New supervision guide aims to increase the number of thesis projects in the pulp and paper industry

Supervising thesis projects is an effective way for companies to attract new employees to the pulp and paper industry. A new free support package is now available, including a guide for corporate supervisors and a strategy report aimed at the management team within the company. “We aim to simplify becoming a supervisor and to increase the number of degree projects that engage students’ interest in the process industry”, says project manager Caroline Stejmar.

High average age and impending retirements have made the supply of skills a burning question for the pulp and paper industry. An effective solution to the problem is to produce and supervise more degree projects in higher technical education, says Caroline Stejmar. She is project manager for the development of a new free support package that guides supervisors, HR and company management in the practical and strategic work surrounding degree projects.

The support package has been developed in a complementary project to the business research school Resource Smart Processes – an initiative funded by academia, the process industry and Vinnova through the strategic innovation programme BioInnovation. A total of 50 people with relevant experience in HR, research and innovation have contributed to the development of the support package, which is published on the website

Caroline Stejmar, Skogsindustrierna.

– Supervising degree projects is one of the most effective ways of attracting and recruiting new employees. It is a kind of probationary placement, but it also strengthens the brand. Students with favourable experiences spread a positive image of the company at universities, says Caroline Stejmar. We aim to make it easy to become a supervisor, and to produce more degree projects that awaken students’ interest in the process industry.

Working with degree projects also has other benefits. For the supervisor, it is an opportunity for professional and personal development, and for the company, the student is a resource who is able to carry out projects that would not have happened otherwise, for example.

Sarah Söder at Stora Enso uses the support material in her role as People & Culture Partner responsible for the area of employer branding:

Sarah Söder, Stora Enso.

– The support package will be an important tool for our supervisors, both for those who are used to supervising, but especially for those who have not done this before. With this support, we can increase the number and the quality of theses more easily.

The supervision guide has also been translated into English, so that even more industry representatives can access the support package, and understand how the Swedish thesis system works.

Read the tutorial guide in English here.

Read the material in Swedish here.