This case explores a challenge faced by Rotterdam School of Applied Sciences, a Dutch higher professional education institute. In order to honour its commitment to diversity and increase equal opportunities, the school needed to by address a gap that had become apparent in the academic performances of different demographic segments of its student population. The backdrop is an increased sense of urgency to deal with the issue, not only from within the school but also from the societal perspective of fulfilling the emancipatory role of public education. Students will work on the implementation of an evidence-based, goal-setting intervention in a regular curriculum. They will also learn about handling tensions that arise when a top-down research approach encounters modern management and a bottom-up organisational culture. This case is part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) case series of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University. The case focuses on SDG 4 (Quality Education) and SDG 10 (Reduced Inequalities). Video learning materials and other resources about these SDGs are available at <>.

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RSM Case Development Centre

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Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Nikolopoulou, K., Van Koert, M., & Schippers, M. (2020). Closing the Gap: Goal-setting Programme at the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. RSM Case Development Centre. Retrieved from

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