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International Business Management students progress through UK competition

Thursday, March 2nd, 2017
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ABOVE (L-R): Margaret Barrionuevo, Kristers Zuika, Meg Seaman, programme director of BA International Business Management Panayiota Alevizou, Dominique Von Oppell and Isaac Bamber Lister

A team of five BA International Business Management students have reached the UK semi-finals of a prestigious international competition.

The Universities Business Challenge (UBC), which runs annually, has educational and employer partners and guides them through three rounds of rigorous testing designed by Learning Dynamics. The Management School’s team, championed by programme director Panayiota Alevizou, stormed through the first round – an online simulation of a real business where they had to make business decisions with regards to the financial data of each trading period, the external business environment, competitor data, and other live factors that any executive board would have to consider.

Competing directly with seven randomly chosen groups from other universities, our team accumulated as much profit as possible after six trading periods, confidently progressing to round two which will be held at the Sheffield’s Octagon Centre on 7 March.

Should they progress to round 3 – the grand final – Margaret, Kristers, Meg, Dom and Isaac will go to compete live against ten other teams at a London venue in an event hosted by UBC’s lead employer partner.

Click here to read more about the competition.

Real-world insight: Our students pitch AECOM entrepreneurship expertise

Friday, December 9th, 2016

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Entrepreneurship is about more than individuals starting businesses – in fact increasingly, big businesses are thinking and working more entrepreneurially.

As a part of our MSc Entrepreneurship and Management, students pitched ideas for entrepreneurship inside an organisation to directors at AECOM, a multinational engineering firm.

The module leader, Dr Chay Brooks, emphasised the importance of working with AECOM on the module, explaining: “Visiting AECOM is a great opportunity for our students and is a part of the learning experience, the contribution of AECOM to the module brings the realities of entrepreneurial activity in a corporate setting to life.”

This semester, students have studied the theory and practice of how big businesses are looking to create environments that encourage employees to be more entrepreneurial, while continuing to deliver their core business. Our collaboration with AECOM gives students a unique opportunity to see how an organisation with over 90,000 employees is changing its working practices to become more innovative and entrepreneurial. As a part of the module students have had guest lecturers by AECOM staff that provide real-world insights, and as a part of their final assessment they presented their recommendations for them to become a more entrepreneurial organisation.

Professor Tim Vorley, Director of the Centre for Regional for Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED), who developed the relationship with AECOM, said: “Taking our students out of the Management School to present their work in a corporate environment is a fantastic opportunity for them, and it is great to see them rising to the challenge as they pitch their ideas.”

The MSc Entrepreneurship and Management provides students with an understanding of entrepreneurship in different countries and contexts, as well as from start-ups to corporate organisation.

In 2017 Sheffield University Management School is hosting the EFMD Entrepreneurship Education Conference, the theme of which focuses on ‘Entrepreneurship inside Organisations’. This area of entrepreneurship education is of growing in interest to business and management schools, and is one in which Sheffield is a leading by example.

Click here to find out more about the conference.

Management School joins ‘Startup Europe Comes to Universities’ initiative

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016


The number of university graduates willing to start new businesses—the largest producer of private sector jobs over the past 25 years—still depends heavily on the entrepreneurial focus and structure of the institutions from which they graduate.

Years ago, it was rare for a student to have entrepreneurship experience because the cost of starting a business was so high and they didn’t have the resources or expertise to pull it off. Times have changed with ‘Startup Europe comes to Universities (SEC2U)’.

SEC2U is an initiative endorsed by the European Commission (Startup Europe) to create a strong culture of entrepreneurship and innovation within universities across Europe. This consists of a series of events that bring together entrepreneurs, business people and representatives of local governments and universities in order to showcase the available support, share success stories and cases of failure, as well as network. Sheffield University Management School is joining the first edition of SEC2U which will take place from 17 to the 21 of October.

Two free events are taking place at the School, led by Prof Tim Vorley, Dr Robert Wapshott and EU project officer Kate Penney. On Wednesday 19 October there is a two-hour workshop (10am-12pm) for students with an interest in learning the basics of entrepreneurship, business and digital startups, followed on Thursday 20 October by an interactive discussion (Google Hangouts, 10-11am) on international and collaborative partnerships in entrepreneurship education. Click here to book.

