Finding the best business education innovations

Published in
5 min readFeb 16, 2021


At LearnSpace we believe in the power & impact of teaching innovations and our goal is to help share good practices in pedagogy on a global scale. This is why we are organizing this call and are looking forward to inspiring change by sharing teaching innovations implemented in business schools globally.

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Our Manifesto

Our initiative comes from a simple, yet frightening observation: business education needs a makeover.

Last year, the unexpected global pandemic has shed a harsh light on a truth that had been set aside, safely tucked into a vault of denial. But here it is and we can no longer ignore it: the vast majority of people are not ready for the future of work.

Years before the events that shattered our world economies in 2020, the gears of the Fourth Industrial Revolution had already started turning. Slowly but surely, they are transforming jobs across all sectors — and with them, the skills needed by workers to thrive.

Businesses are among the players at the forefront of this change — now more than ever, we need enlightened, dedicated and agile business leaders to support this transformation. Business schools are one of the most important institutions for developing business leaders who can drive this change. But the problem is that today, they are lagging behind, stuck with outdated approaches to learning, that, for the most part, are no longer valuable for students.

We need this to change.

Make pedagogy great again

Since the research push in academia after WW2, Business Schools have been building their reputation, respectability and authority through research. Academics are expected to publish frequently, which sets aside other considerations such as teaching & pedagogy. International rankings feed this constraint, by relying on criteria such as academic reputation, impact of research, percentage of faculty with PhD…

In order to efficiently groom future generations to the realities of tomorrow, we need to give significantly more weight to teaching methods (pedagogy).

How well students learn should be at least as important — if not more — as how many papers are published each year.

Pedagogy has been an outsider to the system for way too long. It has been put aside over the years, resulting in professors relying mostly on the top down lectures, during which students are more inclined to stay passive recipients of knowledge rather than active participants.

Today, cognitive sciences have demonstrated that the human brain learns best in an active setting — when synapses build connections within our brains. When we do things, when we create, when we are actively engaged in the learning process — that’s when the process reaches its optimal efficiency.

According to the World Economic Forum’s The Future of Jobs Report, published in October 2020, active learning and learning strategies is the second top competency for 2025. Among the top 15 list are other soft skills such as:

  • Creativity, originality and initiative;
  • Leadership and social influence;
  • Resilience, stress tolerance and flexibility;
  • Emotional intelligence

None of which are likely to be efficiently taught in a traditional classroom environment, when innovative pedagogy does.

So, in view of this,

How can we reinvent the pedagogical methods currently deployed by Business Schools, and replace them with innovative approaches and active learning?

We are on a mission to find the people who share our beliefs, and who have started carrying out experimentations on new learning methodologies.

We are looking for pedagogical innovations in Business Schools — and most importantly the professors who are experimenting with them

This initiative aims at uncovering innovative pedagogical approaches, and at understanding how they are being implemented in classroom environments. We are looking for professors who are enthusiastic about pedagogy and pedagogical innovation, who want to share their experimentations with us.

Our goal this year is to identify hundreds of pedagogical innovations, select 10 of them and write a report to share them with as many people as possible.

Our aim is to show that there is another way for business education, and to open a dialogue with Academia.

Oftentimes, professors and teachers embracing alternative approaches tend to stay under the radar. This is why we need all the help we can get: if you are using an alternative, innovative pedagogical approach in your classroom, we would love to hear from you — simply nominate yourself! And if you know of a professor who you think is using alternative, disruptive methods to teach (they could be your professor, your colleague, a friend of yours…), please nominate them!

If you’re wondering what can be considered an innovative pedagogical approach, well… The possibilities are endless! Examples of use cases we are fascinated with (and still looking for the answer to) are:

  • How do you introduce game-based mechanisms and playfulness in learning?
  • When is a good time to integrate problem solving in a class?
  • How can digital tools support active learning in a relevant way, how do we avoid the pitfall of the digital gadget?
  • How do we make online learning more relevant and engaging for students?

We have endless questions, and some people have already started looking for answers — we’d like to meet them.

Who can be nominated, and until when ?

First and foremost, we hope to hear from individuals who are excited about pedagogical innovation. And by pedagogical innovation, we mean :

The usage of a tool or method that provides a change in the professor’s posture, who would be more focused on empowering students, making them more committed, engaged and responsible for their own learning. At the heart of pedagogical innovation lies the shift from teacher-centered learning to student-centered learning.

Here are the criteria on which we will be basing our selection of the innovations which will be listed in the report:

  • Ability to illustrate or demonstrate clearly which innovation they are applying in their classroom, how they are applying it and what the innovative elements are
  • Demonstration of data/evidence of the impact on learning. This can include feedback from students, feedback from someone who may have tested their approach and/or other forms of data/evidence

The strongest submissions will also show activities such as:

  • The publication of a research paper on the subject, to share their pedagogical innovation and/or the results of their experiments
  • Sharing of experience and approach. This can include participation at events (conference, webinar…), writing online (blog, social networks such as Linkedin or Twitter,…), or sharing of experience and approach through other mediums

An independent Jury made of business education experts will be tasked with reviewing all nominations.

Nominations should be submitted by the end of Tuesday, April 6th, 11pm CET.

Be part of the change: Click here to nominate yourself or Business School professors you know are being innovative — we are looking forward to hearing from you!




Founder @LearnSpaceParis, Co-founder @EdtechTours, @EuropeanEdtechAlliance, Author ‘Exploring the Future of Education’ 🇪🇺