KUALA LUMPUR, 29 November 2012 – Universiti Teknologi Malaysia International Business School (UTM IBS) hosted a two-day Annual Meeting of the Association of Asia Pacific Business Schools (AAPBS) in UTM Kuala Lumpur, the first of its kind in Malaysia.  The meeting is part of AAPBS’ continuous efforts to provide its members a platform to discuss key issues and challenges for the advancement of business and management education in the region.

Established in 2004, the AAPBS has gone from strength to strength to foster collaborations among business schools in the region to develop a robust model of management education in Asia. The association is currently headed by Professor Hirokazu Kono, Dean Graduate School of Business Administration, Keio University.

The theme for this year’s meeting, ‘Innovation Beyond Technology Within Asia Pacific Region’, has been chosen to reflect the increasing challenges in the business and management education landscape.

Accelerating economic growth in the region, increasing demands for quality management education, heightened competition among program providers, depleting federal funding, and diversity of consumer profiles are some of the challenges that business schools in Asia are forced to face with and needed to be addressed. Innovation is a must if Asian business schools want to prosper in this environment.

The meeting, attended by 70 delegates from universities in Asia, United States of America, France, Saudi Arabia and United Kingdom held talks and discussions on innovative areas in school governance, management, teaching and learning, research and publications, student services and funding models for the sustainability of business schools.

Some high-profile names spoke at the event including a keynote address by UTM Vice Chancellor, Professor Datuk Ir. Dr. Zaini Ujang. The meeting also featured Mr. Akshay Mehra, the Principal of Innosight, a global strategy and innovation consultancy firm based in Boston, Singapore and Bangalore. Innosight, co-founded by Professor Clay Christensen who is 2011 world’s number one management guru (Thinkers50), has vast experience collaborating with global clients to identify and build their disruptive innovation capabilities. Mr. Kavan Mukhtyar from Frost & Sullivan was also featured in this meeting, sharing his knowledge on a journey towards visionary innovation.

Three panel discussions were held during the meeting and the panelist were Deans from top business schools such as Dean of Lee Kong Chian School of Business, Singapore Management University; Thammasat University Business School, Bangkok; KAIST Business School of South Korea; Graduate School of Global Business, Meiji University; The Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST); School of Management, Fudan University; Asian Institute of Management, Manilla; Loughborough University School of Business and Economics and many more. Professor Michael Osbaldeston from the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) was also one of the panelists discussing his views as a former Director of Cranfield School of Management, on Service Innovation among business schools.

Dinner was held at the Kuala Lumpur Tower later that evening with Datuk Ir. (Dr.) Haji Ahmad Zaidee bin Laidin, the Advisor of Higher Education Leadership of Academy (AKEPT) delivering an interesting speech on the history of innovation beyond technology in Malaysia. This was followed by cultural performances, which enthralled the international delegates.

The program is sponsored by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), Harvard Business Publishing, EFMD and Percetakan Nasional Malaysia Berhad (PNMB), supported by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia.