Smart moves: The A-Z of Business Schools - International Institute for Management Development

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The Independent Online
Age: 52, if you date it from the founding of IMI Geneva; nine from the merger of IMI with IMEDE Lausanne.

Address: Lausanne, Switzerland.

Ambience: Fantastic setting on the banks of Lake Geneva in French-speaking Switzerland, 25 minutes from Geneva. Lausanne is pretty though quiet, which is what you need if you're going to put in the required hours. MBA operates out of a new building across a narrow street from the main campus. Good facilities - study rooms, restaurant, learning centre, library, on- line computers but no accommodation.

Vital statistics: MBA is an intensive 11-month programme - only one small part of IMD's activities (it specialises in short executive programmes) but nevertheless one of Europe's best known. Quintessentially international. Students are well looked after. There's someone to help them find accommodation, get a telephone and acquire entry visas. And there's a special programme for partners of MBA students. Partners get their own study rooms and free language classes. They can attend some lectures too. Plus, there's a kindergarten - though you have to pay for that.

Added value: Big emphasis on team work. Students have to undertake a Team Initiated Enterprise (TIE), a project which will benefit others and be a learning experience. IMD's kindergarten is the result of one TIE project. Others involved raising money for children in refugee camps and educating classmates on the power of the Internet. At the end of the MBA, students work in teams on an international consulting project for a real company on a real issue. International consulting project clients include General Motors, PepsiCo and Club Med.

Easy to get into? No. Only 83 places per year. You need a minimum of three years' work experience, a degree and GMAT. Then you need to be extremely intelligent, qualified and informed.

Association of MBA's accreditation: Yes.

Glittering alumni: Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, president and ceo of Lego A/S, Denmark; Thomas Schmidheiny, chairman and ceo, Holderbank Financiere Glaris Ltd.

International connections: Supremely international. Students from 35 countries, faculty from 20. Majority of students from Europe (59 per cent); 19 per cent Asian; 10 per cent Latin American; 5 per cent from US and Canada; 5 per cent from elsewhere.

Student profile: Average age is 31; male/female ratio is 84:16.

Cost: Sfr38,000 (about pounds 16,000).

Return on investment: 65 per cent increase in salary and the chance to work for a multinational. Average starting salary on graduation last year: pounds 55,000. International companies are invited to interview MBAs on campus. Last year's class received an average of three job offers each.

Who's the boss: Dominique Turpin, director of the MBA programme, a suave Frenchman who speaks fluent Japanese.

Next week: ISA at HEC School of Management.

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