what is accreditation
AABS Accredtation

AABS Accreditation is a unique African accreditation, underpinned by African values and contexts. It is, as such, a system to benchmark the provision of high-quality business and management education in Africa. It is a habit of continuous improvement that creates the basis for excellence and is a globally recognized standard of quality and a bold step in shaping the African concept of management education.

The AABS Accreditation is designed to promote high standards in business education through credible and benchmarked criteria, inclusive social and economic growth promotion, and relevant local context consideration.

The AABS quality benchmarking focuses on the relevance and quality of what your school does (research, teaching, and student experience) to provide first-rate management education and the consequent meaningful impact it has on its environment.

Interested institutions should contact the AABS Accreditation office by sending an email to accreditation@aabschools.com for further assistance.

quality standards
AABS Accreditation Standards
The AABS Accreditation Standards are based on international quality standards within the African context and have been set to encourage African business schools to support inclusive social and economic growth in Africa.

AABS accreditation focuses on the relevance and quality of the school’s mission, programmes, facilities, and so on, and the positive impact the school can make on society through its faculty, research, and alumni. It looks at how well a school can foster responsible management practice, improve the skills of students, develop its (and other) faculty, and generally contribute to the body of knowledge of business and management in Africa.
There are 11 AABS accreditation standards grouped into six main areas as follows:
Relevance to the African Context
The school’s overall approach demonstrates awareness of the surrounding environment (national, political, legal, social, and economic) and has the mission and portfolio that serves the needs of its operating environment.
Institution
The school’s overall operation has a clear governance system where the mission, strategy and its allocation of available funds and resources are managed effectively and efficiently. This area covers Standards 2-4 which are the school’s Mission, Vision and Strategy, Governance, and Resources.
Stakeholders
The school has identified the different ways relationships with its stakeholders should be managed and handled. Beginning with its students, alumni, corporates, and finally its partnerships with other institutions in Africa. The institution should also demonstrate awareness of its level of diversification and relationship to the marketplace. This area covers standards 5-7, which are the school’s Students, Faculty, and External Relations.
Portfolio
The school has a variety of programmes along with a research portfolio by demonstrating an operational structure for programme development and design, promoting research, up-to-date teaching and assessment methods, and relevance of learning materials. This area covers standards 8-9, which are Programs and Research.
Impact on Africa
The school should summarise the evidence that it has contributed to inclusive economic and social development in Africa through its governance structure, stakeholders’ relationships, diversification awareness and overall portfolio.
Sustainability
The school must show that it’s overall approach to management education is sustainable through its governance structure, relationships with stakeholders, through its portfolio offerings, and how relevant and impactful it is to the African continent. This is an overall and a concluding standard which is embedded across the criteria as it serves as a statement for successful continuous improvement process.
how it's done
aabs accreditation process
AABS Accreditation process involves formation of on-going, solid, constructive, and value-adding partnerships between AABS and the accredited schools, as well as those schools working towards accreditation.

For detailed information about the process, refer to the AABS Accreditation Handbook and Process Guidelines and the AABS Accreditation Policies and Outline.

The AABS accreditation process is laid out into eight phases:
1.
Expression of interest
The first step of the AABS accreditation process begins with a basic expression of interest and enquiry about the AABS accreditation. Institutions are required to fill out the AABS Accreditation Letter of Interest form and send it to accreditation@aabschools.com.
2.
AccreSys Application
After receiving acknowledgment from the AABS Accreditation Office, institutions are required to fill and submit the AABS Accreditation Application Form. Institutions have the option either to fill out a form using a word document or through the online portal.
3.
Mentorship
Institutions who have passed the application stare and opt in for a Mentor are assigned one withing eight weeks from receiving the application acceptance letter until the submission of their self-review report.
4.
Self-review Report
The self-evaluation process and report preparation are expected to begin as soon as the application has been accepted and/or the Mentor has been assigned and must be completed within eighteen (18) months of a Mentor being appointed.

Completed report must be sent to the AABS Review Team and the AABS Accreditation Office at least eight (8) weeks before scheduled visit.
5.
Accreditation Visit
Institutions should be ready to justify the representations made in the self-review report to the AABS Review Team, clarify any issues of concern and be as honest and open as possible during the three-days visit.
6.
Accreditation Decision
The AABS Board is responsible for the accreditation decision. The Board will review the final accreditation report compiled by the AABS Review Team and decide on the accreditation award based on their assessment of the report.

