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Highly commended: How SUMS impressed AACSB

Tuesday, June 6th, 2017


L-R: Bob Reid, Executive Vice President and Chief Accreditation Officer from AACSB, with Yvonne Beach, Prof David Oglethorpe and Prof Andrew Simpson from the Management School

Pictured above (L-R): Bob Reid, Executive Vice President and Chief Accreditation Officer from AACSB, with Yvonne Beach, Prof David Oglethorpe and Prof Andrew Simpson from the Management School

From an intensive focus on careers, to impact on organisations and commitment to the mission and vision, Sheffield University Management School has received standout feedback from accrediting body, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

In April, the School announced that it has been awarded another five years of accreditation from AACSB, further to a visit from their peer review team comprising Deans from thee other international business schools. Amongst the formal feedback from AACSB are a number of strengths, innovations, features and practices which they have chosen to commend.

The panel praises the School’s research, employability initiatives and its work with organisations, highlighting how these activities link back to a recognised mission and vision used by the Dean, Prof David Oglethorpe, to embed socially responsible and sustainable practices throughout.

A research-driven environment which impacts on learning and teaching is core to the School, and the University as a whole. AACSB’s panel credited this approach, also noting that toolkits deriving from academic research projects had contributed positively to a variety of organisations, including the International Labour Organisation.

This link with business was also recognised as excellent in the context of Futures First, the School’s student employability initiative which draws on expertise and knowledge from its advisory board members, whose high profile day jobs inform some of the content.

Professor Oglethorpe said: “I’m so incredibly proud of the School, which has once again been granted the full five-year accreditation from AACSB. This is a wonderful result and testament to everything we have all worked very hard towards.

A further five years of AACSB accreditation cements Sheffield’s position as having a top one per cent global business school.

Click here to read our Mission and Vision.


AACSB were impressed that the School’s mission and vision were embedded throughout the School

Management School secures triple crown with AACSB accreditation

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

Sheffield University Management School has been awarded another five years of accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

The AACSB panel visited in February and undertook a rigorous two-day audit of our activities, meeting with professional and academic staff to discuss every aspect of the School.

Dean of the School, Professor David Oglethorpe, said: “I’m so incredibly proud of the School, which has once again been granted the full five-year accreditation from AACSB. This is a wonderful result and testament to everything we have all worked very hard towards.

“The panel, comprising three business school international deans from the US and China, were incredibly impressed by all the faculty, staff and students they met – particularly by the extent to which the mission, direction and values of the School were shared across the School and all of our activities. They remarked that the standard of our research and teaching was at a very high level and the professional support we enjoyed was amongst the best they’ve seen.

He concluded: “This is a milestone accreditation for us and ensures we retain our triple crown, which puts us in the top one per cent of business and management schools worldwide.”

Leading innovators in learning and teaching awarded by Senate

Wednesday, May 25th, 2016

For the fourth year running, the Management School has achieved success in the University’s prestigious Senate Awards.

Prof Paul Latreille, Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching at the Management School, scooped the prestigious Senate Award for Leadership in Learning and Teaching. On his win, he said: “I’m delighted with this acknowledgement from the University. We’ve worked hard to become leading innovators in learning and teaching and to deliver an outstanding student experience, and it hasn’t just been my efforts: without an exceptional team of supportive academic and professional services colleagues, this award wouldn’t have been possible. I’m proud of the entire School and this award is a further reflection of our collegiality and the great things we can achieve together.”

Andrea Ward, University Teacher and Postgraduate Director for Teaching Quality and Enhancement, has been awarded the Early Career Senate Award. She was praised for being a dedicated, inspirational teacher and mentor who makes the most of available technology, saying: “My teaching approach is facilitative encouraging participation and to provoke thinking to enable them to reach their potential by helping them create the ability and skill to decipher real world situations. It’s an honour to have this acknowledged by the University.”

The final award, for Collaborative Activities, was a group presentation to the Global Leadership Initiative Team (GLOSS), including Management School academic staff Prof Jason Heyes and Dr Thomas Hastings. For the past two years Jason and Tom have arranged for groups of Sheffield students to attend meetings of the Governing Body of the International Labour Organisation, a specialist agency of the United Nations. Thanks to Jason and Tom’s efforts, the students have spent a week in Geneva meeting ILO officials and learning about the realities of international policy making. Their commitment to securing valuable international opportunities for students in the social sciences has made a significant difference to student experience across the Faculty.

