Prof. dr. Albert Plugge appointed as Professor ESG Transformation & Digital Innovation

October 9 2023

Prof. Dr. Albert Plugge has been appointed as Professor of ESG Transformation & Digital Innovation at Nyenrode Business University as of September 1. He is part of the Expertise Center Entrepreneurship, Governance & Stewardship. Within his chair, Plugge conducts research into the transformation of companies in their challenge to both achieve business objectives and comply with ESG regulations.

PluggePlugge: “ESG penetrates into the capillaries of an organization and influences the goals and interests of departments and external suppliers. This requires a transformation approach in which digital innovation is used as an accelerator in realizing an ESG ambition with associated goals.”


His chair stems from the ESG Innovation Institute and Plugge will be connected as a researcher and teacher to this institute, which is a collaboration between KPMG and Nyenrode. In addition to his professorship, Plugge remains connected to KPMG, where he is involved in guiding companies that are undergoing a transformation.

Plugge has been active in research and education in the field of digital business ecosystems at Nyenrode Business University since 2020. He obviously has complete academic freedom over what he investigates, writes and publishes and he does not have to account for this to KPMG.

Expanding the academic foundation

Henk Kievit, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship, Governance and Stewardship: “We are very pleased with the appointment of Albert Plugge to this chair ESG Transformation & Digital Innovation. Both from education and also realizing our research ambitions, he will make a valuable contribution to expanding the academic foundation of the ESG Innovation Institute.”

Plugge studied telecommunications at TU Delft and also worked as an advisor in the field of digitization. In 2011 he obtained his PhD at TU Delft in the field of Information Management. For his dissertation he designed a transformation approach for IT suppliers that makes it possible to achieve a continuous performance for a longer period taking into account changing circumstances.

Developing an ESG transformation approach

Transformation From his chair, Plugge wants to contribute to developing an ESG transformation approach for companies. Plugge: “organizational and business competencies influence the extent to which companies measure their ESG goals and report their performance.” Research into which competencies exactly influence the realization of ESG goals and the effect on continuous monitoring of ESG performance is a relevant research theme. At the same time, ESG goals are influenced by internal and external circumstances, such as tightened legislation and European guidelines. The developments and influences require an adjustment of organizational and business competencies to adequately manage substantive ESG themes. Digital innovations can play an important role in supporting these competencies. Combining an ESG transformation approach with the application of digital innovations offers companies opportunities to accelerate the measurement and reporting of their ESG objectives.

Serving society with his research projects, Plugge focuses on connecting science, education and practice. “The results of my research contribute to Nyenrode’s mission; serving society by shaping responsible leaders for a sustainable future. By applying different research methods, insight is gained into how companies can develop a strategic ESG transformation approach. These insights are then translated into practical applications.”

KPMG and Nyenrode have established the ESG Innovation Institute to help organizations with the transition to sustainability. Organizations can create added value with the ESG themes in their business operations by balancing financial economic results, transparency, social interests, and the environment. It makes the latest ESG knowledge, skills, and ecosystem accessible to anyone who wants to accelerate the route to sustainability professionally and thoughtfully.

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