Preparing B-School Students To Make Impact

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

WDI Senior Research Fellow Ted London gave the keynote speech at the World Investment Forum (WIF) Oct. 16 in Geneva on what innovations are needed in business school curricula to support WIF’s “Business Schools for Impact” objective of preparing students for investing and operating in low-income countries with positive economic and social impact.

Following his keynote, London moderated a panel discussion on the topic during which he asked panelists about which courses, initiatives, and teaching methods they think business schools should develop to encourage business students to engage in entrepreneurship in low-income countries with positive social impact, and to provide them with the skills and tools to succeed.

The panel was comprised of academics from business schools or universities involved in impact courses targeted to developing markets; persons/organizations supporting or investing in enterprises in low-income countries (business angels, training programs for entrepreneurs); and entrepreneurs who started a business/project aimed at helping local producers.

The panel included: Professor Jean-Philippe Bonardi, deputy dean, HEC, University of Lausanne, Switzerland; Professor Mario Molteni, director, ALTIS, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Italy; Professor Vinika Rao, executive director, Emerging Markets Institute of INSEAD, Singapore; Joseph Nkandu, CEO, National Union of Coffee Agribusinesses and Farm Enterprises, Uganda; and Susan Oguya, COO, MFarm, Kenya.

Sponsored by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Investment, the WIF is a high-level, biennial, multi-stakeholder gathering designed to facilitate dialogue and action on the world’s key emerging investment-related challenges. Its mission is to provide a platform where a debate on “investment for development” can take place and ultimately to promote investment flows that contribute to sustainable and inclusive development. With its ties to UN member States, the Forum is able to bring together a broad coalition of investment stakeholders at the highest level who can influence the global investment landscape.

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