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Curriculum



Delivered over two years on a part-time basis, candidates attend classes two evenings per week and some Saturdays as the workload intensities. Students must also allot time outside the classroom for group work, readings, individual research and assignments. We work with candidates to develop time management skills and best practice for group work.

We have three mandatory block weeks that our Executive MBA’s must attend over the two year period. This includes our induction week in Belmullet, Co Mayo, the International Residency week in Brussels and our ‘Design Thinking’ delivery days on campus. We provide these dates in advance so you can work this into your personal schedule. There are additional block weeks in Brazil and South Africa if you choose to take these electives.

Year 1 Modules & Timeline

  1. Michaelmas Term
    September - December

    3 taught core modules. Teaching includes a mix of lecturers, guest speakers, live action learning, projects and workshop.

  2. Hilary Term
    January - March

    3 taught core modules. Company project launches.

  3. Trinity Term
    April - August

    2 taught core modules with three optional residency weeks in Belgium, South Africa and Brazil.

*Curriculum subject to change. Modules may include changes.

Leadership Development

This course is much more than simple theory - it is a game changer. The module strives to turn MBA students into the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The mission of this module is to develop a practical understanding of real-world business challenges, expose students to business trends, and position students to navigate and plan for their careers. The learning outcomes consist of three parts. First, the module allows students to develop professional awareness and specific skills critical to both individual and organizational success. Second, the course is poised to support students in the three company projects throughout their programme. Third, the module offers career support that helps students define their unique strategic career plan, while taking into account the current trends and changes in the work environment.

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

1) Develop professional knowledge and skills that are needed in today’s changing world.
2) Apply frameworks for strategic decision making to support both the company projects and their own organisations.
3) Develop a personal strategic career plan to meet their future career potential.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

Strategic Management

The module is designed to develop strategic leadership capabilities through the exploration of models and frameworks that take a holistic perspective on the organisation. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Differentiate between corporate, business and functional strategies
  • Appreciate the complexities involved in the strategy process
  • Evaluate the different strategic challenges facing profit seeking organisations and not-for-profit organisations.
  • Develop competitive and corporate strategies for a given organization
  • Critically apply various strategic management concepts and techniques
  • Understand strategic change processes from a complex systems perspective

Professor: Paul Raspin

Induction Week on the West Coast of Ireland

The Trinity MBA kicks off with a unique induction week in County Mayo, Ireland. An entirely immersive and offline experience, you will begin your Leadership and Professional Development journey and forge bonds with your fellow classmates. This is a compulsory aspect of the programme.

Financial Reporting for Managers

This module provides a working knowledge of the fundamentals of financial and management accounting. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Communicate effectively in financial language
  • Understand the key components of balance sheets, income statements and cash flow statements
  • Identify the financial implications of day to day and strategic management activities and decisions
  • Construct financial statements and do projections in support of business plans
  • Identify the deficiencies in accounting statements and understand the impact of accounting standards on them
  • Undertake financial analysis of financial statements and identify key trends in performance and financial position of commercial undertakings
  • Understand the impact of operating and financial leverage on the performance and financial position of business enterprises
  • Identify the optimum financial structure for different enterprises
  • Apply costing & pricing techniques to optimize value for the business

Professor: Hilary Hough

Leadership Development

This course is much more than simple theory - it is a game changer. The module strives to turn MBA students into the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The mission of this module is to develop a practical understanding of real-world business challenges, expose students to business trends, and position students to navigate and plan for their careers. The learning outcomes consist of three parts. First, the module allows students to develop professional awareness and specific skills critical to both individual and organizational success. Second, the course is poised to support students in the three company projects throughout their programme. Third, the module offers career support that helps students define their unique strategic career plan, while taking into account the current trends and changes in the work environment.

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

1) Develop professional knowledge and skills that are needed in today’s changing world.
2) Apply frameworks for strategic decision making to support both the company projects and their own organisations.
3) Develop a personal strategic career plan to meet their future career potential.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

Technology Today

This subject is concerned with understanding the principles of marketing strategy and with acknowledging the changing nature of marketing in the digital era. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Acknowledge and address the complexities involved in planning and implementing on organization’s marketing strategy
  • Understand the core marketing strategies of competing through managing customer relationships, managing customer service, branding and managing innovation.
  • To be competent in the use of various digital marketing techniques and tactics as well as a full appreciation of the key issues within digital marketing strategy development and implementation.
  • To identify, and know how to address, the key decisions facing marketing managers and marketing decision makers.
  • To practice the discipline of analysing marketing problems or opportunities, identifying and evaluating alternative solutions and implementing marketing plans.

