Global Initiatives in Management (GIM)

A cornerstone of the Kellogg School's international curriculum is the Global Initiatives in Management (GIM) program. GIM began in 1990 when a group of 27 students organized a course and a two-week trip to what was then the Soviet Union. Since then, the program has expanded greatly, covering five continents and hundreds of international destinations. Today, 250 students participate annually in the program, which offers courses to Kellogg's full-time and evening and weekend programs.

GIM China-Korea 2015
GIM Greater China 2016 in Tiananmen Square.

GIM Basics

The GIM program is an intensive global business course, designed with the following objectives that will allow students to:
  • Gain an in-depth understanding of the economic, political, social, and culture characteristics of a country or region outside the United States
  • Learn about key business trends, norms, challenges, and successes in a country or region outside the United States
  • Conduct international business research on a topic of interest
  • Further develop teamwork and leadership skills
The GIM experience is divided into two sections---in-class and in-country:

In-Class Portion:

  • Timing: GIM is offered as a Winter elective class for full-time and evening and weekend students that meets 8 out of the 10 weeks during the Winter Quarter in addition to one wrap-up class that meets during the Spring Quarter.
Winter Quarter (Jan. 2 - Mar. 10)
8 classes
  • Academic course focused on broad overview of country or region (or topic within country or region)
GIM Trip (Mar. 14 - 23) *trip dates vary by class
  • All-class company meetings
  • Group project company meetings
  • Cultural activities
  • Free time
Spring Quarter (April 5 9:00am)
1 class
  • Research presentations
  • Wrap-up discussion

  • Major Deliverable: Students work in groups of four - five to design a business plan, research question, industry analysis, or business case around a business topic of interest (see examples below) relating to all countries being studied.

 Examples of GIM 2016 Student Projects
Hot Havana Club Nights: Bringing Cuban Rum to the United States
India’s Big IT Disruption: Cloud Computing
Burberry: Becoming Luxury’s Digital Leader in China and Japan
Northern Rangeland Tanzania Initiative: Sustainable Cattle Ranching Pilot

In-Country Portion:

  • Timing: Over spring break, all GIM classes will spend up to ten days in-country. All students are expected to arrange their own international flights and meet up with their classes at 9:00am on the designated start-date of their itineraries. At the end of the trip, students may either continue traveling or return to Evanston. All students are expected to return in time for their first class of the Spring Quarter.
  • Schedule: In-country time is primarily devoted to business and culture, with free time for the students primarily in the evenings and during the weekends. The class will meet with government officials and business and industry leaders as a group (called “plenary meetings”; see examples below), while the group project teams will work to set up their own meetings and conduct first-hand research with key stakeholders in country.
Examples of GIM 2016 Plenary Sessions
Greater China: Boeing China; Baidu; Next Animation; Capital Group; Next Digital
Japan/Korea: Luxury Brand Management: Disney, Shanghai; Tencent; Hermes; Matsuya
India: US Embassy and Defense Attaché; Hero Honda; Medanta; Glaxo; Goldman Sachs; Northern Trust
Social Impact: Tanzania and Kenya: Off-Grid Electric; Opportunity International; One Acre Fund; Acumen Fund
The Business of Renewable Energy: Great Britain, the Czech Republic, and Germany: Energy Environment and Resource Governance; Engie; US Embassy in Prague; Czech Ambassador to the United States; Power Exchange Central Europe; Konrad Adenauer Stiftung; Regionalzentrum Standort Neuenhagen Transmission Control Center
Branding the Nation: Colombia and Cuba: Juan Valdez; Former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe; McKinsey Colombia; Minister of Tourism, Colombia; Financial Times, Andes Desk; Ecopetrol; Sofitel Hotel: Santa Clara; National Association of Economists, Vice President Hugo Pons

To learn more about the 2016 GIM program, please click on the tabs to the left. Also, feel free to contact the Global Programs office:

Christine Dunn
GIM Program Manager

Debbie Kraus
Director, Global Study Programs

GIM Nicaragua 2015
GIM Luxury Brand Management: Japan and China 2016 at Hermes