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George Molenkamp Sustainability Thesis Award

The George Molenkamp Sustainability Thesis Award is a collaborative initiative between KPMG and Amsterdam Business School and has been awarded annually since 2017.

The award is in honour of Dr George Molenkamp, a pioneer in business sustainability. Dr. Molenkamp is a former Partner and Chairman of KPMG Sustainability Services and he was instrumental in developing the field of environmental and sustainability management and auditing. He has also served as a professor at the University of Amsterdam, among many other positions of responsibility he has held in society and business. The George Molenkamp Sustainability Thesis award includes a €1,000 prize sponsored by KPMG.

Natalya Camilla Apopo: Winner of the George Molenkamp Sustainability Thesis Award 2022

Natalya Camilla Apopo was awarded the George Molenkamp Sustainability Thesis Award 2022 for her thesis “The covert role of accounting professionals in a jurisdictional expansion project” (supervisor Prof.dr: Brendan O’ Dwyer).

Finalists 2022
Rick van Galen: "Sexual orientation diversity as a corporate financial and social credibility booster: How anti-discrimination policy changes towards sexual orientation within the United States influences firm performance and CSR quality" (Supervisor: Dr. Vittoria Scalera)

Marija Sinicaite: “Corporate culture and green innovation: An empirical study of medical technology firms” (Supervisor: Ciro Esposito).

Prior winners of the George Molenkamp Sustainability Thesis Award

Winner 2021
Willem Grefkens: "Beauty and the Battered: How Aesthetic Appeal Influences Pro-Environmental Behaviour" (Supervisor: Dr. Carina Thuerridl).

Finalists 2021
Laura Ghitoi: "Refashioning the Fashion Industry: The Growing Digital Aftermarket and the Circularity within the Resale Revolution" (Supervisor: Dr. Aldo do Carmo)

Mana Reed Stutchbury: "Racial Diversity in Brand Communications – The Effect of Racial Diversity on Intention To Engage And Engagement Valence on Social Media: The Role of Self-Referencing" (Supervisor: Dr. Sadaf Mokarram Dorri)

Winner 2020
Giulia Casamatti: “The Impact of Green Sustainability Strategies and Women Management Role on Corporate Financial Performance: the Italian Wine Industry (2019). Supervisor: Dr. Federica Nieri.

Finalists 2020
Kathelin Doornhof: “The Effects of Family Ownership on CSR Adoption: The Moderating Role of CSIR Involvement and Internationalization (Supervisor: Dr. Federica Nieri)

Josefin Pellinger: “Living Online: What’s the Price We’re Willing to Pay? (Supervisor: Dr. Andrea Weihrauch).

Winner 2019
Willem Davies: ”Legitimacy management within the international business environment: do EM-MNEs adopt a dual strategy as they try to overcome their liability of origin?” (Supervisor: Dr. Federica Nieri).

Finalists 2019
Bart Verkaaik: ”The transition of financial audit professionals into sustainability audit professionals: The case of sustainability assurance in a Big 4 firm” (Supervisor: Prof. Brendan O’Dwyer).

Tessa Werter: ”Does a firm’s corporate governance structure affect their corporate goodness?” (Supervisor: Dr. Ilir Haxhi).

Winner 2018
Maren Heumann: ”Organisational justice as a mediator of the relationship between stakeholder culture and organisational citizenship behaviour” (Supervisor: Dr. Flore Bridoux).

Finalists 2018
Aviv de Poel: ”Corporate political activity through social responsibility” (Supervisor: Dr. Ilir Haxhi).

Christian August Stang: ”Examining the income-SWB satiation point, and the potential moderating effect of income inequality” (Supervisor: Dr. Richard Ronay).

Winner 2017
Suzan van Eijden: ”The roles of governments and NGOs in the resolution of conflicts between indigenous communities and MNEs” (Supervisor: Dr. Ilir Haxhi).

Finalists 2017
Robin Britt Danielle Bouma: ”The influence of core-stigma on corporate social responsibility reporting” (Supervisor: Dr. Hesam Fasaei).

Cathelijn Lotte Raaijmakers: ”Internal and external environmental influences of sustainable international new venture internationalisation” (Supervisor: Dr. Johan Lindeque).

Selection process and award committee

In terms of the selection process, thesis supervisors nominate candidates which are judged for their contributions to sustainability, overall quality, practical relevance, and level of ambition. Prior award committee members have included Christof Bischofberger (Faculty Student Council, FEB/UvA), Sofiya Koba (Faculty Student Council, FEB/UvA), Berke Cavusoglu (Faculty Student Council, FEB/UvA), Arjan de Draaijer (Managing Partner, KPMG Sustainability), Bernd Hendriksen (Lecturer, Amsterdam Business School and sustainability entrepreneur), Arno Kourula (Associate Professor, Amsterdam Business School), Jolande Sap (Supervisory Board, KPMG), and Melissa Wijngaarden (Faculty Student Council, FEB/UvA).

Further information

For more information about the theses or the award, please contact Arno Kourula: