Profile interview

I’m steering my career towards greener solutions

Geologist Paulien Veen had a “now or never”-moment when the opportunity arose to participate online for parts of the BI Executive Master of Management in Energy. Halfway through she finds it demanding, but certainly worth it.

After working in the oil and gas industry since graduating in 2002, for the last 15 years as an operation and exploration geologist, planning and monitoring wells, Veen jumped on the opportunity. She wanted to expand her skillset – and mindset – through the Master of Management in Energy programme at BI.

“The programme gives a holistic overview of the energy system. It considers fossil fuels and their importance for the emerging economy, versus non-emitting energy sources, like renewables and nuclear. In addition, it gives you tools for project management, valuation and decision making of projects, legislations and regulations, and new business models for the energy transition. It really creates a 360-degree perspective”, she says.

Being part of tomorrow's energy solutions

Her desire to change her career direction towards greener energy solutions aligned well with the programme, which is designed to give participants a comprehensive understanding of key energy issues.

“Graduates can make sensible decisions on future energy solutions, whether as business developers in renewable energy sources, digital smart solutions on energy efficiency, strategy consultants, advisors for the government and international organisations, amongst many others”, says Veen.

Learn more about the BI – IFP School Energy master here.

Dean for Master of Management in Energy, Lars Huemer, says the programme, and its graduates, will play an important role in the years to come.

“States, organizations, and individuals all over the globe are experiencing the impact of climate change, rapidly fluctuating energy prices and supply, and the uncertainty that follows on these trends. There is a need for people with skills in analysing and navigating, but also actively shaping, the future of the energy ecosystem.”

Student Paulien Veen agrees that the skills she is acquiring will be useful.

“Coming from the oil industry, I recognize the importance of fossil fuels and that we can find it in almost every product we own. The trend today, however, is to say fossil energy always equals bad. But the use of rare earth elements used in for instance electric vehicles and wind turbines are mined in a non-sustainable way as well”, she says and continues:

“We need to ask ourselves questions like "what are the benefits versus the costs?" and "where do the raw materials come from?". Every technology has its pros and cons. It needs to be deployed in a sustainable way. And once the innovation is proven, it needs to be rapidly scaled up globally.”

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"“We need to ask ourselves questions like "what are the benefits versus the costs?" and "where do the raw materials come from?". Every technology has its pros and cons. It needs to be deployed in a sustainable way. And once the innovation is proven, it needs to be rapidly scaled up globally.”"

Paulien Veen


Taking part in shaping the energy transition

The BI Executive Master of Management in Energy is a collaboration between two of Europe's leading educational institutions in the field, BI Norwegian Business School in Oslo and IFP School in Paris.

The duration of the programme is eighteen months, the average student have 12 years work experience and come from all continents and parts of the business. Candidates from both the supply and demand side of the energy sector will benefit from the program, believes dean Huemer.

“The program is for participants with practical experience from a variety of organizations and sectors, who would like to take part in shaping the ongoing energy transition. We seek people from the supply side including oil and gas, and the entire spectrum of renewable energy sources. The master programme is also for people who wish to contribute to the demand side; the success of the green transition does not only depend on changing supply, but on understanding the entire ecosystem of producers, consumers, and prosumers.”

Cross-border and cross-cultural learning

The energy master programme is probably the most global program we have at BI Norwegian Business School.”, says Huemer.

“Participants from all over the world create an international atmosphere in the classroom, which is vital for the learning experience we intend to create. Our partnership with IFP School in Paris adds important dimensions, in terms of international outlook and regarding energy competence.”

The international aspect of the programme has been a highlight, says student Pauline Veen.

“The programme not only has many international students, but we also come from different backgrounds. In my class we have 12 different nationalities represented. The experiences and perspectives that all these students bring is mind blowing.”

She has no hesitation in recommending the BI Executive Master of Management in Energy to potential candidates.

“All students have their own personal motivation to be in class, but all want to be part of the energy transition. To say it in the words of inspirational speaker Simon Sinek: The hardest part is starting. Get that out of the way and the journey is much easier.”

Read more about the Executive Master of Management in Energy here.

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