23 May 2022

BSH confirms the scholarship for the Master in Environmental Sustainability & Circular Economy


Interview to Fabio Palomba, Head of Human Resources & General Affairs, BSH Italy

What has prompted you to invest for the second year running in the partnership with the Master, confirming the “Simona Alberti Memorial” scholarship as well?

We believe that the concept of sustainability represents the core value of this initiative in all its forms: environmental, economic, and in terms of social responsibility. BSH expresses this concept in the same way within its corporate strategy and it is precisely for this reason that we are pleased to contribute to the training of tomorrow’s professionals in the field of sustainability and the circular economy through this collaboration with POLIMI Graduate School of Management.

For this reason, we have decided not only to confirm the allocation of the scholarship, but also to make a contribution to the classroom during the training course through company testimonials and project work, with the aim of increasingly reducing the gap between academic and professional training.

What is the value of the Simona Alberti Memorial scholarship for students? And what does it represent for BSH Italia?

The Simona Alberti scholarship is an opportunity for a first in-depth exploration of the subject, that will allow one of them not only to obtain a financial contribution to the Master’s admission fee, but also to gain visibility for themselves with a view to possible future involvement in studies on company activities related to the topic of the circular economy.

In particular, indeed, the young people who intend to apply for the scholarship will get the chance to take part in a real challenge, that we have called “Sustainability First”.

By 31st May, aspiring students will be able to take up the challenge by sending us a project that describes real, concrete example of Circular Economy which they have had the opportunity to tap into, learn about, or even experience firsthand in their own city, region and/or country of origin. The applicants can freely choose the way in which to describe this example of a circular economy: it can be a written paper, a drawing, photographs, in an audio format, a video or even a mix of these different means of communication. Not only will we assess the relevance of the example of a circular economy that they submit, but also the effectiveness of the style of communication used.

The student who presents the best project will be awarded a scholarship worth 3,000 euros to support him/her in the payment of the admission fee to the Master and then  ̶  why not?  ̶  might also be directly involved in corporate activities in the field of sustainability. In this way, we plan to make our contribution also with a view to social responsibility and focusing on the new generations.

At the same time, this scholarship provides the opportunity for BSH Italy both to promote a wonderful social responsibility initiative and to commemorate our colleague, Simona, whom we sadly lost in October 2020 at the end of a long battle against a terrible disease, and who was personally involved in environmental and social protection activities.

What is the relationship between companies, society and environmental protection today?

Safeguarding the environment is a necessity which is being increasingly perceived by the consumer, who expects a commitment from leading companies to encourage positive behaviour on the part of the customers themselves. It is a need which the consumer feels and demands of companies, and that is also why it is increasingly a fundamental issue in corporate strategies. However, concrete action is needed, not just slogans, because only a consistent attitude on the part of companies pays off. The risk of greenwashing is actually remarkably high, and this can lead to a loss of consumer credibility towards certain companies that are more virtuous in words than in deeds.

Why are large companies today increasingly looking for young people who are experts in the subject of Sustainability and in particular in Circular Economy?

Sustainability and circular economy are relatively new concepts for large companies, on which specialist and consolidated expertise is often not available within organisations. Indeed, traditional professionals think more in terms of improving processes and systems but less of using truly disruptive approaches, which are at the basis of the new circular business models. Profoundly disruptive ideas can only come from the new generations, who will then become the firsthand protagonists in the operational management of these business models

In BSH’s opinion, what is the potential of a Master like this for a young candidate?

A Master of this kind navigates in a field as topical as it is innovative. The real challenge of the years ahead for large companies will be to devise circular economy models that can actually be sustainable in all respects. We believe it is possible to go in this direction only thanks to professionals who have been adequately trained through courses of study, such as POLIMI Graduate School of Management’s Master in Environmental Sustainability & Circular Economy, which integrate academic knowledge with the practical experience of companies belonging to sectors that also vary widely.

The aim of this Master is to train those who will become tomorrow’s sustainability professionals within companies by putting together the most innovative skills and experiences in the field of sustainability and the circular economy. A case in point, Forbes has highlighted the fact that new generations are interested in contributing personally to the improvement of the planet as much as in having financial and career success  ̶  a not insignificant fact, I would say…. Moreover, at BSH, the concept of circular economy is at the heart of a whole series of projects aimed at exploring innovative ways of using and re-using household appliances in a circular perspective, preserving the intrinsic value of the products and generating positive impacts in the economic, social and environmental spheres.

23 May 2022

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