August 16, 2004

UCLA Anderson School of Management Launches Entertainment and Media Management Institute

Led by Alumna Gigi Johnson, New Effort Will Help Industry Adapt to Changing Business Models

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 17, 2004 – UCLA Anderson School of Management has launched a new Entertainment and Media Management Institute, expanding and enhancing its long-standing Entertainment Media Program.  The new Institute will bring together industry professionals, MBA students and faculty researchers to exchange and embrace new ideas for managing and thriving in the face of transforming entertainment and media business models.

Although the Entertainment and Media Management Institute is new, UCLA Anderson has had a focused entertainment-oriented program for some 27 years, as evidenced by its more than 800 alumni who work for entertainment and media organizations – with scores of them in key decision-making positions.  With the growth of the entertainment industry and the impact of technology, globalization and deregulation on both content and distribution, UCLA Anderson will serve as a key center of influence in this important global arena.

“Every sector in these industries is undergoing change at an ever-accelerating pace and in such complex and intricate ways,” said Gigi Johnson, executive director of the Entertainment and Media Management Institute and a 1988 MBA alumna of UCLA Anderson.  “Our mission is to bring together interested constituencies to find ways to best manage and make decisions in the face of greater uncertainty.”

Dr. Dominique Hanssens, a marketing expert who holds the Bud Knapp Chair in Management at UCLA Anderson, will serve as faculty director of the new institute.  Prof. Hanssens is a leading international authority on marketing strategy and the effectiveness of marketing efforts.  He is currently researching marketing spending effectiveness in entertainment companies, including expenditures associated with marketing films.

“We needed a larger footprint for our various researchers to work in and to encompass our interactions with the entertainment business communities,” said Prof. Hanssens.  “We now can expand our research in a number of key areas related to entertainment and media, and in doing so, will help firms develop new and transformational ways of doing business.”

Located in the heart of southern California’s vibrant economy, UCLA Anderson is at the hub of an entertainment and media laboratory that provides much opportunity for its faculty, students and alumni to help set the stage for what is to come in the industry. 

“We were growing so fast that we needed a larger entity to encompass all of our activities,” added Johnson, who has served as a lecturer on the school’s faculty since 1999.

Below are some projects, programs and activities that the new Entertainment and Media Management Institute will pursue:

  • Launch a new two-year research project, “Media 2010,” to identify and understand the many possible “futures” of the media and entertainment businesses.  More importantly, for these different futures, the project will examine the drivers — or the “levers” that sectors and companies might push — to influence those futures.
  • Develop two new programs with UCLA Executive Education: Global Entertainment Management Program, a five-day intensive course slated for August 2005 for international media managers; and Branded Entertainment Marketing, a three-day course on cutting edge marketing techniques for entertainment and media executives.
  • Create a new Industry Fellows Program at UCLA Anderson, enabling current or emeriti CEOs and division presidents to share their industry experiences, lead seminars at the school, mentor students and work with faculty on research projects.
  • Build upon UCLA Anderson’s suite of graduate-level entertainment-related courses, as well as expand its diverse extracurricular programs.
  • Increase the number and diversity of industry-focused events with students, faculty and industry executives, and partner with various industry groups to support entertainment-related conferences and forums.
  • Increase the size and number of research grants that seed faculty and doctoral student projects in many realms of management science in relation to entertainment and media.  Click here for more information on faculty research in this area.
  • Leverage relationships and efforts with more than 800 UCLA Anderson alumni executives and professionals who work in entertainment and media.
  • Increase the opportunities for the scores of UCLA Anderson MBA students involved in entertainment and the student-run Entertainment Management Association, including management field study projects and a broad array of internships and jobs.
  • Expand the new Summer Institute for undergraduate students interested in exploring and understanding the changing film, television and other media industries.  First offered in July 2004, the Summer Institute is four-week intensive introductory program addressing management challenges in the entertainment and media industries. 

According  to Johnson, one of the first major industry events that the institute will support is the Billboard 2004 Digital Entertainment Conference & Awards, which will be held at UCLA on Nov. 4 and 5, 2004.  The institute will also support the ITA in its Re-inventing Television Summit, which will be held on Sept. 29 and 30, 2004, on the Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA.

Bio Brief of Executive Director Gigi Johnson
Gigi JohnsonPrior to assuming her current post, Gigi Johnson served as director of UCLA Anderson’s Entertainment Management Program.  She joined the school in 1999 as director of its renowned Applied Management Research (AMR) Program, where worked with more than 300 organizations on strategic consulting engagements involving some 1,000 MBA students. 

As a UCLA Anderson lecturer, Johnson advises AMR projects for MBA students and occasionally team-teaches entertainment courses in the institute.  In addition to her role in managing and developing the institute, Ms. Johnson works with a wide variety of entertainment and media companies as a “business connector” on new technology ventures and business opportunities.

Prior to her arrival at ULCA Anderson, Johnson was managing director/senior client manager at Bank of America, where she spent most of a decade as a corporate banker in their entertainment/media practice in Los Angeles and New York. 

Johnson has an MBA from UCLA Anderson and a bachelor’s degree in cinema-television production from USC, where she specialized in documentary filmmaking and film marketing.  She has recently joined The Cable Center’s Magness Institute Advisory Council.

About UCLA Anderson School of Management
UCLA Anderson School of Management is perennially ranked among the top-tier business schools in the world.  Award-winning faculty renowned for their research and teaching, highly selective admissions, successful alumni and world-class facilities combine to provide an extraordinary learning environment.  Established in 1935, UCLA Anderson provides management education to more than 1,500 students enrolled in full-time, part-time and executive MBA programs, doctoral programs and executive education and management development programs.

UCLA Anderson’s faculty includes outstanding educators and researchers who share their scholarship and expertise in such fundamental areas as finance, marketing, accounting, business economics, decision sciences, operations and technology management, human resources and organizational behavior, information systems, strategy and policy.

Recognizing that the school offers unparalleled expertise in management education, the world's business community turns to UCLA Anderson School of Management as a center of influence for the ideas, innovations, strategies and talent that will shape the future.

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