94% of IESE MBAs get a job in three months, one-third make triple jump

  • 2021 Employment Report reveals a bright future for IESE MBAs

Despite the pandemic causing widespread disruption to job markets across the globe, the career prospects of IESE MBAs continue to look bright.

In fact, 94% of IESE MBAs secured a job offer within three months after graduation, according to the latest MBA employment report. What´s more, around a third of the class leveraged their experience at IESE to make a notoriously tricky “triple jump” career change – meaning that they changed industry, job function and geography all at once.

The report highlights how IESE remains a destination of choice for top recruiters, with the school connecting more than 400 leading companies with IESE talent over the last year through a number of activities and structured recruitment activities.

ABInBev, Amazon, Bain & Company, BCG, Citi, McKinsey & Company, Novartis and Pepsico were among the top recruiters for the MBA class of 2021, which comprises 364 students, 31% of them women, of 56 different nationalities.

MBA career trends

According to the 2021 employment report, Consulting remains the most popular destination for IESE MBAs, attracting 34% of the Class of 2021 who are seeking employment (and surpassing pre-pandemic numbers). Finance (25%) and Industry (24%) were the next most popular sectors, followed by Technology (17%). Within the industrial sector, healthcare was the most popular choice, with 10% heading into that industry.

In terms of geography, the 2021 report shows that Europe (excluding Spain) was the most sought-after region to work in, with 26% of graduates accepting jobs there. Following closely behind was Latin America (22%), followed by Asia-Pacific (20%) and Spain (20%), and then Middle East & Africa (7%) and North America (5%).

However, the most notable trend was that of career change. As well as 33% of the class changing their job function, geography and sector in one go, in total 72% changed their function, 62% their geography and 61% their industry.

Studying an MBA at IESE has proved a powerful platform for people thinking of switching careers, thanks to the access it provides to a dedicated career development center with expertise in many different sectors and geographies, as well as a variety of training, support, advice and mentorship opportunities.

The option to take a corporate internship (or work on your own entrepreneurship project) in the summer between the first and second year of the MBA, also enables career changers to test and get experience in their new field.

One example of such a career changer is Alix Chausson who pre-MBA was working in the UK as a vendor manager for Amazon. She decided to study an MBA at IESE after realizing her dream job was radically different from the sector and role she had at the time.

“I arrived at IESE with a laser focus: to work in a venture role in foodtech – specifically in alternative proteins – post MBA”, she says.

She is now working in Germany as a senior associate for Evig Group, a foodtech company, and credits IESE with her move.

“This was a radical shift from my pre-MBA work and I strongly believe that my two years at IESE provided me with solid foundations for this unusual transition. As a committee member of the Tech Club, I put together and moderated a panel with foodtech experts where the exposure to investors and entrepreneurs was a fantastic opportunity to further my transition.”

Download the 2021 MBA employment report.

Business schools across four continents join forces to shape the future of capitalism

  • 12 leading business schools to take part in innovative MBA course initiated by IESE and Shizenkan University on social change
  • Guest speakers include top executives, entrepreneurs, policy makers, academics and activists of various backgrounds

Twelve leading business schools from Brazil, Denmark, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, South Korea, Spain, and Switzerland, will take part in an innovative MBA course in January 2022 that encourages students to critically examine today´s socio-economic system and provide a vision for how business can help promote a fairer and more equitable society.

The Future of Capitalism is a three-month long MBA course initiated by IESE Business School Dean Franz Heukamp and President at Shizenkan University, Prof. Tomo Noda. It was first launched in January 2021 as a joint course among four schools (IESE Business School in Spain, Shizenkan University in Japan, the School of Inspired Leadership in India and Fundação Getulio Vargas in Brazil).

In order to scale the impact of the course, as well as provide a broader networking platform for students, eight new schools have joined for the second edition: Copenhagen Business School (Denmark), IMD (Switzerland), IPADE (Mexico), IPB University Business School (Indonesia), Lagos Business School (Nigeria), Seoul National University (South Korea), Tecnológico de Monterrey (Mexico), and Universiti Sains Malaysia (Malaysia.)

Open to MBA students at all 12 participating schools, the 2022 edition of the Future of Capitalism will start on January 26 2022.