This cooperation has been led by STARTIFY7 at the University of Sheffield, a step towards internationalisation also taken by Cambridge University, University Nova of Lisbon and Dublin City University.

This is a time to showcase the work of universities in the entrepreneurship area, build bridges between university communities and startup ecosystems, and facilitate connections.

Take the right step towards your future and don´t miss out on this opportunity. Click here to get your free ticket.

CREED summer school explores migrant entrepreneurship

Tuesday, August 30th, 2016


Dr Chay Brooks from the Centre for Regional Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED) has been leading the European Entrepreneurship Summer School held at the University of Sheffield’s International Faculty in Greece. The summer school, now in its seventh year, is held in conjunction with our international partners from University of Groningen (Netherlands), High School of Economics (Russia), and the University of Twente (Netherlands).

Dr Brooks said: “It has been amazing week with the students learning about entrepreneurship in the sun! We have had a great range of international speakers sharing insights from their research.”

Across the week students were involved in a series of lectures, workshops and debates in different areas of entrepreneurship. This year the central theme of summer school was the socio-economic impacts of migrant entrepreneurship, which is an important issue in Europe. During the week students had sessions by academics on research including informal entrepreneurship, technology entrepreneurship, corporate entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship and public policy.

Dr Robert Wapshott, who also taught at the summer school, explained: “The aim of the event is to bring together students from across Europe to learn about and debate cutting edge entrepreneurship research.”

During the week students worked in international teams to develop in-depth presentations on some of the big questions facing entrepreneurship research. As the teams explored their topic in depth they sought to unpack the complexities of creating more entrepreneurial individuals, organisations and societies. The team awarded the best presentation included Ann Lozovaia and Alexander Kalita from HSE, Tuong Nguyen from Leipzig and Zhuang Jing from Sheffield, who gave a critical account about the importance of informal entrepreneurship.

Reflecting on her participation in the summer school, Kelly Lawrence, a Sheffield student, said: “The summer school was a fantastic opportunity to meet other students interested in entrepreneurship research. The programme was excellent and we all had a brilliant week.”

The CREED team participating in the summer school this year led by Dr Chay Brooks. It also included Dr Robert Wapshott, Dr Peter Rodgers, Cristian Gherhes and Professor Tim Vorley. Next year the summer school will be held in Moscow and the topic will be on green and sustainable entrepreneurship. If you’re interested in applying to take part, watch this space.




Fantastic employability data for SUMS

Thursday, July 7th, 2016

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New figures released by the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey reflect the Management School’s commitment to building the employability of its undergraduates.

Of our most recent UK graduates, who were the first cohort to benefit from our investment in the dedicated Employability Hub for all three years of their study, 84% are engaged in activities for which their degree is an essential requirement.

A huge 95% have experienced positive outcomes, which relates to graduates in any positive activity six months after graduation.

This year has seen significant gains in the DLHE data for the Management School. On these results, Employability Manager for the Management School, Merryn McGregor, said: “It’s gratifying to see that our efforts and investment are paying off. The past three years has seen a more focused and one-to-one approach to employability for our undergraduates and that’s shown in the DLHE figures.

“In September we introduce a programme for undergraduates called Futures First, developed with members of our Advisory Board,  which will get our students talking about their graduate prospects from day one at the Management School. We can’t wait to see the impact it has on their long-term employability.”

Prof Paul Latreille, Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching at the Management School, said: “Balancing employability priorities our students while maintaining a rigorous research base in learning isn’t easy – but we’ve done it here. Our formula obviously works for business and accounting students and we’ll continue to build on our offer to secure equally competitive scores in the future.”

Postgraduate students place highly at International Graduate Competition

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

Hear from our four students who came a fantatsic second in the HEC Montreal International Graduate Competition, as well as one of their mentors Professor Tim Vorley:

An insight into policy – a GLOSS delegation visits the ILO in Geneva

Wednesday, May 25th, 2016


As part of the Senate Award winning GLOSS programme, Prof Jason Heyes and Dr Tom Hastings took a delegation of students to the 326th session of the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) Governing Body in Geneva, Switzerland.

This fully-funded trip was one of many offered by the programme, which you can read more about here.

