The Digital Future Initiative will focus the School’s research and teaching on how technology is altering all industries and the fabric of daily life. The initiative will bring together hundreds of faculty members from Columbia Business School and Columbia University with corporate leaders from across industries to help organizations, governments, and communities optimize and accelerate the technological advances of the future.

“We’re in the midst of a large-scale technological transformation, with new advances accelerating innovative ways of thinking and practicing business on a global scale,” said Jake Reynolds, a Columbia Business School board member and founding member of the Digital Future Initiative Advisory Board. “As these technological breakthroughs are commercialized and implemented, leaders across industries will need to adapt quickly to mitigate risk and maximize returns in the years ahead. Columbia Business School, with its deep expertise and ongoing research in this space, will provide businesses and leaders with the tools and skills they need to succeed in today’s data-fueled, digital economy.”

The Digital Future Initiative is the latest step in Dean Costis Maglaras’s work to ensure that students and business leaders are prepared for an evolving technological landscape. Over the last several years, Columbia Business School has transformed its curriculum – almost half of the electives that MBA students take today were created in the last 5 years – and the research of its faculty, to help tomorrow’s business leaders to navigate and shape the future of business.

“Our goal is to promote research that informs practice through dialogue and debate between industry practitioners, faculty, and students,” said Costis Maglaras, Dean and David and Lyn Silfen Professor of Business at Columbia Business School. “The effect of technology in all sectors of the economy, all aspects of our lives, and to society is profound. Today, all of our graduates are entering careers that either focus on digital technology or are being reimagined through its use. All businesses are technology businesses, so business schools must fundamentally change how they educate and what they study.”

The initiative will consist of specialized research areas that address key topics like digital finance with the creation of the Briger Family Digital Finance Lab, algorithmic economy, digital platforms, retailing and digital supply chains, AI and automation, and media. The labs will be led by faculty and will be supported by a comprehensive cross-practice team of student researchers, research scientists, and industry fellows.