Another One for the History Books

Congratulations to all of our case competition participants for surviving a grueling weekend.

Teams this year brought incredible insight and determination as well as an admirable ability to adapt.  When they were surprised with the directive to create a video as part of their presentations, these teams did not panic, they simply rose to the occasion.

16 Teams presented their plans for Ericsson's role in the innovation of education as part of the Networked Society.

4 Teams advanced to the finals.

1 Team took home the $25,000 first-place prize.

First Place - Kenan-Flagler Business School – University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Second Place - Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Third Place - Fuqua School of Business – Duke University

Fourth Place -  Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California


We are so happy to have had 16 incredible teams join us for the Case Competition! We hope to see you all next year!

Finally, Final Presentations

The Case Competition judges spared no difficult questions for the teams.
The case competition is just about to come to a close with the final team presentations happening as we speak. The SMG Auditorium is packed with supportive classmates who are eager to hear how these top four teams assembled their recommendations for Ericsson. And the Ericsson judges are taking the competition just as seriously. With $25,000 on the line for the top prize, they aren't sparing any tough questions. Demands have been made for clearer definitions of revenue sources, premium content examples, price points and partnerships. But the teams have stayed cool and collected, leveraging their diverse skill sets to take turns handling each question in stride.

It won't be long now until the winner is announced. With just one team left to present, the money is on the line.

Thoughts on Education by Venkatraman

Prof. Venkatraman and a student during Collaboration Round
Professor Venkatraman was kind enough to take a few moments to share with me his hopes for the 7th Annual Case Competition and its topic of education.

For this case, he was proud to merge the ideas of technology development in schools with Ericsson's challenge to its executives to leverage a stronger digital infrastructure, creating higher efficiency for employees.

But more than that he was proud to look at ways to remove the physical limitations that often accompany education, and develop ideas to digitally spread educational opportunities to all members of society around the world. He understands that not every person has access to education, which in his words is, "a system of privilege that not all societies have access to."

Graduate students in the Boston University School of Management already have amazing access to courses examining public and nonprofit management strategies and cases. However Professor Venkatraman is hopefully that more of the real-world case learning can be brought in to the curriculum in the near future, with Boston-area partners like EMC or State Street.

"Students participating in real-life cases from CEOs provides opportunities for growth that no classroom can match," he said.

Smart Cities Galore

The teams spared no drop of creativity during the Collaboration Round. The final poster presentations offered up ideas for everything from smart city legislation to social ecosystems. While one team member took an impromptu nap on the nearby bench, others shared their visions for the cities of the future with the judges.

And a big THANK YOU to the judges who worked on the collaboration round:
  • Heraldo Sales-Cavalcante, Ericsson Executive Development Program Director
  • Mike Lawson, Senior Associate Dean of the School of Management
  • Helena Norrman, Ericsson Senior Vice President of Communications

A random sampling of some of their incredible ideas for a Networked Society of 2020.

  • Team 9 envisioned a Buenos Aires that would use the Networked Society model to monitor the heart rates of its citizens in correlation with their location in the city, and previously entered health data. The result would be up-to-the-minute notification for authorities on emergencies. For example, the system could sense when a heart rate of one person would rise in one location, such as a home. This when linked to previous information could signal a heart attack, and an ambulance would be automatically notified. Or if 20 heart rates rise in a bank location, the police authorities would be notified and a bank robbery could be detected before anyone had to move to press a button.
  • Team 12 dreamed up a smart city for Denver, focusing primarily on using the Networked Society to alleviate water shortages and traffic volume. GPS integration would allow citizens to sleep longer before work, avoiding traffic. Smart phone apps would show when hot water is available or who your ideal neighbors are based on water consumption. 

And the Finalists Are...

This was the hardest year yet to choose the top four teams, but congratulations are well deserved for the four finalists:
  • Team Ericsson Sao Paulo
  • Team Ericsson Delhi
  • Team Ericsson Cairo
  • Team Ericsson San Jose
They've already hit the auditorium to prepare their final presentations, while the rest of the teams share their posters from the Collaboration Round. They will each have 20 minutes to present their recommendations to the judges and all teams, followed by a Q&A session.

Collaboration in Session

The jackets are off and the sleeves are rolled up as teams work diligently through the Collaboration Round. Only about an hour and a half left to create a story board from the future!

16 Teams From Around the Globe

16 teams from the most prestigious graduate schools around the globe competed for the top prize of $25,000.

A Welcoming Committee

The Tech Strategy Case Competition Volunteer Committee, comprised of current MBA students, made sure the competition ran smoothly and that the only detail the teams needed to focus on was winning. Thank you to Maggie Lukaszewicz, whose leadership made it look effortless to host 16 teams from around the globe.

Catering on the Charles

A big thank you to Catering on the Charles for a great lunch. The chicken curry salad sandwiches, veggie wraps, chips and cookies will see the students through the next four hours of collaboration.