Sustainability strategy

Student engagement

Our BI students show an inspiring and passionate drive to create lasting sustainable impact. Perhaps even more than any generation before them.

BISO – Dare to be more than a student

Logo BISOBI students operate a large student organisation (BISO) on all four Norwegian campuses, in Bergen, Trondheim, Stavanger and the largest campus in Oslo. Their key focus is to ensure a social and inclusive student life for all full-time students as well as an arena for personal development. Having a vibrant and diverse student organization is important for student’s individual well-being and development as well as for creating social connections “for life”.

BI believes a thriving student organization is important and funds BISO through annual budget allocations. BISO management self-manage these funds. BI also provides campus areas for free to BISO, for student offices and social meeting arena/cafés/pub. BI management has one seat on the BISO Board, to support the students. BISO has some external funding through sponsorships and collaborations with the business community, giving the students the opportunity to fund extra activities and obtaining valuable business experience.

Read more about BI Student Organisation

BISO – students pushing for sustainability

In 2018, the BI student organisation wrote a “call to action” letter to BI management, calling for curriculum changes on sustainability and other initiatives, to address societal challenges.

BISO management has continued this development. BISO launched “BISO Impact” in Oslo in 2019 and appointed a role as “Head of Academics and Sustainability” in their local management team, to ensure overall focus on sustainability into both student teaching and own operations. BISO collaborates closely with BI to propel sustainability development and student engagement actions.

In late 2020, BISO campus Trondheim established the student body “BISO Bærekraft”, focusing on student actions for sustainability, such as beach clean-ups and fundraising, as well as evening lectures from “green businesses”. The goal is to expand BISO student sustainability engagement to all campuses and integrate into all student activities.

Picture of students attending a panel debate
Picture of students attending a panel debate

BISO IMPACT – the game changer

The most prominent student engagement on sustainability has so far been establishing “BISO Impact” in 2019 on campus Oslo.

These ambitious students aim to be “game changers” on sustainability. This includes impacting curriculum transformations through the academic student representative system. It includes participating strongly in the societal debate on sustainability. It also includes greening BISO student operations through implementing BISO Environmental Compliance Certificates for BISO units, drawing on BI’s Eco-Lighthouse certification experts. 

The large annual student conference “Inspire” has been transformed and joined forces with BIs own “GoExplorer Day” into a joint BI/BISO Impact “Inspire to Impact” conference - to address sustainability jointly towards both students, business and society. The first conference was held in 2020 and the second (covid-digital) in 2021.

Being green is no longer just a cost of doing business; it is a catalyst for innovation, new market opportunity, and wealth creation. Together with BI, we have tried to integrate this mindset into the student organisation, by creating an arena that engages, inspires and enables young business leaders to develop the necessary skills to create a sustainable future. BISO Impact’s long-term goal is that students from BI will be sought after in the job market, because recruiters know that sustainability issues are a top priority both academically and in social arenas such as the student organisation.

Sarah Noe Brogaard
Founder & Leader of BISO Impact (2019-20)

Picture of farmers on a field

“EAT” - Global UN Case Competition 2021

In March 2021, BI hosted the United Nations virtual and truly global case competition together with partners EAT and KEARNEY.

The aim was to generate game changing solutions for the UN Food Systems Summit in 2021 supporting UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) #2: No Hunger plus SDG #9 Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure & SDG# 17 Partnerships for the Goals.

85 international teams participated, 15 remained in the semi-final and three in the final. The winning team, Team Inbbictus from Porto Business School (Portugal), will pitch their ideas to “Action Tracks” experts at the UN Food Systems Summit 2021.

"It has been a great experience for all of us! We made our best efforts to meet the expectations on the challenge (the cause is dear to all of us and should be a global worry) and focused our attentions in trying to solve the issue in a practical and realistic way, so it may be helpful to decision makers. Thank you to the organization and to all of those who motivated us to go beyond - without you the win would not have been possible."- Team Inbbictus

Picture of an auditorium full of people

BI International Case Competitions (BIIC)

Engaging our students through exposure to business practice on sustainability is an important ambition for BI.

Since 2016, BI has offered international student competition (BIIC) and used them to address real-life sustainabilty challenges and opportunities for business and society, in collaboration with corporations and organisations. These supporting companies ensures real-life learning through developing business-relevant cases together with BI faculty, being part of the jury assessing student contributions and hosting various corporate visits and student events. In addition, they sponsor the BIIC event, covering travel, accommodation and event costs. This ensures global inclusion and equal opportunities, where all qualified student teams can participate, regardless of funding levels in various countries around the world.

In 2021, BI also hosted a global case competition for United Nations; “EAT” – a truly global and virtual case competition to transform the broken global food systems.

Business women on train

Women in Finance

BI’s study programmes in Finance has the lowest female student proportion, both at bachelor and master level.

This is in line with international business school trends and in the finance industry at large. BI wants to even out the student body. In order to attract more women to study finance and stay in the business, we need to work in multiple directions. We need more female role models, both in our teaching faculty and female leaders in finance. We also need more student-oriented actions and engagement.

BI female finance students established in 2019 the “Women in Finance” organization, to create a platform for women at BI interested in finance. They have hosted various closed events for female finance students and female role models, also inviting female BI alumni leaders in the finance sector. They have also started to collaborate with Department of Finance with faculty and Associate Deans to establish development plans.

Going forward, both BI management, BI Finance Faculty and the “Women in Finance” students want to encourage more women to study finance and to pursue careers within finance. Plans are to jointly create an awareness and inspiration campaign on “Female Role Models in Finance” from various roles in the finance industry and also to host a “Women in Finance” Conference.