In a globalized world, international cooperation is essential. The ability to act and collaborate across national and cultural boundaries is increasingly becoming a basic requirement for effective work. But how can universities foster these skills? How do students learn to bridge cultural divides and use differences productively? How do you teach them to face their own and others' prejudices with openness and curiosity? How does the HSLU promote the joy of international cooperation?
Ten students from African Leadership University and eight Lucerne School of Business students experienced a week full of discussions, coworking and valuable life experiences. The framework of the study week was the following case study:
“Namibia is planning an ambitious energy project with a company that has the potential to save millions of tons of CO2 and create thousands of jobs. But how should the land be used - for hydrogen production, solar energy, wind energy or for an eco-tourism area after all? How can the local population benefit and the environment be protected?”
The 18 participants - divided into different interest groups - were to negotiate a solution together:
- Energy company: A profit-oriented company that is committed to the energy transition. However, it is dependent on investments in order to be able to realize its energy production at all.
- Federal Office of Energy: Foreign interest groups promote renewable energies all over the world. They provide large sums of investment money, provided that projects meet their objectives.
- Investors: They are looking for "green" investment opportunities in Namibia. However, they want their investments to yield profits and they also have other possibilities to invest in.
- Environmental association: It works to protect the environment and minimize environmental impact and supports projects that contribute to green electrification. Without it on board, it is difficult to implement energy projects in this region.
- Local community of interest: It fights for careful use of foreign investment. The creation and preservation of local jobs is its core objective.
The last day of the study week was negotiation day: Each of the five groups had to defend its interests and yet a common solution was to be found. The participants learned a lot from each other and about themselves. Cooperation, respect for others and finding solutions together were the main features of the study week and had to be taken into account.
Are your students interested in participating in the next edition of our business case challenge? Please contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.