Program Experience

Highlights and Key Outcomes

In Business Model Innovation in the Age of AI, you will:

  • Uncover within your organization currently unidentified ways to dramatically improve profitability and productivity
  • Improve your ability to get organizational buy-in and execute on new business models that often rely on new technologies, most recently on AI
  • Learn how to conduct an audit of your current business model and generate ideas for innovations, as well as how to leverage AI in the process
  • Identify parts of the business model with the most potential for AI adoption
  • Learn a systematic framework for evaluating, experimenting with, and prototyping your ideas
  • Develop defense mechanisms beyond intellectual property protection
  • Master a framework for driving and managing innovative change in your firm
  • Discover how to turn disruptive technologies into profitable businesses within large firms

Experience & Impact

A Systematic Framework: Discover a structured process that eliminates guesswork when designing a business model.

Most organizations systematically and rigorously maintain and monitor key metrics such as quarterly financial statements, productivity levels, and market position. But geopolitical, technological, and socioeconomic changes upend business as usual, and the resulting economic fallout has given companies an opportunity to thoroughly reexamine and even transform their business models. To make the path ahead clearer, Business Model Innovation in the Age of AI helps participants unlock this potential by developing a process for innovation that can be managed and turned into a driver of growth.

Unlike innovation that involves the creation of new products, services, or technologies, this brand of business model innovation can come from anywhere in the company. It requires fewer resources and less time to implement and can result in innovations that are far more profitable and transformative than product- or technology-driven ones.

Embrace Failure: Professor Serguei Netessine says failure is part of the process when innovating a business model.

Business Model Innovation in the Age of AI provides a systematic framework that relies on practical management rather than startup agility or luck. You can begin applying this framework to your own business during the program, conducting an audit of your current models and identifying areas for potential innovations as well as effective AI applications. You will also learn a process for experimentation that addresses weaknesses in proposed business models and experiment with those models to quantify their value and viability. Working in small groups, you will apply class learnings to a real company.

Because the critical last step in the process is implementation, you will be immersed in a half-day simulation on change leadership, strengthening your ability to get buy-in and drive change in your organization. You and your team will act as consultants to a company going through a change effort, working to successfully sell that effort to those in the organization. This powerful learning experience, a highlight of the program, allows you to apply new approaches, learn from real-time feedback, and hone your skills.

Led by Professor Serguei Netessine, a global thought leader in business model innovation and an Amazon Scholar who applies research to help solve technical strategy problems, this program also leverages the expertise of other Wharton faculty who specialize in big data, organizational change, AI, business ecosystems, and digital disruption. In addition, successful business model innovation practitioners will share their experience and insights with participants in two highly interactive sessions. By the end of the program, you will have the tools and skills needed to create value in your organization and to better position it in your market and industry.

Business Model Audit: Uncover within your organization currently unidentified ways to dramatically improve profitability.

Session topics include:

  • The Imperative of Business Model Innovation in the Age of AI
  • The Language of Business Models
  • The Risk-Driven Business Model Approach
  • Opportunities and Challenges of Digital Transformation
  • Creating a Culture of Innovation: An Actionable Framework for Business Model Innovation
  • AI and Workplace Transformation: Key Concepts, Hands-On and Implications
  • Leading and Managing Innovative Change: Simulation and Lecture
  • Platform Ecosystems
  • Lean Development and Discovery-Driven Planning
  • The Better Place: Group Case Work
  • Teaming for Innovation with Humans and AI

Post-Program Webinar

Continue your learning post-program by joining a one-hour webinar hosted by Professor Serguei Netessine. Professor Netessine will check-in to see how you have put the program takeaways into action and answer questions that have come up for you.

This is also a great opportunity to reconnect with your fellow program participants. The date and time of your post-program webinar will be announced in communication sent after your program concludes.

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Here’s a justification letter you can edit and send to your supervisor to help you make the case for attending this Wharton program.

Due to our application review period, applications submitted after 12:00 p.m. ET on Friday for programs beginning the following Monday may not be processed in time to grant admission. Applicants will be contacted by a member of our Client Relations Team to discuss options for future programs and dates.

