SOM builds global network

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Photo by Snigdha Sur.

Unlike most elite American business schools, the School of Management has not prioritized partnering with international business schools — until now.

SOM Dean Edward Snyder, who took office this fall, is working to assemble a group of global business schools with whom to collaborate on a variety of academic projects. The first is a new Master in Advanced Management degree program, which was approved by the Yale Corporation Dec. 9 and will begin next fall. Snyder told the News that the new network will deviate from the traditional “partnership model” since it will include several business schools in developing countries and will not consist solely of bilateral partnerships.

“It’s important for us to think about developing leaders in an innovative way,” he said, adding that SOM must not “neglect emerging economic powers.”

Snyder said INSEAD, an elite business school with campuses in France, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates, and the National University of Singapore have already joined the network. He added that over five other schools, which he declined to name, have also agreed to take part, and several others are considering membership.

The degree program will take place at SOM with enrollment limited to Master of Business Administration students from participating international business schools, who Snyder said will be pre-screened for admission by their respective institutions. The program will have flexible academic requirements based heavily on electives not typically available at international business schools, which are often not connected to Universities. Participating students will be able to take electives outside the SOM, Snyder said.

While the network has not finalized the other components of the partnership, Snyder said he also hopes faculty will collaborate on projects and share curricular information, adding that he also expects student groups to exchange ideas. Snyder added that he hopes members of the network will shape the partnership over time.

“One of the things I don’t want to do is micromanage it,” he said. “I think once the infrastructure is in place, it will run itself.”

A similar degree has existed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management and is open to all MBA graduates of foreign business schools. Like Yale’s degree, the program at MIT is based on electives, allowing students to specialize in an area of business, Program Manager Chanh Phan said. Many international schools whose MBA programs last only one year and are limited to core classes, he explained.

“[International MBA students] might not have as much time to take electives and really dig deeper to gain a really good understanding of one area,” Phan said. “They might not enter the job market with the specific knowledge that some employers are looking for.”

Bernard Ramanantsoa, the dean of HEC Paris, a French business school that has partnered with several international schools including Sloan and the National University of Singapore, told the News in French that the cultural familiarity his students could gain through an American program like MIT’s or Yale’s would help his students learn to approach management issues from diverse perspectives.

He added that Yale’s reputation would likely draw student interest in the new degree program.

Though the SOM is creating the new network, it remains a novice in the realm of global partnerships. Snyder said that while SOM students can take part in several exchange programs, administrators in previous years have focused primarily on developing internal aspects of the school, such as its integrated curriculum.

Snyder said he expects to unveil the full details of the network in April.

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