Exploring the barriers and enablers of Online Education programmes
: the specific case of Gender and Geographic Mobility in MBA programmes

  • Diogo Costa Cardoso (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Education is one of the corner-stones of modern society, representing a propelling motor of our most needed knowledge accumulation. Yet, interestingly enough, the education industry has demonstrated to be one of the least capable to answer to our increasingly innovative and competitive times. As so, the current education business model has been showing growing offer and demand side pressures, thus creating market gaps to be potentially filled by disruptive innovations, more capable to respond to such market dynamics. This thesis focuses in how the online capabilities are enabling the educational business model to break from some of its strains, as well as allowing it to tackle highly valuable market segments like women and international students, considering the significantly representative USA’s MBA reality. The results found that online education is successfully addressing female learners, vis-à-vis the male-built traditional educational system, due to the flexibility it brings and the use of increasingly user-friendly platforms. By contrast, online MBA’s have not been effectively addressing international students thus tuning down the time-and-space asynchrony benefits of such programmes. Consequently, Massive Open Online Courses, as an emerging and disruptive technology, are grasping this market gap and tackling this growing international demand. Higher Education providers need now to fully rationalize the market dynamics in which they are in and understand the role they want to have in the global arena in order to keep being relevant.
Date of Award22 Apr 2015
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorJuan Andrei Villarroel Fernandéz (Supervisor)


  • Mestrado em Gestão

Cite this