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Harvard Takes its Students to the FIELD

Harvard Business School is changing: if a radical overhaul of the MBA curriculum succeeds, learning by doing will become the norm. The students are now required to go out of the classroom and put professors’ case studies into practice. They may also work in a developing country and launch a start-up company. This new practical training is known as “FIELD” (Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development).

Apart from providing students with summer internships, HBS did not do so much to help them with the practical application of management studies in the past.

FIELD was announced by HBS in January 2011 and is a required first-year course that spans a full academic year. The course focuses on developing small-group learning experiences that are immersive, field-based and action-oriented.

FIELD is characterised by three elements. First, students are involved in team-building exercises, which means that they take turns to lead a group engaged in a project. Second, they will be sent to work for a week with one of more than 140 firms in 11 countries. Finally, the third part of the new programme consists of giving the students eight weeks and seed money of $3,000 each to launch a small company. The most successful, as voted by their fellow students, will get more funding.

By | December 8th, 2011|Blog|0 Comments

The iTunes Music Store Rumoured to Hit Latin American Market

The iTunes Music Store might be heading to Brazil. An iTunes spokesperson declined to comment, but many executives from different areas of the music industry say the retailer will definitely open shops in Argentina and Brazil and probably in several other countries in the region. Some sources say the Brazilian store will open as early as mid-December.

Brazil has shown its willingness to buy music online, with most of its digital track sales coming from online sources; by some estimates, the Sonora subscription service alone has some 500,000 paying subscribers. However, customers are restricted to using international credit cards and have to pay in US dollars. Veja, a Brazil-based magazine, stated a local currency solution should be available within the next six months.

According to Alejandro Duque, director of sales and business development for Universal Music Southern Cone, the music market is a digital market that is growing and has an interesting revenue equation. Apple appears to be taking significant steps to increase its presence in Brazil and the broader Latin American market, working with manufacturing partner Foxconn to launch iPhone and iPad production in Brazil in order to avoid high import taxes that have so far hampered adoption of Apple’s products there.

By | December 8th, 2011|Blog|0 Comments

Japan Launched Latest Train after the Earthquake

The new luxury Japanese bullet train is called Hayabusa, or Falcon. This cutting-edge green, pink and silver train was launched in March 2011, and it is the fastest train currently operating in Japan, travelling at speeds of 198 mph.

Mutsutake Otsuka, chairman of the East Japan Railway Co, said: “To the best of our ability, we will strive to improve Hayabusa’s passenger comfort, safety and environmental friendliness, not just its speed.” Japan said its trains boast a strong safety record, despite running in an earthquake-prone country. No passenger has ever died due to a Shinkansen derailment or collision.

Falcon passengers can enjoy journeys along straight stretches and tunnels cut through Japan’s mountainous countryside. But those keen on spoiling themselves can pay £200 for a one-way trip in the comfort of a ‘GranClass’ car. They will enjoy deep recliner leather seats and a cabin attendant at their disposal for serving food and drinks.

A network of cutting-edge Shinkansen train lines has been built across Japan since the 1960s. But as the island nation struggles with a shrinking population and falling domestic demand, the government and industry are seeking to promote the train abroad. Japan has sold Shinkansen technology to Taiwan and hopes to capture other overseas markets, including Brazil and Vietnam. The biggest prize is a future high-speed U.S. rail network that President Barack Obama has promoted, set to be backed by $13 billion in public funding.

By | December 7th, 2011|Blog|0 Comments
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