Annual Report 2020

Organisation and Employees

At the end of 2020, BI had a total of 923 employees. The total figures include 483 administrative staff and 440 faculty members.

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ORGANISATION DESCRIPTION

The Board of Trustees

BI Norwegian Business School is a self-owned foundation, which is led by a board of ten trustees.

The Board has ultimate responsibility for supervising BI’s operations, and for adopting a general set of rules. It appoints the President and considers strategic plans, adopts budgets and financial
statements, and is the ultimate decision-making body in all important issues. See Report of the Board of Trustees for a list of its members.

The Supervisory Committee

The Supervisory Committee reviews the income statement and balance sheet, elects the auditor and ensures that the Board’s management complies with statutory provisions and the bylaws. The Supervisory Committee consists of three members, all from outside BI.

The Supervisory Committee 2020

  • Anne Helsingeng, Chair
  • Christian Winther, Pangea Property Partners
  • Olve Gravråk, Valogiant

The President and the Chief Financial Officer attend on behalf of BI.

The committee meets twice a year, once during the spring semester and once during the autumn semester, usually in May and November.

The Senate

The Senate is BI’s top academic body, and its authority is derived from the powers conferred upon it by the Board. The Senate determines the content of BI’s education programmes, admission rules, exemptions, examinations, admission requirements, examination assessments and the expertise profile for the faculty. The Senate proposes faculty appointments to the President, who has the final appointment authority.

The Senate 2020 (as of 31 December 2020)

Inge Jan Henjesand, President, Permanent member
Hilde Bjørnland, Provost, Permanent member
Bendik Samuelsen, Provost, Permanent member
Amir Sasson, Provost, Observer
Lars Olsen, Dean Bachelor's Programmes, Observer
Janicke Rasmussen, Dean Master's programmes, Observer
Jan Ketil Arnulf, Dean Executive Programmes, Permanent member
Øyvind Norli, Dean Doctoral Programmes, Permanent member
Irina Eidsvold-Tøien, Faculty representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2021
Eivind Furuseth, Faculty representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2021
Paul Ehling, Faculty representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2022
Kim van Oorschot, Faculty representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2022
Richard Priestley, Representative of the Heads of Department, 01.08.2020-31.07.2021
Birte Marie Horn-Hansen, Administrative representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2022
Fridtjof Scheie, Administrative representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2022
Hans Ole Giske, Student representative BISO, 01.08.2020-31.12.2020
Siri Andrine Bakken, Student representative BISO, 01.08.2020-31.07.2021
Lars Huemer, Faculty deputy representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2022
Kai Rune Mathisen, Administrative deputy representative, 01.08.2020-31.07.2022

Leaders who report to the President may attend the Senate.

BI's Management Team

BI’s management team 2020 as at 31 December 2020:

President Inge Jan Henjesand
Provost Hilde C. Bjørnland
Provost Bendik M. Samuelsen
Provost Amir Sasson
Executive Vice President Full-time Marius Eriksen
Executive Vice President BI Executive Lise Hammergren
Chef Financial Officer Thomas Hvamstad
Executive Vice President Communication Yngve Kveine
Chief Digital Officer Elin Borrebæk
Executive Vice President Organization Wenche Helene Nilsen

The President

BI Norwegian Business School’s President is its Chief Executive Officer and has power of procuration. The President is the general manager of the foundation’s activities and must comply with the guidelines and orders provided by the Board. The President provides recommendations in academic and administrative matters. The President has the final say in appointments to faculty positions and is the chair of the Senate. The President must ensure that the foundation’s financial statements comply with statutes and regulations.

The Provosts

The Provosts function as the President’s deputies as needed. The three Provosts head the Programmes and Study unit, the unit for Research and Academic Resources, and the unit for Innovation and Outreach, respectively.

Education Affairs Committee - UUV

BI Norwegian Business School has an Education Affairs Committee for each programme area: Bachelor, Master, Executive and Doctorates.

The Education Affairs Committees are advisory bodies for the dean in the academic issues he/she is in charge of. The Committee deals with academic issues such as treatment of study plans, review of course descriptions (objectives, topics, literature, pedagogical models and forms of assessment), assessment of the areas and levels of expertise of lecturers, counsellors and external examiners, study progress requirements, admission rules, assessment of partners and approval of in-house courses, studies and programmes to be approved with credits.

Appeals Board

The Appeals Board deals with appeals and complaints on specific decisions and may on mandate from the Board process other complaints put forward by candidates. The Appeals Board has five members with personal deputies. The chair and deputy chair shall satisfy the statutory requirements for Appeals Court judges. The chair and deputy chair shall not be employed by the institution. Two of the members must be students.

BAMU

BAMU is BI’s working environment committee. BAMU shall work for the implementation of a fully satisfactory working environment in all our activities. The committee is to participate in the planning of safety and environmental work and must carefully monitor developments in matters that affect the safety, health and welfare of the employees. BAMU shall ensure that BI’s safety and working environment efforts, as well as HSE measures, are properly handled.

EMPLOYEES

At the end of 2020, BI had a total of 923 employees. The total figures include 483 administrative staff and 440 faculty members.

