MSc in Innovation and Technology Management

Gerard Doyle, Technology Ireland Skillnet

27 June 2017

As part of the flagship Masters programme of Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet, that has been running for over 10 years, the MSc in Innovation and Technology Management aims to fill important human resource gaps in the Irish ICT sector by providing opportunities for technical and engineering graduates to develop a broad set of business, management and interpersonal tools. The aim is that participants will emerge as engineering leaders with a strategic perspective on organisational and innovation issues and challenges.

The ICT Skillnet is funded by member companies and the Training Networks Programme, an initiative of Skillnet’s funded from the National Training Fund through the Department of Education and Skills.

Why was the programme developed?
Retaining highly skilled technologists is a growing challenge and one of the best ways is to offer them management opportunities. The problem is that typically they are short on management skills. While ICT graduates have a solid foundation in technical skills they also need to develop interpersonal skills, business and management skills. Consequently, not enough technologists are reaching the higher management ranks in ICT companies.

To meet this need, we have been running a Masters in Innovation and Technology Management for the past 10 years with Dublin Institute of Technology. This is part-time outside working hours and gives participants a practical grounding in Management and Innovation and allows them to get a master’s degree.

How is it different?
It is industry-led (designed and developed with industry input) which means its content is relevant and immediately applicable to the work environment. The programme is specifically aimed at technologists wishing to develop a firmer grounding in the managerial and leadership issues facing today’s complex organisations, thereby creating an ideal opportunity to develop practical inter-disciplinary leadership and managerial skills.

Who should apply?
Participants come from a diverse range of companies in telecommunications, software, manufacturing of computer products and digital media and from a diverse range of industrial and professional backgrounds but all from within the broad ICT sector. They are mostly technical graduates with significant experience in their companies who are seeking to move their career path towards management roles. Participants span all age groups and disciplines and apart from having a primary degree, or recognised technical qualification, will not be subject to further entry requirements.

What work have previous students gone on to?
Many success stories have arisen from participation in the programme with the majority of the alumni moved into managerial roles within a very short space of time on completion of the programme. Below are some stories from past participants: 

Lisa Dunne, contract project manager
“With a technical undergraduate degree and while working in ICAN, I wanted to expand my skills into the broader areas of innovation and understand how strategy works in companies. I gained a great rounded knowledge of innovation and the far-reaching effects of how to make innovation work, from finance, supply chain to developing and launching new products both from a national and international perspective. I now have the academic credentials to match my industry knowledge and love the challenge of helping companies in various industries to face the digital challenges that lie ahead.”

Kathleen Griffin – Microsoft
“I undertook the Innovation and Technology MSc to broaden my professional thinking, gain best in practise industry insights to apply back into my field and as an investment in my future career. Overall, I gained very positive results and experiences from the course. It has enabled me to advance and lead with innovation in my professional career. The curriculum and thought-process was and still is highly relevant and I have continued to apply it directly into my everyday work. On a personal note, I gained a wonderful opportunity to meet, study and collaborate with my fellow classmates and lecturers in a positive learning environment. As a general the MSc has enabled me to broaden my perspectives. I have been able to leverage the wealth of resources from the academic research to support in solving complex business scenarios. Along with this the course provided an exposure to other industries, further developing on this awareness has enabled me to realise the potential of outside-in thinking and the importance of applying new approaches to strive for success. The MSc has certainly supported and provided me with an added confidence in my career development. I would highly recommend it as a worthwhile career investment.”

Gian Paolo Mazzocchi, FTI Consulting
“I started the programme in 2012, six years after my bachelor degree. At this time, I was employed as a technical consultant with the desire to further progress my career. However, I wasn’t particularly targeting any roles or positions, but I was curious to learn new things around the business arena rather than only narrow technical problems. This course gave me the opportunity to step back from the ordinary mindset of my day to day job, allowing me to look at things from a much broader perspective. During the programme, I was introduced to innovation disruptive dynamics that allow industries to flourish, perish or transform themselves. Each module (entrepreneurship, leadership, finance etc.) in the course had a consistent emphasis on innovation as a common denominator.”

