The experience of an educational documentary about the food industry in the Emilia province has been mind changing for the new Associate Dean of the Open Market and New Business Division of SDA Bocconi
Two years ago, Gabriele Troilo shot a 40-minute documentary in the Modena area. The virtual study tour described the competitive advantage of the area due to a peculiar geographical origin. The video was one of the features of Managing Food & Beverage Companies, a MOOC launched on the Coursera platform by Bocconi University, SDA Bocconi School of Management and the innovation lab BETA. “It was a mind changing experience”, Troilo says. “I began to wonder about novel ways to do executive education”. Now Troilo, the newly appointed Associate Dean of the Open Market and New Business Division of SDA Bocconi, is eager “to exploit any opportunity offered in the digital age to invest in online training programs”.
The Open Market and New Business Division offers a portfolio of educational experiences addressed to individual managers and entrepreneurs, not to organizations or companies. Currently there are about 180 courses designed for professional groupings, from accounting to marketing, and for specific industries, from agribusiness to fashion. “I am going to accelerate the internationalization process of the division, opening it up to global executives”, Troilo says. Another challenge he is facing has to do with the aforementioned digital technologies. “Today, the division offers blended learning courses which combine face-to-face teaching with distance learning activities. We are going to launch a portfolio of entirely online English courses, designed for the international market”.
A business school operates in both the education and the content providing markets. “We must therefore learn from companies that produce online formats suitable to our purpose”. The offer of online content with high editorial value will be placed side by side with the more traditional face-to-face learning. Providing digital content does not mean only allowing managers to stream classes online. It means producing a combination of video, text and graphic design held together by the highest video-making professional quality. Study tours will add an experiential dimension to the learning experience.
Troilo is Associate Professor of Marketing. His research interests are strategic marketing, new markets, marketing in creative industries, innovation and creativity management. He has always shared his time between the University and the School of Management, where he seamlessly interacted with the business community. “I have always seen my job as a way to disseminate knowledge not only to students, but also to managers and entrepreneurs. Their learning experience must quickly translate into action. Managers and entrepreneurs represent a tremendous market test: working with them means to instantly test theories and models”.