Digital disruption in higher education

Published on June 29, 2022   18 min

Other Talks in the Series: Digital Transformation

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My name's Keith Pond. I'm a director of EOCCS at EFMD, that is an online course certification system looking at online learning. I'm a lifelong early adopter of technology and brought aspects of this into my personal life as an academic and now an advisor on business school online quality.
In this talk, I ask some key questions, how can higher educational institutions benefit from digital transformation while at the same time keeping their quintessential nature? Universities and other higher educational institutions have had to innovate their model of education based on the impact of digital transformation. How will this affect the skills and techniques required by both students and academics? But it's not all about digital disruption. There's also social change, regulatory and economic pressures that affect universities now and in the future. In this talk, I'll attempt to analyze the strategic situation facing higher education, focusing mainly on business schools. I will explore key aspects of change that will be encountered and offer a case study from Spain of a disruptive business school that has been disrupting since 2006.
Many business schools teach about business disruption caused by the rise of online shopping, streaming services, video calling, cloud computing and so on. Big tech names now dominate our online experiences. Amazon, Google, Microsoft, eBay, Netflix to the detriment of businesses with a legacy investment in physical stores and outlets, business strategy teaches us that key external factors hashed out factors which include not only technology but also social changes, such as the acceptance of technology, the desire for flexibility and demand for 24/7 access to services. These factors have a profound effect on businesses that are slow to change, or in some cases, those that completely miss the looming threats on the horizon. But what about business schools themselves and the universities that host them? Are they potential victims of the theories they teach? Business schools are a good focus, as they often have the most students of any faculty, and their mission is often to attract the most diverse and international range of students and staff. Note, however, that technology is not the only disrupting factor. It facilitates much, but we must not lose sight of the other human factors that could change. In this talk, I simplify