Nytt bilde

Business in a calling – and duty perspective

The West has forgotten the power of religion. People may think that as long as the poor get education and money from us, then the help is done. But Noracta believes that if we use their Christian faith, more people can be helped out of the poverty.

Professor of Economics Magne Supphellen at NHH has caught interest in the idea. He has started and will stay on for several years with research on the theory about how religion plays a role regarding how people in countries like in Africa are thinking and believing when they are doing business.

– Those who see business in a calling and duty perspective, seem to have greater success than those who expect that economic growth comes as an automatic consequence of strong Christian faith, he says. Concurrent with the project in Nairobi, he begins a comparable research among Scandinavian business entrepreneurs. They will answer questions about how faith affects their business.

– The research is very exciting. Supphellen envisages that research program can last up to 15 years.

Is religion opium for business?

That’s the question from Professor of Economics Magne Supphellen. The Haugian movement in the slums of Nairobi suggests an opposite effect. Supphellen works daily at the Norwegian School of Economics in Bergen and is doing his research in the same areas in Nairobi as Noracta works. – The results suggest both yes and no. For those who have a clear Calling and Duty orientation (called the Hauge dimension, “I manage because I have received a talent from God, and because it’s my duty to use what I have,” editor) we see a positive correlation between faith and results in profit, customer orientation and ethical business practice. For those who have a stronger reward orientation (if I believe enough or pray enough, God will bless me, editor) or have a passive behavior, we find no reliable correlation but a negative trend. This way of connecting faith and business is opium for business, explained the professor.

– But it is interesting to reflect on whether faith and values ​​can be considered as a profitable resource. In the foreign development aid policy in Norway, we tend to shadow away from partners who have clear religious values, and the results of this research make great questions whether this makes sense.

– We now know that Haugian ethics creates good profitability. We know that Hauge’s model fits like a hand in a glove in East Africa, and we know that faith is an asset in development, says Øistein Garcia de Presno in Noracta, who is participating in the survey.

Strong faith and faithful church participation alone, doesn’t make good business. The sense of vocation and obligation to conduct business, provide the greatest profit. – There is a clear correlation between how business people see their activities in relation to God, and what economic results they achieve, says Professor Magne Supphellen. In collaboration with the Hauge Institute and the organization Noracta he has studied the business operations to 987 micro businesses in the Nairobi slums.

Hauge-thinking.  Noracta run by the former Secretary General of the Foundation, Øistein Garcia de Presno, has initiated the “Hans Nielsen Hauge project” in Nairobi.

The thinking is that the ideas that the Norwegian lay preacher had such great success with 200 years ago can bring slum residents in Nairobi out of poverty. The results from the research of Magne Supphellen, gives Noracta mostly right. – I found that much of the mindset that gave success to Hans Nielsen Hauge in Norway in the 1800s is working for slum dwellers in Nairobi today. Those who see their business in a calling and duty perspective, have greater success than those who expect that economic growth comes as an automatic consequence of a strong Christian faith, says Magne Supphellen.

All Christians.

One of the findings of Supphellen is that close to 100 per cent of business people in the slums defined themselves as Christians. But he saw that there is a big difference in how Christian faith works.

– We have defined three different groups of believers. The first are those who believe that the more they pray and stronger the belief, the more God will reward them with success in business. The second group is those who look at their business as a vocation to manage the resources they have for the benefit of themselves and their surroundings. The last group of believers is those who have an almost fatalistic approach: that God does as he pleases no matter how they behave, says Magne Supphellen.

Transfer value.

– This research results from a completely different culture than the one we have in Norway. Is there any transfer values to Norwegian reality? – It is too early to tell. We are now starting a similar research among Scandinavian business entrepreneurs. They will answer questions about the effect of faith on their businesses, says Supphellen, who is an expert on branding and entrepreneurship.

Hans Nielsen Hauge: 1771 – 1824

He was a Norwegian lay preacher and industrial entrepreneur. By his help, several large business enterprises were established. He placed great emphasis on serving God through practical work. Hauge was 17 years in prison because he was a lay preacher who gathered people to Christian meetings.

Vann

Forsknings Prosjekt 1

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.

 

Engrokultur

Prosjekt 2

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.

 

HIV/AIDS

Prosjekt 3

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.