Industry Update
Press Release11 September 2018

EHL’s new Institute of Business Creativity (IBC)

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Logo 'Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne'

Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne launches the Institute of Business Creativity, hosting the METRO Hospitality Lab for the development of novel training solutions in the hospitality industry.


Launched in June 2018, the Institute of Business Creativity aims to build bridges between the business world and academia, and to produce relevant, highly impactful, practice-based research and solutions. Under the leadership of professors Marc Stierand, Institute Director, and Ian Millar, Institute Manager, this new structure will contribute to EHL's objective; to provide innovative educational models and to drive growth in the hospitality industry.

"I am very excited to have the opportunity to apply the research I have conducted on creativity over the past years. The Institute will allow us to leverage the unique industry knowledge of our key partners and our combined understanding of Hospitality technology, creativity and team management will truly give us the means to explore new ideas in a pragmatic and constructive manner", said Marc Stierand The Institute offers a wide spectrum of services, including dedicated research labs in partnership with international firms from the hospitality industry and beyond, tailor-made executive workshops and case studies to support business development and innovation. The Institute also provides an environment for developing and testing new concepts with the EHL community.

Prominent experts from the hospitality industry and leading academic institutions from around the world have joined the Institute to contribute their expertise and collaborate on research projects. The Institute of Business Creativity will include several dedicated research labs, sponsored by international companies who will benefit from EHL's awarded research and faculty to develop innovative, leading-edge solutions to transform their industry.

The METRO Hospitality Lab, sponsored by METRO AG and initiated by the two co-founders of Hospitality Digital GmbH (a Metro company) Kay Schwabedal (CEO) and Frédéric Schumacher (Director Innovations), is the first research project within the Institute of Business Creativity. This lab will focus on the HoReCa industry (Hotels, Restaurants, Catering) and will be dedicated to the exploration and design of new HoReCa education and training solutions.

"This is a new and fascinating step in the growing relationship between EHL and METRO. We are all extremely enthusiastic to bring our respective strengths to the table and work towards a common goal", said Ian Millar about the new collaboration.

The research will focus on the relationship between the digitalization of operational training and human interactions. The Master-Apprentice approach will be examined to determine how and where human interaction, such as mentor coaching or expert training, is combined most effectively with technological solutions.

"Our objective is nothing less than to make a significant contribution to the digitalisation of the HoReCa industry. We are convinced that this way there are considerable opportunities for small and mediumsized companies in particular to become even more successful", said Olaf Koch, Chairman of the Management Board of METRO AG. "EHL and METRO, we both share the same passion: Through our collaboration, we are combining our industry and technology knowledge to support together the digital transformation of our HoReCa customers. I am convinced that our customers will benefit even more from our strategic alliance in the future."

METRO's goal is to help their clients -small and medium-sized businesses in the hospitality and food retail industries - succeed in their ventures. Based on previous studies by EHL, this success is closely correlated to enhanced training methods. Results from the research will be presented in 2019, allowing all industry professionals to benefit from the findings.

About Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL)

EHL Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne Lausanne is an ambassador for traditional Swiss hospitality and has been a pioneer in hospitality education since 1893 with over 25,000 alumni worldwide and over 120 nationalities. EHL is the world's first hospitality management school that provides undergraduate and graduate programs at its campuses in Lausanne and Chur-Passugg, as well as online learning solutions. The School is ranked n°1 by QS World University Rankings by subject and CEOWorld Magazine, and its gastronomic restaurant is the world's only educational establishment to hold a Michelin Star.

Sherif Mamdouh
External Communications Manager
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