About SMARTbiz

Important Dates

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Deadline for application/registration: 10th of March 2014

Selection of students: 15th of March 2014

Arrival of the students: 22nd of June 2014

Departure of students: 5th of July 2014

 

Objectives of this Intensive Programme

The main objectives of this IP based on the main subject are (Business studies) are:

1. To prepare 50 students in the field of business studies (management and administration) as future entrepreneurs or employees to be able to think, design and evaluate successful and sustainable businesses which can overcome the possible local, national and international crisis.

2. To prepare 50 students to work in a multicultural environment focusing on multidisciplinary perspectives when approaching a business as well as thinking creatively for finding innovative solutions to day to day problems, with emphasis on strategic planning.

3. To contribute to students` personal development in terms of methods (ways of personal growth) and focus (why and how to think about personal development as a process and as a result of running a successful business).

4. To enhance the learning experience of students and teachers through the cooperation between universities and enterprises.

5. To approach new pedagogical methods, as the concept of business carrousel when approaching practical concepts and the alternation of lectures, workshops and roundtable debate when teaching the theory, to teach students about managing a business in a more integrated and systematic manner.

Target students

  • The target groups are 50 students in the 3rd year of Bachelor (1st cycle) and the 2nd year of Master (2nd cycle). The required background is on: Economics, Management, Marketing, Finance, Human Resources or students from any other specialization aiming at becoming entrepreneurs.

 

Application procedure

  • The academic performances
  • A 2 page motivation letter explaining their motivation to attend and their perspective on what means a sustainable business model, showing their research on the main topic of this IP.
  • A resume which will demonstrate their capacity to work in international teams, wide interest in business field, and attendance in similar programmes.
  • Answer a questionnaire on how the participants would like the theory and practice parts of the IP to be conducted by the teachers in order to fulfil their expectations.

Activities

The main activities include 4 teaching days and 6 practice days.

The teaching activities include lectures, workshops and roundtable debates.

The lectures will be interactive, by encouraging students to participate by asking questions and resolving study cases, or answering to questions from the teachers.

The workshops should focus on applied knowledge (to apply certain tools, to study, to solve study cases, to calculate, to solve problems etc.).

For the roundtable debates the students are required to prepare with help from the participating teachers the debate topics for all the first 4 days in order to be able to be active and debate those topics along with the other students. They shall have 15 minutes presentations on each topic. 2 teachers will co-chair each debating activity. The presentations shall be either individual or collective (per university). The scope of the presentations is to have a concrete basis to conduct to further debates.

The 6 practice days focus on implementing the business carrousel with the involvement of 5 local companies with different business domains. During the 6 days of practice, students will work in teams of 5 and 1 full day is allocated to face to face discussions with top managers from those companies, 1 hour per each team. The next working days are allocated to group and individual work, along with field work for preparing a report on Sustainable Business Models.

The students are encouraged to be creative and innovative and approach other companies with the help of their Romanian co-member of the team.

Business Carrousel Concept

Starting with the 5th day, the students will focus on practical issues related to business studies and business carrousel will be the core activity. The business carrousel involves 50 students, 5 companies along with 5 top managers, 1 hour per company spend by the students. The students will be split up in teams of 5, combining 1 person from the participating countries, so none of the teams will have 2 members from the same country. The managers will have allocated one room and within an hour they will spend time with 2 teams of students, which then the next hour will go to the next manager, but one team shall not meet again into the same room a team with they already shared one manager. Before the carrousel the teachers shall explain to the students the concept and the rules of the carrousel, and the main task after the carrousel, which is a tool, not a mean in itself, – which is to create a report in their teams about Sustainable Business Models, which will include: literature review, study case on the companies presented at the business carrousel and comparison with their competitors.