Lecturer: Adjunct Teaching Fellow Lory Kehoe

Company Project: MBA Strategic Company Project

The purpose of the MBA Strategic Company Project (‘the Company Project’) is to provide a vehicle for MBA teams to apply their business and leadership skills through addressing a strategic challenge faced by the host (partner) organisation; generally a large, complex  company or organisation operating in a dynamic environment. Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Undertake detailed scanning of the external environment including macro-industry, competitor, market and customer analyses
  • Undertake a thorough analysis of the host organisation’s internal environment
  • Critically assess a business-related issue with the host organisation, and apply a solution to the problem that takes into account the strategic intent, capabilities, resources, mission, values and culture of the organisation, inter alia.
  • Critically evaluate the strategic situation facing the host company, and propose an array of suitable remedies or counter-measures, suggesting the preferred course of action.

Professor: Radu Dimitriu

Leadership Development

This course is much more than simple theory - it is a game changer. The module strives to turn MBA students into the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The mission of this module is to develop a practical understanding of real-world business challenges, expose students to business trends, and position students to navigate and plan for their careers. The learning outcomes consist of three parts. First, the module allows students to develop professional awareness and specific skills critical to both individual and organizational success. Second, the course is poised to support students in the three company projects throughout their programme. Third, the module offers career support that helps students define their unique strategic career plan, while taking into account the current trends and changes in the work environment.

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

1) Develop professional knowledge and skills that are needed in today’s changing world.
2) Apply frameworks for strategic decision making to support both the company projects and their own organisations.
3) Develop a personal strategic career plan to meet their future career potential.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

Management and Organisation

This module sets out a broad contextual & historical perspective on the field of management and organisation, and specifically through detailed examination of organisation design and its contribution to the overall capability of the business. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Appreciate the historical and theoretical basis of organisation design and development and their context in terms of value and contribution to organisational life.
  • Demonstrate a systematic understanding of organisation structures, functions and performance in both theory and practice
  • Characterise different organisation types with their respective contexts, structures and management styles, and explain their characteristics, strengths and weaknesses.
  • Apply models analytically and diagnostically, to identify and apply available design options regarding organisational structures and relationships.
  • Processes and systems that need to be in place to maintain such structures and relationships, and evaluation of same.

Professor: John Quilliam

Economics for a Global Market

This module aims to provide an introduction to best practice modern economics. It outlines those elements of the subject that contribute to informed citizenship and good quality business decision-making in the context of changing global, European and national economic environments.
Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Explain and apply basic economic terminology;
  • Formulate and address economic and public policy issues using the language and approach of economics;
  • Articulate economic reasoning and results to others.

Professor: Frank Barry

Digital Business and Big Data Strategy

This course will provide a framework to successfully implement analytics and Big Data in an organization.Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Develop an analytical strategy for an organisation
  • Manage a big data team and project
  • Identify analytical techniques and technology for specific business cases
  • Adjust the processes and culture in their company in such a way that it facilitates data driven decision making
  • Communicate with data scientists and data engineers

Professor: Philippe Baecke

Entrepreneurial Finance

This module has the objective of reviewing the financial, control and investment opportunities faced by rapidly growing companies in entrepreneurial settings. The objective of study is to consider and select financing vehicles which are appropriate to securing the organisations’ money requirements and to understand and analyse the issues in the institutional framework in which those decisions take place.
Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Analyse various sources of financing, including short and long term debt, subordinated capital and venture capital/equity.
  • Have a comprehensive understanding of public versus private financing, on and off balance sheet capital and tax orientated financing.
  • Compare the selection and trade‐offs of financing vehicles with company progress and market conditions.
  • Analyse different institutional regimes and the reasons for particular anomalies in the financing of small and growing enterprises.

Professor: Bill Cockrum

International Business

This module develops the manager’s critical awareness of the issues and challenges associated with the development and implementation of strategy and processes from an international perspective. As a graduate you will better equipped to apply concepts and skills across multiple overseas operations in your project work.
Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Appreciate the evolving competitive context of International Business (IB).
  • Recognize the factors that distinguish IB from domestic business transactions
  • Understand the interrelatedness of issues that impinge on management decision-making in the international environment
  • Grasp that learning opportunities for companies and their managers can be gained from involvement in the conduct of international operations
  • Apply concepts and skills relevant to the formulation and implementation of strategy across multiple overseas operations including;
  1. Identifying and acting on new opportunities
  2. Linking and leveraging those pockets of entrepreneurial initiative
  3. Articulating and inspiring others to follow

Professor: Paul Ryan

Elective Week* or Residential Week in Belgium (April). Module: Negotiating for Value

Module Description

The course is based on best practice negotiation training developed at the Program On Negotiation (PON) at Harvard University.  It aspires to instil the capability, competence and confidence to embark upon principled, value-maximizing negotiation.

