The Surrey MBA


Welcome to the Surrey MBA

"The Connected MBA at Surrey has been built on new concepts and innovative ideas that align it with the challenges of modern day society and business."

Read the full introduction from Marco Mongiello, Executive Director of MBA Programmes.

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MBA open days

Open Evenings (6pm to 8pm)

  • Tuesday 9 August 2016
  • Wednesday 7 September 2016

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Executive MBA (part-time)

Surrey's Executive MBA is a transformational experience, both personally and professionally. It has been specifically designed to help you balance a demanding career and personal commitments with a 24-month period of intensive study and professional development.

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Full-time MBA

The Full-time Surrey MBA programme attracts students from a wide range of business backgrounds and nationalities. It is particularly suitable for anyone wanting to build an international business career or preparing to start their own business.

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Surrey Connect MBA Mentoring Programme.

Learn more about the Surrey Connect MBA Mentoring Programme.

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Surrey MBA modules

Discover the content of the Surrey MBA – a blend of professional development and academic modules.

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Surrey Business School

Learn more about Surrey Business School, the home of the Surrey MBA.

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Featured news


Leadership – a process, not a position

On 20 May Naggib Chakhane, Executive MBA class of 2005, joined us and shared the ‘5 Levels of Leadership’ strategy and what the top ten per cent of leaders are doing.

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My Surrey MBA experience: Carolyn Davies, United Kingdom

Former Learning & Development Manager, Taj group of Hotels, India.

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Developing leaders through improving organisational structures, understanding priorities and the ‘now’

Clair Fisher is the Founder & Director of Pashley Fisher ltd, with significant experience developing teams, leaders and partnerships. She began her career on the prestigious Civil Service Fast stream holding a variety of posts in Whitehall, Brussels and in Regional Government, most recently Deputy Director for 'Place Performance & Partnerships' in the South East.

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Our Blog

  • A great first day of the DEAL workshops. A very useful and provocative intro from David Plans, some Digital Economy “ducking and diving” from Alan Brown, then a really wonderful seminar and workshop from Annabelle Gawer for the rest of the day, exploring the changing nature of value and ecosystems due to Digital Platforms. A lively audience, and great feedback from the sessions.

    Annabelle Gawer DEAL workshop PicMonkey 1000 Annbelle Gawer

    It is an exciting week for us: the first significant gathering of Surrey Business School’s, Centre for the Digital Economy (CoDE) top ‘minds on Digital’ in one creative, intensive, and high-energy workshop running a full week in the Business insights Lab – all for the benefit of startups.

    The sessions are co-sponsored with ENDuRE, the European Network of Design for Resilient Entrepreneurship. Chief of ENDuRE at Surrey and CoDE team member Dr David Plans kicked off the week with a blast of insight about the challenges, opportunities, and surreal experiences in store for European startups like his, BioBeats. ‘Often,’ he stressed, ‘change is the most difficult part of any business. Even with the perfect business model, startups hit a wall they didn’t anticipate, and die. Even though ‘fail quickly’ is an Agile principle, it’s not great for the economy; however, by failing, we also find out what a good idea actually IS’.

    The madness and contradictions inherent in getting a startup off the ground is why ENDuRE got started: to change how entrepreneurship is taught; and to facilitate interaction amongst European startups. The latter isn’t easy: fundraising is different from country to country; cultural logistics vary widely; and Brexit is going to make it harder to have the conversations.


    David Plans gif David Plans

    Some more of David’s advice to our audience from both the business community and the Surrey MBA:

    • ‘In terms of the iteration of funding and the speed of business, the UK is like a limping elephant compared with the US’s cheetah. But, in turn, the UK makes Europe look slow.’
    • ‘Ideas are worthless. Execution is everything. Your team, therefore, is the most important asset you’ve got.’
    • ‘Be prepared for questions from potential investors like, Have you ever been divorced? Have you ever had a nervous breakdown? They are trying to find out how much of yourself you put into your business. They are looking for a “racehorse”.’
    • ‘Once you’ve made a successful pitch and the funding starts, you’ll probably end up having to fire yourself. That’s how you know you’ve succeeded.’

    David’s conclusions: Resilience is the key — plus testing everything, iterating daily, and getting used to swimming in a sea of change.

    Over to Professor Alan Brown, who asked – What does it really mean to be successful? He encouraged the spirit of Experimentation: together within the workshop – but also conducting business in a much more interactive way. ‘It’s possible,’ says Alan, ‘that everything we teach at business school is wrong – that rather than looking to theory on past business cases, we should be looking to ourselves, to “emerging knowledge” as we shape it, to luck, and to experimentation – perhaps this is the new formula for learning, with discovery blended with execution.’

