Norwegian School of Economics

Norwegian School of Economics
Norwegian School of Economics
Norges Handelshøyskole
The NHH logo
Established 1936
Type Public
Rector Jan I. Haaland
Admin. staff 300 (total)
Students 2,800
Location Bergen, Norway
Affiliations CEMS, PIM, Erasmus, EQUIS

The Norwegian School of Economics (Norwegian: Norges Handelshøyskole) or NHH is a public business school situated in Bergen, Norway. Opened in 1936 by King Haakon VII,[1] it is Norway's oldest business school and has since its foundation been the leading Norwegian teaching and research institution in the fields of economics and business administration.

NHH has a strong international orientation. The school currently participates in exchange programs with more than 130 foreign institutions in over 30 countries, and around 40 percent of the school's students spend at least one semester on exchange.[2] The school is member of CEMS (The Global Alliance for Management Education)[3] and the Partnership in International Management (PIM) network.[4] NHH is accredited by EQUIS.[5]

NHH alumni hold several important positions in Norwegian business and politics. Helge Lund is CEO of Statoil,[6] Norway's largest company and the largest offshore oil and gas company in the world. Jon Fredrik Baksaas is CEO of Telenor,[7] Norway's second largest company and one of the world's largest mobile phone operators.[8] Siv Jensen is leader of the Norwegian Progress Party,[9] and Yngve Slyngstad is CEO of Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM),[10] the part of the Norwegian Central Bank responsible for managing The Government Pension Fund - Global.[11]

Admission to NHH is among the most selective in Norway. For five years in a row, the NHH undergraduate programme has received more applications than any other undergraduate study programme in Norway,[12][13] and around 20% of applicants are admitted annually.[14]



NHH has changed much since it was first conceived. Norway's first business school is now part of a global network comprising some of the world's leading institutions for the research and teaching of economics and business administration. This has been achieved over the last 100 years, with much work done to establish a Norwegian School of Business in Bergen before the doors opened in 1936.

1900–1936: Establishing a business school in Norway

The business communities in Oslo and Bergen began discussing the establishment of a Norwegian business school at the end of the 19th century. A number of business schools had been established across Europe and during the early 20th century several business schools were established in Scandinavia based on model of the German handelshochschule (business school). Amongst them, the Stockholm School of Economics and the Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration (Hanken) in Helsinki were both established in 1909, followed by the Helsinki School of Economics in 1911 and Copenhagen Business School in 1917. In 1917 Norway's parliament (the Storting) passed a resolution to establish an institution for higher education and research based on the German handelshochschule model.

1936–1963: NHH opens and sets to work

After much lobbying and hard work, especially by Kristoffer Lehmkuhl, Norges Handelshøyskole (NHH) was finally opened by King Haakon VII on Monday the September 7, 1936. This was 10 years before the University of Bergen was established. The strong involvement of the business community in Bergen had ensured that not only was the school established, but that it was established in Bergen and was closely linked to business community from the very start.

When NHH first opened, the academic staff consisted of fewer than ten people and sixty students were enrolled each year. The first degree course offered was the Handelsdiplom (business diploma) and graduates received the title Handelskandidat (business graduate). This was initially a two-year course and, starting in 1938, a one-year additional course was offered to candidates who wanted to become teachers. As with all the business schools in Scandinavia at the time, the curriculum was heavily influenced by the German business education model. In 1946 the Handelsdiplom course was extended to three years.

After the Second World War, American influence became more important in the teaching of economics and business administration. Graduates and staff began to go to the US to continue their studies and work for a period, a trend that greatly increased in the 1960s and 1970s. By the early 1950s the need for a doctoral programme at NHH had grown. In 1956 NHH received permission from the Norwegian government to award doctorates and in 1957 the first doctoral candidate graduated from NHH.

1963–1980: A new campus and rapid growth

By the late 1950s NHH had outgrown its original premises and work began on developing a new campus for NHH at Sandviken, just outside the city centre. In 1963 the school moved to the new campus, an event which in many ways marked the transition to a new period which was characterised by a rapid increase in the number of students as well as teachers. The new campus provided a huge increase in capacity and the annual intake of students increased from 60 to over 200. In total there were now 304 students and 67 staff.

An important feature of this period was the growth and development of the faculty. The new facilities made it possible to employ many new, talented people and the importance of research as well as teaching was strengthened. Many successful graduates went to the US to study for doctorates and came back to NHH with international experience and a more research based focus. Many faculty members took advantage of sabbaticals to study and continue their research overseas, many textbooks were published and the volume of publications in international journals increased significantly. A driving force behind this expansion and internationalisation of research was Professor Karl Borch.

