New MoU for global maritime business education

The start of industry-specific education and the exploration of potential partnerships between a global marine operator and a world-class academic institution began on 29 April with a new Memorandum of Understanding. Leading enabler of global trade DP World will work with Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM), the Erasmus Centre for Urban, Port and Transport Economics (Erasmus UPT ) and the Erasmus Center for Maritime Economics and Logistics (MEL), all at Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR), to develop industry-specific business leadership.

DP World Chairman Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem and RSM’s Dean of Executive Education Prof. Frank Hartmann signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between DP World and EUR on board the historic ocean liner, the Queen Elizabeth II in Port Rashid, Dubai, on the eve of the global launch of a new partnership between DP World and Virgin Hyperloop One, called DP World CargoSpeed, for transport of high-priority, time-sensitive goods.

Perfect match

One of the first initiatives resulting from the MoU will be the Evolve Leadership Programme specially developed for the Future Leaders of DP World. The Evolve Leadership Programme will develop aspiring business units and regional heads across DP World’s global portfolio of 78 ports in 40 countries by offering a tailor-made maritime and logistics leadership development programme. The programme is a perfect blend of the latest research and insight of industry specific topics combined with leadership and change development. MEL and Erasmus UPT bring a deep understanding of the complexity and dynamics of global supply chains and combining this with the top-level experience of RSM in executive leadership education creates a unique environment for the development of our future business leaders

RSM’s Prof. Frank Hartmann said: “There’s a perfect match between DP World’s inspiring dynamics to remain at the leading edge of logistic innovation and RSM’s strategy for academic thought leadership in logistics management.”

DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said: “Our industry is advancing at unprecedented speeds and as our business strategy develops to include elements of the wider supply chain, the expertise of our people also needs to grow and ‘Evolve’. Our future leaders need to know how to integrate the latest technology for example into our business model today and be equipped with the right tools and confidence to think outside the box – to conceptualise innovative new ideas to help us lead the future of world trade.”

Industry specific, world-class

Leadership development, business management and industry development are key components of the Evolve learning journey that will kick-off in June at the Erasmus University Campus in Rotterdam. It will continue with international modules in countries that are critical to DP World’s business performance and success.

Evolve has been designed considering DP World’s business needs as it diversifies into new areas of the global supply chain, including logistics and free trade zones. The programme will provide participants with a wide range of active learning opportunities and feedback, combined with personal coaching to take an in-depth look at individual leadership strengths and weaknesses.

Strategic and cross-functional

Dr Larissa van der Lugt, Executive Director of Erasmus UPT and academic director of MEL said: “MEL and Erasmus UPT have enormous experience in educating tomorrow’s business leaders in the complex, highly interconnected and dynamic industry of maritime economic, logistics and ports.”

Participants on this one-and-a-half-year learning journey will work together on strategic group projects, using their developing skills in enabling cross-functional collaboration and enabling company-wide innovation.

The relevance – and importance – of the MoU for the future development of business and trade between the Netherlands and Dubai was indicated by the attendance of Ester van Someren, the Netherlands’ Deputy Consul General and Head of the Dutch Economic Department Consulate at the signing ceremony.

More information

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top 10 business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China.

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Marianne Schouten, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at

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