Business in Action: Local Companies in a Global World

Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Business in Action: Local Companies in a Global World

  • Host University

    Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona

  • Location

    Barcelona, Spain

  • Area of Study

    Business Administration, Entrepreneurship, Management, Peace and Conflict Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    Please note that unlike all other 45 hour courses at the UAB, this course meets only once per week for twice as long (3 hours and 40 minutes), and will include visits to local companies.

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview


    To build a career in the international corporate world or as an entrepreneur it is helpful to follow a program that offers you the experience of analyzing and understanding how European businesses operate.

    The goal of this module is to gain an insight into the different strategies and operational activities of Catalan and Spanish institutions and companies working within the European framework. Students will maintain direct contact with the business and economic world in Barcelona where, with the full personal support and collaboration of the Instructor, they will gain hands-on experience of observing, researching, interacting with and analyzing a range of local companies. Direct personal interviews with Business Managers are designed to supply students with first-hand, unique testimonials related to managerial experiences, competitive advantages and daily operations. The real life experience of this course helps students to bridge the gap between theory and practice. Each visit is prepared in advance following
    specific guidelines.



    - Fluent in English

    - Interest to the business implementations in the real world in Europe and in Catalonia in particular



    1. Understand the European and Spanish Business Environment
    2. Identify key issues facing business in Europe regarding markets, regulations, and crosscultural challenges
    3. Analyze differences in strategies and business models for adaptation to changes
    4. Understand sector developments in Europe and compare with home sectors
    5. Gain knowledge of different business implementations in the Barcelona Area
    6. Discover the main characteristics of the local economy and business developments
    7. Develop relationship skills via interviews and meetings with local managers
    8. Analyze key practical business issues for development in the Barcelona and European environment



    1. Introduction to the concept of Enterprise in Catalonia area

    2. Entrepreneurship culture, initiatives, and roles

    3. Predominant Business activities: market and competition situation

    4. Sector analysis

          1. Public sector

                 - Local or regional governments institutions, managing services or doing activities related to the business and economic world within the Barcelona and Catalonia area

                 - Utilities and services companies witch activity has impact to business and companies

          2. Financial sector

                  - Stock Exchange Services

                  - Finance Services

         3. Private sector

                  - Fast-moving consumer goods

                  - Industrial sector

                  - Retail

                  - Sports clubs

    Company Examples to visit: Mercabarna, Barcelona Stock Exchange, Barcelona Studies Program at the City Hall, Barcelona Metropolitan Transport, AGBAR, FC Barcelona. Each visit will be prepared by the students in order to get highest profitability using the following schema:

    Pre- and post-visit tasks:

    · In-class work before the visit

    Topics to be addressed include researching background information on the company,
    understanding the company’s target market, identifying the stakeholders and preparing
    questions or observations to be assessed during the visit.

    · In-class work after the visit

    After each visit the student researches, writes and presents a report related to the most
    significant factors of each company. In addition students will be asked to prepare a
    presentation on the company including objectives, culture, success, failures, future, Swot
    analysis, etc.

Course Disclaimer

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations


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