Diverse insights into the economy of Brazil

International module for students at Furtwangen University

It was recently time for Furtwangen University students to pack their bags! An integral part of the part-time Executive MBA program at the HFU Business School is a one-week module abroad outside Europe. The destination, for the first time, was Brazil. For the students, this week was certainly one of the highlights of their studies. They returned enthusiastic, with a multitude of new insights.

The module abroad was once again offered this year after a break due to Corona. The two current Executive MBA classes –1st and 3rd semester – set off together for a week at the end of April to the renowned FGV Business School in São Paulo.

The delegation of twenty was accompanied by Prof. Dr. Julika Baumann Montecinos, Professor of Intercultural Management at the HFU Business School and Brazil expert, and Executive MBA Programme Director, Regina Feketics.

At the FGV Business School, the guests were first given a general overview of the Brazilian economy before focusing on the topic of sustainability. The challenges and opportunities of the Amazon Jungle were presented, as were the possibilities of the bioeconomy, in which renewable raw materials are increasingly being used. In a board game, which had already been developed in 2011 on behalf of the Center for Sustainability Studies at the FGV, the students experienced the drastic consequences of global warming exceeding a rise of two degrees. Another focus was the topic of social entrepreneurship in Brazil. Entrepreneur Fernando Assad personally presented his project to the students, in which housing conditions in the favela slums are being improved.

The varied programme was rounded off with a company visit to Continental, where the site manager Julio Finatelli presented the local product focus in detail and personally led the tour through the production area. The Parque das Neblinas, an environmental reserve and protection and conservation area for the Atlantic Forest and its biodiversity, was also visited, as was the metropolis of São Paulo with its 12m inhabitants. The HFU students returned to the Black Forest impressed by the many new experiences and touched by the love of life and warmth of the people in Brazil.