Published: 20 October 2016

Dear MBA alumni

As you may know, I recently joined Surrey Business School as Dean. I feel so privileged to have been invited to lead SBS in the next phase of its development. Over the past few months, as I have learned more and more about SBS and the University of Surrey at large, the more excited I have become about the prospect of joining the School.

The signs of success - to mention just a few examples, the recent reaccreditations by AACSB and AMBA, the successes in the rankings for teaching quality and student experience, and many more - are just outward tokens of the underlying move towards the School’s long-term objective: To truly become a leading interdisciplinary business school where innovative thinking is accelerated into action. This School has achieved so much, and it has the potential to achieve so much more.

 Let me say just a few words about my own background. Born and raised in Germany, I first studied philosophy and economics in Frankfurt and Bochum, before moving to London where I did a Master’s degree in Industrial Relations and a PhD in Management at the London School of Economics.

Following these studies, I worked for over three years as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company. In 2002, I went back into academia, working at EBS Business School near Wiesbaden (Germany), before joining the University of Liverpool Management School in 2013, where I served as Department Chair of the Organisation & Management Group. My own teaching and research is primarily in the area of strategy. I have particular experience in MBA-level and executive education programmes: working with experienced managers is close to my heart!

Over the past half year, the School has laid out a strategy that will guide our development going forward. According to this strategy, we aim to be a top 10 UK interdisciplinary business school by 2020. In realising this vision, we will put particular emphasis on innovation and impact. Our research centres – eg the Centre for the Digital Economy and the newly formed Centre for Leadership & Decision-Making – are great examples of this strength.

We will considerably grow our executive education activities, and continue our focus on the MBA as a flagship programme. Delivering against this strategy will see us gain ‘triple crown’ accreditation (with EQUIS accreditation in addition to AACSB and AMBA), and acquire a strong position in international, programme-specific rankings, in addition to the excellent national ones we already have. This is an exciting vision which has attracted me to Surrey, and I hope that you share this excitement.

As a graduate of the Surrey MBA programme, you are a part of an mportant stakeholder group to us. By studying with us, you have become part of an ongoing, lifelong community of learners. I very much hope that your MBA experience has made a lasting impact in your working lives, and that you have benefited in terms of your career development.

Over the next few months, I will make every effort to get to know as many of you as possible. I want to hear about your experience at Surrey Business School, and to explore ways in which we can continue to work together. There will be alumni events, e-based interaction formats, and invitations to lectures and other activities at Surrey. If you would like to share your memories and your ideas for co-operation going forward, please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to hearing from you!

Professor Ansgar Richter

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