For academic institutions like ESADE, December is not the end of the road, but a chance to rest and reflect, as pilgrims do during the long journey toward their destination. Quietly contemplating how far we’ve come and how far we have yet to travel provides a sense of distance and perspective. In this mental snapshot of what we’ve achieved during the 2016-2017 academic year, there is one concept that comes up frequently: collaboration.
Faculty, students and staff: in different ways, they have all embraced initiatives in which cooperation and co-authorship are essential for success.
The ESADE faculty is tenaciously involved in the task of training a new generation of executives. Working in open environments with diverse teams and horizontal decision-making is, for them, an essential condition for creating value and shaping the school. These executives carry the ESADE brand in their hearts.
Our students participate in a growing number of programmes like Challenge Based Innovation (CBI), in which teams made up of ESADE MBA students, engineering students from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC) and design students from IED Barcelona compete in a challenge posed by the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN). The teams receive multidisciplinary mentoring from CERN staff throughout the process.
The ESADE staff – a big family of enormous personal and professional wealth – gathered spontaneously on more than one occasion to raise awareness and cooperate in the ongoing drama of the refugees who are turning up on our shores by the thousands. With the same impetus, ESADE employees in Madrid, Sant Cugat and Barcelona mobilised to support breast cancer research and raise awareness through the #ESADEgoespink campaign.
The collaboration that pervades every classroom, office, department and institute at ESADE is essential to our ability to respond quickly to increasingly demanding challenges in today’s global, tech-heavy, digital world. It’s a philosophy that impregnates every corner of a company or institution.
Opening up to the world and working with others in full collaboration requires the bravery of a soldier who steps onto the battlefield with his arms lowered because he believes in mutual benefit, not confrontation.
Utopian? No. During the last few months of 2016, everyone at ESADE – every last person – proved once again that utopia pales in comparison to reality, and that collaboration has many dimensions, all filled with courageous decisions.