Competencies – Learning outcomes

Subject-related competencies:

ü  putting knowledge of business and international business into practice through the contact of managers from companies,

ü  capacity to search for information and studies, write reports applied to the different areas of business,

ü  capacity for the disclosure of questions in relation to a business and the European and international economy,

ü  understanding and evaluating the analysis of an company from financial, managerial, marketing and innovation usage perspectives,

ü  understanding the interdependencies of different department of a company and the impact of external environment to the business as a whole,

ü  understanding and evaluating financial investments,

ü  knowing and using tools for assessing a business sustainability,

ü  understanding the concept of strategic planning of a business,

ü  knowing and understanding the factors of influence on the sustainability of a company,

ü  broadening their understandings over the complexity of a business within the European Union and global context.

 

Transversal competencies:

ü  analysis and synthesis,

ü  organization and planning, communication in foreign language,

ü  usage of computer,

ü  the ability to look for information from different sources and use the correct and useful ones,

ü  problem-solving,

ü  decision-making,

ü  teamwork,Graphic1_Page_7

ü  working in multicultural and international environment,

ü  inter-personal skills,

ü  creativity,

ü  leadership,

ü  self-organizing capabilities,

ü  taking initiatives and entrepreneurial spirit.

Work methodology

  1. 1.    Learning partnership

The project will foster interaction among participant by working in pairs as a mandatory condition for writing the final report and being awarded with 5 ECTS credits. The students will encourage finding a learning partner for the whole duration of the whole IP to whom they will discuss what and how they have gained knowledge and competencies and there will be allocated 1 teacher per team to for debriefing the learning process.

  1. 2.    Multidisciplinary perspectives

The project focuses on multidisciplinary approach of the teaching activities (4 main topics) and the preparation of the students` report on Sustainable Business Models. The teachers will present a sub-topic and all the teachers will contribute to an integrated and multidisciplinary perspective over a business in order to become a sustainable business model. The students will have to present in their reports they had a multidisciplinary approach on sustainable business models. That is why, the students will work in teams, and each member of the team, will have to prove he/she had a specific and individual contribution to the project as a whole.

 

  1. 3.    Collaboration

The main pedagogical and didactical approaches for teaching are based on the socio-constructivism theory based on collaboration and the idea of learning partnerships (two people are either assigned or they choose each other in order to discuss their learning process and the knowledge & skills acquired). The students will also work together on the final report on teams of 5 students (which is also based on the collaborative learning principle).

  1. 4.    Field work

A novelty a project as this, is the 2 days of group & individual work, along with compulsory field work, which aims at ensuring to the students the necessary time and space to get creative and innovative regarding the report by going out from the university wall by getting in contact with other managers or business. This activity will be monitored and facilitated by teachers with the help of Romanian students. The main aim is to offer the possibility to students to apply the tools they have learned during the teaching activities – if they are connected and useful for their reports, as well as encouraging them to get in contact with other companies, so they can take initiative, find supplementary resources in order to write a complex and integrated report.

  1. 5.    Deliverables

ü  Report on Sustainable Business Models. This is the main outcome of the students and counts for the ECTS awarding. The report evaluation criteria are: responsiveness to questions/ issues; evidence of awareness of key ideas or facts brought out in readings; use of models and explanation, form and analyse, evaluate and synthesize information from a variety of sources; conclusions clearly linked to concepts developed within report; structure and organization of ideas; spelling and grammar. The presentation criteria are: organization of the speech, knowledge (understanding) of the topic, creativity, visual aids, stage presence and confidence in answering the questions.

ü  Mini-magazine on each of the lecture main topics (technology, human capital, marketing & CSR and finance & economics) by the middle of the second week. The purpose of this task is stimulate the creativity, writing capacities as well as capacity for synthesis and analysis of students, by writing small articles about their own opinion on the lectures, workshops and roundtable debates topics.

 

Evaluation and feedback process

 

We will evaluate:

The learning outcomes

Students performances

Teachers – quality of teaching

Organizing conditions

There will be created an IP Office at the faculty where at the end of the day the teachers will have short debrief meetings in order to create solutions for possible problems (Students that have problems adapting to the IP, language barriers etc.). Students will also have the possibility to give a day-to-day feedback during the IP at the IP-office.