Bologna Business School & Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administración Receive EFMD Programme Accreditation

Bologna Business School and IESA EFMD Programme Accreditation

We are pleased to announce the Executive MBA (EMBA) and Master in Data Science and Business Analytics at Bologna Business School (BBS), Italy, and the Master of Business Administration (MBA) at Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administración (IESA), Venezuela, have received EFMD Programme Accreditation.

We would like to extend our congratulations to the schools and a warm welcome to the EFMD Programme Accreditaiton Community!

Barbara Sporn, EFMD Programme Accreditation Director, commented:

“We are delighted to have BBS and IESA as members of the EFMD Programme accreditation community — their programmes will undoubtedly provide students with exceptional educational experiences, preparing them for success on the global stage. We eagerly anticipate the positive impact that their accreditation will have on both schools’ strategic development, their community and the broader academic landscape.”

Bologna Business School, University of Bologna

As Europe’s oldest University, the highly-ranked University of Bologna is a large public institution with over 90,000 students.  Bologna, the capital of the northern Italian region of Emilia Romagna, one of the country’s richest regions, has a population of almost four hundred thousand. The economy is broadly based, internationally oriented, and well-known as the heart of the Italian luxury car industry. Bologna is an important centre for education, transport and a wide range of industries.

Bologna Business School, which was established in 2000, provides postgraduate and post-experience programmes. It has an annual intake of around 1500 students, over eight hundred of whom are registered in degree programmes. The School is well-resourced and financially stable, benefitting from foundation status, which links it to the University and business. Full-time teaching faculty are drawn from relevant departments of the University. The School’s brand is built upon interdisciplinarity and engagement with the world of practice.

Executive MBA (EMBA)

The Executive MBA (EMBA) at BBS is a sixteen-month part-time post-experience degree aimed at mid-career managers. It is one of nine MBA programmes offered in different formats by the Business School, recruiting around sixty-five students annually. The programme is delivered through face-to-face weekend modules, held every three weeks, and online modules. The programme is delivered in Italian and attracts mostly domestic students, many of them drawn from the wider region.

The peer review team commended the close working relationship between the programme and the world of practice as exemplary in terms of bringing practice into the classroom and learning and contributing to the regional and wider economy. A second area of excellence is the personal support that students receive from faculty and programme staff that ensures that their learning experience is a positive one and that coaches them in their personal and professional development.

Specifically, the analysis highlighted the overall quality of the student experience, strong corporate relationships, mixture of theory and practice, consortium and the International Week, impact of the programme on participants’ careers, dedication and engagement of staff and faculty, and the response to the business needs of the region, especially SMEs.

Master of Data Science and Business Analytics

Bologna Business School’s Master in Data Science and Business Analysis (MDSBA), launched in 2015,  is a twelve-month full-time postgraduate degree targeting recent graduates and young professionals from a range of disciplines, including economics, management science, mathematics and engineering.

The programme, delivered in English, aims to train students to interpret and manage business information through IT, data analysis and business dynamics. It draws students from across the world – nearly three-quarters of the most recent intake is international

The peer review team noted an exemplary feature of the MDSBA is its creative deployment of interdisciplinarity to address the opportunities and challenges which technology and data provide for business. By drawing on discipline-based scholarship and research, and applying it to business, students gain skills in new ways of problem-solving and building bridges between functional areas of the organisation.

Specific highlights of the Programme’s strengths include interdisciplinarity, strong corporate relations, dedicated and engaged staff and faculty, a curriculum which builds on economics, statistics and IT, and diversity of the student body.

“Bologna Business School is proud to have achieved the EFMD International Accreditation for the Executive MBA and the Professional Master in Data Science and Business Analytics. Two recognitions strengthen the school’s reputation on a global scale. The two new accredited programs join the Global MBA and the Professional Master in HR & Organization that previously achieved this milestone,” said Paolo Onnis, Bologna Business School. “With the EFMD accreditation, Bologna Business School confirms its commitment to the pursuit of educational excellence and to training leaders capable of standing out in the global business landscape.”

Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administración (IESA)

The Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administración (IESA) is a Venezuelan business school established in 1965. Its mission is to train professionals, managers, and entrepreneurs capable of assuming leadership positions in various sectors, including private, public, and non-profit organisations. IESA is committed to contributing to the development of society through its educational programs and processes.

ISEA is the only internationally accredited business school in Venezuela, and its faculty is made up of more than 40 professors and researchers, 70% of them with a PhD, who collaborate in teaching and research with schools worldwide and more than 100 invited professors, 100% with managerial and international experience. IESA has an Alumni network of approximately 9,000 graduates. Located in Caracas, Maracaibo, and Valencia, IESA is a private non-profit business school with a committment to quality education and its impact on society.

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

ISEA developed the first full-time Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme in Venezuela. Its aim is to offer students the knowledge and skills needed to assume leadership positions as a professional, manager or entrepreneur in both national and international organisations. Students are taught virtually and in face-to-face classes under a student-centred learning methodology, with teaching cases of real business situations, simulations and team dynamics.

The peer review team noted that IESA’s MBA Programme exhibits a commendable level of engagement with the world of practice, which contributes significantly to the quality of managerial education in Venezuela. Additionally, the Programme has established significant engagement with leading companies in Venezuela forging. relationships that are long-standing, systematic and characterised by a high employment rate of graduates.

The accreditation review highlighted specific strengths of the MBA programme, including an institutional focus on internationalisation, specification of Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs), assessment methods explicitly designed to match ILOs, a focus on student-centred learning, individualised learning support from faculty, general involvement with the world of practice, confirmed achievement of ILOs, and its positive reputation.

“We are delighted and proud that our MBA programme has received European accreditation from EFMD. This accreditation marks not only a recognition of IESA’s efforts to sustain and develop its flagship academic program but also a commitment to meet the highest standards for global business education in accordance with the requirements of sustainability, ethics and corporate governance, and the changes imposed by technology and advanced learning methodologies, said Jose Malave, Professor at the IESA Management and Leadership Center, coordinator of the MBA Master’s Degree, a specialist in organisational behaviour, social psychology and management ethics. “Over the years, IESA has been struggling to develop and execute ambitious strategic thinking amidst a demanding economic and political environment. This explains the meaning and relevance of this EFMD accreditation, along with those of AACSB and AMBA, for a Venezuelan business school determined to succeed.”

During the same Accreditation Board meeting, the following institutions were granted EFMD Programme Re-Accreditation:

About EFMD Programme Accreditation

EFMD Programme Accreditation (EFMD Accredited) is a globally recognised quality assurance process that evaluates and benchmarks business and management education programmes. This accreditation signifies a commitment to excellence in curriculum design, teaching methods, student assessment, and quality assurance processes.

It provides institutions with a comprehensive external validation of their programmes, fostering continuous improvement and adherence to international standards. Programmes undergoing the process benefit from enhanced visibility and competitiveness in the global education landscape.

The accreditation system serves as a hallmark of academic quality, attesting to an institution’s dedication to delivering impactful and innovative business education, thereby attracting top talent and facilitating meaningful partnerships with industry stakeholders.

EFMD Accredited emphasises academic rigour, practical relevance, internationalisation, ethics and sustainability. EFMD Programme Accreditation helps schools strive for excellence in an ongoing improvement process following each accreditation or re-accreditation visit.

Discover the latest guidelines for EFMD Programme Accreditation.

Currently, there are 145 EFMD Accredited programmes from 114 institutions in 41 countries.

Explore further insights regarding the EFMD Programme Accreditation by delving into the Frequently Asked Questions.

For additional insights, announcements and perspectives about EFMD Programme Accreditation, visit the conversation here.

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