How will digital disruption impact African Business Schools?

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How will digital disruption impact African Business Schools?


The need for African business schools to innovate and provide good quality and pertinent management education has been brought to the fore by the evolution of technology and the pending arrival of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. As technology comes to education, it’s imperative for African business schools to be ahead of the curve to ensure they evolve and transform to where technology is headed.

The Association of African Business Schools (AABS) - an association of leading business schools on the African continent that provides member schools with an endorsement of quality, an opportunity to learn from peers, and access to a worldwide network – introduced a unique accreditation system, underpinned by African values and contexts, to benchmark the provision of high-quality business and management education in Africa. It’s a globally recognised standard of quality, and a bold step in shaping the African concept of management education for the future.

Dr Cobus Oosthuizen, Dean of Milpark Business School (MBS) says the AABS accreditation standards have been set to encourage African business schools to support inclusive socio-economic growth in Africa. “It focuses on the relevance and quality of the school’s mission, programmes, facilities etc, and the positive impact the school is able to make on society through its faculty, research and alumni. It considers how well a school is able to foster responsible management practice, improve the skills of students, and develop its (and other) faculty and alumni.” He said the process will be as rigorous as any other recognised accreditation systems such as AMBA, EQUIS and AACSB.

At a recent AABS Connect Conference, Dr Eli Elquammah from Morocco’s HEM business school said statistics show 60% of Africa’s youthful population is under the age of 24. Since this group consumes large amounts of technology daily, he said that current higher education institutions will need to make innovation a priority in every aspect of their business model. 

Dr Oosthuizen explained that MBS “remains focused on key management areas while paying sound attention to the critical skills that make our student's outstanding performers in the business environment, locally and internationally. In addition, we also provide future managers and leaders with insight and skills related to the areas of social responsibility, the environment and corporate citizenship.”

Professor Klaus Schwab, World Economic Forum founder said the beneficial transformations, and profound challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) likely to bring economic disruption… Because, “in its scale, scope, and complexity, the transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced before. 4IR is evolving at an exponential rate, not only changing the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of doing things but also ‘who’ we are, as we experience the transformation of entire systems, across (and within) countries, companies, industries and society.” 

29 Jun 2017