Who Should Attend

This program is designed for executives who are experiencing significant changes in their markets, anticipating more nimble and robust competition, and/or facing profit margins that are under pressure. The curriculum is particularly relevant for business unit leaders who have been tasked with finding new avenues for growth within an existing product line, service, or geographic territory. C-suite-level executives, and board members seeking to maintain their organizations’ relevance and standing in their industry will also benefit.

Job titles may include:

  • Managing Director, Regional Director, Country Manager
  • Senior Vice President, Vice President
  • Senior Director
  • Director of Operations
  • Director of Group Strategy and Digital
  • Director of Business Development
  • Innovation, R&D Manager

Fluency in English, written and spoken, is required for participation in Wharton Executive Education programs.

Plan your stay in Philadelphia

Plan Your Stay

This program is held at the Steinberg Conference Center located on the University of Pennsylvania campus in Philadelphia. Meals and accommodations are included in the program fees. Learn more about planning your stay at Wharton’s Philadelphia campus.

Group Enrollment

To further leverage the value and impact of this program, we encourage companies to send cross-functional teams of executives to Wharton. We offer group-enrollment benefits to companies sending four or more participants.


Serguei Netessine

Serguei Netessine, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Academic Director

Dhirubhai Ambani Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Professor of Operations, Information, and Decisions; Senior Vice Dean for Innovation and Global Initiatives, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Business model innovation, operational excellence and entrepreneurship

Rahul Kapoor

Rahul Kapoor, PhDSee Faculty Bio

David W. Hauck Professor; Professor of Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Innovation, technology management and strategy, industry evolution, firm boundaries, business ecosystems

Marissa King

Marissa King, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Alice Y. Hung President’s Distinguished Professor; Professor of Health Care Management; Professor of Management, The Wharton School

Nancy Rothbard

Nancy Rothbard, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Deputy Dean; David Pottruck Professor; Professor of Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Emotion and identity, work motivation and engagement, work-life and career development

Roy Rosin

Roy Rosin, MBASee Faculty Bio

Chief Innovation Officer, Penn Medicine

Research Interests: Chronic disease management, clinician behavior, medication adherence, physical activity, mhealth and wearables

Scott Snyder

Scott Snyder, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Chief Digital Officer, EVERSANA; Senior Fellow, Management Department, The Wharton School; Adjunct Faculty, The Moore School of Engineering, University of Pennsylvania; Co-author Goliath’s Revenge

Prasanna Tambe

Prasanna Tambe, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Associate Professor of Operations, Information and Decisions, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Economics of IT labor, technological change, and labor markets

Valery Yakubovich

Valery Yakubovich, PhDSee Faculty Bio

Executive Director, The Mack Institute for Innovation Management, University of Pennsylvania


I took Business Model Innovation because I wanted to expand my thinking and discover if there was more to innovation beyond a product-centric approach. I’ve been with my company for over 23 years, and in that time, what I learned, I learned by doing on the job. As a manufacturer, our approach at the company has always been very product-centric. I enrolled in the program because I thought I could learn something new and expand my thinking. I most certainly did.

Business Model Innovation helped me see a new way to create and sustain a competitive advantage beyond our products and the demand side of our business. It opened my eyes up to new possibilities.

I felt the program struck a perfect balance between depth and breadth. I learned new frameworks that helped structure my larger thinking, such that I could pursue individual concepts and ideas in greater detail afterwards. In other words, the program functioned as a springboard that encouraged my learning process long after. The entire teaching team was fantastic. I want to especially mention Serguei Netessine and Scott Snyder.

I’m part of Wharton’s General Management Program (GMP) and I can honestly say that every course has been great. Business Model Innovation was really impactful for me and one of my favorites.”

Phil Kim Chief Strategy & Creative Officer, Universal Nutrition

I'm the founder and president of DMD America, Inc. I offer pharmaceutical and biotech companies a data solution around drug product and pricing information. Our company has had a great run, but as you get bigger, you get nervous about somebody else coming along with a better strategy or way of executing. That’s why I took Business Model Innovation.

