Curriculum for the Master of Science in Economics and Business Administration. Applies to international students enrolled through 2014.

  • Programme content

    The Master of Science in Economics and Business Administration programme consists of 12 courses and a thesis. Together they add up to a total of 120 points (equivalent to ECTS credits) - 90 points for the 12 courses, and 30 points for the thesis.

    The programme is spread over four semesters, with four courses taken each semester and the final semester dedicated to the thesis.



    The forces of globalisation have brought people, firms and markets across the world closer together than ever before. Modern companies need to master both international and local dimensions to succeed in an increasingly competitive setting.

    The International Business profile is highly relevant to students who consider a career in multinational companies, international organisations or smaller firms whose activities involve a substantial degree of international business.


    The International Business profile provide students with insights and understandings of the opportunities and challenges that multinational firms, such as, Nestlé, Orkla, Lenovo, Telenor, AirB&B etc. face in the global environment. It also gives a solid basis for a career in more specialised industries, like shipping, or in international organisations, like the OECD or WTO.


    The core courses in the International Business (INB) profile provides you with knowledge about the global environment and how multinational firms creates business opportunities and meet threats and challenges in the global marketplace. The electives add opportunities to specialise in various directions and/or to secure a broader set of skills and insights of relevance for internationally oriented firms and organisations.

    Global firms transcend national boundaries in the labour market as well as in product and factor markets.

    Global firms hire from an international pool of talents and must meet the challenge of managing a nationally and culturally diverse work force.

    Global firms also source their input from suppliers around the globe and must deal with the cultural, logistic and institutional challenges involved in managing a global supply chain.

    The INB profile provides you with insights into and understandings of all of these issues that are core areas for managers in global firms.

    Understanding the global business environment is equally important. International organisations such as the WTO, and global and regional trade and integration agreements, such as the EU, shape the global market place and the business models and strategies of internationally oriented firms. Furthermore, international financial markets play a key role for such firms. The INB profile gives you thorough insights into and understanding of the global business environment facing any firm or organisation operating internationally.

    To an increasing extent, firms are held responsible for their policies toward employees, the environment and consumers across national boundaries. Managers in global firms need to know how to identify and deal with the challenges, and to ensure that the firm as well as its complete supply chain acts responsibly and in accordance with high international standards. The INB profile gives you a solid foundation for responsible leadership in an international context.

    The INB profile can easily be combined with international opportunities offered to NHH students, like exchange, CEMS and double degrees. In particular, it is well suited to combine with the CEMS Master in International Management.

  • The structure of the programme

    The courses in the programme shall be completed according to the following plan:


    • Courses equivalent to 45 ECTS from one of the majors.
    • Each major consists of compulsory and elective courses. The number of compulsory courses varies from major to major. It is highly recommended that the compulsory courses be taken in the first or second semester

    Elective courses

    • Elective courses equivalent to 45 ECTS.

    The elective courses can be chosen from the entire portfolio of master programme courses, including

    • courses from the chosen major
    • courses from other majors
    • courses taken in an exchange programme

    It is possible to combine four of the elective courses (30 ECTS) into a minor concentration by choosing these from one of the other specialisations. International degree students are, however, not required to have a minor.

  • Learning outcome

    Upon completion of the Master of Science in Economics and Business Administration with a major in International Business, the following learning outcomes apply:




    The candidates

    • Have advanced professional insights into the global environment and the strategic and managerial challenges facing global firms.
    • Have up-to-date knowledge of relevant theories and a profound understanding of the multi-disciplinary nature of international business.
    • Have solid competencies in empirical methods applicable to international business as well as of ethics in an international business context.




    The candidates

    • Can apply methodological and interdisciplinary skills to identify challenges and opportunities arising in international organisations.
    • Can use information and theoretical insights to propose and evaluate solutions to international challenges.
    • Can use the insights and theoretical foundation in international business as basis for acquiring new information and knowledge needed to handle international challenges.


    General competencies


    The candidates

    • Can communicate with both specialists and non-specialists about challenges and opportunities in international business.
    • Can reflect upon and take into consideration ethical issues and social responsibility, being aware of the added challenges that may arise in an international setting.
    • Can contribute with new insights and perspectives that further business development from an international perspective.

  • Master thesis

    During the programme, the Master degree students shall complete an independent project where they study one or more related problems in depth.

    This independent project is equivalent to 30 ECTS credits and shall be completed in the subject area of the major.

    The independent project is normally undertaken by two students together.

    Learning outcomes:

    Through the independent project, the students shall

    • develop their analytical skills and get a deeper understanding of theoretical and/or empirical possibilities and challenges in the selected academic field
    • be trained to think and work independently
    • analyse and critically relate to different sources of information and use these to structure and articulate academic arguments
    • show understanding, reflection and maturity in the academic field

    The independent project shall comply with research-ethical standards 

  • International opportunities


    • The students may take part in an exchange programme for one semester in one of NHH's partner institutions and take elective courses there.
    • At least 30 ECTS must be taken at the partner institution in order for the exchange programme to be approved.
    • Normally the exchange takes place during the student's third or fourth semester.


    Students in the Master programme may apply for admission to the CEMS Master of International Management (MIM) programme. CEMS is a collaboration among 29 outstanding international business schools, which awards a joint degree CEMS MIM. This programme is practically oriented and has considerable contact with CEMS's corporate partners. The programme includes compulsory courses, language requirements, an internship, a business project and a stay at a partner institution for one semester. The CEMS candidates are awarded a Master degree from NHH as well as a CEMS MIM (Master in International Management) degree.


    Students in the Master programme may apply for admission to one of NHH's double degree collaborations. These programmes have a high academic level and give the students an extra academic challenge. The students spend a year at NHH and a year at a foreign academic institution. The double degree candidates are awarded a Master degree from NHH as well as a Master degree from the collaborating institution.