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A lecture  on the title,  “Creative Economy: How Creativity Can Become The Next Economic Growth Driver for the Philippines” was conducted by Mr. Paolo Mercado on 13 May 2017 at the IM Conference Room.   Mr. Mercado  expounded on how people could  use  their creative imagination to increase the value of  a product or service  which would eventually contribute to prosperous, socially engaged,  and creative economies. He added that economic activities which are anchored on  people’s  individual creativity  result to more cultural industries,  and  collaborative and innovative  enterprises.

Mr. Paolo Mercado

Mr. Mercado is Senior Vice President for Marketing, Communication and Innovation at Nestle Philippines  where he oversees the creative content work of Nestle in advertising and digital as well as leads the company's innovation strategy. His  international career in Nestle and advertising included postings in Switzerland, France and China, as well as in project management in many parts of the world. He is completing his executive MBA with the Berlin School of Creative Leadership where Creative Economy is his main focus of study. He is also the founder of the Creative Economy Development Council of the Philippines.

About thirty (30)  faculty, graduate and undergraduate students  attended the lecture (B.C. Marzan).


In line with the University of the Philippines-Harvard University’s continuing  academic  collaboration, Jennylyn Quinto and  Kezia Tabago,  Master of Management students  of the Institute of Management,  UP Baguio,  were selected from among a number of nominees from  UP  to attend the In-Country Course Session of the Harvard Business School (HBS) FIELD Global Immersion Program  last  04 May 2017 at Dusit Thani, Ayala Center, Makati City, Metro Manila.  They  were  among the 24 business students from the different campuses of the University of the Philippines who  were invited to converse  with global business partners to develop or improve  a product, service or experience. The global partners in the in-course session were Abenson, Adobo    Connection, Ayala Land, Bo’s Coffee, BPI, Filinvest, First Philippine Holding, Generika and NutriAsia.

The academic collaboration was aimed to develop students from Harvard Business School and UP to enhance their global intelligence through cross-cultural encounters and exposure. This course also aimed for HBS to augment their students’ creativity and innovativeness in a foreign country with unfamiliar taste and preference.

The event started with HBS dividing the students into concentration groups which were assigned a  global partner. Much of the discussions were focused on the consumers’ outlook on the valence of the services received or product bought, and the proper approach in  assisting Filipino consumers, and the target market demographics. The discussions also  revolved around how Filipinos perceive the business of the global partners and  why the market share is positioned the way it is currently done. The discussion then transitioned into how the different global partners can improve and capitalize on opportunities within and outside the firm and its applicability in Metro Manila, since this event concentrated in outlets in the country’s capital. In the brainstorming with the UP students, the HBS students were able to gather feedback from  the different groups.

This experiential and hands-on learning experience further developed the students’ business ideas and consumer observation which are very essential  as they are sent back to the  global partners for meeting with the senior management for a summary of what the students gathered through the eight days of immersion. Although limited with some outlook on a few partners due to demographics, the UP students gave insights on the reception of the Filipino market and a segmented discussion on the businesses’ strengths and weaknesses and the possibility of offering the developed ideas to markets outside Metro Manila.

The global immersion fostered a unique learning experience to both Harvard and UP students. It provided Harvard students a full participation to understand culture, business environment, and social norms in an unfamiliar context. On the other hand UP students were able to gain first-hand knowledge about how schools, like Harvard, expose their students into real business case scenarios.

The event concluded with  students attaining collaborative and empirical learning on the previously developed ideas for the advancement of the service and products of the global partners. Asked of their  personal experience and insights from the immersion, Quinto quipped, “though we do business cases and strategic papers involving real organizations, immersion is a kind of method that will intensely improve our ability to gain rich perspectives of global management issues as we repetitively imagine ourselves in the shoes of business stakeholders facing imminent decisions.”  Tabago more than agreed  when she recommended that It would  be  good if a similar activity can be incorporated to the MM program. (Kezia Tabago and Jennylyn Quinto).

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