To my delight, Professor Netessine and the other faculty taught me how to think differently, so we can protect our company’s future.

My key takeaway really was understanding how to redefine our business model as it relates to our overall and long-term strategy, and we’ve done quite a bit at my company since I returned from the course. The business model we were shown in the class applies to any company of any size in any industry. So we adapted our thinking, and it helped us frame the secret sauce our company has that makes customers want to work with us. It got everyone excited, and we’re not looking back. This is how we’re doing things in the future.

I’d recommend the course 100%, to any business. It would be especially good for companies who are incumbents, to challenge their thinking and clear out the cobwebs of what seems to be working now but might not work so well in six months or a year. I enjoyed the class so much that I decided to take another Wharton Executive Education course, Strategy and Management for Competitive Advantage."

Bill Little Founder and President, DMD America, Inc.

I am a senior manager of lean transformation at Westpac Banking group. My role is that of an internal consultant with the business banking division in Westpac, enabling innovative solutions and ideas in pursuit of our group CEO’s vision of becoming one of the world’s greatest service organizations.

I became interested in the Business Model Innovation course because lately one can sense that digital disruption is everywhere and forcing the traditional brick-and-mortar (incumbent) business model to change. I knew that I had to get out of that older mentality, go head-on and understand how digital is impacting today’s businesses. There is no doubt that digital is an enabler for disruptive innovations, and traditional businesses must be able to influence key stakeholders towards innovation-led growth mindset. I’ve been reading and talking with people about the subject, but it’s important to have a place where you can get a good overview of the whole and a pathway to get a deeper understanding of the subject.

The program was terrific. Professor Serguei Netessine’s set up and the delivery of the core concept and hands-on exposure were very impressive. The course revolves around business model innovation, my field of interest, however the course also is able to seamlessly introduce concepts of machine learning, platform ecosystem, patterns based on historical events, etc., that may influence innovations.

The insights you can get from the discussion with faculty members and other participants are very valuable. There were some really innovative thinkers there. Plus, we worked through potential solutions for real-world issues that some of the attendees were actually dealing with in their companies. That was a great experience.

One of the key highlights for me based on the insights from the course was exploding the myth that large incumbent businesses owing to the size are somehow helpless to move swiftly and innovate their business models. I realized that large incumbents possess great strengths and can easily audit, experiment with, fine-tune, or pivot their business models. It is quite reassuring to know from the people in the course from different industries who have taken this on and been successful.

Some of us have stayed in touch through a Slack community to brainstorm concepts and share articles and book recommendations. It’s quite helpful and keeps you motivated. Overall, I think Wharton is doing a great job with this program.”

Binu Chacko Senior Manager, Lean Transformation, Westpac Banking Corporation, Sydney, Australia

I decided to enroll in Business Model Innovation because I wanted to strengthen my understanding, and get the right tools, to drive transformational change in an organization. I was interested in capitalizing on digital opportunities and also in overcoming the challenges that digital disruption is presenting to the world.

I loved the program. I got a very clear, practical way to find paths to innovation. The course went beyond just theoretical approaches. It demonstrated how to experiment, allow oneself to risk failure, and to take learnings out of that experience. It helped change my mindset. I think we are still living in a world where failing and experimenting — when it does not directly link to a specific success — is not valued enough, and it prevents us from capitalizing on opportunities. Another topic I really enjoyed, and that I think is critical for business success, was about getting buy-in in order to drive change. The course showed me how to make a real-life impact in a business or organization.

I thought the faculty were very solid. In addition to being professionals with academic backgrounds, they work with leading companies that have gone through transformations or are in the process. This makes their teaching approach very down-to-earth, which in my experience was extremely effective.

Another strong element of the course was that the attendees were a rich blend of multi-industry, multi-functional areas and came from different leadership backgrounds and cultures. That made for a very interesting mix within the dynamic of the program. It fostered a lot of our interaction and enabled well-rounded and inspiring discussions.

