Experts in commerce familiarised themselves with MIT's R&D activities
The new shop concept of Walgreens in Boston was one of the places they visited.
MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is one of the world's most successful universities, including producing significant scientific basic and applied research. Researchers from the university have been recognised with numerous awards, including 19 Nobel prizes since 1956.
Together with Finnish Commerce Federation's research committee, Professor of Practice Lasse Mitronen of Aalto University School of Business and Docent Jarmo Suominen of Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture organised the study excursion to this university, innovative and relying on extensive business cooperation. In addition to MIT, the study excursion for the upper management in commerce that took place on 2–10 April 2016 included familiarisation with a number of new and interesting shops in Boston and New York.
'This was a remarkably eye-opening excursion, offering Finnish business managers a highly interesting view to the world through the production of innovations in one of the most significant universities and its research cooperation with companies. We also received a lot of new information about the latest and most interesting concepts for commerce in the USA', notes Managing Director Juhani Pekkala of Finnish Commerce Federation, who participated in the excursion.
During the excursion, participants got to listen to high-quality contributions about business development models as well as productive approaches and possibilities of collaboration between companies and university. On the other hand, the visits to the shops succeeded in illustrating, for instance, the utilisation of technologies and the increasing emphasis on the role of marketing communications in shops as well as the significance of immediate customer encounters in customer and sales work.
'MIT as well as the shops in the USA are prime examples of the utilisation of research and innovations in business activities as well as updating shop concepts in an open-minded way. It was quickly revealed during the excursion how allowing free competition and avoiding excessive regulation enable agile companies to transform shop activities to become increasingly customer-centred even at a quick rate', emphasised Professor of Practice Lasse Mitronen and Docent Jarmo Suominen, the hosts of the excursion.
Professor of Practice Lasse Mitronen
Aalto University School of Business
Adjunct Professor Jarmo Suominen
Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture
CEO Juhani Pekkala
Finnish Commerce Federation