Innovations That Inspire

Case Study Unit

Recognition Year(s): 2024
School: College of Business and Economics, Qatar University
Location: Qatar

The case study unit is a high-impact platform that promotes experiential learning by publishing local and regional teaching case studies and integrating them into the university’s curriculum for more comprehensive business insights.

Call to Action

In 2022, the case study unit was established to support Qatar University’s College of Business and Economics in its ongoing mission to amplify its societal impact, particularly through curriculum enhancement and external engagement. The unit’s primary goal is to provide practical, hands-on training to faculty and students, introducing innovative learning approaches that immerse learners in real-world scenarios, allowing them to comprehend how theoretical concepts can be manifested in practical applications. In essence, case studies have proven to be instrumental in facilitating experiential learning in the College of Business and Economics.

Furthermore, the scarcity of local and relevant cases has underscored the imperative to develop studies that promote inclusivity and better reflect the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Tailored to the regional context, these cases become more relatable to students and lead to increased engagement and concept retention.

In response to the limited use of case studies and the absence of regional and Arabic cases, a dedicated unit was established. Its overarching objective is multifaceted: develop and publish local case studies, enhance experiential learning through the widespread adoption of the case-based teaching approach in both the college and the region, foster stronger ties with the local business community, and increase the college’s impact by addressing challenges faced by the local or regional business community.

Innovation Description

The unit’s core mission is to equip faculty members with the essential competencies and knowledge to develop locally and regionally inspired case studies rooted in authentic business scenarios.

The unit’s objectives are as follows:

  • Equip faculty with expertise in case-study writing.
  • Enhance students’ analytical and entrepreneurial capabilities and acumen.
  • Advance case study use at Qatar University.
  • Publish case studies tailored to the MENA region.
  • Increase the college’s impact by addressing local or regional business challenges.
  • Foster stronger ties with the local community.

It is currently staffed with specialized experts and is actively expanding the team with high-caliber personnel to fulfill its ambitious plans.

The unit organized a series of workshops to provide awareness for faculty about the importance of integrating locally based case studies in teaching. It also provided hands-on trainings for case-study development and its use in the classroom. Furthermore, the unit consistently encourages faculty to promote academic inclusivity by publishing in local, regional, and international outlets as well as organizing student competitions to improve their case-analysis skills. The unit led and managed a case-study track at the sixth international Entrepreneurship for Sustainability and Impact conference. This track provided a platform for faculty and students to present their cases to local, regional, and international audiences.

Innovation Impact

In alignment with the college’s mission and values, which emphasize creating positive societal impact through applied research and collaborations with industry, the case study unit’s initiatives have yielded several outcomes, including the following:

  • Since launching, the unit has published six teaching cases and received more than 40 cases from Qatar University and other academic institutions.
  • The public has been provided with access to cases through an institutional reservoir.
  • At the 2022 FIFA World Cup, a case collection including 25 cases was written by Qatar University faculty and students.
  • A partnership with Harvard Business Publishing encouraged case teaching among instructors and students, resulting in the full adoption of case-based teaching in four MBA courses.
  • The unit collaborated with the International Labor Organization to develop and write nine case studies in human rights in the MENA region.
  • A dedicated case study track at the Entrepreneurship for Sustainability and Impact 2023 conference received a record-breaking 39 submissions, with a panel session led by three international case experts.
  • The college signed a memorandum of understanding with the U.K.’s Case Centre, providing access to an extensive collection of teaching cases and facilitating the publication of 10 case studies.
  • Two student workshops on case study writing resulted in five published cases, co-authored with faculty members.
  • A four-day case writing workshop was led by an associate editor of Emerging Markets Case Studies (Emerald Publishing), benefiting 15 faculty members who were working on individual cases.
  • Through the unit, student projects have been converted into teaching cases with instructional notes for inclusion in a casebook and curriculum.