Bearing in mind the futility of mere rote learning at a post-graduate level, students are not required to resort to convergent thinking by merely regurgitating the course content. Consequently, they exposed to numerous in-class case studies and simulations, which require them to creatively apply the knowledge, insights and skills imparted to them during the course.

Learning and Teaching Approach

The course is based upon best practice negotiation training developed at the Program On Negotiation (PON) at Harvard University. 

The course is presented in an inter-active manner, which includes lectures and experiential learning by virtue of case studies, debriefings, video presentations and simulations.

Learning Outcomes

After successfully completing the negotiation course, students should be considerably better equipped to:

  • Employ the core determinants that underpin principled, value-maximizing negotiation;
  • Appreciate the limitations of distributive, competitive bargaining and the value-enhancing, relationship-building qualities of integrative, principled negotiation;
  • Understand how to distinguish between the positions adopted at the outset of a negotiation and the interests that underlie these positions as the precursor to creating the environment within which lasting agreements can be concluded;
  • Understand the limitations that premature thought closure poses in respect of the joint opportunity finding that parties need to embark upon to envision and realise the best options for achieving a mutual beneficial outcome that will not only meet, but in many cases exceed their initial expectations;
  • Become increasingly aware of the importance of verbal and non-verbal communication in establishing a negotiation climate conducive to long term, value-creating relationships;
  • Use negotiation as an opportunity for working together to develop as many creative and innovative solutions as possible in response to the ‘problem’ or ‘conflict’ that brought them to the negotiation table, thereby separating the  ‘problem’ or ‘conflict’ form the persons involved in the negotiation;
  • Understand the tactics, ploys and gambits negotiators often employ and be better equipped to constructively counter these tactics, ploys and gambits;
  • Be better informed and skilled at applying the universal principles of persuasion that Robert Cialdini has abstracted from the results of more than fifty years of dedicated research;
  • Appreciate the importance and value of structured pre-negotiation, engagement and post-negotiation planning;
  • Understand the constructive deployment of power and how to effectively counter negative power deployment; and
  • Instil the willingness and confidence to apply principled, value-enhancing negotiation in formal and informal business interactions inside and outside their organisations.

Elective Week* or Residential Week in Brazil (May). Module: Management in Emerging Economies

Module Description

The objective of the program is to provide a solid understanding of the business environment in Brazil, the largest economy in the Latin America and in the Caribbean. After the residency in Brazil, students will understand the main characteristics of the Brazilian economy, its economic strengths and weaknesses, the main business opportunities present in the country, the country´s main multinationals and their internationalization strategies.

The lectures will present how Brazil became an economy evenly divided into the agricultural, manufacturing and service sectors and the historical background that led to the diversified demography existing in Brazil. Additionally, the program will address the current political turmoil, corruption scandals and the Car Wash Operation, an ongoing criminal investigation that has imprisoned several important politicians.

Learning and Teaching Approach
Each session will be a mix of case studies and in class-exercises. Case studies are used to provide a background for discussions in a particular business context. It is therefore critical that students read the case in advance and come prepared to the discussion with their assignment done. The role of your instructor is to facilitate and moderate debates to help participants to think critically about the business decisions in question. 

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able:

  • To develop competences to evaluate business opportunities in Brazil, while simultaneously develop an action plan to mitigate economic, business and political risks.
  • To learn about the main business, cultural and political characteristics of Brazil.
  • To understand internationalization strategies of multinationals from emerging markets.
  • To evaluate business opportunities and risks in Brazil.
  • To evaluate country of origin effects (COE), country-specific advantages and disadvantages (CSA, CSD), firm-specific advantages and disadvantages (FSA, FSD)
  • To understand how CSA, CSD, FSA and FSD shape strategy and execution in Brazil

Elective Week* or Residential Week in South Africa (June). Module: Management and Sustainability

Module Description

The concept of sustainability is growing in strategic relevance and importance for the modern corporation. In a high-consumption, ‘fast-fashion’ society, it is more crucial than ever to discuss what it means to be sustainable.

In the corporate world, it has become common practice to equate sustainability to managing the so-called triple bottom line: profits, people and planet. There is an increasing acceptance that individuals and organizations need to approach sustainability from a well thought through strategic perspective, and that they should diligently execute this strategy, as doing this invariably leads to enhanced efficiencies, the ability to create additional and enduring value, and bolsters their impact and longevity

Apart from the moral duty that Individuals, companies and countries have to ensure that they do not impinge upon the ability of future generations to have access to the resources they need to need to maintain and improve their lives.

