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Program in Collaboration with Stanford Center for Professional Development

Certificate in Digital Business Strategy and Innovation Agility

Learn to navigate the digital landscape with innovation lessons from Silicon Valley and the Nordics. The Certificate in Digital Business Strategy and Innovation Agility program has been co-created by Aalto EE and the Stanford Center for Professional Development (SCPD) to provide participants with the leadership skills needed to execute innovation initiatives, lead agile organizations, and conquer the digital disruption wave. The program addresses the challenges and opportunities posed by digital innovation and transformation within an organization. It combines the world-class expertise of both schools on innovation, entrepreneurship, and digitalization. It blends online and face-to-face learning facilitated by professors from both universities as well as industry keynotes and discovery visits in Silicon Valley and Helsinki. The certificate will be provided by Stanford Center for Professional Development.

The program covers the following themes:

  • Fundamentals of digital transformation and innovation strategy
  • Latest technologies: AI, software robotics, blockchain, A/VR/MR
  • Leading innovation and intrapreneurial initiatives
  • Platform economy and architectural configurations
  • Transforming strategic capabilities and scaling excellence
  • Leveraging teams for global innovation

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Make an impact – Blended online and face-to-face learning for high impact and agile implementation of your new skills and knowledge at work

Learn and apply – Intensive and practical, covering the latest trends in technology and providing practical tools and methods to ride the digital wave

Broaden your horizons – The best and latest expertise from two leading universities, lessons from Silicon Valley and the Nordics, a certificate from Stanford Center for Professional Development


Does your current business model enable your organization to compete successfully in the global digital economy? Do you have experts and leaders who are able to embrace the new possibilities of the digital era to the fullest extent? This program prepares your employees to disrupt the technology wave and make innovation a culture and a habit.

Get insights and lessons on how to develop the structures, processes and culture that support innovation
Gain tools and practices for initiating and integrating technological breakthroughs
Explore how to frame problems creatively in order to generate innovative solutions
Understand the conditions that enable innovation networks and innovation ecosystems to prosper

About the Stanford Center for Professional Development

The Stanford Center for Professional Development (SCPD), a part of The Office of the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning (VPTL), makes it possible for today's best and brightest professionals to enroll in Stanford University courses and programs while they maintain their careers.

The SCPD portfolio reflects the exciting research and world-class teaching of Stanford faculty from all of Stanford’s schools. Courses are delivered online and, in some cases, at Stanford, at your work site, or at international locations – providing a global community of learners with flexibility and convenience and enabling them to apply their education to their work.



The program is for business leaders, senior executives and entrepreneurs responsible for leveraging the possibilities created by digitalization and building innovation powerhouses within their companies.

We recommend the program for change managers, core strategy team members, business managers and product development managers. The program is suited to key functions like marketing, operations, IT, strategy, and general management.

Contents and Schedule

The program incorporates a blended format of online and face-to-face sessions. Participants will have the opportunity to attend face-to-face facilitated sessions and workshops with Stanford and Aalto professors in California and Helsinki as well as several online courses, keynotes and webinars.

The unique advantage of the program lies in the discovery visits to the vibrant Silicon Valley ecosystem. Networking sessions and dinners will be held to encourage interaction with other participants and the faculty. A digital learning environment will be used to support the learning experience.

Program Structure

Five face-to-face days

Three face-to-face days are held in Silicon Valley, Stanford campus and two face-to-face days are held in Helsinki, Aalto EE Campus

Online courses, keynotes and webinars

Participants will have the opportunity to attend several online courses, keynotes and webinars with Stanford and Aalto professors

Company visits in Silicon Valley

The unique advantage of the program lies in the discovery visits to the vibrant Silicon Valley ecosystem


Instructors 2019

(2020–2021 faculty to be confirmed)

Michael Barry

Michael Barry works as a Consulting Assistant Professor at Stanford University. Barry teaches the nation’s top students on how to connect innovation to customer understanding.

A founder of Quotient Design Research, Barry has over two decades of experience in providing strategic innovation at the critical early stages of the product development process. His clients include Sony, IBM, Kimberly-Clark, HP, Merck, Shure, Johnson Diversey, Ericsson, Nestlé, Wells Fargo Bank, Wrigley, and several divisions of Unilever.

Tom Byers

Tom Byers is a Professor of Management Science and Engineering at Stanford University. Professor Byers focuses on education regarding high-growth entrepreneurship and technology innovation.

Professor Byers has been a faculty director since the inception of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program, the entrepreneurship center for the engineering school. He has been a member of advisory boards at Harvard Business School, UC Berkeley, World Economic Forum, Conservation International, and several private enterprises.