Dean of the Management School, Prof David Oglethorpe, reflected on the announcement: “I couldn’t be prouder of our achievements in learning and teaching and some of these have been recognised formally by the University again this year with four Management School staff achieving Senate awards. This is the fourth year running that the Management School has members of staff receiving these awards – a true reflection of our commitment to ensuring excellent, innovative teaching provision for students.”

Click here to read more about the Senate Awards and winners across the university.

The Management School shines with five-year AMBA accreditation

Monday, September 21st, 2015


Sheffield University Management School has been reaccredited for the maximum five-year term by the Association of MBAs (AMBA).

After a rigorous two-day visit to the School, the AMBA panel were happy to grant four of the Management School’s Business Masters programmes a five-year accreditation – improving on our previous three-year award.

Dean of the Management School, Professor David Oglethorpe, said: “Five further years of AMBA accreditation is superb news and testament to the School’s continued hard work and professionalism.

“The panel gave us several commendations around leadership, ongoing development of internationalisation plans, facilities and professional service support. I’m delighted that these comments demonstrate that running a world-class Management School is a whole-team effort – everybody contributes and should feel proud. Maintaining our AMBA accreditation also secures our Triple Crown status, and keeps us in the top one per cent of Management Schools worldwide.”

The Sheffield MBA, MSc Management, MSc Management (International Business) and MSc International Management are the four programmes that retain accreditation, and join a global elite of courses to be approved by AMBA. The expert panel, comprising an AMBA representative and senior figures from other accredited universities across the world, were impressed by our collegiality, programme management and methods of diversifying and integrating international students.

Echoing Professor Oglethorpe’s comments, the panel praised ‘the loyalty, enthusiasm and dedication’ of all School staff, referencing a ‘tangible atmosphere of cooperation and common purpose’. They also commended our excellent level of pastoral care structure and the impressive measures the School has taken to ensure retention and development of academic staff.

Graduates of AMBA accredited programmes have the assurance of quality – they can be certain that the courses at Sheffield are thoroughly assessed, both on curriculum content and potential impact on future career prospects. Studying at a school with such international credibility also gets noticed by employers.

Professor Oglethorpe concluded: “The School has made huge steps in recent years. I’m immensely proud of our continued process and am delighted that this has been acknowledged by AMBA’s international panel.”

Celebrating our Professional staff

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015
Josie Smith and Sharon Rose

Josie Smith and Sharon Rose

Excellent Professional Service (PS) staff are the cornerstone of a well-run university department. They drive and are responsible for many of the accolades in our Triple Crown accreditations and ensure connectivity across all the business areas we engage in.

By Dean of the Management School, Professor David Oglethorpe – taken from his blog:

Prior to next week’s University of Sheffield Professional Services Awards, which sees two of our valued colleagues shortlisted in high profile categories, I’d like to take you through some of our PS departments’ essential contributions to every aspect of life at the Management School.

Very soon into their University of Sheffield career, students become familiar with the Student Experience Office’s ‘front desk’. As our largest PS team, this group of professionals is student facing, administers all of the courses, creates timetables for every level of study, and organises our accreditation process – amongst many other functions. It’s no surprise to me that Sharon Rose, Deputy Head of Student Experience and Accreditation, is one of three shortlisted for the ‘Professional Staff Member of the Year – Social Sciences’ award. Many congratulations, Sharon, very well deserved!

Our Marketing & Recruitment and Research teams were nominated individually for the ‘One Team Award’. They make a huge contribution to the School. From appearances in the press, a digital presence and having students on our courses, to our increasing amount of world class research and a dynamic, growing group of PhD students – these two departments are essential to the reputation and standing of the School. Final year undergraduate students will no doubt have been hearing from a few of our Marketing team during their inspiring NSS campaign, about the importance of taking part.