This corresponds to an increase of 50 persons as compared to 2019. The number of administrative employees increased by 38 persons, whereas the number of faculty members went up by 12 persons. Some of this increase may be ascribed to an increase in the number of qualifying fixed-term employees on the faculty. On the administrative side, the increase is largely due to the need for increased capacity in the development and implementation of new digital work processes, an increase in the number of admissions and Covid-19, as well as increased requirements concerning documentation of quality and corporate governance.

The figures correspond to 841 full-time equivalents, an increase of 47 full-time equivalents from 2019. The increase is due to a small increase in the number full-time equivalents on the faculty (about 8 full-time equivalents) and an increase of a little less than 40 full-time equivalents among administrative employees. At the end of the year the total number  of faculty full-time equivalents was 365, an increase from 357 in the previous year. The number of professors at BI totals 122; of these, 34 held positions as Adjunct Professor. The number of faculty members with an
international background corresponds to a little more than 35 per cent. In addition to BI’s faculty, 285 lecturers were associated with the school in 2020*.

* figures for employees may deviate from the statistics in DBH. This is because the reporting to DBH is current as of 1 October, while the figures in BI’s annual report are current as of 31 December. Adjustments have also been made to harmonize the figures stated in the annual report with the DHB figures and Discover/Faculty Insight as regards the selection of groups and counting methods, as for instance the fact that PhD candidates are included in the total figures for international faculty. Gender ratio has also been taken into account.

ORGANISATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

In BI’s strategy 2025 operating excellence is emphasized as one of three strategic priorities. Several of BI’s big digitalisation initiatives, such as BICX, Discover and Wiseflow have a great impact on work processes and organisational structures.

In 2020 this led to a merger, among other things, of the admission functions of the three business divisions Full-time programmes, Executive and Corporate into one joint admissions office. Digitalization also requires new knowledge and new skills among BI’s employees, and in 2020 the school continued the development of more systematic internal training and competence development programmes, partly as e-learning programmes.

«Help», a common physical and digital help service, was established to make it easier for employees to understand where they might get help concerning different types of technical problems and learning-related problems. Digital projects, and the KS project in particular, have resulted in a need to develop uniform work processes and to document roles and responsibilities. This work has shown the need for better documentation of BI’s governance structure as a basis for building a common organizational understanding across BI.

It has been decided to establish a new unit for Governance, Risk and Compliance in order to pool resources and work in a coordinated and systematic way in this area. In the same way, the OU (Organization Development) and HR Department was reorganized to strengthen management and project support.

In 2020 BI’s Board of Trustees adopted a new language policy stating that BI will use both Norwegian and English. Separate rules have been specified for usage in research, teaching and administration. The language policy reflects and supports BI’s international ambitions, at the same time as it recognizes our social responsibility concerning preservation and further development of Norwegian as a specialist language both in research and practice within BI’s subject areas. BI‘s main form of Norwegian is bokmål. Students, however, may submit answer papers both in Norwegian bokmål and Norwegian nynorsk.

Working environment, Covid-19 and absence due to illness

BI aims to facilitate an inspiring working environment that promotes individual wellbeing, health, learning and development. The environment should be characterized by diversity, equality, care and respectful and open communication. BI has zero tolerance for any form of misuse of authority.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to a change to digital teaching and extensive use of home offices, as well as strict infection protection measures. This affected both the psychosocial and physical working environment for all employees. BI has focused on introducing appropriate digital support tools both for teaching purposes and interaction, and to ensure good experiences and mastering for users through training and user support. Employees have also been given access to necessary equipment for their home offices. Various measures, including digital training opportunities, have been implemented to prevent negative effects of long days of sedentary work in front of a screen. Managers have had a special focus on the psychosocial situation of their staff, and BI has offered psychosocial counselling for those in need of this.

In December, an extraordinary working environment survey during the pandemic showed that most employees found their working conditions to be satisfactory but missed social contact with their colleagues. Some other challenges concerned the ability to distinguish between work and leisure, as well as workload and motivation. A number of employees have said that their concentration improved, that meetings were more efficient, and that stress was reduced because of greater flexibility. Overtime work has increased during the pandemic, whereas absence due to illness has gone down during the year and is lower than in 2019.

The working environment survey of the year took place as the pandemic broke out in March. The results, however, were largely concurrent with previous years. The survey had a number of questions related to bullying and harassment added to it. The results showed that most employees find that they have equal opportunities and rights at BI across gender, age, nationality and functional ability. The most important cause of bullying and harassment was disagreement on academic issues and/or personal chemistry. Verbal harassment was the most common form of harassment. Causes of bullying and harassment are now less related to classical discrimination themes such as gender, age, nationality etc.

BI has a focus on constructive dialogue and respectful communication at work. Besides, special behavioural guidelines to prevent sexual harassment have been developed.

BI’s primary occupational health hazard consist of factors related to stress and interaction, as well as musculoskeletal ailments, which have been much focused on in connection with the use of home office due to the pandemic. A psychosocial counselling service for all employees has contributed to preventing sick leave and conflicts, improved conflict management and led to better stress mastering. The psychosocial counselling, combined with good cooperation with the occupational health service, has contributed to employees returning to work more quickly after illness. The total sick leave at BI declined from 2.8 per cent in 2019 to 2.6 per cent in 2020.

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