Kathleen Eisenhardt

Kathleen Eisenhardt is a Stanford W. Ascherman M.D. Professor at Stanford University and the Co-Director of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program. Professor Eisenhardt's research focus is strategy and organization, especially in technology-based companies and high-velocity industries.

Eisenhardt is currently studying the use of heuristics and other cognitive strategies, strategic interaction in new markets and novel ecosystems, and strategy making by boards of directors. She has received the career Scholarly Contribution Award from the Academy of Management and the Global Award for Entrepreneurship Research.

Ville Eloranta

Dr. Ville Eloranta is currently working as a Postdoctoral Researcher in Aalto University School of Business.

Dr. VEloranta is an expert in business model innovation (especially platform business models), distributed ledger technologies (especially open blockchain implementations), and design management (connecting design paradigms to management practice).

Ville Eloranta is teaching future transdisciplinary professionals in International Design Business Management programs, and is also involved in the development of Network university Fitech (a transformative education endeavor of 7 biggest Finnish universities, Technology Industries of Finland, and TEK). He is researching business models in decentralized business ecosystems, and has a solid track record of publications in top-level management journals.

Before joining academia, Dr, Eloranta worked nearly 20 years as a service designer and programmer, and design agency entrepreneur (founder of a 30-person company in three countries), solving digitalization challenges especially for big B2B customers.

Dr. Ville Eloranta holds a PhD in Industrial Engineering and Management from Aalto University School of Science.

Pamela Hinds

Pamela Hinds works as a Professor of Management Science and Engineering at Stanford University. Professor Hinds studies the effect of technology on teams.

Professor Hinds has conducted extensive research on the dynamics of geographically distributed work teams, particularly those spanning national boundaries. She explores issues of culture, language, identity, conflict, and the role of site visits in promoting knowledge sharing and collaboration.

Riitta Katila

Riitta Katila is Professor of Management Science & Engineering and W.M. Keck Foundation Faculty Scholar at Stanford University, and a faculty member of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program.

Professor Katila is an expert in technology strategy, innovation, and learning development in firms with a focus on achieving short- and long-term organic growth. She has conducted extensive work on alliances, acquisitions and corporate venture capital. Professor Katila’s alma mater Aalto University honored her as the Alumnus of the Year in 2016.

Perry Klebahn

Perry Klebahn is an Adjunct Professor and Director of Executive Education at the Stanford d.school.

When it comes to startups, corporations and executive leadership, Klebahn’s seen just about everything. He's a seasoned entrepreneur, product designer, chief executive and co-founding member of the d.school faculty with over 20 years of experience. He also loves math, motorcycles and making things. Klebahn brought two out of three of those interests to bear when he created a new category of sportswear by way of a high-performance shoe — a snowshoe — for his product design master’s thesis. He went on to found the Atlas Snowshoe Company, which remains the leader in snowshoe design and technology. Klebahn sold Atlas and became the head of Sales and Marketing for the clothing brand, Patagonia in 2000. He then went on to be named the CEO of the iconic bag company, Timbuk2 in 2007. Both opportunities gave him extensive experience in brand turn-around, design and innovation.

He holds a B.A. in Physics from Wesleyan University (1988) and a Master’s degree in Product Design from Stanford University (1991).

Dan Klein

Dan Klein is a Lecturer in Management at Stanford University. Klein teaches improvisation full time at Stanford University where he is a faculty member of the Drama Department and the Graduate School of Business.

Klein partners with multiple different corporations, such as Cisco, Oracle, Nestle, Visa, ING, Barclay’s Global Investments, Randstad, Nobel Biocare, and many more.

Risto Sarvas

Risto Sarvas is Professor of Practice and Head of the Information Networks program at Aalto University. Risto has a colourful history overlapping design, business, technology, and society.

The common denominator between these three roles is his endless enthusiasm to figure out how technology and society are intertwined: as a culture, in politics, in business, as well as in everyday life.

His research, teaching, and service design work have received several awards and much popularity.

Risto Sarvas holds a doctorate from Helsinki University of Technology in Media Technology.

Jeremy Utley

Jeremy Utley is the Director of Executive Education at Stanford d.school. In this role, he advises professionals and organizations on how to imbed the tools of design thinking and cultivate an innovative organizational culture.

He also teaches the celebrated d.leadership and LaunchPad classes, advanced d.school courses focused on creating real-world impact with the tools of design.

Jeremy Utley is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin’s Red McComb’s School of Business (2005) and the Stanford University Graduate School of Business (2009).

Program Fee and Registration

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