The quest for the golden idea that would improve management education began last summer, when the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) launched a contest it hoped would shake up the status quo at business schools. The Ideas to Innovation Challenge asked people all over the world to answer the question "What one idea would improve graduate management education?" The contest was organized by GMAC's Management Education for Tomorrow (MET) Fund, a $10 million fund established in 2008 to help improve management education. The MET Fund set aside more than $260,000 for the contest, with the winner of the top prize receiving $50,000. It was the first time that GMAC, which administers the Graduate Management Admission Test, organized such a challenge and organizers said they hoped to get perhaps 100 entries.
Their expectations were met and then some. GMAC was deluged with 600 entries from people in 60 countries. Professors, students, recent MBA graduates, and executives were among those who entered the contest, each of whom had their own unique take on how to improve management education. This fall, GMAC started taking a closer look at the entries, eventually narrowing the pool down to 20 finalists and, today, announcing the winners. Ideas range from alternate-reality game training for MBA students to new ideas for creating more specialized management programs and curriculums. Now that the winners have been announced, GMAC plans to move onto the next stage of the project: implementation. Over the next year, GMAC will be accepting proposals from business schools on how they can put some of these ideas into practice and will be awarding grants that will allow them to begin that process, GMAC says.
So without further ado, let us present the winning ideas. There are 20 in all: a first-place winner plus four second-place winners, 10 third-place winners, and five finalists who received honorable mentions. A more complete description of each idea can be found here