Brown University School of Professional Studies and the IE Business school in Madrid, Spain offer a 15 month joint Executive MBA degree program to Senior managers, professionals, and entrepreneurs with significant work experience.
Combining IE's strength in interdisciplinary management education and Brown’s excellence in the humanities, social, biological and physical sciences, the two schools have created the new IE Brown Executive MBA to develop informed, globally-minded, and innovative leaders.
The program provides senior managers with the opportunity to develop and broaden their management and leadership skills in an intensive, international environment. The program brings together faculty from the IE and Brown, integrating leading management thinking with wider perspectives from the humanities, social sciences, engineering, and life sciences.
For more information on the program and admissions process please visit https://professional.brown.edu/emba/.
EMBA 2000. Entrepreneurial Opportunities in Developing Regions.
This course utilizes team-based experiential learning methods for the further development of skills in business opportunity creation. It builds upon the courses on entrepreneurial management and ethnographic research methods to investigate a business opportunity that participant teams create within, or stemming from, a developing region. The course leverages field work in a specific complex developing regional economy that serves as a proxy for such developing regions more broadly. Upon completion of the course, participants should be able to develop business opportunities in complex, developing regions and have a greater appreciation of the potential and challenges these regions represent.
EMBA 2020. Corporate Innovation Process.
This course considers the unique barriers to innovation that must be overcome within established firms as well as the techniques and best practices utilized by exemplar firms in executing successful innovation strategies. The business environment is evolving rapidly and established firms must innovate to survive and prosper. Executives note that corporate innovation is extremely or very important to their firm’s strategic growth. Challenges to innovation execution considered in this class include human capital alignment, organization of the innovation process, and encouragement of collaboration and risk taking within the enterprise.
EMBA 2100. Ethnographic Research Methods.
This course develops basic skills in learning to use ethnographic research methods, the hallmark of anthropology and a crucial methodology for analyzing why people behave the way they do. Concentration is on the two key elements of ethnographic methodology: participant observation and interview techniques. Students apply these techniques in assigned course project work.
EMBA 2110. Society & Culture in the Age of Globalization.
This course is designed to draw on analytical tools from sociology and anthropology to make sense of the rapidly changing nature of global society. In the past 3 decades the flows of commodities, ideas, people, norms and resources across international borders has accelerated exponentially. Driving these dynamics are not only market forces, but also social networks, cultural diffusions and institutional transformations. As a complement to the courses on political economy and global governance, this course focuses on the social structures, institutional forms, political processes and cultural practices that mediate the encounter of the global and the national.
EMBA 2200. The Spirit of Entrepreneurship.
Historians argue that capitalism, especially its main engine entrepreneurship, took hold and flourished in the West not because of the promise of wealth it contained, but because of the appeal of a distinctive ethical outlook—new ideas about the value of work, business, and the acquisition of wealth that constitute the “spirit of capitalism.” The objective of this module is to trace the development of this new ethical outlook animating capitalist entrepreneurship—the “spirit of entrepreneurship”—from its Reformist beginnings into our own day.
EMBA 2210. Shared History of Slavery & Capitalism.
Over five meetings, we’ll study specific aspects of the history of the Atlantic slave trade and the plantation regimes of the Americas. At the same time, we will explore key principles of historical reasoning and argumentation: the reliance upon evidence to support interpretation; the appreciation of contingency and the specificity of time and place; skepticism towards claims of the universality of experience and the inevitability of outcomes. Finally, in seeking to unravel the paradoxical relationship of free markets to unfree people, we will bring historical perspective to questions about commodities and liberties that remain urgent in the current global economy.
EMBA 2220. The Political Economy of Development.
The goal of this unit is to introduce executives in the MBA Program to the politics economic & social development, with a focus on both long-run historical determinants of development and the more recent effects of globalization and neoliberal reforms on economic growth and inequality. To put these issues in context, the unit addresses debates about development in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa.
EMBA 2230. The Imprint of Time, Space, and Place on our Bodies: Understanding Health Disparities.