The elective explores the key issues society faces within the capitalist system today, and invites students to reflect and come up with a plan on how  business (and themselves as future business leaders) can have a more positive role in society. During the course, students engage in virtual conversations with a variety of guest speakers from around the world, including formerly homeless children and former child soldiers. They will also hear from top executives, entrepreneurs, policy makers, activists of various backgrounds, and academics, among others.

Some of the sessions include:

  • Hearing from Tosha Maggy, Africa Business Coordinator of Terra Renaissance, a Japanese NGO that offers vocational training for former child soldiers in Uganda.
  • A session with a forecaster, Paul Saffo, faculty and Futures Track Chair at Singularity University, on how to leverage technology and innovation for a better future.
  • A dialogue with Shubhashish Roy, Founder and CEO of Ekmattra Society, a Bangladeshi NGO promoting the advancement of underprivileged children.
  • Discussions with a founding member of the Conscious Capitalism movement, Raj Sisodia, Professor of Global Business at Babson College, on precepts and performance implications of pursuing a conscious approach to business.
  • A session on sustainability with Mads Øvlisen, former CEO of Novo Nordisk and former Chairman of LEGO.
  • A session discussing climate change and environmental sustainability with Jennifer Morgan, Executive Director of Greenpeace International.

Throughout, students collaborate in teams (both in mixed school teams and intra-school teams) to work on a mid-term and a final presentation, where they develop an outline of how business can build a bridge between the current status quo and their future vision of capitalism. Two finalist teams will then present their outputs to a group of prominent business leaders, including Paul Polman, B. Muthuraman, and Tak Niinami.

Record 5,000 people attend IESE Global Alumni Reunion

  • The 3-day event focused on sustainability takes place on IESE’s new Madrid campus and online

IESE’s Global Alumni Reunion (GAR) 2021 gets underway Thursday, with a record 5,000 people registered to attend the annual event that this year will explore the urgent need for companies to do their part in the transition to a more sustainable world.

It is the first time the GAR has taken place since COVID-19 spread across the globe, and occurs as larger-scale, in-person events are again possible in Spain and elsewhere. It will take place on IESE’s new Madrid campus, completed in recent months and applying the highest environmental standards, on Nov. 11-13.

“We’re delighted to once again celebrate our Global Alumni Reunion this year, for the first time since the pandemic. This event is new and innovative in every way: we’re holding in-person sessions on our new Madrid campus, which is a model of sustainable architecture,” said Mireia Rius, head of IESE’s Alumni Association.

“There’s also an option for attendees to connect online, choosing their events and networking with others, creating a unique, customized experience for all,” she added. “And we have an unparalleled line-up of global speakers who will talk about what sustainability means to them and to their work. This promises to be our most impactful Global Alumni Reunion ever.”

New Sustainable Leadership Initiative

As part of the event, IESE is announcing a new Sustainable Leadership Initiative, the umbrella under which a dozen professors are working on different sustainability-related research, teaching and outreach projects. The initiative features three main areas of investigation: sustainability in the financial sector, in cities and communities, and in leading corporations for a just transition.

“Sustainability has been an essential part of IESE’s approach to business since the very beginning. We’ve always been committed to creating businesses with a long-term vision and commitment to communities and people,” said Fabrizio Ferrari, the director of the new initiative and an expert in sustainability. “We’ve chosen sustainability as our theme for this year’s Global Alumni Reunion because we feel that there’s no more important issue for our times. The moment for businesses and business leaders to act is now, and IESE is committed to leading a global shift to more sustainable business models.”

To explore what those business models might look like, the event features some 35 global business and policy leaders, including keynote speeches by Dame Vivian Hunt, Senior Partner of McKinsey; Michael Sandel, a political philosophy professor at Harvard; Pablo Isla, Chairman, Inditex; and José María Álvarez-Pallete, Chairman and CEO of Telefonica.

In addition to the plenary sessions, there are a dozen sessions featuring high-profile leaders such as:

  • Citi CEO Jane Fraser
  • Jean Lemierre, Chairman of BNP Paribas
  • Author John Elkington of Volans & Maria Neira, Director, Public Health and the Environment Department, World Health Organization
  • Halla Tómasdóttir, CEO of the B Team 
  • Hiromichi Mizuno, United Nations Special Envoy on Innovative Finance and Sustainable Investments
  • Francesco Starace, CEO Enel
  • Javier Goyeneche, Founder of ECOALF
  • Enric Asunción, Founder and CEO of Wallbox Chargers.

