ABEST21 was founded in 2005, but its origins go back to 1994, when 7 business schools from Japan and abroad joined together in a Global Classroom Conference and the conference was reorganized as the Global Knowledge Network on June 28, 2002. Global Knowledge Network considered it an urgent issue to develop a system to enhance the quality of management education at the business schools. With this idea in mind, on June 28, 2004, at the Hakone Conference, the establishment of network aiming at the enhancement of management education at member schools was discussed, and the preparation to establish THE ALLIANCE ON BUSINESS EDUCATION AND SCHOLARSHIP FOR TOMORROW, a 21st century organization (ABEST21) was started. A year later, on July 1, 2005, assisted by 16 business schools from the world, the Network decided to establish ABEST21 as a mutual evaluation institution.
ABEST21 Mission Statement
We believe that there are many areas where we can explore and interact in the interest of international cooperation in the XXI century. We will advance business school education on a global basis by encouraging the mutually beneficial collaboration among member institutions. We, therefore, have come to the conclusion that we shall use our efforts to establish THE ALLIANCE ON BUSINESS EDUCATION AND SCHOLARSHIP FOR TOMORROW, a 21st century organization.
The mission of ABEST21 is to advance education in business schools on a global basis by encouraging the mutual cooperation among its member institutions. The mission can be accomplished through the following goals:
- Sharing the information on curricular and teaching materials between the member institutions.
- Promoting joint research projects, joint courses, international symposium and global classroom opportunities.
- Providing advice and coordination for the member institutions in the research activities and encouraging the members to continually strive to advance the global business education.
- Facilitating the continuous improvement of the business education through accreditation.
2. Message from the President
In 2014, ABEST21 has welcomed its nine year since its foundation on July 1, 2005. We started with 16 business schools from Japan and abroad, but during the past eight years the number of member schools has more than quadruple from our original size, and now amounts up to 59 business schools from 18 different countries. We conducted business accreditation of eight Professional Graduate Schools of Business in Japan, one business school in Malaysia, one business school in Singapore and one business school in Indonesia. Furthermore, we are currently reviewing nine business schools in the Asia-Pacific region for business accreditation. Now, we have been recognized as an international business accreditation agency for business schools in the Asia-Pacific region.
Our mission is to advance management education in business schools on a global basis by encouraging the mutually beneficial collaboration among our member institutions. Therefore, our business accreditation activities and promotion of mutually beneficial collaboration together can be seen as a car’s wheels, combining the efforts to move the vehicle forward. The current age of globalization creates the challenges for educators, which have never been greater. No single institution can recruit, develop or retain all the resources required to cover every aspect of management education. As such, business schools are challenged as never before to develop and maintain first-class management programs. Therefore, we have enforced five Joint Research Projects with member institutions in order to encourage mutually beneficial collaboration among us. In the last four years we have conducted an international joint research project on “Improving Quality of Management Education” as a Research Project-3 in 2009, “Competencies in Management Professionals” as Research Project-4 in 2010, and “Developing Management Curriculum in Business Schools” as Research Project-5 in 2011.
Now, we are conducting “Case Writing-CSR” as a Research Project-6 and “Developing ASEAN Business Accreditation System Model” as a Research Project-7.
As the number and diversity of ABEST21 members increase, we feel the need for deeper cultural understanding to build stronger bond between our members. Globalization is a process of mutually respecting and accepting each other’s culture and values not dissimilar to individualism. The background of individualism is often religious beliefs, and the knowledge of religious beliefs around the world is essential in understanding this concept. This process demands that we look at ourselves from a different point of view. At ABEST21, we like to keep this in mind and wish to continue to foster the idea of collaboration, cooperation and mutual understanding.
We are still at an infant stage of our development and have yet to mature as an organization. However, I believe that through the opportunity to conduct accreditation and encourage collaboration, we have accelerated our pace towards the established organization. ABEST 21 will continue to ensure and enhance the quality of management education, which will foster the professionals who will contribute to peace and prosperity of our world.