AABS Accreditation will be awarded for five (5) years, after which the accreditation will expire.
7.
Post Accreditation
In attaining the AABS Accreditation, a school commits to maintaining and continuously improving its standards to align with those of the AABS accreditation standards and criteria.

Submission of a Mid-Term report is due two and a half years (2years and 6months) from the accreditation awarding date.
8.
Re-Accreditation
A school that wishes to be re-accredited must submit the re-accreditation letter in electronic format, at least 18 months before expiry of the current accreditation.
1
Expression of interest
The first step of the AABS accreditation process begins with a basic expression of interest and enquiry about the AABS accreditation. Institutions are required to fill out the AABS Accreditation Letter of Interest form and send it to accreditation@aabschools.com.
AccreSys Application
After receiving acknowledgment from the AABS Accreditation Office, institutions are required to fill and submit the AABS Accreditation Application Form. Institutions have the option either to fill out a form using a word document or through the online portal.
2
3
Mentorship
Institutions who have passed the application stare and opt in for a Mentor are assigned one withing eight weeks from receiving the application acceptance letter until the submission of their self-review report.
Self-review Report
The self-evaluation process and report preparation are expected to begin as soon as the application has been accepted and/or the Mentor has been assigned and must be completed within eighteen (18) months of a Mentor being appointed.

Completed report must be sent to the AABS Review Team and the AABS Accreditation Office at least eight (8) weeks before scheduled visit.
4
5
Accreditation Visit
Institutions should be ready to justify the representations made in the self-review report to the AABS Review Team, clarify any issues of concern and be as honest and open as possible during the three-days visit.
Accreditation Decision
The AABS Board is responsible for the accreditation decision. The Board will review the final accreditation report compiled by the AABS Review Team and decide on the accreditation award based on their assessment of the report.

AABS Accreditation will be awarded for five (5) years, after which the accreditation will expire.
6
7
Post Accreditation
In attaining the AABS Accreditation, a school commits to maintaining and continuously improving its standards to align with those of the AABS accreditation standards and criteria.

Submission of a Mid-Term report is due two and a half years (2years and 6months) from the accreditation awarding date.
Re-Accreditation
A school that wishes to be re-accredited must submit the re-accreditation letter in electronic format, at least 18 months before expiry of the current accreditation.
8
why be accredited?
aabs accreditation benefits
recognition

Provides an international recognition of excellence that raises the prestige and reputation of your institution, helping to attract faculty, students, employers and strategic partners

improvement

Encourages a tradition of continuous improvement in all aspects of your school’s processes, enabling it to adapt quickly to the changing needs of the environment in which it operates

learning

Facilitates peer learning and sharing of best practice within a network of AABS-accredited schools

get accredited now!
start  your  accreditation
journey  today.
Accredited schools
aabs accredited schools
who's in charge
aabs accreditation governance
Robert Ebo Hinson
Robert Ebo Hinson

Pro Vice-Chancellor, Ghana Communication Technology University

Imad-Eddine Hatimi
Imad-Eddine Hatimi

Senior Advisor in Education Management, ESCA School of Management

Dr. Nizar Becheikh
Dr. Nizar Becheikh

Dr. Nizar Becheikh is Associate Professor of Strategy and Innovation Management at the School of Business of the American University in Cairo (AUC, Egypt). He served as Interim Dean of the School in 2017, and Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research from 2013-2018. He also served as Director of the EMBA, the MBA, and the CEMS/MIM programs. He earned a Ph.D. in Business Administration and a MBA in International Management from Laval University (Canada).

During his time in Canada, he worked closely, as part of research and consulting projects, with managers and policy makers from Canadian SMEs, public organizations, and governmental agencies intended to foster innovation and regional economic development in Canada. He published his research in top-tier refereed academic journals and prestigious conferences, and in the form of professional reports and best practices guides. Dr. Becheikh has coached entrepreneurs in different phases of development of their business ideas.

He also contributed to different workshops and seminars meant for promoting entrepreneurship in Egypt and the MENA Region. Dr. Becheikh teaches Strategy, Innovation Management, and Entrepreneurship at the undergraduate and the (Executive) MBA programs. His current research interests focus on political economy in the Arab region, innovation paths and best practices in developing countries, and managing growth and innovation in small and medium-sized enterprises in Arab countries.