In addition, Madrid Mayor José Luis Martínez-Almeida will help open the event on Nov. 11, and Isabel Díaz Ayuso, President of the Community of Madrid, will close the sessions on Nov. 12.

Saturday, Nov. 13, is a day dedicated to social and artistic events, including a golf tournament for alumni, a piano concert by Ignasi Cambra (EMBA ’21) and a special tour of the Madrid campus.

Leading European Business Schools unite to accelerate business response to climate crisis

  • New climate leadership toolkit to help companies meet environmental goals

Eight leading business schools have joined together to acknowledge the climate crisis and collaborate to support business leaders who will act to address the climate emergency.

Business Schools for Climate Leadership (BS4CL.org) is a unique alliance of business academic thought leaders, made up of founding members Oxford Saïd Business School, Cambridge Judge Business School, HEC Paris, IE Business School, IESE Business School, INSEAD, International Institute for Management Development and London Business School. Collectively, these schools train more than 55,000 students and executives per year, and are stewards of alumni bodies in excess of 400,000 people.  

As agents of change and the catalysts for thought leadership in today and tomorrow’s business leaders, the founding members of BS4CL recognise their role in driving and accelerating business activities towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Their goal is to support climate leaders and organisations by collaborating on research to identify and shape best practices, and by working across sectors and generations to accelerate the business community’s response to climate change. Collectively they will raise awareness of the urgency for climate change mitigation and adaptation, seeking to have an impact through joint outreach to all eight alumni communities.

As a first step, academics from the eight founding schools worked together to produce a BS4CL climate leadership toolkit, which will be released at COP26 in Glasgow on 10 November. In the run-up to this release, the group is holding a series of webinars to share this content, where each session has participants from multiple schools. The webinars, and ultimately the toolkit, are accessible for free at BS4CL.org. This initial collaboration focuses on eight topics:

  • Climate Change and Inequality (INSEAD)
  • Decarbonising Business (HEC Paris)
  • Global Strategy in a World Transformed: business strategy and geopolitics (IESE Business School)
  • Technology and Innovation as a Climate Change Solution (IE Business School)
  • Business Transformation and Climate Change (The International Institute for Management Development)
  • Risk management and the green energy transition (Oxford Saïd)
  • Climate change and nature, what business needs to know (Cambridge Judge)
  • Climate Standards and Enterprise Value (London Business School)

The toolkit will be launched on 10 November at the Sustainable Innovation Forum hosted by Climate Action on the Scottish Event Campus (SEC) at the UN Climate Change Conference COP 26 in Glasgow, in partnership with InTent.

Joint statement by deans

In a joint statement, the deans of the eight business schools said:

“The crises presented by the global pandemic have highlighted the important role academic institutions must play in providing leadership in times of emergency. Now, as we face one of the greatest challenges of our time–global warming, there has never been a more critical moment for collaboration between our institutions.

“We recognise the need to initiate the search for answers, which will galvanise and promote meaningful action. BC4SL builds on the integrated climate leadership expressed across our individual curricula and faculty research, providing the means to cooperate on a long-term basis. We mean to build the foundations with which businesses can lead global action to collaborate across sectors to limit climate change and to promote meaningful and visible progress. Our Post-COP26 Agenda will bring together our collective faculties to share and develop new insights on the rapidly evolving and urgent agenda.”

Business leader Paul Polman commented:

“New partnerships are essential for bringing speed and scale to our response to the climate crisis. Siloed thinking and institutional rivalry are our enemies in these urgent times, and I congratulate these academic leaders for setting a collaborative example, and for seeking to work hand-in-glove with business. I urge them to be as ambitious as possible, and to push each other to new limits of innovation and ingenuity.”

