Students challenge received ideas

August 5, 2005, 14:15 CEST

New and original solutions which challenge received thinking on important issues have been sought from the students taking part in Statoil’s summer project.

This year’s programme, which concluded on 4 August with a seminar for the 80 participants in Stavanger, yielded good results which can be used in the group’s business.

Key elements in the project are cooperation, learning and development through creativity and expertise.

A number of this year’s students have come up with proposed strategies for solving Statoil’s present and future challenges.

“I gain energy from these young people and their efforts,” declares Margareth Øvrum, executive vice president for the Technology & Projects business area.

“If we’re going to continue developing, we must allow ourselves to be challenged. That’s what these students do. They’re creative and give us new ideas.”

Students from 10 different nations have pursued 19 projects in Statoil’s various specialist fields over the summer months.

One of these activities has worked with Statoil’s international business, developing strategies and scenarios for petroleum production technology after 2012.

Another has mapped coal resources on the Norwegian continental shelf and studied opportunities for converting these to a profitable source of energy by 2020.

Within 15 years, Statoil may be maintaining its subsea installations with the aid of robot technology rather than today’s combination of mother ships and remotely-operated vehicles.

One of the groups on the summer programme has built a demonstration model in Lego which shows how such a robotic device could be constructed.

“The project results reached a very high level,” reports Inger Lise Førre, manager for this year’s summer project. “I’m impressed at the expertise and performance of the students.”

Statoil’s summer project is an organised form of vacation work. It serves as a melting pot where students, universities and employees interact in multidisciplinary teams, working on real issues and challenges facing the group’s operations.