Rihab Khalifa
Rihab Khalifa

Prof. Rihab Khalifa has nearly 20 years of academic and professional experience spanning international top ranked universities and business schools. Previously she was Acting Dean, as well as Vice Dean and Professor of Accounting at the College of Business and Economics (CBE) at United Arab Emirates University (UAEU). She was also the founding Director of the Emirates Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (EILOA), setting in process major changes in learning outcomes practices for the country, region and internationally. A key strength of hers lies in the strategic alignment of organisational structures and processes.

She holds a PhD from the University of Manchester. Before her professorship at UAEU, she held positions at Manchester Business School, the London School of Economics, and Warwick Business School, UK. She has extensive experience in three key areas; higher education, governance and auditing, and leading strategic change.

Prof. Khalifa is an internationally renowned expert in auditing and governance and has published research on a broad range of public and private sector governance issues, including the governance of academia, the UAE and UK audit profession, the governance of development NGOs through audit, new technologies and risk in financial audit, corporate governance research methodologies, the governance of local government, university governance and international accreditation schemes, and sociology of professions and gender. Her expertise in university governance practices, in particular, is evidenced by her ties with the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the oldest international business school accreditation agency. She is the first female Arabic speaker to become a workshop trainer and business school mentor for AACSB.

She is one of nine Steering Committee Members of the AACSB Women Administrators in Management Education group. Her scholarly work has appeared in leading accounting journals, including Accounting Organizations and Society (rated A* by ABDC list), Accounting Auditing and Accountability Journal (A*), Critical Perspectives on Accounting (A), the European Accounting Review (A*), and Qualitative Research in Accounting and Management (A), and has been funded by leading research funding agencies, such as the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and various British professional accountancy bodies. Total grants amount to over $500,000. She is frequently asked to speak on questions of higher education, governance, auditing, gender-responsive budgeting, futures studies and, in particular, the futures of higher education and university governance in the context of economic development and the knowledge economy more broadly.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith

Mark Smith is Director of the Stellenbosch Business School, Cape Town, South Africa. where he leads a triple-accredited school specializing in post-graduate business education. The school has expertise in responsible leadership, futures & foresight, development finance, dispute resolution, ethical governance and women in work. The school is proud of the impact it has on its local ecosystem through its research, teaching and stakeholder activities.He is former Faculty Dean & Professor Human Resource Management at Grenoble Ecole de Management (France). At Grenoble, he was Faculty Dean, Director of the Doctoral School, Head of Department, and research team leader for “Work Life Careers”. Prior to working in France he worked at Manchester Business School (UK). His research interests focus on careers and labour market policy & outcomes for women and men including working conditions, working-time, and work-life integration.With colleagues, he has carried out research work for a number of supra-national, European, and national institutions on gender equality, young people, and labour market policy. He has recently finished work on a large-scale European project on the impact of the crisis on youth and the role of pay transparency in closing gender pay gaps.

He has authored or co-authored over fifty books, book chapters and journal articles. He publishes regularly in the media about his research and the management of business schools. His most recent books include – “Youth Employment” (with Jacqueline O’Reilly, Clémentine Moyart, and Tiziana Nazio published by Policy Press in 2018), “Business Ethics – A critical approach: integrating ethics across the business world” (with Patrick O’Sullivan & Mark Esposito, published by Routledge in 2012), and “Gender and the European Labour Market” (with Francesca Bettio and Janneke Plantenga, also published by Routledge in 2013).

Helmi Hammami
Helmi Hammami

Professor Helmi Hammami is a full professor of Accounting at Rennes School of Business – France. He currently serves as the Senior Advisor for Knowledge Transfer at the same business school. His portfolio covers research valorization and making research more entrenched in society and societal issues.

Until September 2021, Prof. Hammami has been the Academic Dean of Rennes SB, where he managed the academic affairs of the school.   He also held several other leadership positions including the Senior Advisor for accreditations, the Head of the Department of Finance and Accounting, and the Head of the Department of Strategy and Innovation at Rennes SB.

Before joining Rennes SB, Prof. Hammami worked for several years at Qatar University where he was very active in university reform. He held the position of the Head of the Department of Accounting and Information systems, with a portfolio of responsibilities covering several facets of the academic affairs of the school.

Helmi led several committees related to quality assurance, faculty affairs and accreditations. With an extensive international experience, Prof. Hammami is well-versed in academic reforms especially in relation to the requirements of international accreditation bodies with whom he is very engaged, and faculty management in multicultural settings. Besides, he has good knowledge of the North American and the French education systems, in particular.

He holds a PhD in Accounting and Finance from Bocconi University – Italy. He is a former resident fellow of the Collegio di Milano, and recipient of the French Government fellowship to outstanding overseas academics.

