Certificate of Advanced Studies

Business Model Innovation

Learn the tools and concepts for business model innovation. Get inspired by insights from industry leaders and leading companies. Apply this knowledge to drive your own innovation project from idea to prototype. Grow your network by connecting with peers, scholars, and startup founders.

Discover the program Download the brochure

Structure: 15 days of attendance divided into three modules

Location: University of St. Gallen & Stanford / Silicon Valley

Target Group: Senior managers from corporate development & innovation

Course Leaders


Prof. Dr. Oliver Gassmann

Professor of Technology and Innovation Management
Institute of Technology Management, University of St. Gallen

Prof. Dr. Oliver Gassmann is Professor of Technology and Innovation Management at the University of St. Gallen, one of Europe’s leading business schools. He is also Managing Director of the Institute of Technology Management. Over a course of five years at the University of St. Gallen, Oliver and his team studied over 350 business model innovations which led to a revolutionary and practical framework of how to design new business models: The Business Model Navigator™. In 2014 he was awarded Leading Researcher by IAMOT in Washington and nominated for the Scholarly Impact Award by the prestigious Journal of Management. Today he serves as a member in several academic, economic and political boards, such as a member of the International Advisory Board of the Google Research Institute for Internet & Society.


Prof. Dr. Larry Leifer

Professor of Mechanical Engineering
School of Engineering, Stanford University

Prof. Dr. Larry Leifer is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering in the School of Engineering at Stanford University. He joined the faculty in 1976 after serving as an assistant professor at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, and 4 years at the NASA Ames Research Center’s Human Information Processing laboratory. He has served as founding director of the Stanford Veterans Administration Rehabilitation Engineering R&D Center; Smart Product Design Lab; Center for Design Research (CDR); Stanford Learning Lab; and Hasso Plattner Design Thinking Research Program at Stanford. Research themes include: 1) creating collaborative engineering design environments for distributed new product innovation teams; 2) instrumenting that environment for design knowledge capture, indexing, reuse, and performance assessment; and 3) design-for-sustainable-wellbeing. He has been granted an honorary doctorate by the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm; and is an honorary fellow of the Design Society.

Course Modules: Session 2019

Three on-site modules and one module for the implementation of your project

St. Gallen, Switzerland Image

Module I

The Business Model Navigator

A dynamic start to the fundamentals of Business Model Innovation. From the very beginning on we encourage you to think critically and to challenge your own established assumptions, a key element of Business Model Innovation.

Case studies and group workshops supplement the Business Model Navigator which serves as the theoretical basis to understand business models, their interplay and innovation. A closer look is made on digital transformation and the potential of IoT and Industry 4.0 for Business Model Innovation.

February 4-8, 2019
Silicon Valley, United States Image

Module II

Designing Business Models

Hands-on sessions on Human-Centered Design with one of its most accomplished pioneers Prof. Dr. Larry Leifer from Stanford University. Stanfords design paradigm focusses on a human-centered approach that integrates expertise from design, social sciences, business and engineering. It is widely used in the rapid design of prototypes and the development of business model innovations.

The module itself is divided into seminars in which the methodological knowledge is imparted and excursions to some of the world’s most innovative firms such as SAP, Autodesk and Tesla acts as a transition phase from theoretical knowledge to real world application.

March 11-15, 2019
St. Gallen, Switzerland Image

Module III

Leading Change

After 8 weeks of implementation in your organization (see below: "Business Model Project — From Ideation to Prototype") it is time for reflection and addressing the human side of change. A key element of this module is the presentation of your innovation project in front of the course. Receiving feedback from our experts and other participants with diverse industry backgrounds represents an essential source for insights about further optimization of your business model. Further you learn how to address implementation challenges applying concepts such as Innovation Architecture and Organizational Energy.

June 24-28, 2019

Implementation at your company Image

Business Model Project

From Ideation to Prototype

Throughout the duration of the entire course you will be working on developing your own Business Model Project and preparing it for implementation in your own company.

Applying the knowledge and methods learned in the three program modules, you will develop a business model prototype and drive the implementation in your company. The development of the business model prototype takes place in parallel to all three modules. Facilitators and course leaders will support you by giving continuous feedback and advice on how to address the most critical challenges occurring during all stages of the business model project.


Creating best practice insights through case studies and company visits in Europe and in the Silicon Valley


Dialogue with accomplished industry experts & academic leaders from St. Gallen, Berkeley & Stanford


Providing a highly valuable network of like-minded peers and a forum for discussion


Implementation and assessment of a business model innovation project in your company


Executive MBA Integration

The Certificate of Advanced Studies "Business Model Innovation" can be integrated into the Executive MBA in Financial Services and Insurance and the Executive MBA in Business Engineering.

Find out more →
  • Image
    « Business Innovation requires overcoming mental barriers. The Business Model Navigator™ lays out a new way to think about new business models in the 21st century. »
    Reza Vaziri
    Managing Director — 3M
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    « The Business Model Navigator™ makes it possible for us to grasp and to work within a coherent system. The St. Gallen methodology not only brings results but broadens the mindset. »
    Daniel Sennheiser
    President Strategy & Finance — Sennheiser
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    « Working with the Business Model Navigator™ helped us not only to structure our internal approaches better, but drove us also to analyse and understand our competitors‘ business models and therefore their and our position in the market space. »
    Dr. Reiner Fageth
    Management Board — CEWE Color
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    « BASF has been working for more than five years with the Business Model Navigator™. It has led to concrete business concepts and also created a more open mindset. »
    Dr. Petra Bachem
    VP Marketing and Sales Excellence — BASF

Alumni Meetings

Expand your network of like-minded peers and business model enthusiasts in our annual alumni meetings. In the course of each session we invite our alumni from the previous sessions to get to know each other. Each meeting focuses on an exciting topic around innovation, for which we invite industry experts.

Did we spark your curiosity?

Selection of Speakers

Prof. Dr. Dietmar Grichnik
Professor of Entrepreneurship
University of St. Gallen
Prof. Dr. John Danner
Faculty Member
UC Berkeley & Princeton
Ian Roberts
Bühler Group
Dr. Tamara Carleton
Founder & Chief Executive
Innovation Leadership Board LLC
Dr. Michaela Csik
Global Project Manager
New Business Models

Espen Sivertsen
Ivaldi Group
Dr. Reiner Fageth
Management Board
CEWE Color
Dr. Christoph Wecht
Managing Partner & Head of the
Competence Center for Open Innovation


A diverse group of inspiring peers

The program is designed for senior executives and entrepreneurs who have the experience and capability to drive business model innovation in their team, their project, their business unit or company.

Innovation Management
Corporate Development
General Management
Sales & Marketing

A Selection of Participants