Shift Your Perspective at EMBAC Conference Plenaries

As disruptions shape the nature of the marketplace, EMBA Programs that understand those trends increase their likelihood of continued success. In fact, those programs may be the ones that lead the disruptive innovation in the industry.

Take a step in redefining the EMBA industry by attending the 2016 EMBAC Conference plenary session: Disruptive Innovation: What’s Next for EMBA Programs.

As a researcher for the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation, Alana Dunagan focuses on the forces of change in higher education. She studies business model innovations, public policies, and investment strategies that can support the development of new and sustainable post-secondary models.

In her plenary, Dunagan will explore emerging innovations that offer the potential to alter the landscape of higher education and their implications for EMBA Programs.

She brings much experience to the discussion. She leads the institute’s higher education research and analyzes disruptive forces that impact higher education.  She previously spent 10 years in institutional investment management, focusing on non-profits, particularly on colleges and universities. For five years, she also managed a $700 million endowment at Macalester College.

The Clayton Christensen Institute promotes the transformational power of disruptive innovation. Harvard Professor Christensen first coined the concept of disruptive innovation based on his research into the disk drive industry.

“Alana will help EMBAC participants look at the marketplace with a different lens, adding insights into possible transformations, which pave the way for EMBA Programs to continue evolving and enhancing value,” says Michael Desiderio, EMBAC executive director.

With those insights, conference participants also will benefit from applying the concepts of design thinking to strengthen the impact of EMBA Programs.

“We also are pleased to have David Schonthal, a leader in design thinking teaching and practice, as a plenary speaker,” says Desiderio.

Schonthal, clinical assistant professor of innovation and entrepreneurship at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, teaches course in new creation and business model design. He also serves as the director of Kellogg’s Zell Fellows program, a selective venture accelerator program that helps student-entrepreneurs successfully launch new businesses.

In this session, Design Thinking: Inspiration…ideas…implementation, Schonthal will make the fundamentals of design thinking accessible and applicable. Design thinking supports the development of transformational services, processes, and strategies. It allows those who are not trained in design to tap into tools and problem-solving practices.

An excellent guide to the practice of design thinking, Schonthal has helped develop initiatives as a leader in the business design practice at IDEO, an award-winning innovation consultancy. He currently serves as a member of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship council, ChicagoNext, and is the co-founder of MATTER, an innovation center in downtown Chicago that helps catalyze and support health care entrepreneurship.

“This year’s plenary speakers set a high bar, and for EMBAC Conference participants, that translates into sessions that can benefit their professional development and programs,” says Desiderio.

For more details, visit the conference plenary session page.

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