Together for sustainable value creation

Picture of NHH
The offer to take part in the Sustainable Business Strategy programme at the master’s level, is especially directed at leaders of non-profit organisations and social and environmental entrepreneurs. The scholarship covers the full tuition fee for one module.
By Ove Sjøstrøm

28 September 2020 12:30

Together for sustainable value creation

For the first time in its history, NHH Executive is awarding a scholarship to a candidate wishing to enrol in its new master's programme in sustainability. The scholarship covers the full tuition fee for one module.

The offer to take part in the Sustainable Business Strategy programme at the master’s level, is especially directed at leaders of non-profit organisations and social and environmental entrepreneurs. The scholarship covers the full tuition fee for one module.

`We want to offer a place on the programme to a participant who otherwise would not have been able to enrol without a scholarship´, says Kristin Arefjord Stave, Business Development Manager at NHH Executive.

She adds:

`This programme represents a part of our values in a positive manner. NHH's vision is Together for sustainable value creation.

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`Haven't you awarded such scholarships in the past?´

`No, this is a first. We hope to attract many potentially strong candidates wishing to enrol in the programme with the help of this scholarship´.

Social benefit and impact

The scholarship will be awarded following an assessment. In addition to working in socially responsible companies, candidates must satisfy ordinary admission requirements.  


`They must be on the management team of an organisation that works nationally or internationally on socially important tasks. Our assessment emphasises the company's social benefit and impact´, explains Lars Jacob Tynes Pedersen, Associate Professor at NHH and Programme Director of the Centre for Sustainable Business (CSB).

Knowledge-based sustainability

Together with CSB colleague and Associate Professor at NHH, Sveinung Jørgensen, Pedersen has academic responsibility for the new master's programme in sustainability at NHH Executive. The master's programme will commence with its first year-group on 26 November 2020.

`We emphasise innovation and how sustainability issues are brought to the table and for which profitable solutions are then found´, says Jørgensen and emphasises:

`It is important that we do this with a business edge, so that it generates real value for businesses. The fact that existing business models are under pressure in most industries means that this programme is highly relevant for companies with a willingness to adapt. Here, we also see a potential for knowledge dissemination to leaders of green start-ups´. 

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New perspectives

Both Jørgensen and Pedersen think it is wonderful that new candidates will have the opportunity to undertake this study programme with the scholarship from NHH.

`Entrepreneurs, individuals from non-profit organisations and social entrepreneurs possess important knowledge. They see and understand other types of mechanisms than what you would perhaps find with individuals working in more traditional businesses. Naturally, this will also provide the other students with new perspectives on sustainability´, says Pedersen.

`Do you have any examples of such important knowledge´

`Indeed, both my colleague Jørgensen and I have been involved in a research project regarding a start-up developing solar-powered lamps. The company is currently collaborating with Norwegian Church Aid in Somalia, where young entrepreneurs are receiving training. These young entrepreneurs are selling solar lamps in a war-torn country without adequate power supply´.

To understand how non-profit organisations and companies can collaborate to solve specific environmental and poverty-related problems by way of sustainability business models, it is such experiential knowledge that is valuable for our study programme, Pedersen concludes.

Important actors for sustainability

NHH Executive collaborates with the reputable ESCP Business School in Berlin on the new sustainability programme.

´We have also planned for a school trip to Berlin, Germany during the course of the study programme´, explains Kristin Arefjord Stave from NHH Executive.

`ESCP also supports our initiative of a separate scholarship for social entrepreneurs and individuals from non-profit organisations. If this proves to be a success, we will naturally consider awarding scholarships to new candidates in the future. We look forward to contributing to creating opportunities for organisations and individuals who will influence the world in a more sustainable direction´, says Stave.

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Jørgensen and Pedersen are in full agreement with Stave and emphasise that the road to new and sustainable business models requires knowledge.

`If anyone is truly in need of this knowledge regarding sustainable business models it is precisely non-profit organisations and entrepreneurs. They represent an important piece of the puzzle to realising a more sustainable future´, says Jørgensen, before concluding:

´We would have liked to have had ten more scholarships to award, but one scholarship is a good start´.