New study released at the 9th Open Innovation Conference co-organized by IESE Business School, Acciona and Cardumen Capital in Madrid

  • 95 global innovation leaders take part in new report presented at an event co-organized by IESE Business School, Acciona and Cardumen Capital
  • The new study, including 100+ examples, sheds light on how corporations can better innovate with startups via enablers such as VC investors, research centers, private accelerators, and more
  • The 9th Open Innovation Conference, hosted at IESE in Madrid, brings together chief innovation officers, corporate investors, and innovation leaders from Airbus, Santander Bank, BBVA, Acciona, Cardumen Capital, Telefonica, Decathlon, Mutua Madrileña, among others

Madrid, October 28 2021. Authored by IESE Business School, in collaboration with Acciona and Cardumen Capital, a new report is released today about corporate venturing – the collaboration between established companies and startups, a phenomenon globally growing at speed.

As it opens the doors on innovation, it’s bringing more players in. In corporate venturing, “enabler” institutions, such as universities and venture capital firms, are increasingly key: they help established companies join forces with startups and benefit in return, offering distinct advantages from independent knowledge to opportunity deal-flow, cost de-risking, and network effects.

Authored by IESE’s Josemaria Siota and Ma Julia Prats, in collaboration with Vittoria Emanuela Bria, Acciona’s Telmo Perez and Cardumen Capital’s Gonzalo Martínez de Azagra, the study aims to shed light on how to unlock hidden opportunities for corporations by knowing their roles, which types could be most valuable to different firms, and how to craft a compelling value proposition for the two institutions.

Download the report

As corporate venturing turns to institutional enablers, six categories have become apparent:

  1. Knowledge institutions, including research centers, university departments and think tanks.
  2. Boosting institutions. Namely, private incubators and accelerators that support entrepreneurs by providing space, technology infrastructure and other types of assistance.
  3. Investment institutions that fund startups, including business angels, venture capitalists (VC) and private equity firms.
  4. Public institutions, including government branches and embassies.
  5. Business institutions, including other large corporations, even competitors, as well as chambers of commerce.
  6. Service institutions — i.e., consultancy firms offering specialized innovation support.

Based on 95 interviews with innovation leaders in companies across four continents, the report identifies the most salient benefits of enablers in their view. Topping the list is “independent knowledge” (in 32% of the cases) because of the rapid evolution of trends such as venture clients as a service, fund-of-funds and excubators, combined with the complexity involved in understanding deep tech startups. Next in line is “opportunity deal flow” (in 26% of the cases), an area which is increasingly critical as scouting suppliers have proliferated and identifying opportunities before competitors do is becoming more challenging.

The report also finds that enabling institutions benefit in return from their interactions with corporations. Interviewees highlighted companies’ “domain expertise” (in 29% of cases) and their “business applicability” knowledge (in 17% of cases) as some of the main benefits. Lastly, it showcases the relevant of corporations working together to innovate with startups, also called corporate venturing squads.

The report is being released as part of IESE’s 9th Open Innovation Conference, held on October 27 at the new building of IESE’s Madrid campus. The conference brings together chief innovation officers, corporate investors, and innovation leaders from companies such as Airbus, Santander Bank, BBVA, Acciona, Cardumen Capital, Telefonica, Decathlon, Mutua Madrileña and Business Insider.

The gathering counted on the support of the dissemination partners Amazon Web Services for Startups, Endeavor, Madrid Innovation Driven Ecosystem, Embassy of Spain in Tel Aviv, Impact Hub, Madrid City Council, ICEX, Chamber of Commerce of Madrid, The Collider, Global Shapers, and ASCRI.

Access the agenda of the conference.

CEOs, Academics Call for More Trust Between Boards of Directors and Management

  • Europe´s Most Important Corporate Governance Conference looked at COVID-19 impact and sustainability in corporate strategy
  • Speakers at the multidisciplinary conference stressed that greater cooperation between management and boards was key in uncertain times

 A strong trust-based relationship between boards of directors and management is key to corporate strategy at any time, but it’s even more so in times of uncertainty like the present.

That was one of the main themes of one of Europe´s largest Corporate Governance Conferences, organized this week by IESE’s Center for Corporate Governance and the European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI). The two-day hybrid event, sponsored by the Social Trends Institute, brought 1,500 academic experts in corporate governance, CEOs and other top executives together on IESE’s new Madrid campus and online. Speakers included Nobel Prize winner Bengt Holmström, Oxford University’s Colin Mayer and Ioannis Ioannou of London Business School.

