IDC logo 58.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
A new master’s degree that combines the creativity required to develop
innovations in new media with the wherewithal as to how to mass-market such
ideas globally will open this fall at the Interdisciplinary Center of Herzliya,
where an undergraduate program has been promoting new media advancements for
both virtual and in-person use for the past three years.
founder and co-director of IDC’s Media Innovation Lab, miLab, said the new track
will begin receiving its first students this October, in a laboratory where
undergraduates already are learning to integrate social media tools with
physical interactions, in order to find answers to familial challenges, health
choices and business ideas.
miLab was created as a center for research
and prototyping and aims to foster “the field of human-computer interaction,”
its mission statement said. Within the lab, the new graduate program will foster
an environment where students can both generate their ideas and gain practical
entrepreneurship skills, according to Zuckerman, who himself holds a masters and
PhD from the similarly minded Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media
“This program is the first of its kind in Israel,” he said of the
new master’s track, called Global Masters of Business Administration in
Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “First they’re innovators. We try to look for
people with passions for creating something. And then through our special
guidance and special program they will learn not only how to create a unique
idea but also how to create a successful business out of it.”
MBA programs with strong emphases on innovation and entrepreneurship certainly
thrive in Israel, the degree at IDC has a specific basis in new media – in both
creating and marketing the technology. One similar – and more longstanding –
program across the Atlantic Ocean is the MIT Media Lab’s Entrepreneurship
Program, which offers MS and PhD degrees rather than MBAs, but likewise provides
students the ability to “translate promising ideas at the Media Lab from
compelling prototypes towards real-world products or services,” according to the
IDC already has a general Global MBA program with
business and entrepreneurial tracks, but this new, 18- month degree path within
miLab gives students “a possibility to change local industry,” Zuckerman
“Until now most programs are separated between the innovator and
the entrepreneur,” he said. “We want a program that combines the two
Like the general Global MBA program, this track is entirely in
English and has attracted applicants from Israel and all over the world from a
wide range of careers and undergraduate disciplines – from computer science,
design, arts and physics – and students will have an opportunity to engage with
industry professionals regularly, according to Zuckerman.
All of the
students will participate in final projects in pairs, working individually with
two mentors from venture capital firms and places like Google, Microsoft, Amdocs
and Better Place, and creating marketable ideas for business and social
“We have all of these relationships already set up,”
One social entrepreneurship project already planned for
this upcoming semester is conceptualizing “the future of the classroom” –
incorporating new media tools to create the most effective classroom setting
possible. Meanwhile, Zuckerman said he also plans on having students explore the
possibilities in emerging markets with strong senses of innovation, like those
in India and China.
Zuckerman, who specializes, among other things, in
physical-digital interactive systems that motivate participation, has made this
topic one of the primary focuses of the undergraduate miLab program so far,
which he runs with co-director Guy Hoffman.
The undergraduates study in
the lab during the third year of their degree in Interactive
In order to test out the graduate program before
launching this year’s new track, Zuckerman and Hoffman ran a condensed pilot
course about eight months ago for students already enrolled in IDC’s regular
Global MBA program.
“This took that beginning thought process of trying
to create a new innovation and put a business flare on it. That was what was
very distinct here,” Adit Moskovitch, one of the pilot course students
During Moskovitch’s shortened program, she and her project team
conceptualized a home music system that would automatically turn on as residents
enter their “smart home” and could be adjusted depending on the people’s moods,
Moskovitch said she particularly enjoyed how industry
experts came for visits and felt that the new track would be particularly
beneficial to Israelis.
“Israelis a lot of times have wonderful ideas but
don’t always know how to put people in the shoes of the users of these ideas,” she added.