Structure of the spesialisation

For our Executive MBA with spesialisation in Strategic Management

  • Goals for the specialisation

    Goals for the specialisation

    The specialisation in Strategic Management is a unique interdisciplinary management programme that provides a relevant and forward-looking education.

    The specialisation intends to give

    • different perspectives on disciplines within the field of strategy, economics, innovation and management that can contribute to better decision-making and development of their own enterprises. Theory and practical application are integrated in the specialisation, and the participants work on relevant issues from their own enterprises.
    • relevant research-based knowledge about strategic management in a broad perspective. Many enterprises are in a situation of constantly changing competition, often from international competitors, and an overall understanding is therefore necessary to be able to deal with challenges and create and take advantage of opportunities.
    • the ability to shed light on factors that help an enterprise to develop and mobilise resources in a way that creates lasting competitive advantages.  
    • networking opportunities for the purpose of learning and further development both in and outside the teaching situation.
  • Learning outcome

    Learning outcome

    After completing the specialisation, candidates are expected to have achieved the following overall learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


    The candidate has

    • advanced knowledge of how the strategy and management discipline has developed over time and sound knowledge of the scientific methods and approaches that form the basis for the strategy and management subjects.
    • advanced knowledge of strategic analyses of enterprises and the environments and markets they operate in, including from a sustainability perspective.
    • in-depth knowledge of finances and business and specialised knowledge of strategy and management and their importance to value creation in the enterprise.
    • in-depth knowledge of how strategy and management skills can be applied to new issues.


    The candidate can

    • analyse and apply a critical approach to various sources of information and use them to structure and formulate academic reasoning.
    • apply research-based strategy and management theories and tools in practical and theoretical problem-solving in different enterprises.
    • carry out independent strategy and management projects in accordance with applicable academic and ethical standards.

    General competence

    The candidate can

    • stay up to date and make use of new research-based strategy and management knowledge in their future career.
    • apply a global, sustainable approach to strategy and reflect on ethical issues in their own enterprise.
    • discuss and present subject-related issues and analyses with specialists as well as with the general public.
    • communicate extensive independent work in writing and orally using language that is appropriate to the field in question.
  • Assessment


    Students will be assessed in the following manner: 

    Individual home exam: 
    The students will sit an individual home exam at the end of each semester where they are tested on the learning outcomes achieved for the subject module in question.

    Master’s thesis
    The specialisaton includes an independent, written work worth 30 ECTS (master’s thesis), which should demonstrate each student’s understanding, reflection and maturation. Academic supervision is available to students while they are writing the thesis.

    The thesis is made up of four project assignments worth 7.5 ECTS each, one for each subject module. The students will be divided into groups of four participants for each project assignment. The composition of the groups can vary for the different subject modules.

    Each project assignment will consist of a topic with a defined academic approach. The assignment can be linked to an industry/enterprise represented in the group. The students will conduct an analysis where they apply the knowledge and skills they have gained about the topics elucidated in the subject module. 

    A draft of each assignment will be peer-reviewed by four other students who are not members of the same group. The input from the peer review will then be integrated into the project assignment before it is submitted for academic assessment.

    At the end of the specialisation, the four project assignments are combined to form a single document, which, together with an individual introduction chapter/reflection memo, will make up the student’s individual master’s thesis.

    The thesis will be presented and defended orally. The thesis will be presented in groups, where each student is responsible for the presentation of one chapter from their own master’s thesis. 

    Individual peer review by fellow students:
    At the end of each semester, each participant must write an individual assessment of another group’s project assignment. The assessment will also be subject to academic assessment.

  • Organisation of the specialisation

    Organisation of the specialisation

    The specialisation is an experience-based master’s degree programme with a scope of 90 ECTS. It is taught as a part-time course of study over a continuous period of two years and includes 17 physical study sessions as well as a series of digital seminars between these sessions. The specialisation includes an independent work (master’s thesis) worth 30 ECTS, which is written under academic supervision.

    The specialisation consists of four subject modules, each with a scope of 22.5 ECTS. Each subject module consists of four physical study sessions and a series of three digital three-hour seminars per semester.

    Most of the teaching takes place at intensive physical study sessions, normally over three days. The specialisation also includes two study trips to partner institutions abroad. The duration of the study trips is three to five days each.

    Most of the teaching will take place in the Oslo area, but some study sessions will be held at NHH in Bergen.

  • Module 1: The big picture

    Module 1: The big picture

    The first semester deals with how different aspects of an organisation’s surroundings influence strategic decisions. After having acquired a good understanding of the external framework conditions, we will review the framework and analyses used to gain insight into the specific competitive situation in different industries.  Financial markets will be considered separately.

    The relationship between cooperation and competition (value creation and value capture) is important this semester, and the topic will be elucidated from both a business and an economics perspective.

    Trends in the international competitive situation will be discussed, and models for international economics and trade will be reviewed. We then consider the political and cultural framework conditions, including the increasing importance of the political agenda and political processes for businesses’ freedom of manoeuvre and financial performance.

    During the semester, we will also go on a study trip to HEC Paris. Here, we will take a closer look at geopolitical conditions, macrotrends such as sustainability, climate challenges, the global competitive situation and the emergence of new business models.

  • Module 2: Customers, users and understanding the product market

    Module 2: Customers, users and understanding the product market

    his semester is mostly concerned with the user/customer/client/patient – whether they are end users (consumers, B2C) or businesses (B2B).

    Customer needs are an important topic, and we will take a closer look at how they change (e.g. because of digitalisation and increased awareness of sustainability) and how we can use experimental methods and AI to identify needs.

    Emphasis will also be placed on how customers and users can be grouped/segmented and how the calculation of customer and product profitability can be used to make strategic decisions.

  • Module 3: Competitive advantages

    Module 3: Competitive advantages

    The first key topic this semester is about how businesses can create advantages by identifying, exploiting and developing activities and resources. The other key topic is innovation, which will be addressed from both a practical and theoretical perspective. Intangible resources will be given special consideration.

    One of the study sessions this semester will be held abroad, this time at the National University of Singapore. The title of the session is ‘Doing business in Asia’, and we will be introduced to a unique Asian perspective on ecosystems, cluster effects, international competition and negotiations.

  • Module 4: The integrated picture

    Module 4: The integrated picture

    In the final semester, we will put all the pieces together and take a closer look at how strategic management can be exercised in practice, i.e. how strategies can be realised.

    Presentations will be given of different perspectives on management and how managers can promote strategic objectives by dealing with conflicts and negotiations in a constructive manner and by mastering internal and external communication. Groups, teams and restructuring/change processes will also be a topic in this module.

    At the end of the semester, we will focus on how new business areas can be identified and analysed, and how groups of companies can be managed and organised.

    An overview of the sessions in each module is available under ‘Sessions schedule and dates’.