“I got the opportunity to learn a disciplined approach behind research studies, presentations and work group analysis. Through my individual and work group assignments I have had direct exposure with different companies at executive levels. I have learnt to adopt a common business language around business strategies and operations. This built in me enough confidence for materialising my learning outcomes in practical ideas for my job and for my career development. Ultimately, I found not only good course participants but also mentors and friends for life.”

“Straight after the course in 2014 I took on a leading role as business intelligence manager in a fast-growing marketing company, and I am now BI director in a major consulting practise. The course has also provided solid credentials and knowledge that opened doors for my MBA course and several professional certifications. It is for this reasons that I would recommend this programme as a life and career changer.”

Mohamed EL-Kadi, LM Ericsson
“I started the Masters programme back in 2012. At that time, my role as a senior customer support engineer in Ericsson Ireland was focused on technical handling of customer issues, I had the chance to work with a number of Tier1 telecom operators around the globe.”

“I was really motivated to understand how big organisations run their businesses successfully and how a multinational company like Ericsson is capable of serving our huge customer base and operating in this complex and global scale. I was motivated to understand what management theories are adopted, how telcos approach R&D and innovation and how incumbent telco vendors like Ericsson drive B2B marketing and sales. I was also curious to understand how to interpret the quarterly financial reports and assess their impact on profitability and growth.”

“Spring 2012 was the time when I started to enquire about Masters programmes that could give me what I was looking for and a few colleagues in Ericsson recommended the part time Technology and Innovation Management programme in DIT. From reading the programme prospectus it was obvious that this is the one I should go for to get good breadth of management and business skills and complement my pure IT background with business and management knowledge.”

“I have to say that DIT lecturers added a lot of value to the programme, they are very knowledgeable and capable of linking theories to practical business scenarios. Just before completing my Masters on 2014 I was appointed as a Scrum Master to lead a core software team in Ericsson, the DIT programme experience was significant to this appointment. I then moved to New Product Introduction Leader role where I was responsible for planning and launching new products into leading customer markets. Last, but not least, I’m currently leading a team of experienced service delivery engineers and solution architects whose task is to sell and deliver digital business solutions to telco and IT customers in Ireland and Region Western & Central Europe. My academic study in DIT helped me a lot to pursue my career in the business and management domain.”

Peter Carragher, eir
“I started the MSc in Innovation & Technology Management at DIT in 2011. At the time, I was employed in eir as a specialist in BI and Data Analytics. The rationale behind embarking on the course was to acquire leadership qualifications and skills which would assist in career development. I was particularly interested in the programme as it was specifically designed for professionals from technology backgrounds who were looking for the skills which would help them break into more senior management roles. My career had plateaued and I recognised that I needed to develop in this area if I wanted to get promotion.”

“I found the course to be transformative. It gave me exposure to a range of areas such as Marketing, Strategy, Innovation, Commercialisation, Finance and Entrepreneurship. The lectures involved a good combination of individual and group work which facilitated peer to peer learning. The course cohort comprised highly experienced professionals who fully participated in the communal learning process. The course work was very practical and industry focussed. The workload was manageable and the lecturers were cognisant of the pressures facing part-time mature students balancing work, family and college.”

“The course was directly beneficial in the work place and helped with promotion to my current managerial role in the Analytics Centre of Excellence in eir. From a personal perspective, completing the course was hugely rewarding and gave me a taste for continuing professional development. To that end, I am currently completing an MBA at DIT.”

Where and when?
The programme is run in conjunction with DIT Aungier Street and applications are currently being taken for a September 2017 start.

Getting in touch and applications
Contact for an application form.

Closing date for applications is 15 August 2017

Further information is available here.

Anything else?
The course has been developed by companies in the Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet and is part funded by Skillnets which allows for a special annual cost of €2,950. A small investment for a major return.

The ICT Skillnet is funded by member companies and the Training Networks Programme, an initiative of Skillnets funded from the National Training Fund through the Department of Education and Skills.


Gerard Doyle is network manager for Technology Ireland Skillnet


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