Six undergraduates and postgraduates from across the Faculty of Social Sciences joined Jason and Tom on the visit, including Management School MSc student Monisha Khanna who said: “I remember reading an email from the office of the Associate Dean for Learning & Teaching that mentioned this opportunity. It looked really interesting, so I researched the different GLOSS programmes and the Geneva/ILO opportunity stood out for me.

“I am an MSc Occupational Psychology student and the focus of the ILO’s Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) programme mapped back to some of my areas of interest and study. The ILO’s 2016 World Employment and Social Outlook Report also really resonated with me, so I was curious to get first-hand experience about the inner workings of the Governing Body.”

Aware that her interests aligned with those discussed by the ILO, Monisha was successful in her application and left for Geneva with the team in March. She continued: “Being invited to observe the 326th session of the Governing Body was definitely one of the highlights of my Management School experience. The agenda items covered timely global issues such as promoting fair and effective migration policies. It was really interesting to see how the tripartite system of workers, employers and governments worked together in handling complaints and developing policy. We were also privileged to meet with a few ILO officials who were generous enough to give us a private talk about their work.

“Jason and Tom went out of their way to ensure we had a meaningful educational and cultural experience. With the notion of ‘change’ being a constant in the world of work, understanding how the ILO members promote social dialogue on a global scale, was a valuable experience. This is one of the many benefits of attending international meetings and conferences – immersing yourself into new experiences and then sharing what you learned in real time.”

Following the Governing Body meeting, Monisha wrote a briefing which discusses the notions of decent and safe work which tied in with the ILO’s annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April. Click here to read it in full.

Business Management students’ expertise to help local charity

Monday, May 9th, 2016

Pictured L-R: Project manager Sue, Jessica Murray, outreach worker Daryl, Dan and Lily Robinson

Many modules at the Management School integrate real-world problems which students are asked to solve. For our third-year Business Management undergraduates, the ‘Management Project’ module, led by Michael Frize, is a great opportunity for their work and recommendations to actually make an impact on an organisation. This was demonstrated recently when problems in eight organisations were subject to the scrutiny of our students.

Ben’s Centre, a Sheffield charity that supports homeless people that are often vulnerable and involved with alcohol, presented a challenge; they needed to raise awareness of the charity and increase donations from the public in terms of funds and volunteering. The response from students Lily Robinson and Jessica Murray focused on their marketing. Lily’s recommendations discussed how shock advertising might help their cause; understanding students as a target demographic; and how they could enhance their digital platforms. Jessica recommended that they develop a brand personality based on the people at the core of the charity; formulate a more relationship focused marketing approach, using storytelling; and reviewed brand guidelines, using a consistent identity, based on a new logo, colour selections and typefaces, all informed by the brand personality.

The charity was so impressed with their recommendations that they intend on integrating them into future campaigns.

Lily said: “The project involved writing a literature review, using literature to solve their issues and then coming up with recommendations. We then had to do a poster presentation to feedback findings to our company. After choosing to deliver on their brief I visited Ben’s Centre, got a feel for the charity and the work they do, and then got going! My placement year helped a lot as I have practical experience in marketing. I also got plenty of support from Michael, the module leader – I had weekly sessions I could attend where we discussed my coursework progress.

Jessica added: “As soon as I saw the pitch by Ben’s Centre, I knew it was the project I was seeking for a number of reasons. Firstly, because I would be able to apply my marketing expertise to offer genuine help to a charity. Secondly, as it would help me to broaden my academic understanding of the subject and finally because the cause is a matter close to my heart. This project has been really rewarding as I have not only enhanced my own learning, but have been able to provide some tangible recommendations that should hopefully be of use to such a great charity. Feedback I’ve received from the charity was amazing – they feel my solutions were very well communicated and a number of the recommendations made have formed the structure of a new marketing and communications policy for Ben’s Centre.”

Lily added: “It was so rewarding to do a piece of coursework I knew Ben’s Centre was going to use – it was a motivation. It was great to present back my ideas to them as they really liked my recommendations and are hoping to implement some of them in the future. I have not done many poster presentations before and it was a great way to improve my communication skills in an unfamiliar setting.”

The Management School is keen to hear from other organisations keen to benefit from our students’ expertise. Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching, Professor Paul Latreille, said: “I’m delighted to see that both parties have benefited from this module. Although our students are introduced to live case-studies throughout their degree, the Management Project puts onus on practical skills and making informed, realistic recommendations. We’re very proud of Lily and Jessica and can’t wait to see Ben’s Centre thrive as a result of their projects.”