During this time Professor Jan Mossin's seminal paper "Equilibrium in a Capital Asset Market" was published in Econometrica, contributing significantly to the development of the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM). About the same time as Mossin returned to NHH from Carnegie Mellon with his doctorate, future Nobel laureate Finn E. Kydland went to the same university for his doctoral studies. Most of the US educated doctoral graduates came back to NHH to teach and continue their research, but some stayed in the US and a few (like Kydland) returned to NHH only to later go back to the US to continue their work.

As the faculty grew and developed so did the academic offerings, with several advanced level courses established. In 1963 the name of the Handelsdiplom degree was changed to siviløkonom, with graduate receiving the same title. A master level programme, høyere avdelingstudium (HAS), was introduced in 1972 as a preparation for siviløkonom students wishing to continue on to doctoral studies; and in 1973 Professor Dag Coward established a master level programme for students wishing to specialise in auditing, accounting and the financial management of firms, the høyere revisorstudium (HRS). In 1975 the siviløkonom degree course was extended to a four-year programme.

1980–2000: Specialisation and international expansion

In the early 1980s it was realised that the doctoral programme required updating and a new, structured PhD programme was introduced involving taught courses in addition to the research and writing of a thesis. This new PhD programme continued the focus on research at NHH, rather than just teaching. The first candidate to graduate from the new PhD programme did so in 1985 and the annual number of graduates rose from 1 in 1985 to 12 in 1990.

The focus on expansion and internationalisation of research was recognised in 1984 as NHH was ranked 7th globally and 3rd in Europe in the American Economic Review amongst economics schools or departments in non-English speaking countries by publications in leading journals.

During this period, close relations with international research environments were also established. The international activities at the school have increased considerably and the international focus has become stronger over the years. In 1984 NHH established their first international exchange agreement with the Stockholm School of Economics, and in 1986 NHH became the first institution in Norway to offer a master degree programme taught entirely in English - the Master of International Business (MIB). Following this, greater emphasis has been placed on exchange arrangements for students, and the school joined the prestigious Community of European Management Schools (CEMS) and the Erasmus programme in 1992 and the global Partnership in International Management (PIM) network in 1995.

Student and staff numbers continued to rise throughout the 1980s and 1990s. By 1985 there were 1670 students and 198 members of staff in total.

2000–present: Continued growth and development into the 21st century

The siviløkonom qualification was extended to 5 years in 2003. In line with the Bologna declaration, it now comprises a 3 year Bachelor of Science in Economics and Business Administration combined with a 2 year Master of Science in Economics and Business Administration.

NHH alumnus and Adjunct Professor Finn E. Kydland was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 2004, together with Professor Edward C. Prescott of Arizona State University. Kydland was giving a lecture at NHH when news of the award arrived.

In 2007 NHH announced the launching of a new master programme taught fully in English, the MSc in Energy, Natural Resources and the Environment.

Today, NHH is part of a global network of business schools and universities. International partner institutions include Stockholm School of Economics, Copenhagen Business School, Bocconi University, ESADE Business School, London School of Economics, HEC Paris, Cornell University, Duke University, University of Washington, UCLA, University of California, Berkeley, New York University, University of Cape Town and National University of Singapore.

On June 1, 2011, the school changed its English name from the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration to the Norwegian School of Economics.

List of rektors

  1. Ingvar Wedervang, 1936–1956
  2. Eilif W. Paulson, 1956–1957
  3. Rolf Waaler, 1957–1963
  4. Dag Coward, 1964–1972
  5. Olav Harald Jensen, 1973–1978
  6. Gerhard Stoltz, 1979–1984
  7. Arne Kinserdal, 1985–1990
  8. Leif Methlie, 1990–1995
  9. Carl Julius Norstrøm, 1995–1998
  10. Victor Norman, 1999–2001
  11. Per Ivar Gjærum, 2001–2005
  12. Jan I. Haaland, 2005–


NHH has five academic departments:

  • Department of Accounting, Auditing and Law[15]
  • Department of Finance and Management Science[16]
  • Department of Economics[17]
  • Department of Strategy and Management[18]
  • Department of Professional and Intercultural Communication[19]

The school comprises over 2,800 full time students and a total staff of over 330. NHH, together with two affiliated institutions, AFF (Administrative Research Institute)[20] and SNF,[21] form the largest centre for research and education within the fields of economics and business administration in Norway.


