Bradford University School of Management (BU SoM) in England has launched the world’s first circular economy MBA, developed in partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and leading businesses including B&Q, BT, Cisco, Renault and National Grid. This pioneering initiative delivered through the Distance Learning Platform of a leading international business school – BU SoM has recently achieved the coveted triple crown accreditation (AACSB/EQUIS/AMBA) – offers a coherent framework for a fast-evolving global economic context.
Euan Sutherland, Group Chief Executive of the Co-operative Group says:
“The time is coming when it will no longer make economic sense for ‘business as usual’ and the circular economy will thrive. We must take steps now to see what works in practice and to understand the implications of reworking business models. We have the opportunity to lead this change by rethinking the way we do business because the reality is, it isn’t a choice anymore.’”
Professor Peter Hopkinson is director for the distance learning Innovation,Enterpriseand Circular Economy MBA. He explains: “Today’s economic conditions, characterised by increased price volatility and scarcity on the energy and resources fronts, require a change in perspective. We believe that an innovative approach, which integrates systems thinking and looks beyond the linear ‘take, make, dispose’ model, is the answer that a forward-lookingSchoolofManagementshould strive to provide. We have designed our circular economy MBA to give the next generation of leaders a first-mover advantage, by tackling subjects such as regenerative product design, new business models, reverse logistics or enabling communication technologies, to name but a few elements.”
As highlighted in ‘Towards the circular economy’, an economic report published by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation featuring analysis by McKinsey & Company, there is a substantial business opportunity to be seized, and an unprecedented combination of factors (resources availability, tighter environmental constraints, shift in consumer attitudes, enabling IT) that create the right conditions for a move toward circular industrial practices.
The new distance learning MBA programme combines classic areas of strategy, finance, and marketing within a circular economy framework.
Applications for cohort 1 of the MBA, which starts in July 2013, should be submitted by end June. Applications for cohort 2 of the MBA, which starts in January 2014, should be submitted by end November 2013.