18th edition of CEEMAN's Program Management Seminar Successfully Concluded
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This week, a diverse group of participants from 10 institutions and 9 countries celebrated the return of the Program Management Seminar to Bled after two years of online learning.

One of CEEMAN’s signature programs since 2005, the Seminar is an intensive and highly interactive three-day experience designed to make program and project managers working at universities and business schools more effective at handling their increasingly demanding and complex responsibilities. Class sessions included briefings by experts, group discussions, case analyses as well as lots of experience sharing among the participants.

The Program Management Seminar was taught by a high-profile team of experienced business education practitioners and market experts:

  • Paul Matthyssens, Professor of Strategic Management at University of Antwerp and Antwerp Management School, Belgium and Professor of Global Business and Marketing at University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy
  • Danica Purg, President of CEEMAN and IEDC-Bled School of Management, Slovenia
  • Andrew Crisp, Founder of CarringtonCrisp, UK
  • Nenad Filipović, Director of Executive Education, IEDC-Bled School of Management, Slovenia
  • Drikus Kriek, Dean, IEDC-Bled School of Management, Slovenia


After the welcome by CEEMAN President Danica Purg, the participants immediately dove deep into work with Academic Director Paul Matthyssens. The participants were tasked with identifying the key professional and personal traits of program managers, exchanged ideas and experiences on day-to-day challenges of program design and delivery, the importance of an organization’s mission and vision and making an impact outside of their institutions. Paul also talked about current challenges and gaps in management development. Prof. Nenad Filipović of IEDC-Bled School of Management presented his views on the role of the program manager together with the challenges lying ahead for this profession as well as and in the context of a school’s entire team that develops and delivers executive education.

The second day began with marketing expert Andrew Crisp on the topic of building an international reputation through marketing and communications. He stressed the importance of effective branding, and how schools can stand out from the crowd in the age of market saturation. The morning concluded with a presentation and discussion of how business schools can engage their alumni in meaningful ways.

As has become tradition for Program Management Seminar, the participants then embarked on a journey across Lake Bled to enjoy the unique atmosphere on its island and signature Slovenian pastry. Upon their return, Prof. Drikus Kriek awaited this year’s cohort with an engaging problem-solving exercise, followed by an analysis and discussion of team dynamics, group roles and what it takes to make teams successful.

To conclude the day, CEEMAN had something special in store: a visit to restaurant Lectar, a culinary gem in nearby Radovljica with a 500-year old tradition. Our participants were treated to a guided tour of Lectar's signature gingerbread workshop, a delicious, locally sourced dinner and a lively folklore performance.

On the third and final day, CEEMAN President Danica Purg engaged participants in a thought-provoking debate over real-life ethical dilemmas and provided them with a range of practical insights on program management and challenges inherent to the profession. Finally, the Program Management Seminar came to a close with a graduation ceremony, champagne and heartfelt farewells to the participants who made this return to in-person CEEMAN programs a special experience.

With this year’s Program Management Seminar successfully concluded, the CEEMAN team is already looking forward to the next program they are organizing. With preparations for IMTA-International Management Teachers Academy in full swing and new applications coming in steadily, you are cordially invited to take this opportunity and take your teaching skills to a new level. We also invite you to read more about the 30th CEEMAN Annual Conference, which will be taking place in Bled from 21 to 23 September 2022.

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