Brunel MBA Students have begun their final stage of the MBA Programme by undertaking a Business Project with British Airways. Under the guidance of Dr Aida Hajro from Brunel Business School and support from the British Airways Head of Talent Management, Head of Engineering, Head of HRM and the members of the British Airways Strategy Group, the students will examine the role of corporate universities in fostering innovative capacity.
The airline’s corporate university, the “Learning Academy”, was founded in April 2010 with a mission to increase the corporate innovative capacity of the firm by fostering a learning-centred organisational culture.Gisela Narrea and Arthur Owino – the Brunel Business School MBA students engaged on the project – will identify necessary steps for successfully creating a corporate university as a strategic umbrella for all learning and to explore how organizations can develop as innovative cultures. The study will be conducted onsite at British Airways, the flag carrier airline of the United Kingdom, where the students are provided office space for the time of their MBA Business Project.
Interviews will be conducted with senior corporate managers and employees, exploring the different views of these two groups regarding the role of the Learning Academy in facilitating knowledge creation and in changing organizational values and norms and regarding the building blocks required in designing it.
Brunel Business School and British Airways note that the rate of change across technological, economic, political, and socio-cultural aspects is increasing, and organisations are finding it more important to figure out how to manage perpetual change. This includes addressing how new missions, new goals, new products and services, new ways of getting things done, and even new values and assumptions are developed, sustained and managed. Corporate Universities, if managed appropriately, can help organisations to “learn how to learn” and to become self-designing systems.
Professor Amir Sharif, Director of MBA Programmes notes,
“Brunel Business School is very excited about this opportunity, particularly for our MBA students. This is a key anchor organisation for us and we feel this will strengthen the on-going collaboration between our University and a prestigious global brand such as British Airways. This is a great example of how our School is partnering with companies to add value in pursuit of our student learning, experience and employability goals. We look forward to other such emerging relationships with corporates and SMES.”