Available dates

Jan 27—31, 2020
5 days
Lausanne, Switzerland
CHF 7900 ≈USD 8241
CHF 1580 per day
Sep 7—11, 2020
5 days
Lausanne, Switzerland
CHF 7900 ≈USD 8241
CHF 1580 per day


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About the course

Hype versus reality?

The business potential of transformational technologies like blockchain, IoT, artificial intelligence and robotics, is enormous but how do you separate the hype from the reality?

TransformTECH brings you the possibility to really discover which technology will enable you to create new business opportunities. Plus, free you up to work smarter and swifter.

Combining business and technology experts in one program, you will be inspired to find new business solutions using the most globally applicable innovative technologies. Every year, the faculty choose the most relevant innovative technologies and help you apply them to your business. All of this - in just 4 days.

  • Open up new opportunities for your business by exploring latest technologies and the impact for your business and industry

  • Become familiar with nimble innovation practices, the venturing world, design thinking as well as rapid prototyping

  • Develop a beta-prototype with experts in technology, innovation and entrepreneurship that you can apply to your business

New technologies for your business transformation

Hands-on, experiential learning TransformTECH is not just another technology conference. In an interactive, experiential environment, you journey through the exciting world of new technologies and innovation in the context of your business. You will leave with a pretotype (a working prototype) for your business transformation.

Explore AI, blockchain, IoT and robotics Maybe you could design new products with artificial intelligence (AI)? Deliver new customer experiences using blockchain or the Internet of Things (IoT)? Or boost efficiency with intelligent robotics? You'll get up to speed on these exponentially improving technologies, you will learn how to select the most appropriate ones to enable digitization, assess the impact on your business and how you can harness their power (watch video).

Innovation and design-thinking methodologies

Using an innovation methodology, you'll move from identifying a business challenge which could be solved by technology to creating a pretototype which provides the solution. You will follow a step-by-step approach and be inspired by examples from many industries.

Combined expertise of IMD and EPFL

The program brings together the innovation and technology expertise of two top schools: IMD business school and EPFL (Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne), one of the two Swiss federal institutes of technology.


You identify a business transformation challenge/ opportunity to work on during the program with support from IMD.

You get familiar with the latest digital technologies through a designated platform.


Morning sessions

Move from inspiration to prototyping

You will explore business opportunities in 3 areas:

Design new products, services and solutions

Are you dealing with stagnating sales or even serious disruptions in your market? Perhaps you’ve succeeded in partially streamlining your cost structure. You must come up with new ways to grow your business and technology is certain to help, but where should you start? In this session, you will be challenged to design a new customer offering (product, service or solution) that can bring new sources of growth for your business and to imagine ways to test your assumptions in the market.

Deliver new user experiences

Technology provides us with amazing new capabilities, but ultimately, the implementation of a new technology depends upon an audience wanting to buy it, use it and be wowed. In this session, you’ll learn about users to better understand their “pain points”, the benefits they’re seeking and the value they’re willing to allocate. With this insight, you’ll explore how your business–customer interface could be improved through technology.

Develop operational efficiencies

Are you under relentless pressure to make operations more efficient, reduce costs or improve internal services? Technology can improve an organization’s competitiveness by offering people powerful tools to access the right information at the right time, in turn to facilitate their decision-making. But technology goes well beyond supplying information. It can also augment human intelligence to improve the running of your business.

Afternoon plenaries Explore exponentially improving technologies Get the latest from EPFL and other technology experts on:

Blockchain - watch Blockchain for your business - questions to ask

Do you understand blockchain and how it could be useful for your business? Considered the biggest revolution since the internet and commonly associated with bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, blockchain has the potential to transform multiple industries.

IoT - watch how to create opportunities with IoT

Nowadays, every organization must think about how to embrace the opportunities offered by the IoT and its underlying smart-connected technologies, as they can apply to different industrial fields. In this session, you’ll cover the three main themes that enable the IoT to be deployed in any business.

