The "A Building" at the IESE school in Spain

Top overall: Iese

Iese Business School has not only topped the table for customised executive education programmes in 2015, but has taken the number one slot in the combined custom and open table.

The Spanish school, which two decades ago taught almost exclusively in Barcelona and Madrid, and in the English language, now has facilities in New York and Munich and teaches worldwide, still in English.

Iese has dethroned Duke Corporate Education, which had topped the customised table for 12 years.

Highest new entrant: Shanghai Jiao Tong University: Antai College

As China’s market for executive short courses continues to grow, Antai College at Shanghai Jiao Tong University is proving to be a big player in corporate programmes, entering the customised education rankings at 15.

Antai is the highest-placed Chinese business school in customised education, ahead of Ceibs, which is also in Shanghai, and the Guanghua school at Peking University. However, both Ceibs and Guanghua are also ranked in the open enrolment table.

Highest riser: ESCP Europe

In spite of a difficult year for the business school, with a change of dean, ESCP has built on its European credentials. The school, which has campuses in Paris, London, Berlin, Madrid and Turin, moved up the customised programme ranking 28 places to 28th.

Like many schools under the auspices of the French chambers of commerce, ESCP will be looking to these short courses to shore up its revenues as cuts in government funding start to bite.

Top for open programmes: IMD

IMD, the Swiss executive education specialist, is proving its staying power in the open-enrolment market with its fourth consecutive ranking at number one.

The school is one of only four institutions in the top 10 in both the open-enrolment and customised programme rankings. This success comes in spite of the expense of IMD’s programmes, caused in part by the strength of the Swiss franc. As IMD president Dominique Turpin puts it: “We were expensive. Now we are becoming a luxury.”

Top in Latin America: Fundação Dom Cabral

With one of the largest numbers of faculty dedicated to executive education, plus many international partners, FDC is the powerhouse of executive education in Latin America.

The Brazilian school has consistently been the best Latin American business school in the executive education rankings for the past 10 years. FDC was one of the biggest risers in this year’s open ranking, up 11 places to 12th, improving in all criteria rated by participants. It also rose to 16th in the combined table.

Top Asian school: Kaist

Kaist College of Business continues to be one of the best providers of open courses worldwide and the top in Asia.

The South Korean school, established 19 years ago, climbed four places to 20th in this year’s ranking, entering the top 20 for the first time. The school was rated third for the level of follow-up offered after participants returned to their workplaces.

That the courses are directed at Korean companies explains why it is ranked bottom in terms of the international diversity of its participants and faculty.

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