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Helping board members to succeed by providing unique and pertinent resources on current boardroom issues and latest governance trends.


Helping board members to succeed by providing unique and pertinent resources on current boardroom issues and latest governance trends.

Founded in 2010, the IMD Global Board Center’s core agenda is to support long-term organizational success through a strong board. We bring together world-class thought leadership and global best practices in a systematic way to help boards reach their full potential. We address real-world issues in ways that can be used by boards to improve their performance and play a strategic role in their company’s success.

The Center undertakes pioneering research into the diverse dimensions of governance and offers a combination of open enrolment and custom programs aimed at empowering board members and enhancing board performance.

The Global Board Center’s vision is to:

Act globally as a promoter of good governance practices

Be a prominent and innovative thought leader in the field of governance

Support boards and senior leaders by providing unique & pertinent resources

Help boards be their best

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Board education is crucial because today’s CEOs are so overstretched. They are confronted with an incredible rise in complexity – from society, governments, alternative business models, global changes, new risks and opportunities and shifts in economic conditions.

Professor Didier Cossin Professor of Governance and Finance, and Founder and Director of the IMD Global Board Center
Our team
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Didier Cossin

Chaired Professor of Governance and Finance, and Founder and Director of IMD Global Board Center

Didier Cossin is Chaired Professor of Governance and Finance, and Founder and Director of the IMD Global Board Center. He works with owners, boards, and senior leaders to help them improve organizational performance through best-in-class governance and decision-making. He also holds the UBS Chair in Banking and Finance. Cossin is the originator …

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Quentin Dufresne

Associate Director

Quentin Dufresne serves as the Associate Director of the IMD Global Board Center. His responsibilities include custom board engagements, learning journey design, as well as the center operations. Quentin’s expertise lies in crafting tailored board programs for influential organizations across diverse sectors, ranging from state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and public corporations to international institutions and global banks.


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Sophie Coughlan

Associate Director

Sophie Coughlan is an experienced governance researcher, writer and consultant, with a strong interest in stewardship, sustainability and leadership. As the Global Board Center’s Associate Director, she is responsible for the Board Director Diploma and the Board-Readiness diploma, as well as the Board Community at IMD. In addition to conducting board reviews with a number of privately and publicly held companies in Europe, Latin America and Africa, she has also been the lead researcher on governance reviews for the International Olympic Committee and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, among others. She also contributed to a number of publications on governance, including High Performance Boards and Inspiring Stewardship, as well as the 2018 IBE Ethics at Work Switzerland report. As a coach, Sophie has facilitated board strategy retreats and coached board members on self-awareness and board dynamics, using psychometric instruments and 360 feedback.


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Abraham Lu

Research Fellow

Hongze (Abraham) Lu is a CAIA charter holder and a research fellow at the IMD Global Board Center. His expertise covers Big Data, content analysis, and artificial intelligence. Abraham is a prolific writer, co-authoring and contributing to four IMD books: “Profit or Growth?”, “In the Shadow of the Dragon”, “Inspiring Stewardship”, and “High Performance Boards”. His work extends beyond books to encompass a wealth of articles, case studies, and FT50 academic papers.


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Yukie Saito

Senior Research Writer

Yukie Saito is a Senior Research Writer at the Global Board Center at IMD. Her research interests primarily focus on corporate governance, stewardship, and responsible investment, with her publications centred around these topics. Her work also includes examining governance issues, effective board practices, and the impact of governance on social and environmental performance.

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Simon Tièche

Research Fellow

Simon Tièche is a research fellow at the IMD Global Board Center. His research sheds light on what constitutes good and effective governance, with a focus in the investment industry. While corporate boards often don’t give sufficient thought to geopolitical risks, social change, and the long-term instability of the world, investment boards do. Simon’s research therefore has practical implications, particularly for fund managers and asset allocators, with knock-on effects for corporate boards.

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Our programs

Open programs

IMD’s Board programs draw on more than 40 years of board education experience. Our open programs offer the breadth and depth of knowledge necessary for continued success as a modern board member amid disruption and highly complex business times.

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Custom programs

Our custom programs are founded on cutting-edge research, the extensive experience of IMD Faculty and are inspired by the board practices of leading organizations in Asia, Europe, the Americas and the Middle East. With a heavy emphasis on experiential and discussion-based learning, our tailored solutions are highly customized to meet the specific learning and development needs of your board.

Our legacy

We have dedicated our thinking and resources to supporting boards for more than forty years.

  • 1970s

    New governance legislation comes into play, following abuses in compensation, which had a significant impact on the functioning of boards in the 1970s. IMD launched its flagship board program, High Performance Boards (HPB), in 1977, which focused on the theme of ‘Boards in Transition’.
  • 1980s

    Against the background of loosening financial regulations, the issues framing boards became the abuses in value destruction due to a significant increase in M&A activity in the 1980s. HPB at the time provided over 300 board directors with the tools and knowledge to be more effective.

  • 1990s

    With the demands on boards increasing, due to an increase in governance and financial regulations, HPB focused on helping board directors balance tensions in a paradoxical world; reflecting structural tensions that constantly threatened to undermine board effectiveness.

  • 2000s

    The beginning of the 21st Century was rocked by corporate scandals, which led to even greater regulation and scrutiny of boards. Diversity, particularly gender diversity, was a key issue at the time. HPB also focused on unpacking the ‘real value of boards’ and looking at the complexity of board work.

  • 2008

    Following the 2008 subprime and global economic crisis, HPB had a renewed emphasis on board composition and the role of shareholders. It also focused on the role of the board in monitoring risk and creating strategy.

  • 2010

    In 2010, Professor Didier Cossin founded the IMD Global Board Center to support board members by providing unique and pertinent resources on current boardroom issues and the latest governance trends.

  • Today

    IMD’s Global Board Center continues to draw on more than 40 years of board education experience, our HPB program is considered an essential board member training program, enhancing both board performance and effectiveness.

With our deepest gratitude to UBS and Sandoz Foundation for supporting the Center