NHH annually admits 430 student to its sole undergraduate programme in Economics and Business Administration. The programme has for many years been the most popular undergraduate study programme in Norway, with more than 2000 "first priority" applicants annually and an admissions rate of around 20%.[22] The school attracts applicants from all parts of Norway and aims to have a varied student body. The school also aims to reach 40% female students and has taken several measures to attract more female applicants. Although more women than men pursue higher education in Norway, NHH is still dominated by male students. As a Norwegian public institution of higher education, NHH admits its students through Samordna opptak where applicants are ranked on a point scheme and the qualified candidates with the most points are granted admission.

Undergraduate NHH students are secured transfers to school's the master's programmes after completing the bachelor's degree. Most student take advantage of this policy. In addition, students from other universities and business schools are admitted to the master's and doctoral programmes, and make up the graduate student body.


The school offers one three-year undergraduate programme in Economics and Business Administration, taught in Norwegian. Most students continue their studies with a two-year master's degree, which together with the undergraduate degree completes the requirements for the Norwegian siviløkonom title. NHH offers eight master's profiles:

  • Financial Economics
  • Business Analysis and Performance Management
  • Economic Analysis
  • Marketing and Brand Management
  • Economics
  • Strategy and Management
  • International Business (taught in English)
  • Energy, Natural Resources and the Environment (taught in English)

Additionally, NHH offers a master's programme in Accounting and Auditing, as well as the CEMS Master's in International Management which is currently ranked as the world's second best Master's in Management programme by the Financial Times.[23]

The NHH PhD programme offers specialisations in five fields:

  • Accounting
  • Economics
  • Finance
  • Management Science
  • Strategy and Management

Double degree arrangements

NHH is part of four double degree arrangements:

Student life

Like all public institutions of higher education in Norway, NHH does not charge tuition fees. However, a small semester fee of NOK 490[28] (roughly US$80) is charged. This money helps fund the Student Welfare Organisation in Bergen, which subsidises kindergartens, health services, housing and cultural initiatives.

The Student Association at NHH (NHHS) has groups to accommodate many student interests. As would be expected for a leading business school, NHHS has many groups involved with economics and business issues. These groups maintain contact with the business community and serve to stimulate interest in and improve knowledge of various sectors Norwegians and international business. This is achieved through conferences, seminars, company visits, excursions in Norway and abroad and trainee programs in various businesses. The Student Association is led by a board of seven people - Kjernestyret.

  • NHH has several bands and choirs. Although each choir and band has their own distinct character and charm, they do have some common features. The musical groups with a long history at NHHS include the male choir Svæveru', the female choir Sangria,[29] the mixed choir Optimum, the brass band Direksjonsmusikken and the Big Business Band.
  • NHH also has school teams in several sports, including badminton, basketball, soccer, lacrosse, volleyball, handball, golf, indoor bandy and diving.
  • Every two years NHHS organises a three week music festival called UKEN. The origins of UKEN date back to 1946 when the students at NHH organised the first studenteruken or students' week. After 1980 UKEN developed into a much broader event and it has now grown into the second largest festival in Western Norway.
  • The largest event held by NHHS for the business community is Symposiet, a visionary biennial conference at which leading executives, researchers and students from Norway and abroad participate.
  • Næringslivutvalg (NU - the Business Committee) is the main link between students at the NHH and employers worldwide. They establish contact between companies looking to recruit and students looking for jobs, and provide all the necessary services needed by both parties.
  • In addition to the on-campus facilities at NHH, NHHS also owns the cabin Kramboden in the mountains south west of Bergen. Many of the clubs and societies within NHHS organize trips to Kramboden and students can rent the cabin themselves for a reasonable price.
  • NHHS has its own TV news program, K7 Minutter[30] and a wide variety of groups cover various sports, economics and business topics, music and other interests. A selection of groups that have been very popular among international students in the past include:
  • The local committee of AIESEC at NHH is one of the original seven founding committees. AIESEC is the world's largest student-run organization focusing on leadership development, through a large internship program.
  • Amnesty International is a globally renowned human rights organization focusing on the release of prisoners of conscience. NHH has its own chapter of Amnesty International.
  • Friluftsgruppa (Hiking group) arranges tours in the mountains of varying length and intensity every semester.
  • GEP (Global Economic Perspectives) focuses on the consequences of global economic activity. GEP has no political affiliation. The group's main focus is to arrange debates and conferences with academics, business leaders and politicians around topics related to global economic perspectives.
  • Foto NHHS is the student association's photo group.
  • K7 Bulletin, or Bulle, is the school newspaper and is printed every two weeks.
  • Lurken Telemarkslag (The Telemark Skiing Group) is one of the largest groups in the school, with over 200 members. It arranges trips to Voss, Finse, Eikedalen and, of course, Kramboden.
  • MiB Council All MSc in International Business students are automatically members of the MiB Council, which organises social events and activities to help the International Business students get to know each other better, to involve them with the local business community and to raise the profile of the students overseas. The MiB Council organises the MiB Forum for Norwegian businesses every autumn semester.
  • NHH Aid is the student group for humanitarian work. The students collect money and work to raise awareness regarding the poor living conditions in third world countries.
  • Oikos is part of a network of student groups in business schools across the world, working to integrate sustainability into business and management through education.
  • StafettKomiteen (Stafkom - The Running Club) The goal is to beat BI (The Norwegian School of Management) in the annual relay race between Bergen and Oslo. It takes place at the end of the spring semester, lasts for 2–3 days, and ends with a grand banquet at either BI or NHH.
  • Økonomiske Vinterleker (Economic Winter Games) takes place at Ål during the first week of February. Almost 300 students from both NHH and BI (The Norwegian School of Management) gather to compete in winter sports and to socialise.
  • Børsklubben (the Stock Club) is the stock analysis group. Børsklubben founded Lehmkuhl Invest AS, a joint investment company owned by students at NHH.
  • NHHS Consulting This is a student-run and owned consulting firm. It aim is to offer various services for student groups at NHH and do commissions for local firms in Bergen.
  • Markedsgruppen (The Marketing Group) Markedsgruppen supervises all corporate relations the student association is involved with.

