Business engineering

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Business Engineering is an interdisciplinary field of engineering that focuses on how complex businesses should be designed and managed.


Business engineering circumscribes the domain of designing new business fields. Unlike business development, business engineering does not only include marketing related tasks, but also most of the other business administration tasks. Financial and operational tasks are of equal importance, for example.

Business engineering includes all activities that are necessary to develop and maintain an independent line of business. It is comparable with starting a business, but includes the novel component. That means that there is no core market yet and market opportunities need to be created. Most likely, the output of business engineering substitutes known forms of supply, in existing markets.

Therefore business engineering aims to establish new, future oriented forms of businesses but with reference to existing or emerging needs. Business engineering is most likely related with the area of future technology. To abstract it, business engineering combines the establishment of a completely new business in a prospect business environment.


Business Engineering (BE) is defined by Van Meel and Sol (1996)[1] as the "integral design of both organizational structures and information systems". Despite the numerous developments in this field, Business Engineering has so far achieved little theoretical and methodological support. In the 1990s Van Meel and Sol finished a four years action research project[2] to overcome this problem. A key factor in their approach is dynamic modeling, a structured problem-solving approach for real-life problems using simulation.[1]

A parallel effort has been under development since 1998 by Barros[3] where the emphasis is in establishing engineering foundation for the redesign of functioning organizations and also the design of new ones. Such foundations are based on the conceptualization of business by means of an Ontology and the proposals of different types of patterns that serve as reference models in their design. There are patterns for business models, business architecture and component processes. Such patterns have been extensively used in many real life cases, particularly in hospitals, generating measurable benefits that are documented in several publications.[4][5][6]


In Belgium[edit]

In Belgium, universities offer academic programmes in Business Engineering. These studies are combining management science, business administration, finance, economics, mathematics, sciences and technologies for the main but also computer science as well as social science (ethics and law) and foreign languages. They are composed of a Bachelor of Science (BS/BSc; 3-year track) and followed by a Master's degree leading to the title of "Business Engineer" ("Ingénieur de Gestion" in French / "Handelsingenieur" in Dutch). This master (MS/MSc; 2-year track) degree leads to a specialization (quantitative financial markets, IT & data management, industrial & environmental management, innovation management & entrepreneurship, marketing engineering, services management, operational research & econometrics, global strategy & leadership, etc.). Graduates are granted at the end of the five (or more) years a diploma of "Master of Science in Business Engineering".

Among others, university business schools offering those programmes are the Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management (Université Libre de Bruxelles and Vrije Universiteit Brussel), the Louvain School of Management (Université catholique de Louvain, Université de Namur), HEC Management School - University of Liege, the ICHEC Brussels Management School, the KULeuven, the HUBrussel (Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel), Ghent University or still the University of Antwerp.

In Germany[edit]

In Germany, the Steinbeis University offers an academic program in Business Engineering. Similar as in Belgium, the program combines management science, business administration, finance and economics. Graduates are awarded with the academic degree Master of Business Engineering (MBE) after the end of the two years of study. Usually it is required to hold a degree in engineering to get admission to the program.

In Finland[edit]

Oulu University of Applied Sciences (OAMK) offers advance specialization diploma in Business Engineering. Business Engineering (BE) studies are designed to respond to the needs of business life in the field of engineering. The aim of the studies is to educate engineers to work in the various fields of the business environment and provide students with the expertise required in international companies. The main study focus is on the skills needed for utilizing the results of technical work on the export market.

It is required to hold an Engineering degree (Bachelor's or Master's) to be eligible to apply for the course.