Time and again, speakers stressed that a strong relationship between boards of directors and management teams is key to corporate performance and strategies. Boards have the duty to govern the firm and help develop it sustainably for the long term. That means making decisions on corporate strategy, even in contexts of increasing uncertainty.

Frequent interaction, basis for good governance

“Interaction is key to the relationship between the board and the management team, in order to be sure that we don’t miss something. In an uncertain context it is important that they interact frequently, not only once a year,” said Tobías Martínez, CEO of Cellnex.

Risto Siilasmaa, former Chairman of Nokia, agreed that the relationship between the board and the management team must be based on trust: “We need to rebrand Corporate Governance. Rethink it, and make it more attractive.”

Margarethe Wiersema, professor at the University of California, explained how activism affects boards: “Boards must be more proactive and ask the hard questions on strategy. Communication with institutional investors and keeping them abreast of what’s going on at the firm is also key.”

Digitalization must be part of agenda

Bengt Holmström, MIT Professsor and Nobel Laurate in Economics, spoke about digitalization in boards. “The tsunami is coming, boards need to pay attention, as this will change strategy dramatically,” he said. “Boards must become more involved in strategy, we need a massive shift in mindset,” he said noting that in the case of Apple, for example, the board played an important role in helping Steve Jobs see the value of digitalization.

Sustainability enters boardroom

Sophie L´Helias, head of LeaderXXChange, commented that boards need to make sure that when we talk about purpose “it is really integrated into the strategy. Strategy is operational and it needs to integrate governance, environment and social factors, as well as financial factors.”

“The board of directors has to ensure that a sustainable strategy is set and to ensure that this strategy is set in the long term,” Denise Kingsmill, board member of Inditex, said.

For his part, Jean-Pascal Tricoire, president of Schneider Electric, stressed that it’s important to have your own sustainability agenda. “Sustainability changes the purpose of your company,” he said.

“Sustainability is really complex. No one can do everything but everyone needs to do something. Partnership is the way to do it,”, Juvencio Maeztu, Deputy CEO & CFO of Ingka Ikea, added.

Speed to manage uncertainty

For Francisco Reynés, Chairman of Naturgy, “The pandemic helped us to move quicker. We have realized that a very important crisis may happen. The company may survive with much more simple procedures. We are more efficient in our way of working, more trust in technological aspects.”

Reynés supports the return to face-to-face meetings. “I hate Zoom because it reduces a lot of human contact. We have lost the human touch which is very important. For easy decisions this is less important, but Zoom cannot substitute a very important face-to-face discussion, when different points of view are required.”

Renée Adams, professor of the University of Oxford, agreed: “In virtual meetings people show off more, but the impact on the results is less significant. They ask fewer questions.”



IESE MBA ranked no.2 in Europe by Bloomberg Businessweek

Bloomberg Businessweek ranks IESE’s MBA no.2 in Europe

  • IESE MBA stands out for its exceptional learning experience and networking opportunities

Bloomberg Businessweek has ranked IESE Business School´s full-time MBA as the second best program in Europe. The Bloomberg Businessweek Best European B-Schools 2021-22 MBA Ranking, released today, highlights the exceptional learning experience that IESE provides MBA students, as well as the rich networking opportunities that are available when studying the program.

The result caps off a record-breaking year for the IESE MBA, which has seen it place among the top positions in the most recognized international rankings in 2021, including ranking no.1 in the world by The Economist, and no.4 in the world by the Financial Times.

This year´s edition of the Bloomberg Businessweek ranking gathers the views of students, alumni, and recruiters on business schools throughout Europe. It then assess them across four areas: Compensation, Networking, Learning, and Entrepreneurship. (More on the Bloomberg Businessweek methodology.)

With IESE scoring high marks across the board, the results shed light on how current and former students continue to value their IESE MBA experience, as well as the high regard in which recruiters view IESE talent.

In particular, IESE ranked no.1 for Learning, reflecting the quality, depth and range of instruction on IESE´s MBA, as well as its relevance to real-world business situations. IESE´s innovative approach to learning, which combines discussion-based methodologies with highly personalized follow-up and support, was also key to its high marks.

