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Thunderbird's new building demonstrates how integrated planning and technology can facilitate connections that are key to education for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

On Monday, July 24, 2022, Dr. Sanjeev Khagram, director general and dean of Thunderbird School of Global Management at Arizona State University (Thunderbird), presented on the topic of Empowering Students to Connect and Lead the Fourth Industrial Revolution at The Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) 2022 Annual Conference. He was joined by Amy Hellmund, architect for Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners, Shawn Swisher, project architect and designer for Jones Studio, Inc., and Buzz Yudell, partner of Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners. Dean Khagram presented on how Thunderbird’s new state-of-the-art global headquarters empowers students as global leaders in the digital age.

Thunderbird’s new most technologically advanced global headquarters is a physical manifestation of the School’s vision to be the most global and digital leadership and management school in the world. The facility spans 110,000 square feet across five floors and features state-of-the-art flexible classrooms and 1,600 square feet of displays with over 20 million pixels of direct-view LED screens showcasing presentations and events worldwide. The building also features a green-screen studio, a full XR production and development studio, a VR language lab, table-top computers and a volumetric capture studio that creates full three-dimensional renderings for faculty and student initiatives. This technology is used to facilitate connections that are key to education for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The high tech, high touch elements throughout the building were designed to be welcoming, open and inclusive to all people and cultures from around the world. The new facility has been central to the reclaiming, rebuilding and transformation of the School in offering academic environments with truly active and multi-dimensional learning spaces that fully immerse students in their disciplines while allowing them to collaborate on a global scale.

Thunderbird's new global headquarters brings the world's leading technology directly to the hands of students and faculty. Through the collaborative efforts of the School and its partners, Moor Ruble Yudell and Jones Studio, the School incorporates virtual reality, artificial intelligence and emerging technology breakthroughs of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Jones Studio is a local firm with a deep history in downtown Phoenix and ASU, and Moore Ruble Yudell is a Santa Monica-based architectural firm that has transformed the landscape of many university campuses by designing some of the world's most unique and complex buildings in higher education.

Thunderbird's Global Headquarters utilizes technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution that empower our students to positively impact societies and networks across the globe," said Dean Khagram. "I thank our partners for pushing the boundaries of design and creating a remarkable learning environment that advances our commitment to creating equitable and sustainable prosperity worldwide."

The public is welcome to take a virtual tour of the Global Headquarters on Thunderbird's website, using a web browser or VR headset, and explore the building as if you were there in person. 

Dr. Khagram's presentation offered insight into embedding global connections within leadership and management education. Strategies included implementing technology as a robust, comprehensive learning and collaboration tool as well as engaging with other departments, the campus and the surrounding community and other global entities in new interconnected ways. Khagram further discussed how advances from the Fourth Industrial Revolution, networking and globalization present opportunities for new types of learning, more impactful communication and business interconnectivity, including change leadership and change management. 

"It was a privilege to present to this impressive group of leaders from across the country," said Dean Khagram. I am especially grateful to my dear friends Amy, Shawn and Buzz for this transformational collaboration."

SCUP unites the best of college and professional planners. The organization creates a range of learning opportunities, from publications to the annual SCUP conference, for the community to share perspectives, resources, best practices and fresh ideas that move challenges to solutions—building upon a culture of integrated planning. 

Explore the F. Francis and Dionne Najafi Thunderbird Global Headquarters through a virtual tour here.