Capstone: Critical Challenge Project

The Critical Challenge Project (CCP) is central to the ScM in Technology Leadership learning experience and will become the focus of your independent study. You will identify a critical challenge related to your field and interests, drawing from your own experience and vision for the future. Under the direction of a faculty member and advisor, students analyze their critical challenge from multiple perspectives and develop a comprehensive plan for addressing it.

You'll address real-time challenges and apply the knowledge and skills you learn throughout the program — with particular emphasis on integrating technology, policy, strategy and communications. Your CCP should consider ethical implications and have practical applicability to your business or field of expertise — taking into account multiple stakeholders, such as customers, developers, policymakers, and government and industry executives as you develop innovative, transformative and viable solutions.

Upon completion of the CCP, you'll be able to:

  • Tackle a technology problem facing your industry
  • Position yourself for leadership in your industry
  • Build a network of advisors for your long term career aspirations

The CCP often delivers high-impact results. Some examples of project deliverables and outcomes include:

  • New product(s) deployed
  • Patent applications
  • Tech innovation with potential for market disruption
  • Prototype or proof of concept completed during program
  • Management decision-making tool or process enhancement

Why is it valuable to employers?

  1. Alignment with Important Strategic Issues - Employers gain the benefit of dedicated employee effort on issues of key strategic importance to the organization's success. Advisors to the CP can be Brown Faculty and expert co-advisors may come from the student's organization or elsewhere in the industry. We recognize the sensitive nature of student work and contributions to their company. We work with students and faculty to preserve confidentiality as needed.
  2. Employee Development - Used effectively, employers can leverage the CP to develop individual talent in the organization. Students gain the skills, tools, and knowledge to grow their career and contribution to their organization.
  3. Access to Brown University Resources and Leadership - Students have access to a powerful network of resources including faculty, advisors, academic/library resources, and peers across industries to broaden and strengthen their solutions/action plans.
  4. Results - Students create fully developed actionable plans, addressing real-time industry and organization challenges.

Recent Capstone Projects

Sample Project Titles:

  • Combating Distracted Driving (new IoT venture)
  • Securing Mobile Voting Apps (Cyber/Public Sector)
  • Infrastructure Dependency Model (Disaster Management, National Lab)
  • AI and Additive Manufacturing for Supply Chain (US Navy)

The Critical Challenge Project


Classroom excellence, real-word application