In The Times onderstreept zijn baas, Jan-Willem Oosterwijk, die invalshoek. “Yip’s appointment signals our ambition to rank among Europe’s Ivy League business schools.”
The school has spent four years on postmerger integration, primarily focusing internally. As a result it lost some of its external profile and slipped in the rankings as well. Now it is time to reemerge into the external world. Yip says: “My main role is to connect the school better to the business world and to raise the international profile,” A dual American and British citizen, Yip’s career trajectory marks him out as a global citizen. Born in Vietnam, he lived in Hong Kong and Burma until he was ten, when he came to England, studying economics and law at Cambridge, before earning an MBA at Harvard Business School, where he also received a DBA (doctor of business administration).
Yip spent the next 22 years in America, working at Pricewaterhouse among other companies, and holding faculty positions at Harvard and UCLA, and visiting positions at Georgetown University and Stanford Business School. He then recrossed the Atlantic to become a professor at Judge Business School at Cambridge, before moving to London Business School in 2001.
To his research and teaching interests, Yip brings a reputation as a prodigious networker and administrator. At Rotterdam he is targeting the market in short courses for corporates. The school is about to add a portfolio of open programmes to its established customised programmes. “Our aspiration is to move into the space occupied by London Business School and Insead,” Yip says. Along with an array of bachelor, master, doctoral, and executive education programmes, Rotterdam currently offers three different MBA programmes: a full-time international MBA with between 100 and 120 participants per year; a part-time executive MBA with about 100 participants; and a global executive MBA, with between 25 and 40 participants.
With an average GMAT score of 640, and 95 per cent non-Netherlands students on its full- time MBA, Rotterdam prides itself on offering a truly international programme. Known for its research into sustainable business practice and for the development of global leaders, Rotterdam will expect Yip to raise its profile. What differentiates the Rotterdam MBA, Yip says, is its emphasis on personal leadership, and also intellectual substance because of the heritage of the university. “Since the university was named after Erasmus, the first thinker of the Renaissance, that is part of our positioning. We also have some individual subjects such as sustainability and innovation. I think, being Dutch, sustainability is very important, more so than for a British or American school. I want to grow the MBA programme. More specifically, I want to expand the number of applications to increase the quality. I am also setting my sights on America. I want to get many more American students into the MBA programme because if you want to be a top global business school, you have to attract Americans because they have the choice of the best in the world.”