The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) has just named the AQUATIS Challenge, which brought together students from HEC Lausanne and the IMD business school in 2020 as part of IMD’s MBA innovation Week, as one of the most inspiring innovations in teaching in 2021 (AACSB 2021 Innovations That Inspire). IMD invited Bachelor’s students from HEC Lausanne (UNIL) to take part in the project through its new Enterprise for Society centre last year. Students from IMD and HEC Lausanne therefore joined forces to improve the customer experience at Aquatis.
[Update of article published on 21 October 2021 entitled: Students from HEC Lausanne and IMD join forces for Aquatis]
AACSB International is a global, non-profit organisation that puts educational institutions, students and businesses pursuing the shared goal of creating the next generation of leaders in contact with each other. For the last six years, the AACSB has been highlighting initiatives in business schools that have a positive impact on society through its “Innovations That Inspire” Awards. This year, the association has named IMD’s MBA Innovation Week and its
AQUATIS Aquarium-Vivarium project as one of the “AACSB 2021 Innovations That Inspire”.
“The Aquatis Innovation Challenge was a fantastic opportunity for our students to work as a team with students at IMD on practical innovation projects that could have a significant impact on the Lausanne region. This demonstrates the full potential of the new E4S centre, which brings our institutions together and contributes to the development of a rich and innovative ecosystem,” comments Jean-Philippe Bonardi, Dean of HEC Lausanne.
The start of a new collaboration between students at IMD and HEC Lausanne (UNIL)
The collaboration began in 2020 as part of “Activate change”, one of the three pillars of Enterprise for Society (E4S), which aims to establish a collaborative innovation network between businesses, start-ups and students in the Lake Geneva region. It was in this spirit that IMD, in partnership with INARTIS, last year invited Bachelor’s students from HEC Lausanne to take part in IMD’s MBA Innovation Week, an educational project that forms part of their MBA programme.
It resulted in students from IMD and HEC Lausanne working together to improve the customer experience at Aquatis. The 18 teams developed creative options that involved – among other things – mobility solutions inside the aquarium and technologically advanced proposals for fun educational activities. After testing the appeal, feasibility and viability of their ideas, the teams then learned to present and promote their plans using story-telling techniques.
The students were also supported through the learning process by experts such as actors for the preparatory phase of presenting their projects.
Many congratulations to Professor Cyril Bouquet from IMD for leading the initiative and to all the students for their efforts and creativity!