This module aspires to afford students the opportunity to develop a critical awareness of the issues and challenges related to the sustainability of current individual, organizational and governmental practices.  Students are challenged to interrogate and evaluate current approaches, and explore creative ways of promoting flourishing individuals and organizations that are cognizant of their responsibility to future generations.

The module will be delivered in one week at the Graduate Business School of the University of Cape Town.  It will inter alia be centered on contextualizing sustainability with an emerging world context, moving beyond the triple bottom line, sustainability as organizational practice in action, the impact of climate change, Environmental stewardship meeting business innovation, and integrating sustainability into organizational practice.

Learning and Teaching Approach

The learning approach in this module is a combination of lectures, site visits and time for cultural appreciation. The days are structured in a way that lectures are attended in the mornings and site visits, company visits and cultural excursions take place in the afternoon.

Learning Outcomes

Having completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Be increasingly aware of the core principles that underpin sustainable, flourishing organizations;
  • Be better informed and more appreciative of the triple bottom line approach;
  • Better understand and appreciate the challenges and critical decisions employees, business leaders and managers face in developing and maintaining a sustainability agenda that inspires individuals and organizations to flourish.
  • Be better prepared to evaluate sustainability from an individual and organizational perspectives, with special reference to an environment that promotes individual and organizations to flourish.
  • Gain insight into a Flourishing model of individual and organizational sustainability.
  • Better appreciate the interconnected responsibility of developed and developing countries in promoting sustainability, as contextualized by the first to fourth world South African environment.

Satisfactory completion of this course will contribute to the development of the following key skills:

  • Be able to carry out a contextual/environmental analysis as part of a fuller sustainability analysis
  • Be able to evaluate the importance and relevance of the sustainability issues that emerge from the contextual/environmental analysis
  • Be able to weigh up the ethical, communal and societal aspects of sustainability issues
  • Be able to formulate strategies and policies that are consistent with good corporate governance and good corporate citizenship

Year 2 Modules & Timeline

  1. Michaelmas Term
    September - December

    3 taught core modules. Teaching includes a mix of lecturers, guest speakers, live action learning, projects and workshop.

  2. Hilary Term
    January - March

    3 taught core modules.

  3. Trinity Term
    April - August

    0 taught core modules. Completion of live action learning projects and elective modules.

*Curriculum subject to change. Modules may include changes.

Leadership Development

This course is much more than simple theory - it is a game changer. The module strives to turn MBA students into the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The mission of this module is to develop a practical understanding of real-world business challenges, expose students to business trends, and position students to navigate and plan for their careers. The learning outcomes consist of three parts. First, the module allows students to develop professional awareness and specific skills critical to both individual and organizational success. Second, the course is poised to support students in the three company projects throughout their programme. Third, the module offers career support that helps students define their unique strategic career plan, while taking into account the current trends and changes in the work environment.

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

1) Develop professional knowledge and skills that are needed in today’s changing world.
2) Apply frameworks for strategic decision making to support both the company projects and their own organisations.
3) Develop a personal strategic career plan to meet their future career potential.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

Marketing Strategy

This subject is concerned with understanding the principles of marketing strategy and with acknowledging the changing nature of marketing in the digital era. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Acknowledge and address the complexities involved in planning and implementing on organization’s marketing strategy
  • Understand the core marketing strategies of competing through managing customer relationships, managing customer service, branding and managing innovation.
  • To be competent in the use of various digital marketing techniques and tactics as well as a full appreciation of the key issues within digital marketing strategy development and implementation.
  • To identify, and know how to address, the key decisions facing marketing managers and marketing decision makers.
  • To practice the discipline of analysing marketing problems or opportunities, identifying and evaluating alternative solutions and implementing marketing plans.

Professor: Dr. Laurent Muzellec

Corporate Financial Management

The finance function is a critical aspect of any organisation.  The success or failure of a firm may be influenced significantly by how it manages its’ finances. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Explore the concept of financial management and its importance to organizations
  • Appraise capital investments through the use of appropriate methods and techniques
  • Understand the relation between risk and return and the importance of managing this relation in corporate decision-making
  • Use financial mathematics, statistics, excel routines and pricing techniques to value bonds, stocks and other risky assets
  • Understand the basic elements of investment, financing, capital structure and dividend decision processes
  • Explain how businesses create value.

