Welcome to Kiel, Prof. Dr. Soogand Golesorkhi!

Since the beginning of March, we have welcomed Dr. Soogand Golesorkhi as a visiting professor from Norway at our Department of Economics. I had the opportunity to talk to her about her experiences and her goals:

Could you please introduce yourself?
I am Dr. Soogand Golesorkhi. I am based at the University of Agder in Kristiansand, Norway. I moved to Norway from the United Kingdom. My commercial and academic background is entirely based on UK education and environment. It was there that I gained my commercial experience, obtained my PhD and took up my first academic post. After my time in Manchester, I moved to Norway. And now I'm here for a six-month visiting professorship. It started in March, so it's already been going on for two months.

What are your academic specializations?
My specialization and area of research is predominantly based in international business strategy. As so I do research and publish within that field. It provides a basis for company-by-company analysis of internationalization strategy, operational challenges and advantages in the foreign market, and stratification based on companies' growth and profitability targets. And in terms of the challenges of implementing that strategy and dealing with a different cultural environment. And more recently, I've also been focusing on social entrepreneurship and microfinance. As part of my research and my teaching, which is also very research-based, I bring those insights into my teaching. Now I'm here, I hope to expand research and other connections with my institution in Norway and here.

What are you teaching here exactly?
Here I am teaching three courses on different bachelor and master program. On the master’s program I am teaching Innovation Management. And on the Bachelors Program I am teaching Introduction to Business and International political economy, which is really closed and linked to my own area of research. Here we are looking at the interplay between firms, states and the impact on the society.

Do you enjoy teaching in Kiel, is it your first in Kiel?
It's my first time in Kiel. But I have been to Germany before, in the early 90s. I must say that I was impressed by the German progressive thinking back then. But I find Kiel as a city quite diverse and energetic with a nice atmosphere. At the same time, I really enjoy the interaction with the students. One thing that goes against my expectations is that, perhaps because I also have small groups, the students here are very eager to talk, discuss, and participate. For example, in my master's course, I enjoy the interaction with the students. They are very challenging in a good way. They are very curious and very inquisitive. They want to explore the concept of "ideas" beyond what you tell them. That's a very good way to find solutions. Even in my introductory business course, there is a very diverse group of students with different academic backgrounds.  I really like the interactive and broader perspectives of the thought processes.

What are you looking forward to the most?
Personally, I'm looking forward to exploring more of northern Germany. I would like to visit a few more places like Lübeck or Hamburg. On a professional level, I would like to benefit from this experience by hoping that we can further develop the international cooperation between Agder University and Kiel University of Applied Sciences. In a broader perspective, I would also like to develop non-teaching goals. So to promote mobility between universities. Perhaps in the form of double degree programs or maybe even double PhD programs or research projects between Norway and Kiel.

Thank you for the interview! 

Text: Amely Hunklinger 
(veröffentlicht: 26.04.2022-ra)