Helmi specializes in accounting related topics notably financial reporting (IFRS), fraud risk governance, and accounting for economic development.  He has several publications in international academic refereed journals. Helmi works extensively with accounting professional bodies to strengthen the academic-pr ties. He acted as the vice-president for academic relations at the IMA French chapter and he is active with the French and other accounting bodies.  As part of the give-back to the community, Helmi sits on the board of several SMEs and provides advice to bourgeonning entrepreneurs.

Franklyn Manu
Franklyn Manu

Professor Manu is a Professor at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA) and was the Rector from August 2012 to August 2016. He has over twenty-five years’ experience in consulting, training, and education. During this period, he has exhibited extensive capabilities in strategic planning, program design and assessment in higher education.

He has been heavily involved in designing and reviewing programs to improve university and corporate education in such institutions as Loyola College in Maryland, Morgan State University, Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), Association of African Business Schools, Global Business School Network, International Academy of African Business and Development, and the Ghana TALIF project.

He has also consulted for a variety of companies in the areas of strategic planning, marketing strategy development and corporate social responsibility. Additionally, he has substantial experience lecturing in strategy, decision-making and leadership for corporate education clients. Professor Manu serves on the Boards of Bedrock Venture Capital Fund of Ghana, Buck Press Ltd., Private Clinics Ghana (Ltd), Media Reach OMD (Ghana) and GN Bank. He also chairs the MTN Ghana Foundation and the AngloGold Ashanti School and is Vice-Chairman of Trojan Power.

Professor Manu earned Ph.D. (Marketing and International Business) and MBA (Finance and International Business) degrees from New York University, Graduate School of Business Administration (Stern). His undergraduate degree was received at the University of Ghana, School of Administration where he earned a B.Sc. (Administration) degree.

Piet Naude
Piet Naude

Former Director, University of Stellenbosch Business School

Karim Seghir
Karim Seghir

Chancellor, Ajman University, United Arab Emirates

Nicola Kleyn
Nicola Kleyn

Dean, Executive Education, RSM Erasmus University

Thami Ghorfi
Thami Ghorfi

Thami Ghorfi is President of ESCA School of Management, (an African leading Business School based in Casablanca, Morocco) where he teaches communication strategy and change management. Prof. Thami Ghorfi has developed an expertise on management practices in Morocco and the Maghreb region, in entrepreneurship and change management.

He is advisor to several organizations in the strategic fields, multicultural human resources management and leading change.

Thami Ghorfi is also present during important economic events in Morocco and is given the opportunity to contribute to the success of high-level professional meetings. Ghorfi was appointed in 2011 as an expert member of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council, a constitutional institution of Kingdom of Morocco.

Ghorfi, through his position as Vice President of the AL AMANA foundation – leading micro finance organization in the MENA region- is strongly involved in charity and the fight against financial exclusion. He is an International Academic Member of the EDAF Committee “EFMD.” Thami is graduated from ISG-Paris and ESSEC Business School. He holds a Doctorate Honoris Causa from Grenoble Ecole de Management.

Jean Philippe Ammeux
Jean Philippe Ammeux

Education
1984: Ph.D. in Economics and International Finance, University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne
1980: MSc in International Economics, University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne
1978: MSc in Management, IÉSEG (Lille)

Specialisation Fields:
• International Economics
• Macroeconomics
Publications and Communications in Conference:
Until the beginning of the 90s, several publications and communications on «Internationalisation of corporations in the 1980 decade».

Teaching Activities:
Since 1979:

Jean-Philippe AMMEUX has taught international economics, macroeconomics, and politic economics at the following institutions:
• IÉSEG School of Management, Lille (France)
• Faculty of Economic Sciences, Lille Catholic University (France)
• Louvain Catholic University (Belgium)
• Reims Business School (France)

Current Responsibilities
Since 1994:

• General Director of IÉSEG School of Management, a leading Business School that offers a five-year program, compatible with international standards. Founded in the city of Lille, in France, in 1964, member of Lille Catholic University, IÉSEG is one of the French top schools of Management.
• Member of the FESIC (Federation of Higher Education institutions with public interest)
• Member of the CNESER (National Council of Higher Education and Research)
• Member of the CCESP (French Committee of the Private Higher Education) (Ministry of Higher Education)
• Member of the Board of Lille Catholic University

Jean-Francois Fiorina
Jean-Francois Fiorina

Graduate of INSEEC Bordeaux and an MBA graduate of the University of America – San Francisco, Jean-François Fiorina began his career as an international consultant, before becoming professor of international trade. After being the Director of the Grande Ecole Program (ESC) and of international relations at Groupe Sup de Co Amiens-Picardie, he arrived at Grenoble Ecole de Management in 2000 as the director of Specialized Masters. In 2003, he becomes the Director of ESC Grenoble (one of the four schools of Grenoble Ecole de Management). He has also been the president of Passerelle since 2007 and vice-president of Atout+3 since 2008.