Josie Smith, Research Officer in the Research team, has been shortlisted in the ‘Professional Student Collaborator of the Year Award’, a University-wide category. Known well by PS and academic staff, as well as our PhD student community, I was delighted to hear of her nomination. Great work, Josie!

PS roles can so often span far and wide – across every community in the School and many in the University. The External Relations team’s reach is even further, bringing organisations and interesting speakers into the School to enhance our curriculum and offer unique opportunities to students. They also help us to keep in touch with alumni, bring in and allocate student projects and organise International Summer Schools. Students can see real benefits from engaging early on with this team’s events and opportunities, which they distribute via Hub Headlines.

Our Information, Operations, Projects and Finance teams handle the critical ‘day-to-day’ running of the School, alongside providing a great deal of support to academics. It’s so easy to simply accept that a complex department like the Management School just ‘works’ – as Dean, I want to acknowledge the exceptional contribution of these staff who ensure that essential tools such as MOLE are up-and-running when students need them, that new staff have a comprehensive induction, that building work and maintenance is conducted safely and with minimum disruption, and that the numbers all add up.

This piece only touches on small parts of these teams’ contribution to student life, and the running of the Management School. While your main contacts here will be mostly academic, the support work from PS staff is what makes the University of Sheffield number 1 in the country for student experience.

Full list of nominations in the Management School:

Josephine Smith (Research Team); Jenny Hugh (Student Experience Office); Loo Yeo (Information Office); Kath Cobley (Finance Team); Paul Nile (Information Office); Mandy Robertson (Research Team); Jane Archer (Student Experience Office); Rebecca Kendrick (Student Experience Office); Sharon Rose (Student Experience Office)
Marketing & Recruitment Team: Sue Whittaker, Maddie Stewart, Heather Crookes, Asif Naeem, Sophie Raynor, Amy Lax/David Sedgley (Mat Cover)
Research Team: Harriet Godfrey, Mandy Robertson, Josie Smith, Mark Latham

REF2014: SUMS soars up the rankings

Thursday, December 18th, 2014
  • 81 per cent of our research is considered world leading or internationally excellent
  • Top five in the Russell Group for research impact
  • Top ten in the UK for research impact
  • Top 15 in the UK overall

Sheffield University Management School is rounding up 2014 on a high.

Hot on the heels of EQUIS reaccreditation, which keeps us in the top one per cent of business/management schools globally, the Research Excellence Framework 2014 (REF2014) has released excellent results for the School.

For the first time, we are in the top 15 business/management schools in the UK – a huge 81 per cent of our research is considered world leading or internationally excellent. Up two places from the previous assessment (RAE2008, =16th), this significant elevation is a reflection of our fantastic research environment, output and impact.

The School performed exceptionally well in its research impact, which is the demonstrable contribution that research makes to society and the economy. Sixty per cent of our research impact is considered ‘outstanding’ (4*), and the remainder ‘very considerable’ (3*). Impact is assessed on its reach and significance, so we are pleased to have seen such outstanding achievements in this category – with our core research themes of sustainability and socially responsible work practices and processes, it is evident that our academics are making a significant contribution to the world.

Associate Dean for Research, Professor Pauline Dibben, said: “We are delighted with our REF2014 results. They have cemented our strong end to the year, following news of our EQUIS reaccreditation, and truly reflect what the Management School does well.

“We have a clear focus on social responsibility, strong ethics and integrity – qualities also noted by EQUIS. It is what we do, and who we are. These attributes also contributed to the score for our research environment, that was ranked 3 and 4*.

“We provide an internationally excellent environment in which our academics are supported to produce world leading research.”

The Management School has achieved a great deal in the years leading up to 2014, and this month the hard work and determination has come to fruition. Dean of the Management School, Professor David Oglethorpe, said: “To achieve such great success in both the REF and through our EQUIS reaccreditation in one week marks us out as one of the most outstanding and improving Schools in the UK, with a truly global reach and significance.  I am delighted with these results which are a testament to the dedication, commitment and quality of everyone who works in the School.”

A global player: Sheffield University Management School maintains place in world’s top 1%

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

The University of Sheffield’s Management School has kept its place in the global elite thanks to once again gaining the stamp of approval from prestigious international accreditors, EFMD.

