Department of Business Administration

Lund University School of Economics and Management

Major investment in new interdisciplinary centre for sustainable enterprising in Lund

Published: 2022-05-30

Lund University School of Economics and Management (LUSEM), the Faculty of Engineering (LTH) and Sparbanken Skåne are founding a joint centre for sustainable enterprising at Lund University. Together, they are investing several million SEK in the centre, which will start welcoming new doctoral students across a variety of research collaborations this autumn. The focus is on the transition to a more sustainable society – while maintaining a viable economy – through collaboration and knowledge.

“There is a strong commitment and interest among companies to work on sustainable development, but also humility at the scale of what remains to be done. Now we have the opportunity to work together – the business community, the financial sector and academia,” says Susanne Arvidsson, Associate professor of Accounting and Finance at LUSEM and future director of Sparbanken Skåne’s centre for sustainable enterprising.

The aim of the centre is to support the development of sustainable business and contribute to the long-term well-being of society. Through pioneering international research and education, the centre will help Swedish companies to transition successfully, while the same time increasing their competitiveness. All with close cooperation between academia and private and public stakeholders.

“We believe that knowledge and collaboration is the way to solve society’s vulnerability. We need to know more about how financial sector players can factor sustainability into their decisions, and we hope that Sparbanken Skåne’s centre for sustainable enterprising will enable us to invite many different co-creators to join us in building a sustainable Sweden,” says Mats Benner, Professor of Research Policy and Dean of LUSEM.

Solutions through collaboration

In a recent opinion piece in the newspaper Sydsvenskan, Mats Benner argues, together with Annika Olsson, Dean of LTH, and Rasmus Roos, CEO of Sparbanken Skåne, that transition needs to be compatible with a robust economy in order to succeed.

“Sustainable transition often means that companies must change their business models and be more circular in their use of materials. They have to be able to orient themselves in a landscape of major technological shifts and societal challenges, while continuously minimising risks and maximising opportunities,” says Annika Olsson, Professor of Packaging Logistics and Dean of LTH.

The centre’s approach is broad, interdisciplinary and solutions oriented. The organisation will be run in close cooperation with the business community, through research, seminars and continuing education for lifelong learning amongst other activities.

“For companies, their transition to zero emissions and increased sustainability depends on solutions that span research subjects and faculties. This must be done in collaboration with the surrounding society, infrastructures, norms and policies – that is why this centre is so important,” says Lars J Nilsson, Professor of Environmental and Energy Systems Studies at LTH, who will be one of the researchers at the centre.

New Master’s programme with a sustainability focus

Within the framework of Sparbanken Skåne’s centre for sustainable enterprising, a new Master’s programme in sustainable entrepreneurship will be developed. The hope is to further equip students with knowledge of sustainable business and problem-solving, where processes, systems and materials are optimised, all based on requirements of the business world.

“We are convinced that the future will make new demands on how business and universities work together. Sustainable models and ways of working need to be disseminated across companies and sectors, in which case universities can act as a neutral meeting place for different interests. Banks and the financial sector play a central role in the everyday economic life of both people and businesses. How these institutions assess risks and investments will play an important role in this transition,” says Rasmus Roos, CEO of Sparbanken Skåne.

Learn more about the Centre

Opinion piece in Sydsvenskan 29 May

Sparbanken Skåne’s centre for sustainable enterprising

The ambition of the centre is to contribute to a sustainable transformation of business and society. Two important elements are to educate today’s and tomorrow’s leaders about the conditions of sustainability and to collaborate with companies and organisations.

Sparbanken Skåne contributes through its owner foundation Sparbanksstiftelsen Finn with SEK 25 million – SEK 5 million per year, for 2022–2027. The University is co-financing for, among other things, centre and project management. Several young researchers (doctoral students and postdocs) will be employed. This will provide a substantial amount of money for research, collaboration and education with a focus on sustainable business development.

This article was updated on 31 May.


Susanne Arvidsson
+4670-306 36 97,

Mats Benner
+4672-543 49 39,

Annika Olsson
+4646-222 97 34,

Rasmus Roos
+4646-16 23 11,

Lars J Nilsson
+4646-222 46 83,

Thomas Kalling
+4646-222 46 38

Lars Bengtsson
+4670-812 99 45

Fredrik Nilsson
+4670-958 00 79