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14 MAR 2020


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[ Why Join ]

Come face the top business schools around the world and compete with world-class students
Experience great workshops and team building activities to build ties and benefit from exclusive visibility to first tier schools, students and partners
Apply acquired knowledge and skills to a real-world strategic business case in a competitive environment

The International Graduate Competition (IGC) is the first international academic competition dedicated solely to graduate students worldwide. In 2020, the 9th edition will be held from March the 14th to March the 19th. This week-long event takes place in the dynamic city of Montreal, between business and innovation. Join us as up to twelve teams from internationally top universities to compete on a organizational strategy case.

IGC is organized by a team of MSc students (Master in Science) from HEC Montreal, with the support of student volunteers. The competition aims to provide a thrilling and challenging event that will allow you to enrich your academic experiences and broaden your business perspectives.

Each team will have 48 hours to work through a real business case, identifying key priorities, weighing benefits and addressing risks.

The university with the highest cumulative score based on the depth of analysis of each individual case, the soundness of the integrated solutions, and the quality of written report as well as oral presentations will be named the winner of the competition. Many prizes and awards to be won.

For its 9th edition, IGC will collaborate with the HEC Montreal case center to provide a case in organizational strategy. This will allow participating teams to compete on current and actual issues provided by a partner company.

[ Format ]

IGC is based on the notion of cooperative competition.

All teams must collaborate with one another throughout the early stages of the competition in order to offer effective solutions to the strategic issue identified by the company participating in the competition. These collaborations will be based on the business functions of the case (4) which, for the 9th edition, are:

  • Finance

  • Human Resources

  • Marketing

  • Sustainable development

Consult the Team section for more information about the functions.

As for the general format of the competition, the teams will be divided into pools. The number of schools in each pool will depend on the final number of schools participating in the competition. Each pool’s composition will be drawn at random by a participant from each team.

During the 48 hours case-cracking session, teams will be required to prepare a written report, an elevator pitch (15-20 minutes) and a final presentation (30 minutes).

The structure for the day of presentations and the criteria for finalist selection are currently being revised based feedback received last year. Details will be posted at a later date. Participating and interested universities will be notified.


Four students and one coach must represent each school. The four students will be named “functional experts” in four business functions:

  • Finance: for students familiar with finance and accounting

  • Human Resources: for students in human resources management, change management, organizational development …

  • Marketing: for students having a knowledge in product development, market development, strategic positioning …

  • Sustainable development: for students interested in the current challenges of ecology and environmental impact

It is the coach’s responsibility to select the team, accompany and, of course, coach them.

The teams of 4 must consist of AT LEAST 2 Master of Science (MSc or equivalent) students. MBA students may participate; however each team can have a maximum of 2. Teams can also have a maximum of 1 PhD student.


The rules and Regulations for 2020 will be sent directly to the participating teams or on demand for the interested universities. 



The IGC’s Committee will be taking care of your university’s needs upon arrival at HEC Montreal’s campus. The participation fee for your delegation (4 students, and 1 coach) is 4,250$ CAD. The fees comprise most of the expenses throughout the week of the competition including:

  • Accommodation during the competition (6 nights at Omni Mont-Royal Hotel located in historic Old Montreal)

  • Breakfast, lunch, dinner, reception, welcome/cocktail parties and activities

  • Local transportation by Montreal’s unique public transit system between hotel, activities and competition sites

However, the following items are not included in the participation fees:

  • Transportation to and from airport and all other personal transportation during competition week

  • Air travel and all other personal/discretionary expenses


As this competition has tailored specifically for graduate students, please note that all participants will be required to provide proof of enrollment in a master’s program. Two MBA students per team are permitted or one PhD student; the remaining participants of the delegation must be master students in research-oriented programs.