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Publishing Management Course in St. Gallen, Switzerland

On behalf of Schilling – a leading supplier of solutions to the publishing industry - I participated in the St. Gallen International Publishing Management Course in Switzerland from 2-6 September 2013. The course was organised by Frankfurt Academy and the Institute for Media and Communications Management of St. Gallen University.


The first five days of the course took part at St. Gallen University in scenic Switzerland, followed by a two-day self-study that included an individual assignment for each participant, designed as a personal reflection and its application to their individual business context.


The course was concluded at the Frankfurt Book Fair with a two-day recap and an International Publishing Leaders' Summit, where 10 international publishing CEOs and top managers sat down with the course participants and engaged in exclusive round table discussions.


Leadership, innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurship were the overall themes of the course. The sessions combined theory and practice and were run by internationally renowned academics within the fields of media studies, management, and economics, and from various industries.


The theoretical part of the course was anchored in the current publishing environment, the media industry, and international business strategies. The presenters highlighted the importance of consumer research and data management and reviewed the current trends in social media. On the practical level, the course provided tools and methods on how to stimulate and manage innovation and business creativity, create new business models, explore new ways of creating value, and use entrepreneurial skills within existing organisations.


I found the combination of academic perspectives and pragmatic approach during the course extremely interesting and very useful. The speakers were well prepared and offered not only a broad understanding of the issues facing the publishing industry, but also offered an outsider’s perspective, insights from other industries, and lots of practical recommendations for how companies’ leadership and organisational culture can support innovation and change.

Nearly all sessions included workgroup collaboration including hands-on experience with creative methods for managerial problem solving, developing practical solutions to real issues such as looking for potential revenue streams beyond books (in new business models, processes, or delivery channels) and coming up with innovative and creative marketing strategies. The group was small (17 participants) but spanned four continents and all branches of the industry from children’s publishing to educational, academic and trade. The international character of the course allowed for many stimulating discussions.


I have had a professional career for 25 years and I can truly say that this was the best course I have ever attended. I came away inspired and filled with new ideas, tools, and techniques that can be used to enhance innovation and creativity, and lead organisations through change.


The University of St. Gallen is one of the leading business schools in the world – ranked as #1 in Masters in Management by Financial Times since 2011.


- Henrik K. Nielsen


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