Birkbeck advertising campaigns are very popular with Londoners. “London’s evening university” is on many double-deckers and “Transform the end of the day into the beginning of your future” in many tube stations. Birkbeck is the place in which working Londoners come and improve their skills, create new ones and change the direction of their lives. That makes teaching challenging and exciting. Classes are largely made of working people eager to learn, to engage and to look ahead. The “Blockchain Technology and Its Impact on Innovation, Management, and Policy” class was made up of those people. They were focussed, critical and engaged. They did not just study the module. They took their module into the work place, using it for their career, and in some cases becoming ambassadors of blockchain and other emerging technologies in the organisations they are working in. Let’s hear from three of these students.
“I enjoyed the Blockchain Module so much and I passed with a good grade. I am now researching the feasibility of including blockchain in a Dissertation” – Jo Magnani, Client Partner at Verizon Enterprise Solutions. Jo oversees Financial Vertical Sales for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Verizon Enterprise is a very well-known provider of telecommunications solutions for companies.
“This was an excellent module, probably the most thought provoking and insightful of my MSc Management with Business Innovation modules. I was able to apply the learning like other students to my own field of interest – renewable energy. It was also very fun! I look forward to hearing of its continued growth” – Philip Simpson, Environmental Project Manager at Barclays.
“The blockchain module was brilliant! Despite having no prior knowledge about blockchain, the module was well prepared to support less experienced students. Saverio and the guest lecturers delivered their lectures in an accessible and understandable format, which resulted in a very engaged class.
“Unlike more traditional modules, the set weekly readings included articles, videos and podcasts. I found this particularly appealing as the material felt relevant and “hot off the press”. I most enjoyed learning about how blockchain technology can be applied to a broad range of industries, and it got me thinking about how blockchain can be applied to anything!
“ Learning about the impact of blockchain on the charity sector and how it can be used to help achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals appealed to me. Finally, I really liked studying a module that is about an evolving and recent technology – interest in blockchain technology has grown massively, both in academia and various industries. I haven’t been able to use blockhain in my current role, however the module has helped me think more widely about how new technology can be used to disrupt industries, increase efficiency, and result in more positive outcomes for society.” – Maya Welford, Barclays HR Graduate Analyst and student in MSc Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability.
These comments are very encouraging and highlight that students appreciate a module that is a bridge between their academic learning and the marketplace in which they work. The evolution of the module will reinforce that bridge trying to connect innovation, entrepreneurship and management theories with the dynamics of markets and organisations through the analysis of emerging technologies.