Health is a fundamental human right regardless of where one is born or the social conditions one is born into. Disparities remain for the most vulnerable populations & communities, even with developed low-cost, evidence-based strategies. This course interrogates health disparity conundrums; explore social determinants of health through experiential learning; highlight pathologies of power driven by historical, political, and economic forces through discussion and debate, and using case-based learning; examine opportunities for achieving health equity, guided by social justice approach and utilizing a capabilities paradigm; define ethical challenges in tackling health disparities due to power differentials across countries, communities, populations.
EMBA 2300. Globalization and the Arts.
This course will exemplify the role of the humanities in high-level practical education. The humanities are understood here as way of understanding the human condition in its depth and variation. Humanistic understanding is essential to the negotiation of the globalized world and its challenges. How do the increased exchange, access, and flow of persons, products, and markets associated with globalization negotiate cultural, political, and social difference, particularity, and inequality? How do global systems negotiate between shared benefit and exploitation? Between cultural exchange and innovation on the one hand and the preservation of heritage on the other?
EMBA 2310. Natural Collections: Responses of Biodiversity, Industrialization and Change.
This course explores questions about biodiversity loss and maintenance. The appropriation, exploitation and introduction to different landscapes of various plant and animal products are linked in recent history to the intertwined projects of imperialism and the enlightenment. For these reasons, containing nature is also about products and markets. The relationship between human control over nature, natural resource decline, and entrepreneurial and public sector strategies to protect the environment are considered. The course questions the ways and circumstances in which biodiversity is valued and examines the role of various social organizations in managing the environment and its resources.
EMBA 2320. Trends in Global Architecture and Urbanism Today.
This course introduces students to current questions in global architecture. After a survey of the history and motivations behind the internationalization of architectural forms, we examine current debates about sustainable architecture and smart urban growth, global urban problems and potential solutions to mass housing, and the application of new technologies such as “smart materials” in architecture. Questions of local vs. global building traditions are considered. Students gain a new understanding of their built environment and will be able to ‘read’ and analyze buildings they encounter, engaging meaningfully with questions about formal, functional and material choices.
EMBA 2400. Global Markets.
This course investigates the institutions and regulations governing our global economy. Recent events have shown that traditional national regulations (or lack thereof) are no longer adequate yet international accords over aid, trade, labor standards and a host of other issues are fiercely and frequently contested by competing interests. The results of these debates, and the resulting economic systems and policies will determine winners and losers in the new global economy. Understanding the interaction between this political-economic-regulatory environment and individual firms and industries is key to determining both the possibilities for and constraints on global business in today's fast changing economy.
EMBA 2410. The Rise of China.
This course examines the drivers of China’s emergence as a global power, and the consequences of that emergence for international business practitioners. Employing perspectives from comparative politics, international relations, and economics, the course explores the connections between China's domestic institutional transformation, its system of governance, and its increasingly powerful indigenous firms. To what extent have Chinese firms become innovative? How have they become innovative – indeed, how have they even basic growth at all – in a home environment dominated by persistent corruption and unfettered state power? The course examine specific strategies international business practitioners can employ to navigate the Chinese environment.
EMBA 2500. Cultivating Conditions for Innovation & Creativity.
What insights can an artist bring to business? When we cultivate a discerning sensitivity to the contexts in which we operate, we are more likely to identify possibilities that others miss. A critical awareness fertilizes the imagination. A creative outlook can enrich how we see the world. These ideas that spring from the imagination can be refined into concrete outcomes. By fostering a keen understanding of how our own personal creative process works, we will explore how art provides strategies for the creation of value. We will examine these strategies as we discover ways in which creative processes facilitate innovation.
EMBA 2510. Influencing Through Communication.
This course is designed to make students more aware of the elements of effective communication (both verbal and non-verbal) to enhance their own communications and to more critically evaluate communications of others. During this practical course, students will learn elements of classical rhetorical theory and current perspectives on persuasion. The objective of this course is to teach students the elements of effective and persuasive communication to enable them to achieve concise, effective communication in all modes, especially presentations and public speaking.
EMBA 2520. Public Speak Your Mind and Your Heart.
What you say, how you say it, and how you make it relevant to the audience, can turn an idea into a power horse. And many ideas are dumped daily because their originators do not present them in a dynamic and convincing way. Presentation skills rank among the most practical for financial managers: nothing will give you a more immediate competitive edge than the ability to communicate orally in a fluent and confident manner.