Avid advocate of differentiated pedagogy, Jean-François actively promotes an open to society and to the world training for future managers, based on building bridges between different fields: management, engineering, design, art, geopolitics…fine connoisseur of the world of higher education in France and the education market abroad, he is recognized by his peers for his ability to explore new territories.

JF Fiorina is very much involved in Geopolitics, as editor of a weekly bulletin on Geopolitics notes CLES (notes hebdomadaires d’analyse géopolitique), and as co-founder of the Geopolitics Festival held at GEM annually (Festival de Géopolitique et de Géoéconomie de Grenoble). He holds a blog: http://blog.educpros.fr/fiorina/.

In September 2012, Fiorina is appointed as Vice-Dean / director of programs of Grenoble Ecole de Management. He has been ranked NO.1 in 2017 and 2018 as best influencer dean and universities presidents on twitter.

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downloads
aabs accreditation resources
AABS Accreditation
Application Form 2022
AABS Accreditation
Fees Structure
2024
AABS Accreditation
Handbook and Process
AABS Accreditation
Letter of Interest 2018
AABS Accreditation
Policies and Outlines
AABS Accreditation Standards
and Criteria Guidelines 2018
downloads
aabs accreditation White Papers
White Paper 1
White Paper 2
White Paper 3
faqs
What is the Association of African Business Schools (AABS)?

AABS is a non-profit organization devoted to grow Africa through quality management education.

Whom do I contact for more information?

Interested institutions should contact AABS Accreditation office by sending an email to accreditation@aabschools.com.

Do schools need to translate all documents into English?

Yes, all documents need to be written and presented in English.

How long do schools get accredited for?

AABS Accreditation is awarded for a maximum of five years.

How much does it cost to become AABS accredited?

Please refer to the AABS Accreditation Fees Structure found at www.aabschools.com.

What is the Self-review Report (SRR)?

The SRR is what the institution produces using the AABS Accreditation Standards and Criteria Guidelines to become accredited. The report is between 100 to 150 pages in length (excluding annexes) and should cover all 11 standards.

What does AABS do?

AABS supports graduate business schools through capacity building, collaboration and quality improvement programmes for deans/directors and faculty from African Business Schools.

Who manages AABS?

AABS is led by a Chair who works with the Governing Board.

Where is AABS based?

The AABS head office is in South Africa, however, AABS has offices embedded in all regions across the continent (Egypt and Senegal).

Should my institution apply for AABS membership when interested in accreditation?

Yes, the accreditation process is only open to AABS members. For information on becoming a member, please send an email to membership@aabschools.com

How does our institution start the accreditation process?

Institutions interested to start the accreditation process should send a letter of interest via email to accreditation@aabschools.com. Further details on the format of the letter and content could be found under the accreditation tab at www.aabschools.com.

Does accreditation cover the whole institution or just the business school?

The AABS accreditation is designed to cover quality principles for the whole institution. We believe that a comprehensive management education starts not only in the classroom, but through the institutions’ relationship with corporate, partnerships with other education institution, its national influence, connecting with alumni, among others.

Does AABS accredit online programs? What are the criteria for these programs?

As long as they follow the same criteria as listed in standard 8, then yes, AABS accredits online programs. For more details, refer to the AABS Accreditation Standards and Criteria Guidelines.

Are business courses and degree programs taught in a language other than English included in scope?

Yes, the language of delivery typically does not influence the scope of the accreditation.

Who is eligible to serve as an AABS mentor?

Serving or former dean/associate dean/equivalent from another school which is accredited by AABS or other international accreditation bodies, and which has a similar mission or offers some similar programmes with the school being accredited are eligible. The mentor may also be a professional/expert in the management education sector in Africa.

What is the general timeframe to complete the AABS accreditation process?

The time that is required to complete the AABS accreditation process depends on the accreditation sought and other factors. On an average, an institution with no prior accreditation experience can meet the requirements of AABS accreditation from two to three years.

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