Syllabus overview (public)

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Programme Master in Management
Academic Year Academic Year 2021/2022
Module/course Code OP115
Delivery location Madrid
Language English
Course type Specialisation
Contact hours 120
ECTS M1 before 2020 16
ECTS M1 from 2020 20
Level 5 (year post baccalaureate)
Semester Spring
Module name Innovation and Family Business
Field (Discipline) Management
Academic Department Management


Module/course Summary

This specialization will focus on the organizational and managerial challenges that family business face to innovate.  In current times of significant change (technological, demographic, political, social…) innovation is critical to all companies. Family business have a very specific way to deal with it due to their organizational peculiarities.

Family businesses represent more than 60 % of the companies and 40 % of the employment in most countries. Also many ESCP students have a family business in their surroundings, which may be a source of employment for themselves or other classmates.

Sooner or later any ESCP student will be part of a family business or interact with them. Family businesses have certain managerial specificities. Management will depend on the business but also the structure and level of professionalization of the management of the family business. It will depend on the generation and how the generational transition is understood. It will depend on the business family objectives and how internal relations are managed. The specialization will cover most of these topics.

But in the current changing times, how should the business survive and grow? Through related or unrelated diversification, open innovation, intrapreneurship, corporate venture capital (CVC), family trusts…? Innovation adoption and management of innovation are some of the topics where the specifics of the organizational characteristics of family business impact most. This is another of the elements of the specialization, relating the potential strategies with current moment of technological, political, social…change.

The specialization is targeted at those students who have a family business in their surroundings and at those students interested in the topic. The faculty involved in the course teach similar topics in more senior programs (MBA, EMBA), do family business advising and manage a European Union recognized hub on Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (both types of technologies are or will be significantly affecting family business).
Miguel Palacios PhD, José Ramón Cobo PhD FRSA, Isabel Ortiz PhD, Carlos Arbesú PhD, Ruben Herskovits PhD

Objectives of the training action
The aim of this specialization is: to prepare students to help family business innovate.
At the end of the course, participants should be better prepared to: 
- Operate in a family business context and drive innovation in family business through the understanding of the specific context these type of companies face and their governance and professionalization level.
- Understand and evaluate the challenges and opportunities of working in a family business, as well as the key factors for being successful in this field.
- Adapting and anticipating business and family governance changes.
- Planning the governance framework and bodies of governance. 
- Management of new governance structures.
- Be future leaders in the global project based environment.  By developing knowledge and skills in both business strategy and project management, participants will be exposed to strategic project thinking, innovation, and best practices applied in this field.
- Understanding how to recognize and foster the correct innovation that would create value for all relevant stakeholders. And in this process to successfully manage the change that this innovation would bring. 
- Understanding the transformation that the digital era is having on business and specifically on family business. The irruption of digitalization has led to the emergence of new business models, new customers and new communication needs. In view of this, organizations also have the need to reformulate the role of their leaders as well as the competencies required from them.