The Learning Alliance Between Business and Business Schools: Executive Education as a Platform for Partnership

by Breck Arnzen, Sharon Brownfield, Sumantra Ghoshal

Fall 1992

Volume 35
Issue 1

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Business and business schools, at least in the United States, have tended to maintain an arm's-length relationship. Recent evidence suggests that this arm's-length model may have expanded the gulf between business and business schools, making them increasingly irrelevant to one another. This article argues for a new kind of executive education program that can provide the platform for building a very different partnership between business and business schools. Instead of viewing research and teaching as independent or sequentially linked activities, such programs can make them simultaneous outputs from a shared learning experience. Grounded in the specific case of one such partnership between Digital Equipment Corporation and INSEAD, such learning alliances can be just as useful for broadening the perspectives of business school faculty and for building new theory as they are for educating managers and for managing corporate change.

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