Professor: Jenny Berrill

Company Project: MBA Strategic Company Project

The purpose of the MBA Strategic Company Project (‘the Company Project’) is to provide a vehicle for MBA teams to apply their business and leadership skills through addressing a strategic challenge faced by the host (partner) organisation; generally a large, complex  company or organisation operating in a dynamic environment. Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Undertake detailed scanning of the external environment including macro-industry, competitor, market and customer analyses
  • Undertake a thorough analysis of the host organisation’s internal environment
  • Critically assess a business-related issue with the host organisation, and apply a solution to the problem that takes into account the strategic intent, capabilities, resources, mission, values and culture of the organisation, inter alia.
  • Critically evaluate the strategic situation facing the host company, and propose an array of suitable remedies or counter-measures, suggesting the preferred course of action.

Professor: Radu Dimitriu

Leadership Development

This course is much more than simple theory - it is a game changer. The module strives to turn MBA students into the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The mission of this module is to develop a practical understanding of real-world business challenges, expose students to business trends, and position students to navigate and plan for their careers. The learning outcomes consist of three parts. First, the module allows students to develop professional awareness and specific skills critical to both individual and organizational success. Second, the course is poised to support students in the three company projects throughout their programme. Third, the module offers career support that helps students define their unique strategic career plan, while taking into account the current trends and changes in the work environment.

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

1) Develop professional knowledge and skills that are needed in today’s changing world.
2) Apply frameworks for strategic decision making to support both the company projects and their own organisations.
3) Develop a personal strategic career plan to meet their future career potential.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

The Reflective Leader

The module aim is to introduce students to the approach, philosophies and methods of reflective leadership practice by raising their self-awareness about their assumptions, beliefs and values and how they use these cognitive maps to practice leadership.  The module will present learning theories and opportunities for students to experiment with these concepts through experiential exercises, thus enabling them to reflect on past professional experiences and critical encounters to gain new personal insights and learnings.  Students are introduced to the approach of reflective leadership practice through a series of experiential workshop formats, relevant readings and peer action learning sets.  The module content will enable students to understand how they use their knowledge in practical situations. Students will learn how to challenge their assumptions and consider more fully if alternatives exist, thus opening themselves up to greater possibilities or acceptance of how things are.  It will be a process of trying on ‘possible selves’ as opposed to ‘working on yourself’ (Ibarra, 2015 p.11)

The module will comprise eight classes of three hours and four peer action learning sets of two hours each. The basic format of each class will be:

  1. A brief introduction to the core concepts relating to the topic of the day;
  2. Introduction and setting up of an exercise relevant to the theme;
  3. Immersion in exercise of up to 90 minutes;
  4. Reflection and discussion of the exercise in varying formats about the experience, with a tie back to the session topic and professional work experiences of organisational life;
  5. Individual Journaling between classes to set up the context and the construct for the peer action learning sets.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

Operations Strategy

This module takes a detailed look at the decisions managers need to make about operational activities. Having completed this module, you should be able to:
• To define and to describe the field of operations strategy
• To Identify and to understand the working of manufacturing and service firms from an operations perspective
• To conduct relevant analyses of operational and managerial situations and scenarios
• To apply key concepts in the field of operations strategy such as process, capacity, quality, development, improvement, focus
• To communicate conclusions and recommendations in a professional manner
• To work effectively as an individual in a team focused on reviewing the performance of an operation

Professor: Sinead Roden

Financial Statement Analysis

The success of business enterprises is measured by their financial performance and their financial strength. Financial statements provide the key to understanding that success. This module is built around the analysis of the financial reports of international businesses across range of industries.
On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:

  • Evaluate a company’s financial performance using common-size income statements.
  • Illustrate and interpret the components of the assets, liabilities and equity sections of the balance sheet, and discuss the uses of the balance sheet in financial analysis.
  • Demonstrate how the cash flow statement is linked to the income statement and the balance sheet.
  • Compare and contrast cash flows from operating, investing and financing activities.
  • Explain how day-to-day operational decisions are reflected in the financial statements of a firm.
  • Compute the cost of equity and debt capital from data in financial statements and perform simple valuations of equity.

Professor: Gerard McHugh

Company Project: MBA Strategic Company Project

The purpose of the MBA Strategic Company Project (‘the Company Project’) is to provide a vehicle for MBA teams to apply their business and leadership skills through addressing a strategic challenge faced by the host (partner) organisation; generally a large, complex  company or organisation operating in a dynamic environment. Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Undertake detailed scanning of the external environment including macro-industry, competitor, market and customer analyses
  • Undertake a thorough analysis of the host organisation’s internal environment
  • Critically assess a business-related issue with the host organisation, and apply a solution to the problem that takes into account the strategic intent, capabilities, resources, mission, values and culture of the organisation, inter alia.
  • Critically evaluate the strategic situation facing the host company, and propose an array of suitable remedies or counter-measures, suggesting the preferred course of action.

