Hello Everyone,


I am currently taking my Master's of Education at Queens University, I have my Bachelor’s of Commerce, and am working towards a profession in teaching business.  In my course right now I am learning about curriculum philosophies, design, and strategies.


I have noticed that there aren’t very many courses on Business Models or Business Model Innovation.  I would love to hear from you in regards to your experience with courses in Business Model Management/Innovation etc. and also what type of conceptions of curriculum you think would be best suited for teaching Business Models.


I have included a like to my group’s Prezi, which will take you through the conceptions of curriculum I have learned up to this point. I have also included a chart below for quick reference.


I would love to hear from you!


Conception of Curriculum

Philosophical Foundations

(as taken from Orstein)

Source of Curriculum Design

(Ornstein & Hunkins)

Curricular Designs

(Ornstein & Hunkins, Sowell)




Subject Centered

Social Reconstructionist



Society-Culture-Based Designs

Learner Centered/self actualization/humanistic



Learner-Centered Designs





Cognitive Processes



Learner-Centered Designs

Social Effeciency



Society-Culture-Based Designs

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Hello again,

I want to start off with an exerpt from a 2012 Forbes Interview with Gary Hamel titled: "Gary Hamel On Innovating Innovation""

SD: Why haven’t we seen the necessary level of effort?

Gary Hamel: Several reasons.

One is that leaders still think of innovation in these mystical terms. I often get asked: is it really possible to teach people how to innovate? And I reply: Yes, we’ve taught thousands of people how to innovate. They have created billions of dollars of market value. So: yes, you can!

There’s this myth that innovation can’t be taught, along with an even more insidious belief that I would call “creative apartheid”: there’s this sense that “There are a few really smart clever people and that most people are idiots; so bother even to train them? We all know that innovation comes from these few really extraordinary people.” This is nonsense but there is sometimes that belief. We need to recognize that something as seemingly ethereal and fragile and mystical as innovation can really be systematized.

I think that now more than ever there is a large need to discuss teaching innovation. So how can we make that learning accessible and relevant to the next generation?

Hello Bianca;

Simply put, it will be difficult to get substantive input on an academic perspective of curriculum design in this community. Though we have quite  few academicians in the community, the level of discourse here is less about the philosophical underpinnings of teaching, and more about the real world application of the tools.

The observation you made about there not being many courses on business model innovation in university speaks to the divide between theoretical and applied understanding of concepts.I have been a strategic advisor to senior management, owners and operations for many years, and the lesson learned is these business people, and people launching innovation, are not interested in theory underlying the tools and approaches, let along theory about teaching it. The bottom line is whether the use of that approach and those tools will have a net positive effect on their business concerns.

I am an incorrigible learner, and I track a lot of new frameworks and approaches while they are in development. I looked at your post three times. First two, I didn't get past scanning it. The third time I tried to get my head wrapped around what you are saying and I don't understand the table at all. I have no frame of reference for many of the terms you use.

The strength of the Business Model Generation approach is that it is built on a language and core concepts that are common language to any person running, leading or trying to change a business. It is a powerful tool that applies at all levels of a business, and across business sectors. It has been designed, taught (through masterclasses and innovation workshops) to be useful immediately in the room and as a soon as you get back to your desk - applied knowledge.

It is important for academic institutions to debate and evaluate philosophical underpinnings of approaches. However, if they want to connect with non-academic communities, they have to move past theory to application of the concepts in real world situations and common language.

Hi Mike,


Thank-you for your reply and insight into this business community. I completely understand what you are saying. You raise some good points about the divide between the theoretical and the applied. I wonder if it is possible with a well-structured curriculum for teaching business models that we can bridge the divide. I know that this may not be the best community for inquiring about the technical aspects of business, but I am wondering if there are some business educators who have some experience as to what kind of strategy or approach is best when teaching the subject. I apologize for not being clearer with my previous post with regards to the different approaches. You are right the language is a bit ambiguous and I should have presented the concepts in more common language.

Essentially, there are 4 main approaches to teaching:

1) Academic (Focus on content/subject matter)

2) Social (Focus on social issues)

3) Learner-Centered (Focus on the learner and their interests)

4) Technological (Focus on how using technology can further learning)


From what you are mentioning, it sounds like the focus of teaching business models is more about communicating the subject and presenting model innovation as a tool for business owners. You raise another good point that businesses will only be interested in the net positive effect on their company and that we have to move past the theory into application to real world situations.

I am curious to know if you believe there would be strength in teaching business model innovation online through the use of videos and presentations? Do you find there is also a lot of interest in seminars/webinars or conferences in business model innovation?


Thank-you for your time!

Yes, as a consultant, certified coach and trainer for the business model canvas, I believe there is a lot of interest in workshops and training about business model innovation.

Strategyzer has an online course teaching the business model generation approach and value proposition design. There are many You Tube videos out there on business model innovation. Steve Blank has a course on Udacity which deals with customer development and business model design for startups - and by extension established businesses.

I am currently working with a partner to design an video library of 4-6 minute videos. I believe the video material can be an important component of introducing the concepts. I also believe learning skills and advance approaches need face-to-face instruction and peer collaboration to be successful.

The book Business Model Generation has sold more than 1,000,000 copies in 30 languages. It has permeated the knowledge base in senior management offices and business schools around the world. There are other books that also address business model innovation (e.g. Seizing the White Space, Open Innovation). Business model design and innovation is an integral part of the program in business and management schools here in Canada and the US (Stanford, Columbia, Harvard...).

Are you connected with Queens University in Kingston Canada (I am located in Ottawa)? Not to be overly critical, if your program is only beginning to examine the potential for teaching about business models, design and innovation, I would say they are lagging behind the wave.

It is great to hear back from you on this. It sounds like to me that you are actively involved teaching and it is great to hear that you are developing a video program. I am at Queens in Kingston; however, I am in education not business. I am sure the business department is teaching about business models and if they aren't it might be a good place to introduce your program to. I'm sure some of the business teachers there would love to get involved with this.


I will definitely check out some of the material you have mentioned and thank-you again for your feedback.




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