EMBA 2530. Key Reflection Project.
The Key Reflection Project (KRP) is a culminating academic project where students integrate and apply the knowledge acquired during the program to examine an idea or solve a challenging problem that is within their area of influence or personal interest. The project must mirror the spirit and learning objectives of the program, which are based on the awareness of social complexities and critical analysis of business issues. The pedagogical objective is for students to practice the application of the multidisciplinary learnings of the IE Brown program to real and complex problems that they face in their own workplaces.
EMBA 2540. Global Trends Seminar Series.
This seminar aims to foster awareness and discussion on trending issues that have an impact on managerial work. The Series will concentrate on two highly imbricated fields: Global Leadership Awareness and Technology Trends. Students will be exposed to insights and discussion from speakers that will share their ideas about the state of the art of geopolitics, emerging AI developments and social implications of the integration of technology in the world of work. The seminars will take place either during the residential periods in Madrid and Providence or via webinars during the online periods.
EMBA 2550. Thinking About Thinking About Management.
The complexity involved in corporations nowadays is daunting, as issues related to globalization are adding to the classic issues of corporate and competitive strategy. This course has two main objectives. First, it provides an organizational theory perspective and thereby complements the previous courses of strategy and management. Second, it seeks to develop your critical thinking through specific reading of the material assigned and continuous connections with practical examples.
EMBA 2600. Financial Accounting.
This course will emphasize the understanding of how financial statements are created and how accounting decisions affect these statements. The course will teach the theory emphasizing the use of accounting as a tool for decision-making and problem solving. The objective of the course is not to memorize accounting rules and perform “bookkeeping” activities. However students will have to practice some bookkeeping in order to understand deeper issues that goe beyond it. Students will also learn the problems associated with accounting subjectivity and flexibility while evaluating the appropriateness of accounting policies and estimates.
EMBA 2610. Financial Management.
This course focuses on the fundamentals of corporate finance. The objective of corporate financial theory is to maximize the value of the business. In this context financial decisions can be broken down in two basic decisions (1) how much to invest and what assets to invest in, and (2) how to raise the necessary cash. This course provides a framework to answer the first question: how the firm should make the investment, or capital budgeting decision, in order to increase shareholder value.
EMBA 2620. Cost Control.
Students, as future managers, will utilize the output of cost systems (the primary internal information systems in a firm). Students will gain an understanding of cost accounting systems, including a familiarization with: the goals of cost accounting systems; the fundamental features and design of cost accounting systems; and the various uses of the data provided by cost accounting decisions. A sound understanding of these issues is necessary to interpret cost accounting system outputs; to transform them from data to information and knowledge. Without this understanding, cost accounting data is often mis-interpreted and/or mis-applied leading to erroneous decision making.
EMBA 2700. Managerial Economics.
Managerial Economics provides students with a framework to understand the main economic variables and dynamics that affect business activity. Understanding the microeconomy is the first stepping-stone toward achieving a full grasp of the economic world that surrounds us. Most of the world´s countries rely on free markets to make most of their economic decisions, and those markets automatically answer the key economic questions (What will we produce? How will we produce it? At what price? Who will get it?) through the operation of supply and demand. The course will review the basic concepts of supply, demand, market failures and externalities to provide a broad perspective on how free markets work. It will then move on to elasticity and market structures and their impact on profitability. The objective is to give students a firm understanding of how supply and demand at the micro-level determine the basic parameters of doing business.
EMBA 2710. The African Economy.
The African economy sessions will begin with an overview of the continent, focusing in particular on sub-Saharan Africa and eventually centering on South Africa. In an interactive videoconference lecture, the development challenges and their possible solutions will be reviewed along with the growth prospects for economies and markets in the region in coming years.
EMBA 2810. Managing Communities of Work.
The objectives of this course are to enable participants to: discuss the psychological, social and strategic contexts in which HR processes and principles operate; describe and appraise the social and strategic benefits of “general management” expending time and resources on “employee issues”; analyze and critique people-based processes relying on their psychological, social and strategically oriented business merits; assess the relevance of HR policies the impact on business outcomes as a function of factors such as the market, the industry or the culture of the organization; and, reflect upon emerging people topics in today’s organizations, which impact the managerial profession.