I would recommend the program; in fact I’ve already recommended it to several people. I’m still very excited about the things I learned and how much the course inspired me. I think we all realize that there are big opportunities and challenges in the digital space, and Business Model Innovation is a very strong program to help you face that more effectively. I’m now considering taking another Wharton program, the Executive Negotiation Workshop.”

Manuel Dulitzky Executive leader of multinational companies, Santiago, Chile

Business Model Innovation is an incubation on the topic of business models — it gives you a really good sense of what to think about and how to begin to address challenges in bringing your ideas to market.

I am a leader in a large, well-established organization that is slowly pivoting, and was happy to see that the program is geared for someone like me. We learned best practices that are extremely relevant and timely. I picked up good ideas in every session that related to my own challenges and have been able to apply them. All of the professors brought their own unique point of view and expertise, and I truly enjoyed having such a diverse group of attendees in terms industry segments, and geographies. I learned a lot from them.

It’s a phenomenal program for someone in an organization that is trying to innovate. If that is you, I would say absolutely you should attend.”

Keyur Parikh IT Department Head, The Vanguard Group

Business Model Innovation is a novel idea. You typically think of innovation in the form of technology or products. Serguei Netessine challenged that. Innovating your business model can give you a greater advantage than coming up with a new product or service. That’s important for my company because our industry is the most disrupted one. We know it is mandatory that we innovate, not just with new initiatives and digital, but throughout the company.”

Frank Filippo EVP Print Group, Dow Jones


What is a business model?

At a very basic level, a business model is a plan for making money (or creating other value if the company is a nonprofit, for instance). At a slightly higher level, the term “business model” describes the way a company supplies products or services to the market to make money.

How can you build a profitable business model?

Simply put, a profitable business model is one in which revenue streams exceed cost structure. Because most models only become profitable at scale, it is critical to understand at what scale that will occur, and which cost/revenue components change at scale. On the other hand, there are profitable business models that are not easily scalable (e.g., a one-person consulting shop).

What is the perfect business model?

There is no such thing. A business model that works somewhere at some point in time may not work at all in another industry, country, or time. It is very difficult to predict which business models will succeed or fail, which is why it is important to experiment with them by testing various assumptions.

Can large companies innovate business models effectively?

They can if they solve three major issues:

  1. Top management needs to provide support and guidance
  2. The company must learn how to experiment
  3. The company must then learn how to pivot based on their experiments

How do the biggest corporations remain innovative?

The key to sustaining innovation at a large company is to continuously review the current business model, seeking any inefficiencies. This process is called a Business Model Audit (as detailed in the book The Risk-Driven Business Model), and it allows the company to constantly challenge its current business model to prepare for the future.

What company has the most innovative business model?

Timing is everything in terms of innovative business models. A given model may seem innovative at a certain time, but, if successful, it often becomes mainstream and eventually inefficient. More than 100 years ago, Sears pioneered the catalogue business model and Ford innovated the way to manufacture cars by creating a vertically integrated business model with an assembly line. Their success led to industry replication, and they became mainstream. Today, Uber’s and Airbnb’s business models are highly innovative.

What are some examples of disruptive business models?

Recent business models that disrupted entire industries include peer-to-peer marketplaces (think eBay), sharing economy (Airbnb is a prime example), on-demand services (like Uber), gig economy (such as, and subscription business models (think Spotify and Dollar Shave Club). Over time, many of these business models have become mainstream, and some prove unworkable.

What makes business model innovation so difficult in a large company?

Changing a business model often requires major changes in an organization: some lines of business can be eliminated, organizational boundaries can be adjusted, and new people with new skills may be needed for new lines of business. Naturally, the people whose livelihoods may depend on the old business model will continue to support it and doggedly resist change.

Date, Location, & Fees

If you are unable to access the application form, please email Client Relations at

November 11 – 15, 2024Philadelphia, PA$12,500

May 12 – 16, 2025Philadelphia, PA$12,500

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