IESE also performed well for Networking, taking the no.2 spot thanks to the breadth and depth of an active alumni community of more than 50,000 executives, a highly regarded careers service and excellent links with top recruiters, among others.

IESE´s focus on helping participants develop an entrepreneurial mindset, and support across all areas of the entrepreneurship ecosystem, also resulted in good scores for Entrepreneurship, where it also ranked second. Finally, IESE´s marks for Compensation (no.4), highlight how an IESE MBA continues to be a solid investment for participants.

Coming off the back of a string of strong ranking performances, this latest result by the weekly American business magazine once again consolidates IESE´s MBA as one of the best programs in the world.

More on IESE´s latest rankings.

IESE triples its campus in Madrid with focus on sustainability and entrepreneurship

  • School plans to increase activity in the Spanish capital by 50% over the next 5 years

IESE has launched its new campus in Madrid, tripling the previous area of the campus in the Spanish capital and allowing the school to increase its activity there by 50% over the next 5 years.

With this expansion, which has involved an investment of €52 million, the Madrid campus now covers 33,600 square meters. The new space consists of an acquired plot of 21,900 m2, added to the previous campus area of 11,700 m2. Together, they form a single, united enclosure encompassing two large buildings surrounded by forest. The new campus building, called Executive, has an area of ​​16,300 m2, while the old building, now called the Master building, totals 13,600 m2.

The new facilities, which will be officially inaugurated this October, include four new amphitheater classrooms, a high-tech multipurpose classroom, an auditorium with natural light for more than 500 people, and underground parking for 300 vehicles.

A space for leaders in sustainability

The campus is located in Pinar del Cerro del Águila which is within the vicinity of the Casa de Campo, the main green lung of the city of Madrid. This, together with architecture based on open spaces, large entrances of natural light and the use of green energy, makes it an ideal environment for the training of environmentally responsible managers.

The new building is in the process of obtaining LEED Gold certification, which recognizes its high environmental standards. Among other features, it uses 100% renewable energy, has intelligent control of the facilities and air conditioning, and consumes 40% less water than a conventional building.

IESE has consistently focused on promoting the development of sustainability-conscious managers. In line with this, IESE has launched the following initiatives for the 2021-22 academic year:

  • New MBA program specialization in SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals, Environmental, Social and Governance.) Participants will delve into better environmental, social and governance practices for companies, as well as the new criteria for sustainable investment.
  • Creation of an Initiative for research and teaching in sustainability, which brings together more than 10 professors and researchers from all disciplines of business management to generate knowledge and good practices that can be applied in programs and companies.
  • Certificates of training in sustainability. By taking several short and specialized programs at IESE, it will be possible to obtain an accreditation recognized in the market.
  • Global Alumni Reunion dedicated to sustainability. Between November 11 and 13, the annual conference for IESE alumni will bring together more than 40 international experts in sustainability this year. It will be a hybrid event for more than 10,000 people, broadcast from the new IESE campus in Madrid.

In addition to its training offer, the school has renewed its internal sustainability policy, with new travel recommendations for its employees and a plan to attract female talent.

A hub for entrepreneurs, innovators and investors

With the expansion of the Madrid campus, IESE also deepens its commitment to entrepreneurial talent. The second Venture Hub of the school will be housed in the new campus, creating a dedicated physical space for entrepreneurs, innovators and investors.

In addition, IESE intends to achieve these sustainable development goals (SDG) before 2030:

  • Generate 50,000 new jobs by supporting 5,000 entrepreneurs in the creation of new companies and in raising more than 500 million euros in risk investments.
  • Reach 2,000 high-level innovation managers through research and IESE activities.
  • Develop 200 new publications related to corporate entrepreneurship, technology transfer, search funds, and angel investing.

IESE has been working with entrepreneurs, innovators and investors for decades. To date, more than 70,000 jobs have been created around the world thanks to IESE-trained entrepreneurs, who have raised $3.6 billion in invested capital. Thirty percent of IESE students have also started a company in the 5 years after graduation.

The new campus will further strengthen the international ecosystem of IESE´s entrepreneurial initiative in Madrid, with networking and financing networks through multiple initiatives such as the Technology Transfer Group, the Open Innovation Institute, the International Search Fund Institute, the venture capital fund Finaves, the Business Angels Network, and the weGrow mentoring program.