Professor: Radu Dimitriu

Leadership Development

This course is much more than simple theory - it is a game changer. The module strives to turn MBA students into the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The mission of this module is to develop a practical understanding of real-world business challenges, expose students to business trends, and position students to navigate and plan for their careers. The learning outcomes consist of three parts. First, the module allows students to develop professional awareness and specific skills critical to both individual and organizational success. Second, the course is poised to support students in the three company projects throughout their programme. Third, the module offers career support that helps students define their unique strategic career plan, while taking into account the current trends and changes in the work environment.

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

1) Develop professional knowledge and skills that are needed in today’s changing world.
2) Apply frameworks for strategic decision making to support both the company projects and their own organisations.
3) Develop a personal strategic career plan to meet their future career potential.

Professor: Melissa Sayer

Business and Society

This course aims to explore the continuous political and social pressures that businesses operate under together with the social impact of business and the role it plays in society. It looks at the social pressures and threatening forces that continuously face business managers as well as the opportunities that exist for business. 
Having successfully completed this module, the student should be:

  • Sensitized to the diverse set of issues involved in the business – society relationship and debate
  • Able to understand the role of ethics and corporate social responsibility in modern business
  • Equipped to question and critically evaluate the impact of business activities and behaviour on society
  • Able to discuss the market and non-market and shared value issues involved in building a firm’s strategy
  • Able to create and implement strategies and policies that are consistent with good corporate governance and good corporate citizenship

Professor: Grainne Madden

Elective Week* or Residential Week in Belgium (April). Module: Negotiating for Value

Module Description

The course is based on best practice negotiation training developed at the Program On Negotiation (PON) at Harvard University.  It aspires to instil the capability, competence and confidence to embark upon principled, value-maximizing negotiation.

Bearing in mind the futility of mere rote learning at a post-graduate level, students are not required to resort to convergent thinking by merely regurgitating the course content. Consequently, they exposed to numerous in-class case studies and simulations, which require them to creatively apply the knowledge, insights and skills imparted to them during the course.

Learning and Teaching Approach

The course is based upon best practice negotiation training developed at the Program On Negotiation (PON) at Harvard University. 

The course is presented in an inter-active manner, which includes lectures and experiential learning by virtue of case studies, debriefings, video presentations and simulations.

Learning Outcomes

After successfully completing the negotiation course, students should be considerably better equipped to:

  • Employ the core determinants that underpin principled, value-maximizing negotiation;
  • Appreciate the limitations of distributive, competitive bargaining and the value-enhancing, relationship-building qualities of integrative, principled negotiation;
  • Understand how to distinguish between the positions adopted at the outset of a negotiation and the interests that underlie these positions as the precursor to creating the environment within which lasting agreements can be concluded;
  • Understand the limitations that premature thought closure poses in respect of the joint opportunity finding that parties need to embark upon to envision and realise the best options for achieving a mutual beneficial outcome that will not only meet, but in many cases exceed their initial expectations;
  • Become increasingly aware of the importance of verbal and non-verbal communication in establishing a negotiation climate conducive to long term, value-creating relationships;
  • Use negotiation as an opportunity for working together to develop as many creative and innovative solutions as possible in response to the ‘problem’ or ‘conflict’ that brought them to the negotiation table, thereby separating the  ‘problem’ or ‘conflict’ form the persons involved in the negotiation;
  • Understand the tactics, ploys and gambits negotiators often employ and be better equipped to constructively counter these tactics, ploys and gambits;
  • Be better informed and skilled at applying the universal principles of persuasion that Robert Cialdini has abstracted from the results of more than fifty years of dedicated research;
  • Appreciate the importance and value of structured pre-negotiation, engagement and post-negotiation planning;
  • Understand the constructive deployment of power and how to effectively counter negative power deployment; and
  • Instil the willingness and confidence to apply principled, value-enhancing negotiation in formal and informal business interactions inside and outside their organisations.

Elective Week* or Residential Week in Brazil (June). Module: Management in Emerging Economies

Module Description

The objective of the program is to provide a solid understanding of the business environment in Brazil, the largest economy in the Latin America and in the Caribbean. After the residency in Brazil, students will understand the main characteristics of the Brazilian economy, its economic strengths and weaknesses, the main business opportunities present in the country, the country´s main multinationals and their internationalization strategies.

The lectures will present how Brazil became an economy evenly divided into the agricultural, manufacturing and service sectors and the historical background that led to the diversified demography existing in Brazil. Additionally, the program will address the current political turmoil, corruption scandals and the Car Wash Operation, an ongoing criminal investigation that has imprisoned several important politicians.

