Management Education Research Institute

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About the MERInstitute

GMAC established the Management Education Research Institute (MERInstitute) in 2005 to stimulate faculty research on issues affecting graduate management education. MERInstitute is now a part of the GMAC Management Education for Tomorrow (MET) Fund, created in 2008 with a US$10 million commitment to invest in strategic philanthropic initiatives that benefit management education globally. 

Through its Fellowship and Grants Programs, the MERInstitute funds data-driven research related to graduate management education around the world—research that develops knowledge and innovation and identifies best practices and areas for improvement related to admissions, curriculum, career, and outcomes.

The MERInstitute seeks research that improves educational practice. Universities and colleges constantly strive to achieve their missions in the face of increasing competition and limited resources. Traditionally, most deans and other academic administrators have based decisions on their professional experiences, observations, and judgments. In the future, however, evidence-based research should play a more central role in decision-making.

With effective evidence-based decision-making, higher education administrators and faculty can more accurately identify trends; pinpoint areas that need improvement; and engage in scenario-based planning and discuss fact-based decision-making options and likely outcomes. These advanced capabilities don't just benefit an institution's long-term planning. They also help with routine decision-making that—when acted upon throughout the institution—can add up to tremendous performance improvements over time.

The MERInstitute's Newest Initiative

A new book commissioned by GMAC’s MERInstitute represents the contributions of 20 thought leaders—deans and faculty from top international MBA programs—who provide business school decision-makers with an evidence-based approach to improving the practice of graduate management education. Disrupt or Be Disrupted: A Blueprint for Change in Management Education, published in August 2013 by Jossey-Bass/Wiley, analyzes challenges business schools will confront in the face of dramatic marketplace transformation, technological advances, and globalization that have led to completely new ways of learning, interacting, and information sharing.

Visit the Disrupt or Be Disrupted webpage for video interviews with the book’s authors, author biographies, book reviews, chapter descriptions, and upcoming events where Disrupt contributors will be speaking. GMAC’s Giving Back blog also features interviews with several of the book’s authors.

Disrupt or Be Disrupted is a natural outgrowth of MERInstitute’s eight-year-old mission to fund data-driven research on issues affecting graduate management education. By compiling current research from industry thought leaders into a single resource, the MERInstitute is able to offer business school decision makers a unique handbook with proven approaches for improving graduate-level management programs.

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