    Professor Annabelle Gawer spent the afternoon guiding the workshop through one of the most significant areas of the Digital Economy, using her ground-breaking research on Platforms. Platforms went from enigma to buzzword in a few short years – and Annabelle was there from the beginning. She explains, Digital platforms constitute 70% of all unicorns (companies whose valuation exceeds $1 billion), and they affect our lives as citizens, employees, or entrepreneurs. This is why we must understand deeply how they create value, as well as what forces drive the distribution of the value created”.

    She continues, “Entrepreneurs must understand how to build platform businesses in our digital economy”. Her passion is infectious, and the questions kept coming throughout her session.

    Day 2 found us learning about Value and Digital: Professor Roger Maull and Dr Phil Godsiff ran the gamut from Open Data and the Internet of Things to a Blockchain exercise involving Lego, stickers, maths problems, and an imaginary marketplace, in an extremely lively and effective hands-on demonstration of how Blockchain really works.

    It’s Day 3, and we’ll be hosting the IBM UK Emerging Technologies Team for a Design Studio session, and a day dedicated to ‘design thinking.’

    We’re only halfway through the week, but we’re exhilarated and inspired, and already certain that ‘DEAL’ will be an annual event.

    Who knows what the Digital Revolution will look like in a year? We can only guess – so make sure to join us as we get to grips with the next wave of innovation.

    Kris Henley 

  • Surrey Business School researchers Professor of Retail Management Andrew Alexander and Chair in Retailing and Marketing Christoph Teller, have been working to improve our understanding of the role and contribution of retail store managers. In today’s competitive omni-channel retail environment, brick and mortar retailers increasingly compete on the basis of the customer experience that they can deliver. Part of this experience occurs in the store, but part depends on the experience customers have in the surrounding shopping environment.

    Enhancing Customer Value

    In a recent study (together with Professor Anne Roggeveen, Babson College, MA, USA) they investigate the role and potential of store managers as boundary spanners in shopping centres. Boundary spanning store managers negotiate boundaries between the parent retail organization and the shopping centre and between the shopping centre and customers. They are key individuals who have the potential to act as both ‘ambassadors’ and ‘seismographers’ not only for their  organization but also for the wider shopping centre network.

    Analysis reveals six types of boundary-spanning activities. Four serve to represent the organization and network (service delivery, coordination, guarding, and external communication), while two others are more informational in nature (information collection and relay). The research highlights the wide range of activities a store manager can undertake to improve the competitiveness of their organization and the wider shopping centre network by enhancing customer experience and thus creating value.

    The research suggests a number of practical implications concerned with the communication of the boundary spanning role and its potential, the identification of boundary spanning champions and the facilitation of those who undertake this important role.

    You can download the full research paper for free (Open Access) by clicking on here: ‘The Boundary Spanning of Managers within Service Networks’* published by Elsevier in the Journal of Business Research.

    *The authors would like to acknowledge the Academy of Marketing and the British Academy of Management for their support in relation to this research.

  • Harnessing Extractive Industries for Development in sub-Saharan Africa: An Interdisciplinary Workshop

    Thursday 9 and Friday 10 June 2016


    Over 40 PhD researchers, leading academics, and expert industry practitioners met at Surrey Business School (SBS) to explore the challenges and pathways to realising the development potential of extractive industries (mining, oil and gas) in sub-Saharan Africa.

    This international workshop led by James McQuilken, a PhD researcher at SBS, and funded by a grant from the Economic and Social Research Council via their South East Doctoral Training Centre, fostered dialogue between key stakeholder groups and laid the basis for future collaboration. Participants from a range of disciplines and international institutions presented their cutting-edge research and were asked to collectively identify what is needed to ensure the region’s extractive resources can be harnessed for development by the countries and people that own them.

    A range of sessions helped meet this aim and guaranteed plenty of time for discussions and reflection. Professor Gavin Hilson, Chair of Sustainability at Surrey Business School, opened proceedings with his keynote speech focusing on an often overlooked and largely informal sector that supports upwards of 13 million people in sub-Saharan Africa: artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM).

    Having heard from six further presenters on day 1 covering topics as diverse as Corporate Social Responsibility in Chad’s oil sector and partnerships between mine exploration companies and community development in Ethiopia, we were provided with more food for thought from participants on day 2, and through several group breakout sessions, given the opportunity to discuss the issues highlighted in-depth. Towards the end of the workshop we were treated to a question and answer session with Stephen Okyere, a small-scale diamond dealer and miner from Ghana, who told us about the devastating effects of the 2006-2007 Kimberly Process embargo on his hometown of Akwatia.

    With the sometimes unintended and adverse impact of development interventions on communities in mind, the workshop culminated in a lively panel discussion comprising high-profile experts from academia and industry1. It was decided that it’s all about the ‘people, power, and politics when it comes to harnessing the extractive industries for development in sub-Saharan Africa, and, as a final thought, many commended the workshop for its comprehensive programme and fostering dialogue between academia, NGOs and industry – a space which further workshops should aim to fill.


    James McQuilken, Workshop Organiser & SBS PhD Researcher


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