Learning and Teaching Approach
Each session will be a mix of case studies and in class-exercises. Case studies are used to provide a background for discussions in a particular business context. It is therefore critical that students read the case in advance and come prepared to the discussion with their assignment done. The role of your instructor is to facilitate and moderate debates to help participants to think critically about the business decisions in question. 

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able:

  • To develop competences to evaluate business opportunities in Brazil, while simultaneously develop an action plan to mitigate economic, business and political risks.
  • To learn about the main business, cultural and political characteristics of Brazil.
  • To understand internationalization strategies of multinationals from emerging markets.
  • To evaluate business opportunities and risks in Brazil.
  • To evaluate country of origin effects (COE), country-specific advantages and disadvantages (CSA, CSD), firm-specific advantages and disadvantages (FSA, FSD)
  • To understand how CSA, CSD, FSA and FSD shape strategy and execution in Brazil

Elective Week* or Residential Week in South Africa (June). Module: Management and Sustainability

Module Description

The concept of sustainability is growing in strategic relevance and importance for the modern corporation. In a high-consumption, ‘fast-fashion’ society, it is more crucial than ever to discuss what it means to be sustainable.

In the corporate world, it has become common practice to equate sustainability to managing the so-called triple bottom line: profits, people and planet. There is an increasing acceptance that individuals and organizations need to approach sustainability from a well thought through strategic perspective, and that they should diligently execute this strategy, as doing this invariably leads to enhanced efficiencies, the ability to create additional and enduring value, and bolsters their impact and longevity

Apart from the moral duty that Individuals, companies and countries have to ensure that they do not impinge upon the ability of future generations to have access to the resources they need to need to maintain and improve their lives.

This module aspires to afford students the opportunity to develop a critical awareness of the issues and challenges related to the sustainability of current individual, organizational and governmental practices.  Students are challenged to interrogate and evaluate current approaches, and explore creative ways of promoting flourishing individuals and organizations that are cognizant of their responsibility to future generations.

The module will be delivered in one week at the Graduate Business School of the University of Cape Town.  It will inter alia be centered on contextualizing sustainability with an emerging world context, moving beyond the triple bottom line, sustainability as organizational practice in action, the impact of climate change, Environmental stewardship meeting business innovation, and integrating sustainability into organizational practice.

Learning and Teaching Approach

The learning approach in this module is a combination of lectures, site visits and time for cultural appreciation. The days are structured in a way that lectures are attended in the mornings and site visits, company visits and cultural excursions take place in the afternoon.

Learning Outcomes

Having completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Be increasingly aware of the core principles that underpin sustainable, flourishing organizations;
  • Be better informed and more appreciative of the triple bottom line approach;
  • Better understand and appreciate the challenges and critical decisions employees, business leaders and managers face in developing and maintaining a sustainability agenda that inspires individuals and organizations to flourish.
  • Be better prepared to evaluate sustainability from an individual and organizational perspectives, with special reference to an environment that promotes individual and organizations to flourish.
  • Gain insight into a Flourishing model of individual and organizational sustainability.
  • Better appreciate the interconnected responsibility of developed and developing countries in promoting sustainability, as contextualized by the first to fourth world South African environment.

Satisfactory completion of this course will contribute to the development of the following key skills:

  • Be able to carry out a contextual/environmental analysis as part of a fuller sustainability analysis
  • Be able to evaluate the importance and relevance of the sustainability issues that emerge from the contextual/environmental analysis
  • Be able to weigh up the ethical, communal and societal aspects of sustainability issues
  • Be able to formulate strategies and policies that are consistent with good corporate governance and good corporate citizenship

Company Project: MBA Strategic Company Project

The purpose of the MBA Strategic Company Project (‘the Company Project’) is to provide a vehicle for MBA teams to apply their business and leadership skills through addressing a strategic challenge faced by the host (partner) organisation; generally a large, complex  company or organisation operating in a dynamic environment. Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Undertake detailed scanning of the external environment including macro-industry, competitor, market and customer analyses
  • Undertake a thorough analysis of the host organisation’s internal environment
  • Critically assess a business-related issue with the host organisation, and apply a solution to the problem that takes into account the strategic intent, capabilities, resources, mission, values and culture of the organisation, inter alia.
  • Critically evaluate the strategic situation facing the host company, and propose an array of suitable remedies or counter-measures, suggesting the preferred course of action.