In Chile[edit]

The University of Chile offers an academic program in Business Engineering through its Industrial Engineering Department since 2003. The program, as in Belgium and Germany, combines management science, business administration, finance, economics, sciences and technologies. It also includes Enterprise and business processes architecture, modeling and design. Its distinctive characteristic is the systemic integration of these disciplines in an approach based on an Onthology and patterns that guide a business design effort. It has a solid theoretical foundation and a practical approach that includes the development of a project by the students for an organization in the private or public sector. Hundred of projects have been developed since 2003, producing a validation of the proposed approach to design and a generation of knowledge that has been formalized and applied in new projects. Graduates are awarded with the academic degree "Master of Science in Business Engineering" (MBE) after taking the courses of the program and successfully completing their projects (4 semesters approximately).[7]

In Peru[edit]

The University of the Pacific offers an academic degree in Business Engineering since 2008, it was the first university in Peru to offer that program. The studies are designed to include three areas: Process Engineering, Project Engineering and Information Technology Engineering, also combines economics, statistics, management science, business administration, finance and operations.[8]

In El Salvador[edit]

In 2009, The Escuela Superior de Economia y Negocios (ESEN) initiated the Business Engineering that trains professionals focused on solving business problems from a systems perspective, modeling and analyzing the complex interrelations between resources, people and information, and integrating knowledge of engineering science quantitative and analytical with a business sense. The Business Engineering program follows a similar pattern to that of the best programs in industrial engineering and incorporates solid knowledge in the areas of economics, business, leadership, innovation and information technology.(6)[9]

In The Philippines[edit]

The Ateneo de Naga University offers Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Major in Business Engineering under the College of Business and Accountancy. The Business Engineering program is a multi-disciplinary 4-year course designed to meet the educational needs of young men and women who aspire to either start their own businesses and become successful Christian techno-preneurs or become corporate leaders in manufacturing environment or in technology-based businesses. The graduates of Business Engineering are expected to contribute significantly to the industrialization of the Bicol Region as the course offers students a combination of classroom instruction and business hands-on that develop their creativity and innovativeness in conceptualizing and commercializing products and designs. It exposes students to businesses and business leaders and allows them to learn from the best of academic thought and business practices.[10]

The Ateneo Business Engineering Techno-preneurs (ABET), its co-curricular organization, handles student events for academics and member enticement in their field. (Click the link to check out their Facebook Page.)

See also[edit]

Related topics
People involved in Business engineering


  1. ^ a b Jeroen W. van Meel and Henk G. Sol (1996). "Business Engineering: Dynamic Modeling Instruments for a Dynamic World ". In: Simulation & Gaming, Vol. 27, No. 4, 440-461 (1996) doi:10.1177/1046878196274003
  2. ^ Jeroen W. van Meel, Pieter W.G. Bots and Henk G. Sol (1994). "Towards a research framework for business engineering". In: IFIP Transactions; Vol. A-54 archive. Proceedings of the IFIP TC8 Open Conference on Business Process Re-engineering: Information Systems Opportunities and Challenges. pp. 581-592. ISBN 0-444-82062-0.
  3. ^ Oscar Barros's Website
  4. ^ Oscar Barros, Cristian Julio, (2011) Enterprise and Process Architecture Patterns. Business Process Management Journal, 17, 4, 598-618.
  5. ^ Oscar Barros, Business Engineering: Integrated Design of Business, Process and IT applications, (2012) ISBN 9567802793 (Spanish)
  6. ^ Oscar Barros, Business Engineering and the Design of Services: Application to Hospitals, (2012)
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ Ateneo de Naga University
  10. ^ Ateneo de Naga University

Further reading[edit]

  • Jack Elzinga, Thomas R. Gulledge, Chung-Yee Lee (1999). Business process engineering: advancing the state of the art. Springer, 1999. ISBN 0-7923-8402-4
  • Hubert Österle (1995). Business Engineering. Prozea- Und Systementwicklung: Band 1: Entwurfstechniken. Springer, 1995. ISBN 3-540-60048-5
  • Nick V. Flor (2001). Web Business Engineering: Using Offline Activities to Drive Internet Strategies. Addison-Wesley, 2001. ISBN 0-201-60468-X
  • Mike Robson, Philip Ullah (1996). A practical guide to business process re-engineering. Gower Publishing, Ltd., 1996. ISBN 0-566-07577-6
  • David A. Taylor (1995). Business engineering with object technology. Wiley, 1995. ISBN 0-471-04521-7

External links[edit]