Capt. Prashant Widge of A.P. Moller – Maersk and the Blue MBA acclaimed in AMBA Excellence Awards
A prestige award has gone to a key corporate sustainability expert at an A.P. Moller – Maersk, Capt. Prashant Widge, for his role in promoting world-leading standards in ship-recycling. Capt. Widge was proposed for the accolade by the Executive MBA in Shipping & Logistics (the Blue MBA), a renowned course under the aegis of at Copenhagen Business School, where he is a member of the Class of 2019.
To cheers at the 2019 annual dinner in London of the Association of MBAs (AMBA), Capt. Widge was called forward to receive the “Highly Commended Award in the Business School Community and Society Impact” category.
This is a new category in the AMBA excellence awards and Capt. Widge emerged as a prominent contender among the five finalists.
Although he was pipped by the eventual winner, his name was the first to be announced, electrifying the whole room, with especially appreciative gasps from his supporters in the audience of business leaders, academic deans and directors, distinguished MBA alumni and journalists.
The black-tie event “celebrates the quality and achievements of post-graduate business education at the forefront of leadership excellence, recognising the talents and contributions made by AMBA-accredited business schools, their students and graduates,” says the organisation.
The Blue MBA, under the guidance of programme director Irene Rosberg, was among those taking tables at the event on February 1 at London Marriott Grosvenor Square Hotel. The Blue MBA table was in a prominent spot next to the top table. “Prashant Widge’s achievement deserves hearty congratulation and is a matter of pride for everyone at the Blue MBA,” Ms Rosberg said later. “He is totally dedicated to participating in radically uplifting conditions in the ship-recycling sector, while through his studies with us advancing his capability across all elements of business strategy.”
AMBA said that the impact on community and society award honours AMBA-accredited business schools that share AMBA’s commitment to corporate social responsibility “and are passionate about making a difference.” The award recognised business schools “that have taken the initiative in creating a sustainable future and teaching MBA students about social values.”
The energetic Capt. Widge has a vital role in the corporate sustainability department in the transport and logistics division of the Danish shipping giant, which he fulfils while studying part-time but intensively for the Blue MBA qualification.
He was chosen by A.P. Moller – Maersk in 2016 to accelerate the company drive to ensure that end-of-life ships were dealt with responsibly. Steady improvements and audits at upgraded facilities at Alang on the west coast of India led to the group focusing on the area, where there is a 10 km-long beach for ship-recycling.
Capt. Widge’s job is to work with many stakeholders to facilities in the Alang area meet high standards. The initiative is seen as being of benefit to the entire ship-recycling sector, and an impetus to efforts to build support for the Hong Kong Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, which has yet to meet the endorsement threshold for entry in force.
Ms Rosberg welcomed to the Blue MBA table in addition to Capt. Widge the following: Dr Malcolm Willingale of Clarksons; Monica Kohli, senior lawyer with Gard; Julie Lithgow, director of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers; Dr Aleka Mandaraka-Sheppard, arbitrator and mediator, founder and chair of the London Shipping Law Centre; Dr Malek Pourzanjani, Southampton-based independent consultant and former chief executive of the South African International Maritime Institute, Port Elizabeth; Naeem Masani, managing director of YS Investments, Gujarat; Sean Moloney, managing director, Elaborate Communications; Janet Porter, chair of Lloyd’s List editorial board; and John Faraclas of AllaboutShipping.
Guests had gathered for a drinks reception ahead of a formal welcome from Andrew Main Wilson, chief executive of AMBA since August 2013, and of the Business Graduates Association. AMBA decided a short time ago to relaunch the BGA to focus on increasing business schools’ impact on students and communities, and “play a more significant role in the professional and personal growth of students to produce a new generation of socially responsible leaders.” The BGA was the founding name of AMBA in 1967. In his earlier career, Mr Main Wilson was 16 years with the UK’s Institute of Directors as chief operating officer and managing director of IoD Enterprises.
After dinner, Prof Bodo Schlegelmilch, chair of AMBA and of the BGA international management board, introduced the awards ceremony. Prof Schlegelmilch heads the Institute for International Marketing Management at WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.
The AMBA Excellence Awards comprise the employer and business school partnership award, MBA innovation award sponsored by Liaison International, MBA student of the year award and MBA entrepreneurial venture award (private sector), and for 2019 there were two new categories: MBA entrepreneurial venture (not-for-profit sector) and business school impact on community and society. It drew up a shortlist in November 2018 of 27 finalists throughout the categories.
AMBA defines itself as “the impartial authority on postgraduate management education” and declares it “is committed to raising its profile and quality standards internationally for the benefit of business schools, students, alumni, and employers.”
Its accreditation service is “the global standard for all MBA, DBA [Doctor of Business Administration] and master’s degrees, currently accrediting programmes from the top 2% of business schools in more than 70 countries.”