Hyderabad: The Srini Raju Centre for IT and the Networked Economy (SRITNE), at the Indian School of Business (ISB), hosted 36 students from Vienna University as part of their WU Executive Academy MBA program between January 13 and January 17, 2020. The group had students from multinationals and large corporates from several countries, including Russia, the US, South Africa, India, and Asian nations. Majority of them are working as Managing Directors, CEOs, COOs, CIOs, and other senior executive levels across diverse sectors.
Welcoming the students, Praveen Mokkapati, Associate Director, SRITNE, said that the study programme is part of ISB’s efforts to showcase varied IT capabilities to global managers and the transformative role played by the IT sector in India.
During this trip, the students attended lectures by ISB faculty that discussed important lessons in digital disruption, technological innovation and entrepreneurship, and Big Data and Analytics. They also learnt about new business models in the digital economy such as platforms and the gig economy, and how industrial economy incumbents can transform themselves to compete with these business models. The lectures also provided insights on doing business with and in India.
Talking about this programme, Professor Deepa Mani, Executive Director, SRITNE, said, “The programme showcases the transformative role played by the IT sector in a range of decisions, be it in business or government policymaking. The IT organisation in firms is no longer a peripheral cost center that drives automation. Rather, IT is a key strategic asset that drives competitive advantage. In this context, global managers must understand important opportunities in the digital economy and the key factors that constrain their response.”
The experiential learning aspect of the study programme engaged students through interaction with multinational companies (MNCs) and startups to understand innovations that are distinctive to the Indian context. The cohort visited three MNCs during the week and learnt from these industry leaders about ways to adapt global products to the Indian environment. The students also visited and interacted with several startup founders at ISB-housed D-Labs and T-Hub to understand the nature and source of innovation and their challenges to achieving scale in India.
Speaking about this year’s visit, Elke Lerch, Program Manager Global Executive MBA at WU Executive Academy, said, “Our students are delighted to study at one of the leading universities in Asia and gain broad experience in one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. Alongside outstanding academic sessions, students visited several companies where they learned directly from managers about the challenges of the Indian market.”
To understand the socio-cultural context, the WU Executive Academy students first visited Grace Model School in the city to understand how they are educating underprivileged children. After interacting with the children and the management, the students generously contributed funds to further support the education initiatives of the school.
At the end of the study programme, the participants explored Hyderabad and visited major city landmarks like Charminar, landmarks in old Hyderabad city, Shilparamam, and Falaknuma Palace to gain first-hand impressions about local people, history and culture.