Top 5 one-year MBA programmes in Europe that offer more bang for your buck

While countries such as the US have long been a popular destination for aspiring b-school candidates, have you ever considered acquiring an MBA in Europe?

By Shekinah Kannan 

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The benefits of pursuing an MBA are well documented.

The Association of MBAs notes that graduates have reported that their MBA helped them achieve a promotion, expand their area of expertise, change career, equip them to start their own business and improve their business and professional network of contacts, to name a few.

While countries such as the US have long been a popular destination for aspiring b-school candidates, have you ever considered acquiring an MBA in Europe? If you haven’t, perhaps it’s time.


Why get an MBA in Europe?

European business schools have built a strong reputation for themselves, thanks to their quality programmes and strong employment rates. 

Among the European business schools that have muscled their way to the top in this year’s Financial Times Global MBA charts include INSEAD where its programme nabbed the top spot. In close pursuit was London Business School in the UK, IESE Business School in Spain, and HEC Paris.

European MBA programmes are also known to be global in nature, offering a global business perspective.

Coupled with their strong rankings that attract professionals from all corners of the globe, this makes it an enticing opportunity for students to network within a diverse cohort of students.

Another strong allure of getting an MBA in Europe? You can complete your programme within a year, whereas many MBA programmes in the US can last two years, which translates to lower tuition fees and spending less time out of work. 

If you’re sold on Europe, here are the top five business schools and programmes you should consider:


For the last three years, INSEAD has ranked among the top five in the Financial Times ranking.

The school’s MBA graduates achieve the highest salary on the list: US$188,431. The offerings of its 10-month programme include a total of 90 elective modules to choose from, an exchange programme, as well as a summer internship. 

You’ll also be happy to know that top recruiters of INSEAD MBAs include Amazon and Goldman Sachs.


SDA Bocconi School of Management

When it comes to Italian MBA programmes, SDA Bocconi tops the charts. Its graduates go on to achieve a 126% salary increase, with an average annual income of US$155,475 – within three years of graduating. 

Its one-year MBA was designed to flexibly meet the needs of students.

According to the university, their ,MBA programme connects students with inspirational leaders and iconic brands: from Google to Starbucks, from Prada to Illy.  

Judge Business School 

Cambridge’s Judge Business school has climbed the FT rankings significantly in the last three years, nabbing the 16th spot this year. This intensive one-year programme is underpinned by a foundation of core courses, with additional elective subjects.

It is also taught through a blend of workshops, seminars, lectures, small-group work, group discussion, presentations and experiential learning.

Upon completion, graduates can expect an 87% salary increase and an average annual income of US$167,610 within three years.

EDHEC Business School

EDHEC’s full-time Global MBA programme is designed for professionals looking to gain a 360° business vision in a global context.

The programme comprises seven-months of core business fundamentals, two-months of a tailored MBA project, and a month of specialisations studies. 

Joining this programme means heightening your chances of receiving a job offer within three months of graduating –– much like 85% of its graduates.

Saïd Business School

Oxford University’s Saïd Business School offers a one-year, full-time MBA programme that provides exposure to a diverse student group, a global connected network, a broad range of career opportunities, thought leaders, and a rigorous academic experience. 

Graduates of this programme achieve, on average, a salary of US$151,895 within three years of graduating — an increase of 85% compared to their pre-MBA salary.