Leading Innovations in Health Care & Education

Offered Annually in Boston, MA

Next Course:
June 9 - 14, 2019

Course Brochure: course brochure PDF

Deadline to apply:
March 8, 2019



Program Directors:

Elizabeth Armstrong, PhD

Clayton Christensen, DBA

Senior Course Planner:

Josh Nagler, MD

Course Objectives

Forward progress in health care delivery is dependent on fundamental reform across the continuum of health care education, including graduate and post-graduate education, continuing professional development, and accreditation processes. Using a systems approach and design thinking processes, participants are equipped with the tools and knowledge to lead and manage change in their health care delivery system and educational environment. Design thinking examines what the target population needs and wants in a particular process or service. The design process creates the product with the users’ needs in mind.

In this course, participants and faculty collaborate to develop strategies and action plans for leading innovation within their own evolving health care delivery systems and institutions. Classic management studies and case studies of educational reform are used to conduct “deep dives” into the interlocking elements of change strategies. The goal is to develop an impactful leadership style to fulfill their institutions’ educational and health care delivery missions.

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Anticipate the disruptive innovations likely to impact health care delivery and intertwined educational programs, including disruptive technologies.
  • Use design thinking and design processes to identify and meet needs of target populations.
  • Identify local relevance of international trends in health care education and resources as well as accreditation.
  • Assess an institution’s structure, processes, culture, and readiness for change.
  • Identify and develop leadership styles that foster systemic educational innovation.
  • Negotiate and build coalitions
  • Design strategic and operational plans
  • Obtain and allocate resources
  • Manage conflict and resistance to change

Course Description

Virtually all health care systems are struggling to contain costs while offering excellent quality health care to patients. Similarly, educational programs charged with training future health care providers are challenged with expanding numbers of students, efficiencies in teaching formats and increasing costs.

The program curriculum is designed to assist you in developing your own strategies for leading change within a rapidly evolving health care delivery system. Using classic management studies and case studies of education reform, you will analyze the interlocking elements of change strategies and develop guiding principles drawn from organizational research.

Teaching/learning formats include case studies with small and full group discussions, interactive presentations, and panel discussions. You will meet each day with others from similar institutions to develop action plans for change. The informal exchange of insights and experiences among international participants and faculty drawn from multiple professional disciplines is a vital part of the experience.

We are fortunate to once again offer this unique leadership course with Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen, internationally recognized for his teaching style and work on disruptive innovation, and best selling author of The Innovator's Prescription and Disrupting Class: How disruption will change the way the world learns. These books are becoming required readings in governments and Academic Health Centers around the world seeking to reform their health care systems and their education programs.

Attendance is limited due to the intensive teacher-learner interaction in a small group format.



The Harvard Medical School is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Harvard Medical School designates this live activity for a maximum of 39.50 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada recognizes conferences and workshops held outside of Canada that are developed by a university, academy, hospital, specialty society or college as accredited group learning activities.

AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ claimed by physicians attending live events certified and organized in the United States for AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ can be claimed through the agreement on mutual recognition of credits between UEMS and AMA, considered as being equal to the European Continuous Medical Education Credits (ECMEC©) granted by the UEMS. One AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ is equivalent to one (1) hour of European EACCME Credit (ECMEC©), therefore up to 39.50 ECMEC© Credits are available. Each medical specialist should claim only those hours of credit that he/she actually spent in the educational activity.

*Note: AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ is calculated based on submission of a preliminary agenda and may be subject to change.

Harvard Medical School (HMS) adheres to all ACCME Accreditation Criteria and Policies. It is HMS’s policy that those who have influenced the content of a CME activity (e.g., planners, faculty, authors, reviewers, and others) disclose all relevant financial relationships with commercial entities so that HMS may identify and resolve any conflicts of interest prior to the activity. These disclosures will be provided in the activity materials along with disclosure of any commercial support received for the activity. Additionally, faculty members have been instructed to disclose any limitations of data and unlabeled or investigational uses of products during their presentations.

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