Professor At Presidio Graduate School Writes The Story Of The Chevy VOLT

Business case study of disruptive technology development will be taught in Presidio MBA program

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 4, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- After a year-long research effort at General Motors, Presidio Graduate School Professor Dariush Rafinejad has written a case study about how the Chevy VOLT was created.

The case study, titled Chevrolet VOLT: A Disruptive Innovation Bridge to Electrified Transportation, details the intricate path of creating the VOLT, including how Chevrolet analyzed product strategy, executed from concept car to mass production, designed for mass appeal, developed its pricing strategy, and launched its product into the market.

The case study emphasizes the challenge of developing of disruptive technology within a large company, whose internal stakeholders often protect the status quo.   

"I'm very grateful to the GM Executives who were very forthcoming and provided valuable input," Dr. Rafinejad said. "It's so important that we not just show business students how sustainability innovation is managed in a large company, but also how persistence through political and technical challenges is a key ingredient for success."

He added, "This is one of the reasons we have a Cleantech Certificate Program at Presidio--to disseminate the lessons and challenges that companies face bringing disruptive technology to the market."

The case study will be taught in Presidio's Sustainable Products & Services course, which Dr. Rafinejad teaches, and will be made available for any other programs to use as a teaching tool.

About Dariush Rafinejad, PhD Dr. Rafinejad has had over 25 years of experience as a senior executive in high-tech industries in Silicon Valley. He was Corporate Vice President at both Applied Materials and LAM Research, both billion-dollar semiconductor process equipment manufacturers. In addition to his core faculty appointment at Presidio, he is currently a lecturer at Stanford University and president of Blue Dome Consulting firm whose clients include: Novellus, SanDisk, Brewer Science, Aviza Tech, MKS Instruments, AMEC (China), SoloPower and Intevac. He is the author of the book, "Innovation, Product Development and Commercialization," and holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley.

About Presidio Graduate School Presidio Graduate School educates and inspires a new generation of skilled, visionary and enterprising leaders to transform business and public policy and create a more just, prosperous and sustainable world. Through innovative MBA, MPA, Dual Degree and professional development programs in Sustainable Management, and a flexible, affordable hybrid residency model, Presidio activates students and professionals across a range of disciplines, industries and sectors to bridge the gap between commerce and the common good. The Huffington Post ranked Presidio the #1 sustainable business program in the world. Fast Company rated Presidio in the Top 5. For more information, please visit

Media Contact: Rachel Fus, Presidio Graduate School, 415-655-8972,

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SOURCE Presidio Graduate School



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