Graduation Assignment Analyses Sustainability in European Aviation Industry
MBA Student Maha Guenounou Stresses Urgent Need for Regulation
Inspired by her frequent conversations on the topic of environmental protection with her husband, who works for the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol), Wittenborg student Maha Guenounou decided to write her thesis on sustainability in the European aviation industry. The subject is also aligned with Wittenborg University of Applied Sciences’ adoption of the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Guenounou, who recently completed an MBA degree in International Management, points out that the continent’s aviation industry has been growing very fast, with a significant rise in the numbers of passengers and airlines. “Because of this, there are serious concerns about the negative impacts of the aviation industry emissions on the environment, and companies are more inclined to adopt sustainable practices,” she says.
Based on a qualitative approach, Guenounou’s study involved interviews with experts and specialists who have in-depth experience in the aviation industry and sustainability. According to her, the key pillars of the sector’s climate action strategy are technological innovation, sustainable fuels and operational improvements. “There is an urgent need for the regulation of gas emissions and types of fuels, and this should be done through strict laws. In fact, aviation companies are already trying to be more sustainable, but sustainability is a complex process which requires the collaboration of multiple actors, including airlines, customers, crew members and governments.”
Guenounou says that her research has increased her awareness about the dangers posed by aeroplane emissions to the planet and to the next generations, and adds that she has decided to adopt sustainable practices while travelling. Additionally, she highlights that studying at Wittenborg has enabled her to improve her analytical skills, such as approaching research from different angles, and also contributed to the development of other professional competencies.
Being originally from Tunisia, Guenounou has recently become a Dutch citizen. She plans to stay in the Netherlands and find a job where she can apply what she has learned during her studies. “I am improving my Dutch and I want to start a career at an international company, as a project or finance assistant, with the goal of becoming a manager,” she says.
by Ulisses Sawczuk