Find out more about Bens Centre on their website:

Environmental credentials grow at SUMS

Friday, May 6th, 2016


As part of its commitment to environmental behaviour, the Management School has been awarded a Green Impact Bronze award.

Green Impact is a sustainability accreditation scheme, run in over 50 universities across the UK. It involves both staff and students, bringing them together to green their institutions and create positive change. Dr Sonal Choudhary, lecturer in sustainable management (pictured above), founded the Management School departmental team in 2015 and it has grown quickly, both in size and visibility.

Aligning neatly with the School’s dedication to socially-responsible behaviour, Sonal has led the team to great success – not only securing the bronze accreditation, but also raising awareness of opportunities to save energy and recycle around the school.

She has been nominated for the Community Action Award at the Green Impact awards ceremony on 20 May 2016 for her work on a first-year module, Business Challenges. In 2015, Sonal set the Eco Challenge (linked to the NUS’s Switch Off campaign) to six teams of undergraduates who were tasked with reducing energy and water consumption in student housing, as well as increasing recycling activity. The teams worked closely with the NUS’s environmental advisor and saw great success in particular flats – in fact, their efforts led to a five per cent reduction in energy usage and more awareness around sustainable ways to recycle.

A student member of the Management School’s Green Impact team, Jad Soubra, has also been nominated for the Best Team Member award for his contribution as Green Impact auditor. Taking on the role in a voluntary capacity, the BA International Business Management third-year was inspired by Sonal’s Corporate Social Responsibility module.

Jad said: “The module, which involved analysing the detrimental effects of corporations on the environment and discussing what is being done to lead the business world towards socially responsible future, furthered my existing passion for sustainable development and the climate change movement, so when the opportunity to take part in Green Impact presented itself I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of. I was also both very excited and proud to hear that this was the first year of the Management School’s involvement in the scheme and requested to work with the School’s Green Impact Team.

“The training was enjoyable and informative. Initially we were introduced to the Green Impact scheme and how it operates. To prepare us for the year ahead, we were divided in teams and asked to complete some situational tasks which we were likely to come across when working with our Green Impact Teams. We also had skills building sessions on Team Management and Behaviour Change. Since the majority of my other teamwork experiences have been with my peers, I have found it very interesting working directly with Management School staff. I also found it motivating to be given the platform to help generate positive change within my department. I have come out of this role with far more knowledge, skills and competencies that I am certain will help me in the future.

“Firms all over the globe are increasingly concerned with the environment and how to minimise their harmful impact and many seek to employ those who share these values. My work with Green Impact has proven my interest in and dedication to this cause and will continue to do so in the future.”

Watch this space for news from the awards.

Intensive competition challenges our students in Canada

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016
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Gerardo, Lena, Cristian and Emad

For 48 hours, four of our postgraduate students are ‘cut off’ from the world – working on a business case in an international competition in Canada.

The fifth International Graduate Competition (IGC), held annually by HEC Montreal, has brought together a number of student teams from world-leading universities to collaborate and compete around a live business case on the themes of network economics, marketing, strategy and IT management.

As one of the first UK teams to attend the competition, the Sheffield group join attendees from Australia, America, Canada and all over Europe. The Management School-funded trip, run and also attended by members of the Centre for Regional Economy and Enterprise Development (CREED) provides a fantastic opportunity for the students who underwent a rigorous selection process.

The students in attendance are Lena Suess (MSc Creative and Cultural Industries Management), Cristian Gherhes (PhD student with CREED), Gerardo Taboada (MSc Logistics and Supply Chain Management) and Emad Ejielat (MSc Entrepreneurship and Management).

Prof Tim Vorley, who is attending the competition in Montreal as a mentor with Dr Robert Wapshott, said: “The six-day event has begun with a series of ice-breaking, team-building sessions, followed by lectures and workshops which are relevant to the themes. Following this, the students were given the brief and have been put into a period of 48 hours with no contact from the outside world, apart from the opportunity to interview experts from the company that has set the business case.

“On Wednesday, the students present their projects. They prepare a 60 page analysis and recommendations and pitch it to the organisation.

“It’s a great opportunity for the students and has given the Management School a presence on this international stage, where we can build links with similar, accredited schools.”