History of IESE in Madrid

IESE landed in Madrid in 1974, at the request of former students who lived in the capital. Seven years later, after the PDD and PDG executive programs had been consolidated, the school launched the first Executive MBA program in Europe to great success.

The first Madrid campus was inaugurated in 1991, and delivered Custom Programs for national and international companies, as well as management programs such as the PDD, PDG and PADE. In 2004, the first expansion of the campus was made.

The Master in Management (MiM) was launched in 2019. It is IESE´s first full-time program to be delivered from the Madrid campus, and the first program aimed at recent graduates.

Finally, 2021 sees the inauguration of IESE´s new Executive building, whose works began in 2018.

Academic Year Kicks Off with Record Number of MBA Students, New Covid-19 Measures

  • IESE´s MBA Class of 2023 is the largest in the school´s history with nearly 400 students and a new sixth section. They join new cohorts of IESE´s Master in Management (MiM) and Executive MBA programs beginning classes in Barcelona, Madrid, and Munich.
  • IESE is one of the only top schools to have remained open for in-person classes since June 2020, thanks to putting in place rigorous health and safety protocols. This academic year, safety measures have been updated to include new protocols on vaccination and testing.

This week around 1000 students begin in-person courses of the MBA, Master in Management (MiM), and Executive MBA programs at IESE Business School´s campuses in Barcelona, Madrid and Munich. IESE´s rigorous set of health and safety measures, which enabled it to be among the first business schools to return to face-to-face classes back in June 2020, have been updated to include new protocols on vaccination and testing. The updated protocols ensure a safe and productive educational environment for all.

Despite the ongoing disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, continued strong demand from high quality applicants for IESE´s masters programs means that the school was also able to open a sixth section of its full-time MBA program for the first time this year. The incoming MBA class of 2023 is the largest in the school´s history with 387 students, up from 355 last year. More than eighty percent of the class are international, with students hailing from 59 different nationalities.

IESE´s full-time MBA students take classes at IESE´s campus in Barcelona, and study the program in English over 15 or 19 months. The average age of the class is 29.

The new students of IESE´s Master in Management (MiM) class of 2022 also recently began classes at IESE´s campus in Madrid. The class counts on 77 students from 27 different nationalities. Aimed at recent graduates with minimal or no work experience, the average age of the class is 23.

Launched three years ago and taught over 11 months, the MiM is a full-time program in English from the Spanish capital. It provides an immersive experience for participants, enabling them to acquire the best business tools to kick-start their management career.

Meanwhile, the new edition of the Executive MBA program in Munich has also started. IESE´s campus in Germany begins its third class of the executive MBA with 62 new participants from 22 different nationalities. The average age of the class is 35.

Ensuring a safe, innovative campus

From the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, IESE worked quickly to adapt its classrooms and put in place a comprehensive set of health and safety measures. These measures enabled IESE to successfully return to face-to-face classes over a year ago.

IESE´s extensive efforts to safeguard its campuses include restricted campus access and temperature controls, mandatory mask use in all common spaces combined with a high tech air-renewal and renovation system. As the pandemic has evolved, these safety measures have been further updated for the 2021-2022 academic year to include new protocols on vaccination and testing.

IESE is strongly recommending all participants and staff are fully vaccinated and provide proof of that with an official certificate. Those who are not will need to provide weekly proof of a negative PCR, serological or antigen test in order to access campus.

Participants who are unable to attend in-person classes will also continue to be able to connect to classes remotely. 

More on IESE´s health protocols.

Prof. Pietro Bonetti finds evidence tying fracking to increased salt concentrations in surface waters

IESE Research in Science: Hydraulic fracturing may be impacting surface waters

  • New research, published in Science, finds evidence tying fracking to increased salt concentrations in surface waters
  • The research points to the need for better and more frequent water measurement to fully understand the environmental impact on surface water of unconventional oil and gas development

August 20, 2021. New research, published today in the prestigious journal Science, finds that fracking is linked to higher salt concentration in surface waters. The research, which is authored by professors from IESE Business School, Chicago Booth and the University of Bristol, concludes that better water measurement is needed in order to fully understand the environmental impact of fracking.

