RSM and Wetsus launch unique Executive MBA Programme Water Specialisation

Posted: Tuesday 9th November 2010

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University is to join forces with Wetsus, Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Water Technology, to launch a new Water Specialisation as part of the top-ranked RSM Executive MBA programme. The memorandum of understanding was signed recently. RSM is the first top level business school to offer such a programme.

With this programme, RSM and Wetsus will offer a higher management education to companies in the water business. The programme is targeted at internationally oriented and talented business people who wish to develop their activities in the global water business. With a strong emphasis on leadership development in an international environment, the aim of the EMBA Water Specialisation programme is to reflect and further expand on issues related to water quality, distribution and availability. Moreover, the goal is to provide insights into state-of-the-art technological and managerial aspects of operating successfully in the industry.

Participants will take part in the first two terms of the Executive MBA Programme at RSM. The third term of Advanced Courses, specialising in the water business, will be modular in format and will take place at Wetsus in Leeuwarden. The In-Company project, supervised by an RSM faculty member, will also be in specialised water topics.

“All indicators show us that there will be a global, severe water shortage,” said Prof. Dr. George Yip, Dean of RSM. “We therefore need to focus on this broad, complex issue, and help solve it by providing the necessary management and leadership skills to people working in the water management business. We anticipate that EMBA participants in this specialisation may come from such functional areas as HR, Operations, Strategy and Innovation, and from a broad variety of organisations concerned with water management. As a top European management school – located in The Netherlands, with its 500-year history of water management – RSM is well positioned to deliver this specialised, and highly relevant, programme.”

“Successfully developing and implementing water technologies that address the world’s major water challenges requires talented, excellent and well trained people that can make a difference,” said Cees Buisman, Co-Founder and Executive Board Member of Wetsus. “Aside from business principals, leadership and management skills, the EMBA participants will gain multidisciplinary insight to complex, worldwide water issues.”

“The growing demand for clean and affordable water is fuelled by global drivers,” said Menno M. Holterman, Chief Growth Officer and member of the Board of Directors at Norit, one of the founding partners. These drivers include health and safety concerns, water shortages, the energy-water nexus and the demand for closed water loops, including water reuse, and require integrated solutions. Such solutions must meet local requirements and circumstances, while at the same time employ state-of-the-art technologies that operate in the most efficient way. For developing nations and many industries, water has become their license to operate and deserves the highest attention. This focus is needed, not only to provide immediate access to safe and reliable drinking water for more than two billion people around the world, but also to prompt management to make smart investment decisions, especially for locations where the availability of water is jeopardized. The growing complexity of the water supply chain requires that the smartest people in the world join this industry. The initiative of Wetsus, RSM and its founding sponsors is driven by our desire to motivate experts to prepare themselves for the ever demanding water requirements of the future!”

“Times have changed dramatically for drinking water companies,” said Dr. M.G. Flick, General Manager at Evides N.V, one of the founding partners. “While technical issues with long term views have ruled board room discussions for years, several developments have caused water companies to adapt business principles in order to adapt to short and medium term changes as a consequence of market developments, policy making and bench marks. To that cause, the demand of its personnel’s qualifications is shifting. It is therefore not surprising that Evides supports initiatives that aim to develop human capital in order to tackle the challenges they face. The RSM-Wetsus Water-EMBA specialisation fills the vacuum at the management level, taking the focus away from pure technical and technological issues. Evides wishes this initiative every success and looks forward to a fruitful cooperation.”

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