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Aarhus BSS opens its doors

A key strategic goal at Aarhus BSS is to be in close dialogue with the surrounding society and strengthen the interplay between theory and practice. For that reason, the school is increasingly focusing on events aimed at the business community and alumni.

2018.12.13 | Sinne B. Jakobsen

Dean Thomas Pallesen gives the opening speech at this year's business conference. Photo: AU Foto.


One of these events is the school’s business conference, which took place on 29 November under the name Back-to-Business – Ignite your global potential. Through a series of presentations from practitioners and several of the school’s researchers, more than 350 participants got an insight into how to prepare their company for the digital future. And this interplay between theory and practice is one of the key purposes of the event, according to Jacob Kjær Eskildsen, head of the Department of Management. Together with Niels Haldrup, head of the Department of Economics and Business Economics, he has secured funding for the event.

“With the business conference we wish to challenge participants and disrupt their mental models a bit,” says Jacob Kjær Eskildsen. “We’ve put together a comprehensive programme with practitioners and a broad representation of academic fields. In this way, we hope to send participants home with new knowledge and inspiration. And I actually think that we’ve succeeded.”

Something suggests that Jacob Kjær Eskildsen is right. At least according to business psychologist Søren Braskov from the company HumanAct, who participated in the conference: “I leave the conference today full of inspiration for my own company and also a great deal of optimism,” he says. “The many presentations have given me lots of knowledge of how to handle the digital challenges and a belief that it can actually be done. It’s also been great to sense the high academic level that has pervaded the entire event.”

Strong relations in focus

The business conference is just one of a number of academic events at the school aimed at the business community. Other examples include Om Ledelse, Kvinder og Karriere and the Digital conference. Common to them all is that they focus on issues that are relevant to companies as well as to society.

The many academic events at Aarhus BSS are supplemented by the school’s annual Summer Festival. Last year, more than 1,500 alumni from a wide range of companies participated alongside the school’s employees and partners. The Summer Festival has a social element, but also rests on an academic foundation, explains Dean Thomas Pallesen. Among other things, next year’s Summer Festival will include a joint academic event where the school will yet again zoom in on a relevant issue in society and place it in a business context.

“At the school, we have an increased strategic focus on strengthening our relations to the business community and brand ourselves as a business school where strong core business and social science disciplines interact with all that lies in the interface between them,” says Pallesen. “Through our many academic events, we are able to show what we can do and thereby strengthen our collaboration with the business community and influence the world around us,” he concludes.

Aarhus BSS
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