Accreditations from EFMD’s European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS), the Association of MBAs (AMBA), and the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) are collectively known as Triple Crown accreditation, an honour upheld by Sheffield University Management School since 2012 and bestowed on fewer than 60 business and management schools worldwide.

Dean of Sheffield University Management School, Professor David Oglethorpe, said: “I am proud to lead such an inspiring school. EQUIS accreditation is a highly prestigious mark of quality and another feather in our cap – although we are already in the top one per cent of schools worldwide, we are highly ambitious for the future and want to further enhance our reputation and that of the University on a global scale.

“EQUIS has critically examined our global presence and progress alongside programme provision, world-class learning environments, research and outreach. As an EQUIS accredited school, we must demonstrate a high degree of internationalisation. Across the globe, businesses recruit our students, and we welcome many overseas students every year. Also, we must create strong alliances across continents with institutions like ours. There is no reason why all of us shouldn’t aim to be international – not just as a school, but as students, researchers and professional staff too.”

Accrediting bodies look for qualities in a school that are unique – Sheffield University Management School’s research focus sets it apart from similar organisations. Professor Oglethorpe continued: “Our researchers are conducting world-leading studies, with an overarching focus on sustainability and socially responsible work practices. From analysing labour standards in Brazil and South Africa, to developing flood risk strategies in the face of climate change, and securing food supply chains, they are working to solve huge global problems.”

Associate Dean for External Business Advancement, Professor Andrew Simpson, said: “Continuous improvement is embedded in our staff’s and students’ approach to work and study, and we are committed to this as a strategy for the future.

“To achieve EQUIS we don’t simply have to maintain standards – the School must have advanced significantly in line with its strategy since the panel’s previous visit.”

Professor Simpson is spearheading the Management School’s international profile. He recently returned from a trip to Japan with the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Keith Burnett, where he met with other universities, organisations and alumni.

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for the Faculty of Social Sciences, Professor Gill Valentine, said: “I was delighted to hear of the Management School’s reaccreditation. The panel could not fail to be impressed by their excellent facilities, focused mission and vision, and world-leading staff – EQUIS cements their global reputation, and feeds into that of the Faculty and University.”

Sheffield University Management School is living and breathing the University and Students’ Union-formed #weareinternational campaign.

SUMS brings in the numbers

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

F-D_LectureTheatre   DO_AF-D   Networking2

Keeping a room of the region’s most prominent accountants and financers entertained after work is a tall order – but Sheffield University Management School’s lecture rose to the challenge on Wednesday 12 March.

A lively programme of speakers, headed up by Lloyds Bank’s Head of Macroeconomics Adam Chester, followed networking in the School’s new business engagement space.

As the first public lecture held since the refurbished Management School building, on Conduit Road, opened its doors, Professor Anthony Fretwell-Downing officially cut the ribbon to his namesake lecture theatre and spoke to the audience about businesses adjusting to change in a challenging economy.

Dean of Sheffield University Management School, Professor David Oglethorpe (pictured above, centre with Prof Fretwell-Dowling), also spoke on the evening. He said of the event: “It was a privilege to host such a highly regarded assembly of guests at the School. Complemented by a number of our students who chose to attend, the evening’s networking had a fantastic buzz, and the speakers were very well received.

“As the inaugural lecture in our Fretwell-Downing Lecture Theatre, we were delighted with the turnout and welcome others to attend our future events, such as Graham Honeyman’s approaching lecture on the ups and downs of building Forgemasters.”

“Adam Chester’s talk, discussing whether the economic recovery is sustainable, was extremely current and provided a fascinating insight into where Lloyds Bank see the country’s future in economic terms. A lively question and answer session was a fitting conclusion.”

Over 100 guests attended the lecture, 20 of whom went on to a roundtable event at the University of Sheffield’s Inox Dine restaurant.

Head of External Relations, Ian Proctor, said: “This was the first of many exciting events that we have planned at the School. We were delighted to hear Professor Fretwell-Downing speak in the theatre made possible by his generous donation.”

Visit the Management Gateway ( for information on up-coming events.

A strategy for the future: SUMS appoints Dean

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014


Professor David Oglethorpe has been appointed Dean of the Triple Crown accredited Sheffield University Management School.

