Spark Institute at IBS

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Dea Frankó-Csuba, Head of Spark Institute talks about her professional background  and shares some interesting information about our innovative executive education center.

How does the name Spark  reflect the aim of this new institution that you are the head of?

Spark Institute at IBS is a future studies center for leaders, entrepreneurs and ambitious talents who are already or would like to be leaders in the future.

Our courses are designed to ignite innovative thinking and creativity, whilst providing the skills and knowledge one needs to be successful in the future. This is where the name Spark comes from. It’s the Spark of ideas, enthusiasm, willingness to experiment and create new solutions based on the experiences and knowledge we accumulated throughout the years.

We do not aim to give definite solutions to leadership problems, since there is no general recipe for all the variety of challenges we face as leaders.

We empower participants to create the ambiance of problem solving, data driven thinking, experience design and collaboration within their organizations and use the latest technologies and practices to make the process effective.


When will it begin working at IBS? Who can apply for it? Whoseapplications do you anticipate?

Our first course starts in September and admissions are open. Leaders, managers and entrepreneurs from different industries, businesses and professional areas are all welcome. Our courses offer an equally exciting perspective for a CEO of a small business or Communications Manager of a large organization or CFO of a mid-sized company.

Transformation of thinking patterns and practices of an organization is a long and systematic process. The more influencers of an organization are involved, the more effective the shift will be. For this reason, we encourage companies to sign up diverse team of managers, influencers, leaders from their organization, who can then implement the desired changes in their daily practice with the help of Spark’s mentors. Participants can apply individually or as a team.

What is your professional background and experience that helps you in this new work?

I’ve started my career in a tech startup at the early age of the commercial internet and have been working in the tech sector for over a decade, mainly in the area of communications and marketing. I’ve always been interested in the way technology shapes our lives and creates new opportunities for us. I started designing education programs 7 years ago, when I saw how the increasing availability of technologies and knowledge is accelerating changes of market characteristics and professions.

Who will be the instructors of Spark and what are the fields that they will cover?

We start with two major subjects this year, the first is focusing on Transformative Strategies, the other on Data Driven Leadership. Our programs are designed to offer an up-to-date, global perspective, practices that are tested and validated, points of view that have the capacity to open new perspectives. Our faculty and mentors are experienced professionals who have significant track record in their fields of expertise. We have teachers and mentors joining us from several countries, including Vancouver, Berlin, Dubai, London, Vienna and Budapest.

Will they come to Budapest for teaching? Where is the physical location of Spark?

Our founding institute is the International Business School and thus, our courses are held at the campuses of IBS in Budapest and Vienna.  The Budapest campus is located in the inspiring environment of Graphisoft Park and the Vienna campus right in the heart of the city of Vienna.  The faculty will complete the courses on these two locations and do the follow-up work with the participants online.

What is innovative executive education and what is its significance?

We are taking a very practical approach. Time is very precious for each participant so we strive to get the most out of those days and hours they dedicate to educating themselves. Our courses consist of one week boot camps that we all spend together in Budapest and in Vienna and 2 month mentoring periods where we accompany participants in the progress of implementation of new ideas into their daily practice.

Why do you think it is important, can we say, vital, for leaders and entrepreneurs to study disruptive techniques?

In the past 10 years we have seen many examples on how technology rewrites the rules of businesses, markets and cooperations. The first and very obvious human reaction to change is resistance. We like to think that it will not effect us and we manage to survive it somehow. The second phase is acceptance. I believe that all those companies that are preparing to stay successful in the future are already somewhere in this phase or even further. They already started developing, improving, experimenting and most importantly learning. They are likely to be the ones outperforming their competition in the near future, because they understand that every day there is more we need to learn in other to be able to stay in the game.

 Spark Institute