how short-sighted business decisions could lead to detrimental outcomes. “We cannot close our eyes to fundamental challenges that exist across industries.”