Data analytics & artificial intelligence - watch how to create opportunities with A.I

You’ll discover how modern machine learning and data science are reshaping existing businesses and how they can help you identify new opportunities, too. In this session, fast-forward to the near future, discuss the next wave of artificial-intelligence (AI) systems and anticipate their impact on data-enabled corporations.

Intelligent robotics - watch how to harness the power of robots

During this session you will take a journey into the workplace of tomorrow and discover intelligent applications for robots.

Afternoon sessions

Develop your technology-enabled business case Create and refine your pretototype through experiential learning:

  • Get first-hand exposure to new technologies with a visit to EPFL labs
  • Exchange with start-ups from EPFL that have applied blockchain, AI, IoT and robotics to different business areas
  • Develop a pretototype with feedback from business, innovation and technology experts. Come as a team to develop a pretotoype for your specific business opportunity.

By the end of the program you will be ready to test your technology-enabled business case within your organization.


Continue technology prototyping for your business transformation initiative and get feedback.

Join IMD’s professional alumni network

Once you complete an IMD program, you join IMD’s alumni network, an outstanding global community of global business leaders who will support you long-term.

Who should attend

This program is designed for individual business executives and teams in mid to senior-level management. Ideal participants include: general managers, executives in business development, marketing, sales, operations, customer service, HR, legal and finance.

For maximum impact, and where possible, we recommend you join as a team of colleagues.

Your goal is to gain a deeper understanding of the latest of innovative technologies and apply them to your business. You have a working understanding of technology but not necessarily technical expertise.

Trust the experts

Cyril Bouquet

Cyril Bouquet is Professor of Strategy at IMD. His major interest is the interface between organizational psychology, strategy and leadership. His teaching, research and consulting activities focus on leaders who are working with their teams to design winning competitive initiatives and action pl...


Bettina Büchel

Bettina Büchel has been Professor of Strategy and Organization at IMD since 2000. Her current research topics include strategy implementation, new business development, strategic alliances and change management. She has led both public programs, such as Orchestrating Winning Performance and Stra...


Marc Gruber

Marc Gruber is Vice President for Innovation at EPFL and full professor at the College of Management of Technology at EPFL where he holds the Chair of Entrepreneurship and Technology Commercialization (ENTC). Marc also acts as Deputy Editor at the Academy of Management Journal (AMJ), the highest ...


Pierre Vandergheynst

Pierre Vandergheynst received the M.S. degree in physics and the Ph.D. degree in mathematical physics from the Université catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, in 1995 and 1998, respectively. From 1998 to 2001, he was a Postdoctoral Researcher with the Signal Processing Laboratory, Sw...


David Atienza Alonso

David Atienza Alonso is associate professor of electrical engineering and director of the Embedded Systems Laboratory (ESL) at the Institute of Electrical Engineering within the School of Engineering (STI) of EPFL, Switzerland. Previously he was associate professor at the Computer Architecture an...


Jim Pulcrano

Jim Pulcrano is an independent consultant, educator and business coach specializing in entrepreneurship and start-ups. He is a core faculty member on IMD’s EMBA team. He has made a major contribution to the success of six start-ups in the US and Switzerland, as well as coaching through the IMD St...


Jaime Paik

Jamie Paik founded and directs of the Reconfigurable Robotics Lab at the EPFL. Her research focuses on leveraging expertise in multi-material fabrication and smart material actuation for novel robot designs. For her doctorate studies she designed a humanoid arm and hand. This 7-DoF humanoid arm w...


Bryan Ford

Bryan Ford leads the Decentralized/Distributed Systems (DEDIS) lab at the EPFL. He focuses broadly on building secure decentralized systems, focusing on scalable and privacy-preserving blockchains. An internationally recognized specialist in data security and privacy protection, Bryan is working ...


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TransformTECH: See how you will work with experts to transform your business with new technologies

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