The discovery of hydraulic fracturing, better known as fracking, is considered by many to be the most important change in the energy sector since the introduction of nuclear generated electricity more than 50 years ago—and a controversial one. US production of oil and natural gas has increased, energy prices have fallen, and domestic energy security has strengthened as the US has relied more on fracked oil and less on imports. But critics point to health and environmental concerns, especially the threat fracking could pose to water supplies.

Some studies have documented groundwater contamination related to fracking, but surface water may also be at risk: IESE Business School´s Pietro Bonetti, Chicago Booth’s Christian Leuz, and University of Bristol’s Giovanna Michelon find evidence tying fracking to increased salt concentrations in surface waters across several US shales and many watersheds. While the elevated levels they discovered were very small and within the bounds of what the US Environmental Protection Agency considers safe, the researchers note that better water quality data is needed to fully understand the surface water impact of unconventional oil and gas development.

Fracking allows the energy industry to reach oil and gas stores that are otherwise unavailable, which it does by injecting millions of gallons of liquid underground, at a high pressure, in order to create fractures in rocks to allow oil or gas to flow. While the industry maintains that the process is safe, others have raised concerns regarding the fracking fluid (a mix of water and chemical additives and propping agents such as sand) and the large amounts of resulting wastewater, which includes both flowback from the fracking fluid and produced water from the deep formations. The latter brine is naturally occurring water, into which organic and inorganic constituents from the formation have dissolved, resulting in high salt concentrations.

While studies such as a 2011 paper by Duke’s Stephen G. Osborn, Avner Vengoshb, Nathaniel R. Warnerb, and Robert B. Jackson have linked fracking to groundwater contamination, there has been less evidence tying the process to surface water contamination, other than to isolated spills and leaks. But Bonetti, Leuz, and Michelon’s research suggests fracking may lead to increased salt concentrations in surface waters.

The researchers used a geo-coded database that combined surface water measurements with 46,479 hydraulic fracturing wells from 24 shales across 408 watersheds from 2006 to 2016. They specifically looked for concentrations of bromide, chloride, barium and strontium because these ions are usually found in high concentrations in flowback and produced water from wells, and they do not biodegrade and have been found several years after spills. Using a statistical approach, Bonetti, Leuz, and Michelon identified anomalous changes in ion concentration associated with new wells in the same watersheds.

Small but consistent increases in barium, chloride, and strontium

In areas where there were new hydraulic fracturing wells, there were also elevated salt concentrations in surface waters, according to the researchers, who find small but consistent increases in barium, chloride and strontium concentrations, but not bromide, for many watersheds across the US. These elevated levels existed in Pennsylvania—which accounted for almost 41 percent of the sample—and for all US watersheds at comparable magnitude and significance.

The increases in salt levels were largest during the early phases of production when wells generate large amounts of flowback and produced water, which suggests a link between elevated concentrations and the unconventional oil and gas development process, according to the research. The salt concentrations were most pronounced for wells that produced larger amounts of water and for wells located in areas where the deep formations exhibited higher levels of salinity.

The elevated levels the researchers discovered were well below the US Environmental Protection Agency’s limits and advisory levels for what is considered safe. However, the water measurements were predominantly taken from rivers, and it is important to recognize that not all wells are close to surface water and not all monitors are in locations where they could detect an effect, the researchers argue. In addition, they write, the study was hampered by the availability and measurement frequency of water quality data. Hydraulic fracturing fluids contain chemical substances that are potentially more dangerous than salts, but Bonetti, Leuz, and Michelon weren’t able to look for these chemicals, as they’re not widely covered by public databases.

As such, the research shows “we need better and more frequent monitoring and water measurement to get a greater understanding of the environmental implications of fracking”, says Bonetti. “For instance, federal and state environmental agencies could consider placing monitoring stations in a more targeted fashion to better track potential water-quality impacts. More extensive water measurement for a broader array of substances clearly requires adequate funding for these agencies.”

More: Pietro Bonetti, Christian Leuz, and Giovanna Michelon, “Large-Sample Evidence on the Impact of Unconventional Oil and Gas Development on Surface Waters,” Science, August 20 2021.

Read an interview with Prof. Bonetti discussing the research.