A high quality research and education of Oulu Business School (OBS) has been recognized again with the extension of international AACSB accreditation. OBS was the fourth business school in the Nordic countries to earn the initial accreditation in 2013. Now it is one of the longest accredited business schools in the Nordic countries.
Oulu Business School (OBS) has invested in internationalization in education and research from the beginning of the 21st century. The AACSB accreditation initially earned in 2013 and now extended for another five years, provides even more opportunities in international markets of education and in research. At the same time, the accreditation also demands continuous development – high level in research, education, and in all activities.
“My best thanks to our faculty, students, alumni, and our supporters. I am happy and proud of our common achievement. This recognition will encourage us to get even better results in the future”, comments the dean of Oulu Business School Mikko Puhakka.
A high-quality research and education together with the AACSB accreditation have raised the OBS – a young and small faculty from Northern Finland – among the world’s best business schools. A good example of this is the Times Higher Education ranking 2019, in which OBS placed in 201-250. It is an excellent achievement for a 19-year old faculty when competing against 800-year old world-class universities. The ranking was also the second best in Finland. Without the AACSB ranking, it is practically impossible to get to the THE ranking.
“In international business school markets of some 16 000 schools, accredited schools collaborate primarily with other accredited schools. The AACSB accreditation has provided us a place among the best 5% of business schools, which benefits our students, faculty as well as our stakeholders”, says the head of accreditation in Oulu Business School, deputy director of Martti Ahtisaari Institute Sauli Sohlo.
OBS’s attraction has also grown internationally. In recently ended admissions for international master’s programmes, OBS received 847 applications, which is 15% more than two years ago when the tuition fees were introduced for the first time. On top of that, the International Business Management programme was the most popular one among all the available international master’s programmes in the University of Oulu. None of these accomplishments would be possible without a high-quality of research and education, both of which are continuously developed further. The AACSB accreditation and its demands have improved the quality and volume of the research and education significantly.
The accreditation awarded by AACSB International (The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) is the most significant hallmark of excellence in business education and research. Only some 5 % of the world's 16,000 business schools have fulfilled the AACSB quality standards that focus on different aspects: strategic management, the quality of the school's faculty, students and processes, and the level of education programmes and student learning. Once achieved, a school must undergo a continuous improvement review every five years to ensure they are evolving and improving over time. In the Nordic countries, only 10 business schools have earned the AACSB accreditation.