The USI EMBA is a modular, advanced master in management degree, taught in English, by the exceptional international faculty at Università della Svizzera italiana. Participants meet once a month in Lugano for four days, from Thursday to Sunday, over a period of fourteen months. The program’s flexible format allows managers and executives to complete all of the courses while working full time. The degree ends with the opportunity for participants to apply their new knowledge and skills: under the guidance of a professor, they carry out a three-month keystone consulting project.

USI EMBA distinctive features

  • Distinguished, international faculty with extensive experience: both from leading international business schools and from strategic consulting companies around the world.
  • Personalized learning experience: thanks to the small class size of fifteen to twenty participants, exchanges between participants and faculty are meaningful and tutoring ensures that each individual gains the maximum from the courses.
  • Tailored advanced courses: out of a list of proposed courses, the participants will select collectively four of them.
  • Balance between theory, concepts, and applied learning: permanent and guest instructors share their knowledge and guide participants in the practical application of new concepts and competences.
  • Outstanding location: a breathtakingly beautiful setting for inspired learning.


Core courses

Quantitative Methods
Using quantitative tools to analyze business information and to develop a company’s strategy is a requirement for business leaders. This course covers an introduction to probability, statistics, optimization, all used in understanding business trends and improving efficiency.

This course provides the necessary information and tools to understand financial accounting requirements and reporting. In addition, it offers an introduction to the useful concepts and frameworks that form the basis of managerial accounting.

How does the current economic climate affect companies? This course provides an understanding of the newest insights from micro-economics and game theory. It also explains the influence of macro economics on the business environment.

Organizational Behavior and Leadership
How do individuals, groups and organizations learn? Why do some groups perform well while other don’t? What is leadership and how can you become a leader? These are the type of questions that will be discussed in OB.

Without a market, is there any point in having a product? Understanding consumers, competitors and product development is critical to most businesses. Moreover, in today’s increasingly global market branding takes on a new dimension. Finally, this course looks at the channels and new tools available for product promotion.

Human Resources Management
Hiring is critical for most organizations, but how do you get it right? What is performance and how do you evaluate it? How do you create the right incentives for your valued employees? This course looks at all these aspects of managing employees.

Understanding the finances of a company is essential. This course teaches the logic underlying the firm’s financial decisions: investment, financing, and payout policies.

How can a company compete effectively in its market? Using conceptual frameworks to better understand the external environment – competition and barriers – as well as internal drivers for a sustainable competitive advantage are the focus of this course.

Operations Management
How can you develop reliable yet flexible supply chains? Where is the best location for production? How and why would you introduce quality systems in your organization? These are some of the issues dealt with in this course.

Entrepreneurship and Intrapreneurship
Creating new enterprises is vital for the economy, and so are the processes inside organizations for creating innovative products and services. In this course the discussion will be around creation of new companies as well as ways in which existing organizations can stay or become entrepreneurial again.

Advanced courses

While the core courses are the cornerstone of the program, the advanced courses, offered towards the end of the 18-month period, give participants the opportunity to take a more in-depth view on selected topics and issues. Using their negotiation and leadership skills, the Executive MBA students will have the chance to exert their influence on the choice of the advanced courses. The list of advanced courses proposed by internal and external professors consists of:

  • Business Analytics (included Risk Management)
  • Business Law
  • Change Management
  • Corporate Restructuring
  • Innovation and Creativity
  • International Business
  • Lean Six Sigma (included Agile Management)
  • Managerial Decision Making
  • Project Management
  • Raising finance in International Capital Markets
  • Strategic Communication

Keystone project

Once the core-curriculum has been completed, the participants, with the help of the relevant professors, finalize their project focus. The 3-month keystone project is generally done inside the EMBA participant’s company. An integral part of the advanced management learning experience, the project positions the participant as a consultant. Using their new skills and professional experience, the participants will then work on a strategic issue for their company under the guidance of a USI Professor.

Seminars, conferences and workshop

In the last few years we have been organizing seminars with senior managers from different industries, such as chemical, banking, pharmaceutical, fashion or the telecom industry. These University seminars will be open to the program participants in addition to the special seminars and talks organized with international and local speakers.


Global in scope, regional in focus. Global in scope is the collaboration with an international faculty using strategic case studies from all over the world. Regional in focus means having a personalized and applied learning experience due to the small class size and based on the Swiss tradition of excellence.

Our approach accelerates intellectual development, gives greater strategic vision and immediate applicable knowledge. It is practical, focused on group work, practice-based learning and self-reflection. You use and build on your own experiences to improve your leadership skills and manage complex projects.

Assignments, balanced between practice and theory, business simulations, small group work activities with classmates from diverse backgrounds and experiences are some distinctive features of the USI EMBA design.

