Top 10 Executive MBA Programs for International Students in 2019 |

Top 10 Executive MBA Programs for International Students in 2019

By Niamh O

Updated March 25, 2021 Updated March 25, 2021

Released earlier this month, the QS Global EMBA Rankings 2019 reveal the top executive MBA programs around the world.

To compile the ranking, information on more than 150 executive MBA programs was collected, including the percentage of international students enrolled on each program.

Want to study as part of a diverse cohort, surrounded by a high proportion of international students? Or maybe you want reassurance you won’t be in the minority by travelling abroad to a particular school?

Whatever the reason, below you’ll find a rundown of the 10 executive MBA programs from our rankings with the highest proportion of international students.

                                                                                Top 10 EMBA programs for international students

RankBusiness SchoolLocationPercentage of international students
1Grenoble Ecole de ManagementTbilisi, Moscow, Medellin100
2IE Business SchoolMadrid, Sao Paulo, Singapore, Los Angeles92
3=IESE Business School – University of NavarraBarcelona, New York (NY), Silicon Valley89
3=INSEADFontainebleau, Abu Dhabi, Singapore89
5=IMDLausanne, Palo Alto (CA), Beijing88
5=Nanyang Business School, SingaporeSingapore88
7=ESADE Ramon Llull University Barcelona, Madrid80
7=NUS Business SchoolSingapore80
9Judge Business SchoolCambridge74
10ESCP Europe Business SchoolParis, Berlin, Turin, Beirut, London72


10) ESCP Europe

ESCP by Arthur Weidmann/Flickr

International students: 72 percent

Global rank: 37th

ESCP Europe’s Executive MBA program was established in 1994, and it achieved a perfect score in this year’s ranking for career outcomes (find out more about the methodology here).

Students can complete their studies in 18 months, 22 months or 30 months (part-time).

Within the 103-strong class, 20 percent of students are female, while 72 percent are international students with 30 nationalities represented. The class has an average of 13 years’ work experience, with graduates estimated to earn a 65 percent salary increase.

The ESCP Europe Executive MBA costs €62,000 (US$70,064) in tuition.

9) Cambridge (Judge)

Cambridge Judge

International students: 74 percent

Global rank: 13th

In ninth place, you’ll find the only UK institution in our top 10 for international students – Judge Business School. The EMBA program here scored very highly for all indicators, including a near perfect score for thought leadership.

The Cambridge Executive MBA is a 20-month program delivered over 16 weekends and four week-long blocks, meaning you’ll only spend 34 days out of the office.

This year’s EMBA class has 81 students with an average of 13 years’ work experience. Females make up 30 percent of the cohort, and there are 27 nationalities represented.

Students on the September 2019 program will pay £69,200 (US$90,509) in tuition.

7=) National University of Singapore Business School

national university of singapore business school

International students: 80 percent

Global rank: 18th

The Executive MBA program at NUS has soared up the global ranking this year, climbing 11 places to 18th. NUS achieved a perfect score for executive profile, one of the indicators used to compile the ranking.

Established in 1997, NUS offers a flexible program length for students. While the average is 20 months, some complete the 18 modules in just 15 months.

This year’s cohort has 120 students, and they have an average of 16 years’ work experience and 13 years’ managerial experience, while 49 percent have C-Suite experience. There are also 17 nationalities represented, and just over a quarter of the cohort is female.

Students here can expect an average salary increase after graduation of 45 percent, while tuition will cost them S$100,000 (US$73,817).



International students: 80 percent

Global rank: 17th

Established in 2001, ESADE’s Executive MBA program boasts 31 nationalities among its cohort, with four-fifths of students hailing from abroad.

Ranked 17th globally, the 16-month EMBA program has jumped up from 23rd place in 2018.

Established in 2001, the program has quite a small class with only 42 students, of which 45 percent are female. On average, students have 11 years’ work experience, four years’ managerial experience, and 40 percent have C-Suite experience.

Barcelona’s ESADE earned a perfect score for diversity, and very high scores for employer reputation and career outcomes in this year’s ranking.

The total cost of tuition for the Executive MBA program for the 2019-2020 academic year is €64,000 (US$72,120).

