The Gordon Institute of Business Science
Founded in 2000, the University of Pretoria’s Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) has been built around its mission to significantly improve individual and organisational performance, primarily in the South African environment, through the provision of high-quality business and management education.
GIBS is named in recognition of the contribution to South African business and a significant endowment to GIBS by Sir Donald Gordon. The GIBS ethos is rooted in a belief that business is a force for good, a force for positive change and a force for the economic development South Africa so desperately needs. A conviction of the institution is that business should work closely together, as well as co-operatively, with government and civil society to create a better, more equal South Africa of which we can all be proud. GIBS, as organisation, is philosophically close to business and this is enacted in everything they do.
While GIBS’ primary role focuses on improving individual and organisations’ performance through business education, the institution aims to play a far broader role in South African society. Given its context on the dynamic African continent, GIBS focuses on general management. The institution believes it is the ability to lead and manage complex organisations in diverse environments that will make the most meaningful contribution to the greater good.
Over the years GIBS has refined its management education experience, be it a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) degree or a customised in-company programme, to affect behaviour change through the acquisition of knowledge and skills. Impact is core to how GIBS programmes are designed, delivered and assessed, and students are equipped to take up the reins of leadership to successfully propel businesses forward in the context of a dynamic and changing world environment. The school prides itself on producing leaders who can manage cross-functional teams, who understand diversity, who appreciate the societal impact of business and who engender a sustainable approach. These leaders are agile, inclusive and global in their thinking and attitudes; but their roots are firmly in Africa.
Anchored in this core philosophy, the business school’s blended-learning approach has yielded dividends within a relatively short period of time, garnering global recognition from organisations like the prestigious UK Financial Times, which, since 2003, has ranked GIBS among the Financial Times’ top 50 business schools for Executive Education Open and Custom Programmes.
In May 2014, GIBS ranked 42nd out of the top 70 open programme providers, up from 43rd place in 2013, while in custom programmes, GIBS was ranked 53rd out of 80 customised programme providers – the highest ranked African business school and the 11th time GIBS has appeared in these rankings. The GIBS MBA was ranked among the top 100 business schools globally in the prestigious Financial Times Executive MBA Rankings in October 2014. GIBS is the only business school in Africa to appear in this ranking.
GIBS works with more than 6 000 executives, managers and scholars every year across multiple countries. From a world-class campus situated in the heart of Johannesburg, one of the greatest African cities, to internationally-recognised faculty and associates, as well as unique learning methodologies, GIBS aims to offer students a transformative learning experience.
As an organisation which preaches action, impact and effectiveness, it’s significant that GIBS focuses less on marketing campaigns and bold promises than it does on consistently meeting – and exceeding – expectations as the institution strengthens its efforts to be the leading business school in South Africa. That’s the essence of this dynamic business school: Being in the driving seat. Taking opportunities. Fulfilling the needs of society by moulding the leaders of tomorrow. Remembering the past, but always looking forward.