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MA Food Business Management With Internship

Course Description

The MA Food Business Management course creates links between academic theory and practice and leading food and hospitality businesses. These connections will be established in the classroom, on field trips and in interactions with a range of distinguished external speakers from the industry.

The course will enable you to approach business challenges from a global perspective, integrating academic and technical knowledge, and assess situations from financial, commercial, societal and cultural standpoints. You will be able to create innovative solutions to champion food businesses and develop action plans based on rigorous theoretical frameworks that you can use in your professional careers’ to effectively manage change.

Module summaries:

Designing the Customer Experience
This module addresses the unique opportunities and challenges that the luxury hospitality industry faces when designing a customer experience. The module is underpinned by the sociological, cultural and historical perspectives of international lifestyles that determine patterns of consumption and usage.

It incorporates models and concepts drawn from new product and service development theories and innovation management forming a comprehensive understanding of ‘experience centric’ luxury and budget food production and consumption in the food service sector. Innovation can be successful when it leads to a commercial outcome such as a more efficient way of doing something or a new product and service that creates a better guest experience better than the one it seeks to replace.

The module adopts this perspective and explores the key issues that will enable the delivery of such a commercial outcome. Students explore the entire product-development process, from identifying customer needs to generating concepts, to prototyping and design to product launch.

Business Performance Analysis
In order to ensure that you are pursuing strategies and actions which will enable your business to achieve its goals, managers must be able to measure and analyse the financial, social and environmental performance of their business. In this module you will learn how to evaluate information and data available in annual reports, financial analysts' reports and companies' websites using the Triple Bottom Line approach which combines three considerations: is the company financially, socially and environmentally sustainable?

Using the principles and practices of analysis offered in this module you will be able to continuously optimise your business performance and enhance your contribution to the societies you operate in.

Responsible Value Chain Management
This module is designed to help you to evaluate the practices used across the value chain. In particular you will be able to identify and critically analyse value chain frameworks that will enable you to appreciate the performance from an economic, social and environmental perspective. This analysis will help you to recognise existing and emerging factors that affect the Triple Bottom Line.
By using the principles and practices of analysis offered in this module you will be able to develop strategies that optimise the value chain performance and enhance your contribution to the societies you operate in.

Applied Food Science and Product Development
The food industry is arguably one of the most dynamic sectors within business with many external factors influencing the respective decision makers. An understanding of food science, nutrition, hygiene and food safety are key drivers in any food business. The application of a theoretical approach in product innovation is required within both the hospitality and retail sectors of the food industry. Successful innovations can be used as means by which a company can increase its portfolio of operations, enhance market share and develop the business modus operandi.

Food and Society
This module offers an exciting, coherent and interdisciplinary perspective on food systems and demonstrates the rich variety of theoretical contexts underpinning food studies. In particular, the study of 'Food and Society' draws on disciplines as diverse as sociology, anthropology and cultural studies at one end and economics, politics and agricultural science at the other. This module presents a clear, authoritative and comprehensive account of the food chain and reveals how it affects the lives and livelihoods of us all.

Internship route:

Organisational Behaviour in Theory and Practice
This module is designed to provide a course of study in preparation for the internship. It aims to cover a range of topics including an analysis of the structure of work organisations and the various work roles that can be found therein. Changes in work practices are considered and their implications for obtaining immediate and long-term employment.

Management Consultancy
This module requires that you will work with an employer and direct your efforts towards solving a topical issue of concern for that employer. It will require that you undertake a major piece of independent research and report your findings to your employer in an oral and written capacity. In doing so, what you are effectively doing is replicating the role of the management consultant. The module aims to provide an opportunity for in depth and rigorous enquiry. It will also allow for the enhancement and application of your research skills and seeks to consolidate your powers of critical analysis, creativity and evaluation.

The Internship
The internship requires that you work for a minimum of 1200 hours (or 28 weeks) with a food or hospitality employer. These positions can be in either paid or non-paid employment. The important thing is that the internship allows you to apply the theoretical knowledge acquired on your course to a practical work-based situation.

The internship will allow you to improve and acquire new skills, explore various career opportunities, network and work with others as part of a team. It will also enhance your understanding of the world of work and what constitutes professional practice in the workplace. In doing so the internship seeks to enhance your career prospects and allow you to become more focused in determining a potential career pathway.

Visit the MA Food Business Management With Internship page on the University of West London website for more details!

Entry Requirements

You would normally be expected to have a good honours degree (2.2 or above) in related honours degree. Applications from potential students with non-standard entry qualifications would be accepted after an interview with the Course Leader.

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