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Design Thinking and Innovative Problem Solving

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Shaping Entrepreneurial Mindsets

Part of the book series: The Palgrave Macmillan IESE Business Collection ((IESEBC))


In 2010, professors Srikant M. Datar and David A. Garvin and research associate Patrick G. Cullen published Rethinking the MBA: Business Education at a Crossroads. Rethinking the MBA took stock of business education in the US in a way that had not been done since the Carnegie Corporation and Ford Foundation each published reports on the subject in 1959. The research revealed an educational establishment disconnected in significant ways from the businesses and organizations in which its graduates traditionally go to work. Through interviews with numerous high-level executives and corporate recruiters and deans from highly ranked business schools in the US and Europe, a picture developed of MBAs whose skills were unequal to the most pressing needs of 21st century employers. Tasked with executing on known strategy or operations, MBAs performed very well. But when faced with “unstructured problems, ambiguous data, rapidly changing environments, and information overload” (Datar, Garvin and Cullen, 2010)—the new normal in an increasingly complicated and global world—MBAs faltered. Hence the question, Can anyone, including MBAs and executives with superb analytical skills, learn to think more innovatively and, if so, how might we go about developing these skills? Executives and managers could then train their associates in these skills.

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© 2015 Srikant Datar and Caitlin N. Bowler

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Datar, S., Bowler, C.N. (2015). Design Thinking and Innovative Problem Solving. In: Canals, J. (eds) Shaping Entrepreneurial Mindsets. The Palgrave Macmillan IESE Business Collection. Palgrave Macmillan, London.

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