EMBA 2820. Marketing Management.
This course is designed to provide students with a deep understanding of the fundamental principles of marketing and marketing strategy making. The focus will be on getting to know the basic techniques of defining and segmenting a target market for goods or services, building a brand with a meaningful positioning, and then integrating product, price, promotion and distribution to offer a superior marketing mix leading to a long-term competitive advantage. Finally, students will be given an insight into consumer behavior and brand management, as well as understanding the role played by different marketing tools such as marketing research.
EMBA 2830. Operations & Supply Chain Management.
This course provides an introduction to the basic aspects of the operation of the firm by presenting an integrated vision of those concepts and techniques and an understanding of the new role of operations and supply chain management in the overall strategy of the firm. The course structure initially addresses issues related to operations strategy, followed by a focus on systems and supply chain management. The course closes with a consideration of operations in practice.
EMBA 2840. Competitive & Corporate Strategy.
This introductory course to the area of strategic management aims to provide students with a thorough understanding of the internal and external factors that shape a firm’s ability to create value. Students will be familiarized with tools to analyze industries, firm resources and competitive interactions, both on the individual business and the corporate level. Perhaps most importantly, the courses strive to instil a strategic mindset that will enable students to go beyond a simple application of tools to derive a deep understanding of firm competitive behavior in order to enhance their own firm’s performance in any given situation.
EMBA 2850. Technology & Innovation Strategy.
The course introduces the critical elements of designing and developing digital products and services. Course participants will be able: to analyze digital transformation and its affect on society, industries and individuals; to develop an appreciation of the importance of information technology; to identify and understand the economic and technological factors at the heart of the digital revolution; to manage and lead product and service innovation initiatives; to apply concepts, tools and techniques to design appropriate digital business models; to strategically manage digital transformation of a business; and to understand the implications of emerging IT trends.
EMBA 2860. Strategy at the Intersection of Business & Society.
This course builds on the principles of strategic management to build an understanding of the impact of society on firm strategy and to learn to shape, accordingly, superior business strategies. The course addresses: stakeholder strategy (creating shared value); issue management (how social movements impact firm strategy); links between social performance and financial performance; communicating corporate strategy in line with social expectations in a social media era; and staying competitive in a global and digital era.
EMBA 2870. Cross-Cultural Biases.
Fundamentally, we work with other people and have a profound influence on others. This course aims to enhance students’ global leadership capabilities by: 1) cultivating deeper cross-cultural sensitivity, awareness, & competencies. 2) bringing awareness to the biases (both individual & cultural level) that we each hold; and 3) offering opportunities for critical reflection on how awareness of & strategies for working around these biases make us more effective global leaders.
EMBA 2900. Entrepreneurial Management for Executives.
This course provides a forum for the in-depth examination of mindsets, methods, and managerial activities that follow the entrepreneurial process from opportunity recognition to growing new ventures, whether as startups or within existing businesses. In particular the course will examine the role of finding a fit between one’s passions, skills and markets in the pursuit of opportunities and facilitate an understanding of the stages in the entrepreneurial process: opportunity recognition, customer discovery and market validation, solution validation and crafting of the business model.
EMBA 2930. Leading People, Teams and Organizations.
This course focuses on advancing students' understanding of how to lead and manage with the aim of increasing personal and organizational effectiveness. It is designed to address several fundamental aspects of managing and leading people. These include understanding and influencing group behavior and performance, working with and managing people on a one-on-one basis, and leading, motivating and aligning people behind a common vision or direction. This course places a particular emphasis on increasing students' self-awareness as leaders and their ability to address the challenges of leading change in organizations.
EMBA 2940. Motivation Science.
Course objectives include: learning how motivation works from recent conceptual and empirical advances in psychology and using this knowledge to make motivation work for you—in your own performance and as a motivator of others. Most people believe that the best way to motivate others is by using “carrots and sticks” (incentives), which is based on the classic assumption that what motivates people is to approach pleasure and avoid pain (the hedonic principle). Motivation however is more than “carrots and sticks”, and, importantly, there are many different kinds of motivational mechanisms that underlie people’s choices and what influences them.