5=) Nanyang Business School

Nanyang Business School

International students: 88 percent

Global rank: 29th

The 14-month program at Nanyang Business School is the second institution from Singapore to feature in our internationally diverse top 10. However, while Nanyang outperforms NUS for the percentage of international students, it ranked 11 places lower in our global table.

There are only 31 students on the program (the smallest in this top 10), and the class has an average of 14 years’ work experience and 10 years’ managerial experience. Nearly a third of students are female.

The 14-month program costs around SG$100,666 (approx. US$74,439), but the average graduate receives a 30 percent salary increase. Nanyang offers students an international experience in collaboration with world-leading US business schools – The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business.

5=) IMD


International students: 88 percent

Global rank: 19th

IMD earned a perfect score for executive profile and career outcomes in this year’s table, two of the indicators used to compile the ranking.

Students can undertake their EMBA program in 15 months or spread it over a longer period, with the average program length totalling 21 months. Students will only be away from the office for nine weeks in total.

IMD has a class size of 111 students, of which 22 percent are female, while 30 nationalities are represented.

Students have an average of 16 years’ work experience and 12 years’ managerial experience. Just over a third have C-Suite experience.

IMD’s 2019 tuition fees total CHF105,000 (US$105,008), with graduates noting a more than 52 percent salary increase after completing their studies.



International students: 89 percent

Global rank: 9th

Established in 2004, INSEAD’s 15-month Global Executive MBA program scores very highly for employer reputation, thought leadership, and diversity.

INSEAD’s 2019 class profile boasts the largest cohort in this top 10 with 235, with ages ranging between 33 and 43 years old. The average student has 13 years’ work experience and six years’ managerial experience, while 17 percent of the cohort have C-Suite experience.

There are 59 nationalities represented in the cohort, and a quarter of all EMBA students are female.

The GEMBA Europe tuition fees for the 2020 class intake are €123,000 (US$138,970), with graduates reporting a 34 percent salary increase.

3=) IESE Business school

IESE Business School

International students: 89 percent

Global rank: 4th

IESE Business School’s program is 19 months long, and features 300 cases, three international weeks and 1,500 hours of individual study and teamwork.

Of the 60 students, 35 percent are female, and 89 percent are international, with 25 nationalities represented. Students have an average of 15 years’ work experience, 10 years’ managerial experience, while 53 percent possess C-Suite experience.

The fee for the Executive MBA program is €72,700 (US$81,951), but with an estimated 67 percent salary increase – the highest in the top 10 – the return on investment proves worthwhile.

2) IE Business School

IE Business School

International students: 92 percent

Global rank: 20th

IE Business School’s Global Executive MBA scored a perfect 100 for career outcomes in this year’s ranking and students can expect quite a return on investment, with graduates noting a 65 percent salary increase.

Participants on the 15-month program have an average of 16 years’ work experience, and six years’ managerial experience. 66 percent have C-Suite experience – the highest proportion in the top 10. Within the 65-strong class there are 31 nationalities represented and 34 percent of students are female.

The tuition for the Executive MBA is €61,200 (US$69,167).

1) Grenoble Ecole de Management

Grenoble Ecole de Management

International students: 100 percent

Global rank: 63rd

Our top executive MBA program for international students is at Grenoble Ecole de Management, where an astonishing 100 percent of students are international. The school offers participants the chance to study in Tbilisi, Georgia; Moscow, Russia; or Medellin, Columbia.

Program length varies depending on where you study, from 24 months in Columbia (one session every five weeks from Wednesday to Saturday) to 22 months in either Georgia or Moscow with weekend classes, followed by a Final Management Project.

Established in 1995, students have an average of 10 years’ work experience and eight years’ managerial work experience, while 60 percent have C-Suite experience.

There are five nationalities represented in this year’s cohort of 69 people, of which 35 percent are female.

This article was originally published in April 2019 . It was last updated in March 2021

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Written by

Niamh is Deputy Head of Content at QS (;, creating and editing content for an international student audience. Having gained her journalism qualification at the Press Association, London and since written for different international publications, she's now enjoying telling the stories of students, alumni, faculty, entrepreneurs and organizations from across the globe.