One of the reasons why prospective students interested in health care should consider Harvard Business School (HBS) is its amazing location.  The Greater Boston area is full of companies, hospitals and universities focused on health care, technology and science. And, with the final beams of the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) going up on Western Ave, across the street from HBS, the concept of the Allston “Innovation Corridor” is visibly well underway.

To help celebrate the new proximity of the two schools, HBS and SEAS co-hosted an event during the Boston-wide celebration, HUBweek.  This year’s HBS-SEAS symposium, “Engineering + Entrepreneurship: Innovation in Health Care” specifically focused on the intersection of engineering, digital health and precision medicine, and was open to the public.

There were a number of great presentations, including a case discussion on “Adaptive Platform Trials: The Clinical Trial of the Future?” led by HBS Professor Ariel Stern to a room of nearly 150 attendees. The case introduced the protagonist, Dr. Brian Alexander, who is the president and CEO of AGILE Research Foundation which recently launched an adaptive platform trial to find better treatment options for glioblastomas.

During the case discussion, Professor Stern talked about the efficiency improvements seen by the adaptive platform and also presented some of the challenges, including how they were going to finance the trial. The conversation engaged the audience and they were eager to provide additional insight for Dr. Alexander who was present to help field questions related to the case.

The HBS case method approach fosters these types of conversations to give participants a perspective into the challenges faced by a business leader, and encourages everyone to participate.  And, while there are no “right” answers, there are smart and informed questions and comments that come out of these discussions.

HBS has seen an increased interest in health technology over the years and with the newly-announced MS/MBA joint degree program with SEAS we are looking forward to even more collaboration between the two Harvard schools. To learn more about SEAS or the joint degree program, please visit the website.