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Business School, Small Business, SME, Not-for-Profit, Spatial Analysis, GIS
The last generation in management education identified and addressed two perceived gaps in standard degree curricula: global business and corporate ethics. The Association for Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) has been instrumental in assuring these topics receive due attention. Given the current state of management education for the challenges of the 21st century, what are the two gaps that are likely to be perceived and addressed during the next generation? The conjecture here is that attention to non-traded enterprises and to spatial awareness will emerge as critical components of management education in the near future, and will endure because their relevance and relative value will increase over time. Such a shift will necessitate substantial rethinking of curricula: more than 99% of American businesses are “small”, but the standard objective function taught in b-schools today is maximization of shareholder wealth, usually measured by changes in stock price. Similarly, the current estimate is that at least 80% of all business transactions or decisions involve a spatial component, yet this component rarely is explicitly recognized in today’s b-school classes. The blurring of boundaries and increasing joint ventures among public, not-for-profit, corporate, and small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs), coupled with advancements in geographic information systems (GIS), suggests an impetus for these next two waves in management education. This paper provides background information and a projected trajectory for infusion of these concepts into tomorrow’s curriculum.