Bill Fischer

Professor of Technology Management, IMD
Visiting Professor of Operations Management, MIT Sloan School of Management


Bill Fischer William Fischer specializes in issues relating to corporate strategy, particularly in technology-related organizations, and in the management of operations and technology at IMD (the International Institute for Management Development) in Lausanne, Switzerland.

He has published numerous articles in academic journals and has won awards for teaching and case writing. In 1999, Fischer received the Silver Magnolia Award, Shanghai’s highest award for foreigners. He currently writes a regular column on Chinese business issues for His most recent book, co-authored with Andy Boynton, is Virtuoso Teams.

An engineer by training, Fischer has worked with a number of leading corporations in both North America and Europe, and has worked in China continuously since 1980. For more than 15 years, he worked with the World Health Organization in strengthening research and development institutes in developing countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

Between 1976 and 1996, he was on the faculty at the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill, where he was the Dalton L. McMichael Sr. Professor of Business Administration. In 1998 and 1999, he served as the president of the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS), a 50–50 joint venture between the European Union and China, located in Shanghai.

Fischer holds a DBA from George Washington University.

Faculty Media

  • The Haier Road to Growth

    Customers always come first for this Chinese appliance maker — even as it continually reinvents itself and expands around the world.

  • Standing At The Dumb-End Of Our Smarter Future

    "My good friend, and Driving Strategic Innovation colleague, Duncan Simester, of MIT's Sloan School of Management, has recently pointed out that “Many executives in big companies attained their...

  • The Leadership Advantage Of Bezos, Musk, Ma And Zhang: An Explorer's Mindset

    Be ambitious! Be daring! Take chances! Fail often! These are the new secrets of leadership success in a digital age, but, then again, this is also exactly what Christopher Columbus did, Vasco da...

  • Learning the Art of Driving Innovation

    As digital technologies disrupt businesses everywhere, IT chiefs are increasingly drawn to academic programs that promise to hone their abilities to lead business-changing innovation.

  • The End of Expertise

    What if what you know didn’t matter anymore? What if knowledge became a commodity? What if everyone could be an expert?

  • Professor Bill Fischer on the Importance of Innovation

    "You will have a higher probability of success when you allow people to be small and independent."

  • Are You An Analog or Digital Leader?

    Changing mindsets begins with you! The only mind you can be sure of changing is your own, and the only way that you can demonstrate this mindset change is through your behaviors.

  • Smart People, Leading Smarter People

    "At a time when new ideas are the only hope for our economic salvation, the real “energy” crisis is to be found in the inability of tired, old institutions producing the innovation and creativity...

  • Integrating Social Media in the Executive Education Classroom

    In my first episode of FIR on Higher Education, guest Bill Fischer, a professor at IMD business school in Switzerland, discusses how to successfully use social media to spur idea generation. He...

  • Becoming More Innovative in 2014

    Organizations don't innovate—people do. Organizations that are admired for being especially innovative don't hire genetically different people than are available to the rest of us. They just make...


Contact Information

Support Staff