Business Education Is 'Glocal'

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Wednesday, May 13, 2020
Johan Roos, chief academic officer of Hult International Business School, and Sherif Kamel, dean of AUC Business School, discuss why business school today must serve both local and global needs--depending on their context.
Filmed February 2020 at AACSB's Deans Conference in Nashville, Tennessee, USA.


Johan Roos: [0:04] Business education just like business is a local and a global business or "glocal," as some people say. That means that of course you as a business school or we as a business school offering education, we have to see where we are working here.

[0:28] Some schools may be more local or regional by nature, and that's perfectly all right. Others, like my own school, tries to be very global and have campuses all over the world. It is a bit of what's your mission. Not everybody should do everything for everyone all the time, but we'll find our niches and see what makes sense.

[0:48] Business and business schools are ultimately both global and local.

Sherif Kamel: [0:52] Addressing the needs over a country or a region is not like the one size that fits all. One needs to always keep an eye on what's happening globally, but also cater for the issues that are happening in the country where the business school is or the region where the business school is.

[1:09] Over the last 30, 40 years, with the massive development and information communication technologies and emerging innovative applications and so on and so forth it's becoming a global space.

[1:21] There is a thin line that one needs to go through where they cater for whatever there is happening locally, but always keep an eye globally. Graduates will go out there, not necessarily work in the country where they study, but also need to build bridges between their peers across the world.

[1:39] Business schools should have that balance. That happens through programs, through seminars, exchange programs, study abroads. There are a portfolio of activities they could be doing.

[1:51] For example, in the MENA region, some of the issues that are being addressed in the context of business schools is that most of the business schools, standalone business school students are coming from sons and daughters of family businesses. Those are more of the private schools.

[2:05] The public schools are usually the sons and daughters of people working in civil service. It's not like a zero sum game, but it's more or less that divide. The business curriculum should be addressing those issues.

[2:19] For example, students in private schools where they come from family businesses, obviously, most of them will be looking for extending their businesses, growing it, and so on and so forth. The curriculum should be geared that way. That does not mean to disconnect of what's happening in the country, but the focus should be more on that.

[2:35] It's vice versa when it comes to the public sector. Surely, it's a huge market. It's 400 million. In my mind, it's very much underserved when it comes to the number and diversity of business schools that are operating there.

[2:49] Massive development happened over the last 20 years. If I was asked that question in the '80s, the answer would have been completely different. We were talking about maybe 20 business schools back then. That's just 30 years ago. Today we're talking maybe 400. Still, 400 for a 400 million market, it's still very much underserved.

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