About IBM’s Corporate Service Corps

As described at IBM’s Corporate Service Corps home page

The Corporate Service Corps was launched in 2008 to help provide IBMers with high quality leadership development while delivering high quality problem solving for communities and organizations in emerging markets. The program empowers IBM employees as global citizens by sending groups of 10 – 15 individuals from different countries with a range of skills to an emerging market for four week community-based assignments. During the assignment, participants perform community-driven economic development projects working at the intersection of business, technology, and society.

This program increases IBM’s understanding and appreciation of growth markets while creating global leaders who are culturally aware and possess advanced teaching skills. The Corporate Service Corps offers a triple benefit: leadership development for the IBMers, leadership training and development for the communities, and greater knowledge and enhanced reputation in the growth markets for IBM.

Since its launch in 2008, the Corporate Service Corps program has sent over 1,400 participants on over 120 teams to more than 20 countries around the world. The participants come from over 50 countries and have served communities in Brazil, Cambodia, Chile, China, Egypt, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malaysia, Morocco, Nigeria, the Philippines, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam. The program continues to expand to new locations each year.

The practical upshot of this is that each year, IBM selects a few hundred people from the 420,000+ they employ worldwide and sends them out in small teams for four weeks to provide on-site consulting support to development and infrastructure projects around the world.  Modeled on the US Peace Corps, this program has unsurprisingly garnered a lot of attention, and is now being emulated by a number of other major global enterprises.

Links to articles about the CSC

Financial Times

Wall Street Journal

Forbes

BusinessWeek

Huffington Post

Harvard Business School

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