Phillipus Mwapopi, Narikutuke Naruses, and Carlos Smith, along with NBS lecturer Katrina Simon-Agolory, are on a mission to increase the use of the case method at Namibia Business School by making available relevant, high-quality case studies about Namibian companies. Mwapopi, Naruses and Smith are the three NBS students selected as inaugural participants in the NBS Case Writing Fellowship.
“Many students applied for the fellowship, but only three students were selected. The fellowship is very rigorous and we intentionally
kept the number of fellows small to ensure quality supervision for each fellow.” Katrina Simon-Agolory, the fellowship supervisor, explained. Candidates completed an online application, provided their resume as well as a writing sample and participated in an interview.
“I was very excited to become part of the team that will develop NBS’ first business case studies and teaching notes,” Mr. Mwapopi, a current PGdipBA student, reflected. “I applied for this fellowship because I want to make a difference in NBS students’ life by developing
innovative ways of thinking, and also contributing toward the development of NBS as I fulfil my potential.”
The NBS Case Writing Fellowship kicked off on 16 November, 2015, with a threehour “How to Write Business Case Studies” Workshop in which fellows learned the process and best practices for business case writing. The fellowship will conclude in May 2016 with
each fellow submitting a classroomready business case study with accompanying teaching note. The NBS case studies will be used immediately in the Diploma in Project Management, Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (PGdipBA) and MBA programmes.
Based on an informal survey conducted in September 2015, the case method is underutilized at Namibia Business School. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, the world’s best business schools such as Harvard, Columbia, and IESE, use the case The 2015 NBS Case method for at least 40% of its instruction. The NBS instructional format consists overwhelmingly of traditional lecturing. As NBS publishes business case studies, academic staff will be able to more easily vary teaching methods using business case studies to bring students face-to-face with real-life business situations that engage their ability to solve real-world business problems.
Carlos Smith asserted, “Writing Namibian case studies are very important because the subject matter under discussion is Namibian. This is more practical as opposed to unfamiliar cases. Also students can relate more easily because the environment, actors and stakeholders
Although the initial class of fellows will focus on project management and operations management case studies, future classes of fellows will integrate additional business topics such as finance, marketing, corporate governance and human resource management.
“This is a very exciting initiative,” shared Mrs. Simon-Agolory. “With the exception of a couple business schools in South Africa, we are not aware of any business school on the continent publishing a significant number of business case studies. This effort truly sets NBS apart as a leader of business education and research in Africa.”