Information Pertaining to IIPM
Point 1: Relationship between IMI, BBS, EBMS, and GCME
A number of blogs have pointed out that the websites of the International Management Institute, the Barcelona Business School, and the European Business Management School look suspiciously similiar. Well one reason is the fact that all of these websites are designed by the same man. His name is Thierry Kirschstein and this is his website.
Not only that the Dean of the International Management Institute and the Director of the Barcelona Business School are the same person, someone by the name of Freddy Kirschstein. He also happens to be the Dean of the Global Business Academy, also based in Antwerp. This Global Business Academy also features in the list of websites designed by Thierry Kirschstein.
I emailed my friend who lives in Barcelona (he grew up there) and attended ESADE, one of the best business schools in Europe. He has never heard of the Barcelona Business School.
I contacted the International Management Institute as well as Marc van Gastel, someone who lists teaching assignments at the IMI and EBMS in his resume.
The email I received from IMI
Date: Mon, 17 Oct 2005 14:51:30 +0200
Thank you for your email message.
Please be informed that an academic cooperation agreement between IMI and IIPM exists. As a consequence some of our
Faculty members are going to IIPM regularly.
The email from Marc Van Gastel
Tue, 18 Oct 2005 21:21:01 +0200
Subject: Re: Request for Information
From: "Marc Van Gastel"
Thank you for contacting us. I am indeed one of the faculty professors, teaching Business Intelligence, CRM, Strategic Information Systems, e-Commerce, e-Business and Balanced Scorecards.
To get more detailed information about the institute’s focus, status og degree, etc... I would like to refer you to our dean, Prof. Kirschstein. The email address : firstname.lastname@example.org .
Prof. Marc Van Gastel
So there is at least one person who goes on record to say that he has taught and still teaches at the International Management Institute. Which confirms that the institute does exist in some form. But what is the status of the degree/diploma it provides?
To find out I emailed NARIC-Vlaanderen, a Belgian government organization that determines the validity of degrees offered both within and outside Belgium for use within Belgium. This is the email I received from NARIC.
Email from NARIC-Vlaanderen
Wed, 19 Oct 2005 14:29:22 +0200
From: "Onderwijs Naric"
"Patricia Michielsseune" ,
"De Coorde Christel"
Subject: Re: Message to Mr. Malfroy regarding Institute's recognition
The "International Management Institute" in Antwerp and Brussels is a very very very very very very private institution.
In earlier days this institution was called the "European University", which was a diploma mill.
The qualifications awarded by this kind of institution are NOT at all recognised by any Flemish or Belgian education authority.
Holders of such qualifications may NOT claim any academic (further studies) or civil right (access to regulated professions).
I guess that settles the question of the status of the IMI degree and by association the IIPM degree once and for all (Editorial voice: I loved how he used very multiple times. Couldn't be more emphatic than that :)).
Point 2: Association of alleged international partners with IIPM
On the IIPM website are listed the names of a number of persons who are supposed to have some sort of alliance with the institute. I emailed as many names from the list as I could asking them about their relation with the institute. Here are the emails I received, and I reproduce them.
AW: Request for Information
Date: Tue, 18 Oct 2005 16:51:45 +0200
From: "Baumberger, Roland"
Thanks for your e-mail. I have to inform you, that we do not offer any courses in IIPM but give students the chance to visit our Headquarter in Switzerland during their regular European Tour and talk about Human Resources issues within our organisation.
Hope that this is what you want to know, otherwise please feel free to contact me.
Global Human Resources
Sulzer Turbo Services
Sulzer Management Ltd.
Mon, 17 Oct 2005 15:55:14 +0200
From: "Jean-Daniel Pasche"
Subject: Rιp. : Request for Information
We refer to your e-mail and thank you for interest regarding the Swiss
Watch Industry. Our contacts with IIPM have taken place within the
following framework. We have received a delegation of students from
at our headquarters in Bienne (Switzerland) in order to present them
Swiss Watch Industry, the activities of our federation and namely our
fight against counterfeiting. We have not offered course in IIPM.
I hope this information is useful to you and remain
with best regards
Dr. J-D Pasche
Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry FH
Date: Fri, 14 Oct 2005 06:44:46 +0000
Thank you for your e-mail.
My connection with IIPM is almost nothing. I gave one lecture for them
about six years ago in Geneva, and that is all I have done for them.
In fact, I did not know that they were using my name, and have
them asking them to cease doing so.
I am sorry that I cannot give you better news, but wish you all good
your future studies.
RE: Request for Information
Date: Fri, 14 Oct 2005 10:25:56 +0200
many thanks for bringing this to my attention. I was not aware that they display my and other Nestlé executives names on their site.
We will take this up through our operation in India.
Again, suggest you contact the IIPM directly with your question.
Update & Disclaimer: I have decided to heed to the concerns of some commenters of the dangers of the emails and adddresses in the post being misused by spammers. Hence I am removing the addresses. I would also like to declare that the communication was made to me in a personal capacity and not representing the corporate position of the companies that the individuals work for.
Update #2 Mr. Christiansen wrote to me saying that since Nestle has nothing to do with IIPM, he does not wish to be mentioned in the context of this issue. I'm respecting his wishes and removing his email.