Students as global virtual team leaders: a model for enquiry-based experiential learning

Peter Zettinig, Audra I. Mockaitis, Lena Zander

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Deb Gilbertson,1 a visionary educator in New Zealand, has a mission to use the classroom and beyond to create a better world. With this in mind, the Global Enterprise Experience competition has been organized for 11 consecutive years with the goal of enabling students to learn through experiencing what it means to be part of a global team. The basic idea is simple. If students work together across cultures, time zones, worldviews and levels of wealth and poverty, they will develop management skills and a mindset for making a difference in the future. Over the years, the Global Enterprise Experience competition has achieved this by bringing together more than 5,000 students from 360 universities in 72 countries. Participants are grouped into globally dispersed teams and during three weeks they together develop a business proposal on a topic chosen by Deb Gilbertson. This topic varies from year to year, but it always addresses a social concern or need, for example ‘The fortune at the bottom of the pyramid’ or ‘proposal for a profitable product or service to foster women’s social and/or economic development’. The team members are encouraged to contribute by drawing on their own capabilities and cultural contexts (for more info, see http://​geebiz.​org/). For many of the students worldwide, participating in the Global Enterprise Experience competition is a part of a course in international management, cross-cultural management and global leadership or similar. For the students in New Zealand, the competition is part of the course ‘Managing across Cultures’, where we as teachers worked at developing an enquiry-based experiential learning model for the course to enrich and deepen students’ learning.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave Handbook of Experiential Learning in International Business
EditorsVas Taras, Maria Alejandra Gonzalez-Perez
Place of PublicationHampshire UK
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781137467720
ISBN (Print)9781137467706, 9781349500055
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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