Notable NHH students, alumni, and professors



Government / Law / Public Policy / Human Rights

Arts and Entertainment


  • CEMS – Community of European Managements Schools
  • Erasmus programme
  • PIM – Partnership in International Management


  1. ^ NHH opens and sets to work
  2. ^ International Relations Office
  3. ^ CEMS - school information
  4. ^ PIM network
  5. ^ EQUIS accredited members
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ Department of Accounting, Auditing and Law
  16. ^ Department of Finance and Management Science
  17. ^ Department of Economics
  18. ^ Department of Strategy and Management
  19. ^ Department of Professional and Intercultural Communication
  20. ^ AFF
  21. ^ SNF
  22. ^ Søkere fordelt på lærested i hovedopptakene 2006-2009
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^
  28. ^
  29. ^
  30. ^
  31. ^ The Economics Prize Committee

External links

Coordinates: 60°25′22.87″N 5°18′7.41″E / 60.4230194°N 5.3020583°E / 60.4230194; 5.3020583

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Norwegian School of Economics — (NHH) Nom original Norges Handelshøyskole Informations Fondation 1936 Type Établissement public d’enseignement supérieur Régime linguistique norvégien, anglais Budget 38,7 millions d’euros (2007) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration — Infobox University name =Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration native name =Norges Handelshøyskole latin name = motto = established =1936 type =Public University endowment = staff =300 (total) rector =Jan I. Haaland students… …   Wikipedia

  • Student Union of the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration — Infobox Company name = Student Union of the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration type = Student Union genre = foundation = 1936 founder = location city = Bergen location country = Norway location = locations = area served =… …   Wikipedia

  • Norwegian School of Veterinary Science — Norges Veterinærhøgskole Latin: Schola Veterinaria Norvegiae Established 1936 Type Public U …   Wikipedia

  • Norwegian School of Sport Sciences — Norges idrettshøgskole Established 1870 Type …   Wikipedia

  • Norwegian School of Information Technology — Norges Informasjonsteknologiske Høgskole Established 1995 Type Private college Dean Bjørn Jarle Hanssen Admin. staff c. 25 …   Wikipedia

  • Norwegian School of Management — Infobox University name =BI School of Management native name =Handelshøyskolen BI latin name = motto = established =1943 type =Private University College Principal =Professor Tom Colbjørnsen students =18,700 staff =800 city =Oslo country =Norway… …   Wikipedia

  • London School of Economics — Not to be confused with School of Economic Science. London School of Economics and Political Science Motto Latin: Rerum cognoscere causas Motto in English To Understand the Causes of Things …   Wikipedia

  • MF Norwegian School of Theology — Norwegian School of Theology (MF) Det teologiske Menighetsfakultet Motto In Principio Erat Verbum Established 1907 Type Private …   Wikipedia

  • List of London School of Economics people — This is a list of noted alumni or faculty of the London School of Economics. Heads of State or Heads of Government * Harmodio Arias (1886 1962) President of Panama, 1932 1936 * Óscar Arias (b. 1941) President of Costa Rica, 1986 1990, 2006… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”