Professor: Radu Dimitriu

Leading with Business Analytics and AI

This course will provide a framework to successfully implement analytics and Big Data in an organization.Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Develop an analytical strategy for an organisation
  • Manage a big data team and project
  • Identify analytical techniques and technology for specific business cases
  • Adjust the processes and culture in their company in such a way that it facilitates data driven decision making
  • Communicate with data scientists and data engineers

Professor: Philippe Baecke

Entrepreneurship

This module seeks to provide an understanding of the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and enable participants to independently evaluate and create a commercially viable business plan. The module also provides an introduction to strategic analysis models and frameworks & is designed to feed into the Strategic Management module in Hilary term as well as connect with the Entrepreneurial Finance module, Scaling Project, Social Entrepreneurship Project and Strategic Company Project.

Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Critically engage with the premise of the entrepreneurial lifecycle where entrepreneurship is not just limited to new venture creation but rather throughout the life of any organisation in terms of innovation, creative and disruptive strategy.
  • Understand the fundamentals of entrepreneurship frameworks and the analytical tools & models used in strategic business planning.
  • Critically engage and evaluate Lean Start-Up principles and new venture canvassing techniques.
  • Source information from a variety of primary and secondary sources, analyze and interpret the data and be prepared to correlate them into a coherent business plan.
  • Explore and articulate key elements of entrepreneurial business modelling such as finance, monetisation of a business concept, competitive mapping, customer research and the development of differentiation and competitive advantage.  
  • Engage in the process of developing a pitch presentation for a new venture and develop the skills required for effective communication of a proposal.  
  • Defend assumptions and recommendations related to a new venture and / or business plan proposal.  

Professor: Michael Flynn

Strategic Human Resource Management

This module provides participants with frameworks, concepts, tools and practical advice on how to develop an aligned human resource strategy and practices that will support and enable the delivery of business strategy. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Build a culture which will dominate your organisation’s marketplace
  • Diagnose cultural functionality and dysfunctionality
  • Define the behavioural requirements for successful implementation of strategy
  • Architect a best practice staffing process
  • Design a best practice performance management process
  • Architect a best practice total reward system
  • Structure an effective and competent HR function
  • Use competency frameworks as an integrative HR management tool
  • Select and develop talent, manage performance and engage others

Professor: Fergus Barry

Entrepreneurial Finance

This module has the objective of reviewing the financial, control and investment opportunities faced by rapidly growing companies in entrepreneurial settings. The objective of study is to consider and select financing vehicles which are appropriate to securing the organisations’ money requirements and to understand and analyse the issues in the institutional framework in which those decisions take place.
Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Analyse various sources of financing, including short and long term debt, subordinated capital and venture capital/equity.
  • Have a comprehensive understanding of public versus private financing, on and off balance sheet capital and tax orientated financing.
  • Compare the selection and trade‐offs of financing vehicles with company progress and market conditions.
  • Analyse different institutional regimes and the reasons for particular anomalies in the financing of small and growing enterprises.

Professor: Bill Cockrum

International Business

This module develops the manager’s critical awareness of the issues and challenges associated with the development and implementation of strategy and processes from an international perspective. As a graduate you will better equipped to apply concepts and skills across multiple overseas operations in your project work.
Having successfully completed this module, the student should be able to:

  • Appreciate the evolving competitive context of International Business (IB).
  • Recognize the factors that distinguish IB from domestic business transactions
  • Understand the interrelatedness of issues that impinge on management decision-making in the international environment
  • Grasp that learning opportunities for companies and their managers can be gained from involvement in the conduct of international operations
  • Apply concepts and skills relevant to the formulation and implementation of strategy across multiple overseas operations including;
  1. Identifying and acting on new opportunities
  2. Linking and leveraging those pockets of entrepreneurial initiative
  3. Articulating and inspiring others to follow

Professor: Paul Ryan

Management and Organisation

This module sets out a broad contextual & historical perspective on the field of management and organisation, and specifically through detailed examination of organisation design and its contribution to the overall capability of the business. Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Appreciate the historical and theoretical basis of organisation design and development and their context in terms of value and contribution to organisational life.
  • Demonstrate a systematic understanding of organisation structures, functions and performance in both theory and practice
  • Characterise different organisation types with their respective contexts, structures and management styles, and explain their characteristics, strengths and weaknesses.
  • Apply models analytically and diagnostically, to identify and apply available design options regarding organisational structures and relationships.
  • Processes and systems that need to be in place to maintain such structures and relationships, and evaluation of same.

Professor: John Quilliam

Economics for a Global Market

This module aims to provide an introduction to best practice modern economics. It outlines those elements of the subject that contribute to informed citizenship and good quality business decision-making in the context of changing global, European and national economic environments.
Having completed this module, you should be able to:

  • Explain and apply basic economic terminology;
  • Formulate and address economic and public policy issues using the language and approach of economics;
  • Articulate economic reasoning and results to others.

Professor: Frank Barry

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