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How do you improve the graduate education industry and deliver the most relevant content for the next generation of business and world leaders? GMAC, which distributes the GMAT business school entry test, this week announced that it is giving $7.1m to to 12 organisations around the world to do just that.

As part of its Ideas to Innovation (i2i) Challenge, GMAT will fund projects at eight business schools in North America, two in Europe, one in India and one in Africa to create programmes to answer issues of social responsibility, technology implementation and education for veterans. The programmes range from three US programmes that will develop MBA and executive short courses for military personnel, to a one-year programme run by S P Jain Institute of Management & Research in which first year MBA students mentor underprivileged children in a Mumbai suburb.

The awards are the second phase of a $10m programme to kick-start a new generation of business school programmes. In the first phase of the i2i Challenge, more than 650 initial ideas were submitted to the GMAC. In phase two, which ran throughout 2011, 25 proposals from seven countries were submitted. Winning schools include Esade in Spain, the University of Botswana and Net Impact in the US.

The implementation of the 12 programme could revitalise management education, according to Dave Wilson, president and chief executive of GMAC. “Graduate management schools play a critical role in training business leaders who make a global impact. We believe these grants will enhance that impact and trigger even more innovation in schools around the world.”

www.gmac.com

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