You will return from each module to your organization with new skills to better identify, frame, and solve complex business problems; the confidence to make important business decisions in an uncertain and rapidly changing environment; and the leadership skills to drive fundamental change in your organization and industry. The USI EMBA also allows you to test your new skills under the expert guidance of USI’s top faculty during the keystone project at the end of the program.



Giorgio Berner
President of Camera di Commercio Svizzera in Italia

Maurizio Camponovo
Honorary Chairman HR Ticino

Gianluca Colombo
Professor and CO-Director EMBA, Faculty of Economics, USI

Gianluca Carnabuci
Professor and CO-Director EMBA, Faculty of Economics, USI

Umberto Giovine
Entrepreneur and Founder of the “Associazione Talento nella Vita”


Daniele Lotti
Head of EOC Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale and President of SES, Società Elettrica Sopracenerina SA

Jean Pierre Pedrazzini
Egon Zehnder International (Suisse) SA

Julia Renaux
USI EMBA Representative, Client Relationship Manager

Judith Eberl
Head of Training & Development at BSI SA, Switzerland

Beatrice Fasana Arnaboldi
Managing Director Sandro Vanini SA, Switzerland


Truly international faculty

All of our highly experienced and qualified academics have international backgrounds and experiences across Europe and beyond. The USI EMBA faculty members are selected for their excellence in teaching and applied research, their experience working with business and governments and, last but not least, their teaching in executive education programs at top business schools.

They are experts in helping executives apply the latest management theory to their work and they take a multidisciplinary approach to their subjects, encouraging participants to do the same. Additional external faculty from well-reputed business schools offer a number of the advanced courses and teach a few core courses.



Professor of Entrepreneurship and Management at USI.


Professor of Operations Management at USI. PhD (MIT Sloan), M. Sc. (MIT), M. Sc. (USP)…


Professor of Strategic Management at USI. Co-Founder of the USI EMBA. PhD (Copenhagen), M. Sc. …


Professor of Organization and Management at USI. PhD (Bologna), M. Sc. (Bologna).


Associate Professor of Organization and Management at USI. PhD (Amsterdam), M. Sc. (Genova), M. Sc. (Carlo Cattaneo).


Visiting Professor of Quantitative Methods. PhD (London Business School), M. Sc. (LSE). Kostis …


Visiting Professor of Economics. Professor of Economic Policy at the University of Parma. M. Sc. …


Professor of Finance at USI. PhD (Harvard), M. Sc. (HEC Paris). Senior Chair and Managing Director, Swiss Finance Institute


Paolo Besani, EMBA
Partner HDPB srl and Chairman Innovation Mould srl

Jean Pierre Blaison
Human Resources Director, Amministratore Delegato Richemont Italia SpA

Riccardo Braglia
CEO and Managing Director Helsinn Holding SA

Michele Buttazzoni
Group Integrated Logistics Director, LGI Managing Director, Luxury Goods International SA

Francesco Caporali, MBA
Freelance consultant, former Director of Gartner Consulting, Milan

Dr. Marco Cavadini
Business Developer – Entrepreneur, PhD Technical Science ETH Zürich

Dario Duse, MBA
Chairman and CEO Italiana Pellets SpA (Biomass and energy producer), Pavia, Operating partner Ambienta Sgr (Private Equity), Milano

Cristiano Gellera, MBA
GCC Suisse Sagl, Studio di Ingegneria Gestionale

Raimondo Gissara
Founder & Partner at #be

Luca Esposito
Insight and SHI EMEA Account Manager, Oracle

Monica Ferrario 
Country Manager Kilpatrick Group Sa.

Andrea Frei
Head HR B-Source

Daniela Fusar Poli
National Sales Manager ASSOS of Switzerland, Cyclist – Italian National Team

Michele Genovesi
General Manager Ginsana SA

Stephen Norman
Senior Vice President Group Marketing Coordination, PSA Peugeot Citroën

Daniele Lotti
Head of SES – Società Elettrica Sopracenerina, Head of EOC – Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale

Santiago Imperatrice
CEO & Founder Latitude 46
Digital Marketing

Prof. Mauro Baranzini
Professor Emeritus Università della Svizzera italiana

Marco Cerulli
Civil Engineer & Risk Manager
Consultant & Coach for Managers & Leaders
Management Consulting Services

Vincenzo Martino
BSI: Senior Vice President Group HR Head

Marco Pozzo, EMBA
E-business Director – Zegna Group

Alexander Rehm
Owner & CEO at RLD Rehm Leadership Development

Cristina Spagna
President and Managing Director of Kilpatrick Group

Emmanuel Toniutti, PhD
Chairman International Ethics Consulting Group

Ryan Vannin
Founder of Plastical sagl

Pieralvise Zorzi
Senior Marketing Consultant

Sebastiano Cobianco
CEO Ex Machina SAGL

Ronnie Kessel
CEO Kessel Auto Sto arrivando!, Owner Kessel Racing, CEO Kessel Immobiliare, CEO Kesmon Meccanica


USI Università della Svizzera italiana

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