Shaping the next generation of inclusive finance leaders
The Harvard Business School (HBS)-Accion Program on Strategic Leadership in Inclusive Finance brings together leaders at the forefront of economic and financial inclusion for six days of intensive in-person leadership training, networking, and knowledge sharing at the HBS campus in Boston.
The HBS Executive Education learning model immerses participants in a transformational experience that combines the best of strategic thinking with the most important developments spanning financial inclusion, digital technology, and impact investing to build a deeper understanding of the opportunities and challenges in the years ahead. Participants include leaders from financial service providers, fintechs, government, regulatory authorities, central banks, global investors, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies, nonprofits, and beyond. Gain a comprehensive understanding across multiple sectors of the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead, enabling you to reimagine your company’s role in driving inclusivity.
Using the case study method pioneered by HBS, participants will deep dive into key decisions facing leaders of innovative businesses, ranging from a groundbreaking fintech bank in Brazil, to a pay-as-you-go solar power company in East Africa, to China’s fastest-growing e-commerce company. Throughout the course, you will have the opportunity to engage directly with some of the case protagonists, gaining vital experience from the people who have navigated these real-world situations.
Program participants from across the private and public sector share a commitment to advance economic equity and inclusion globally, and include banking and microfinance executives, technology entrepreneurs, investors, financial regulators, managers of development finance institutions, specialized network leaders, corporate sustainability professionals, and beyond. In 2023, the program cohort of 60 people included participants from more than 30 countries, creating a truly global experience.
The program addresses key strategic issues arising from the dual goals of economic and social value creation:
- How new business models in this space—especially technology-enhanced models—succeed or flounder.
- How to successfully compete in highly competitive markets.
- How to balance social mission with financial considerations.
- How to stay abreast of rapidly evolving products and delivery channels.
- How inclusive financial service providers are helping vulnerable populations enter the digital economy.
Through guided case discussions, led by Harvard Business School’s expert faculty, participants work together to identify practical business strategies from the experiences of leading institutions. Prior preparation of the cases is essential, reinforced by study groups in the morning before classes. Participation in class is central to the learning experience. By taking a stand and reflecting on reactions from peers, participants think in ways they would not have otherwise. These novel insights then become lessons to apply to their own institution upon returning from the program.