On his appointment, he said: “I am delighted to have been appointed to the position of Dean at Sheffield University Management School. I am immensely proud of what the School has achieved already, and cannot wait to make a significant leadership contribution to its ongoing development.

“From the Management School’s research-intensive community also emerges an unfaltering focus on student experience, a dynamic and engaged workforce of academic, teaching and professional services staff, and a passion for the city of Sheffield. Our current position is strong, but throughout the next few years we have many objectives and I have made it my mission, as Dean, to do all I can to achieve them.”

Professor Oglethorpe’s research interests focus on environmental sustainability and he is involved in various interdisciplinary cross-faculty research initiatives, particularly related to food production and the water agenda. Joining the Sheffield University Management School in July 2012, he has an undergraduate honours degree in Agricultural Economics (1988) and a PhD in Environmental Economics (1996), both from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne.

Professor Oglethorpe has also been active in teaching at Sheffield University Management School, on the Sheffield MBA’s module in Managerial Economics and Masters-level Research Methods.

Faculty of Social Sciences Pro-Vice Chancellor Professor Gill Valentine said: “Professor Oglethorpe has an ambitious vision to take the School to the next stage of its development. I look forward to working with him in what promises to be a challenging and exciting time.”

Professor Oglethorpe concluded: “Sheffield University Management School can now build on its previous accomplishments to create added value in distinctive channels of management education and research. The competition in the marketplace for students is fierce and the bar is continually lifting on research excellence.

“Over the next ten years, I intend to make Sheffield University Management School internationally recognised for its world-leading research and for providing an outstanding student experience at the highest level of provision.”

Leaders in their Field: Joint Sheffield City Region Leadership Programme celebrates its third cohort

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013
Delegates and the teaching team

Delegates and the teaching team

Firth Court was an appropriately grand setting for the third set of graduates from the Sheffield City Region Leadership Programme.A pianist enhanced the classical sense of occasion, while successful delegates from the programme, along with their tutors and representatives from the Universities, gathered and enjoyed the canapés ahead of an evening of inspiring speeches and individuals.

The innovative course, run collaboratively by the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University, is building a generation of highly trained, socially networked leaders in the city region. This year’s cohort included representatives from South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue, many of the region’s councils, the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, the NHS and South Yorkshire Police.

After introductions from Sheffield University Management School’s Associate Dean for Knowledge Exchange Professor John Cullen and Acting Dean Professor David Oglethorpe, as well as Deputy Dean of Sheffield Business School Professor Isobel Doole, graduates of the year-long programme watched a presentation filmed specially for them from Lord Michael Bichard. In it he discussed the significance of the programme in a national context and the importance of cross-agency working, as well as passing on his congratulations.

Delegates then crossed the stage to collect their certificate, becoming the programme’s third cohort.

Isobel David Nigel CRLP Event 20 Nov 2013

Prof David Oglethorpe, Nigel Brewster and Prof Isobel Doole

Following the ceremony, Nigel Brewster, partner at  bespoke recruitment company Brewster Pratap and a private-sector board-member for Sheffield City Region’s Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), took to the lectern to discuss the benefits of both universities working together, and how our cooperating and the potential of an academy is helping the work of the LEP. Mr Brewster’s knowledge of skills added an interesting focus to his talk.

Lord Bichard’s virtual presence at the ceremony was highly relevant, as he has long championed cross-agency working and skill-building excellence. After a long and illustrious career in Government, including a spell as Permanent Secretary of the Department for Education and Employment, he retired in 2001. However, he is still a very active in Chair and advisory positions, and throughout his career has overseen significant changes to the education policy landscape, such as the introduction of the Learning and Skills Council to fund further education and apprenticeships.

Speaking to the graduates gives you a real sense of the achievement they feel following completion of the PG certificate. From learning the rigorous academic theory behind Dr Kamal Birdi’s Clear Ideas, to simply finding the confidence to articulate their ideas in a meeting, each University brings its own specialisms and expertise to enhance the delegates’ existing professional expertise.

Photographs in Firth Court’s beautiful Tapestry Room and networking with the new graduates formed a fitting end to the evening.