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Strathclyde Business School: An institution in its PRiME

By Ian Thomson - Posted on 27 June 2013

Professor Ian Thomson, from Strathclyde Business School’s Department of Accounting and Finance, discusses his recent report on the business school’s progress in becoming more sustainable…

In an ever more complex and interconnected world, corporate responsibility and sustainability are now essential considerations for any business. As educators, we are committed to developing the next generation of business leaders, capable of creating sustainable value in business and for the social good.

This month, we published our first report detailing the progress we’ve made in becoming more sustainable in our approach to developing enterprising and internationally focused students, since signing up to the UN Principles of Responsible Management Education (PRME) in 2010.

In the past three years we’ve made huge progress in living up to the principles, making some key changes to our own sustainability policies and incorporating these values into the education we provide.

By redeveloping our Management Development Programme - a core module underpinning all of Strathclyde Business School’s undergraduate degrees - we’ve been preparing our students for futures as sustainable business leaders, while also teaching them how to live more sustainable lives in general.

With a commitment to the teaching of the values of global social responsibility, we’ve revised our MBA curriculum to include Comparative Corporate Governance, a module which teaches participants good organisational governance and stakeholder management in an international context.

Through the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship, our students have also been able to develop social business plans to receive Creativity and Entrepreneurship Recognition. This year successful students were selected to enter the international Values and Ventures Business Plan competition, at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth.

To promote cross-disciplinary collaboration, Strathclyde Business School has also been involved in the management and delivery of post-graduate courses to find technological solutions to environmental challenges, at the David Livingston Centre for Sustainability.

We’ve also focused on research which delivers social and environmental good, through projects on skills utilisation, carbon capture and the impact of care personalisation on voluntary sector workers.

As an interface between the business school and industry, the Centre for Corporate Connections has also played its part in improving our links with industry. With the creation of the Strathclyde Business Fellow Network in 2012, we’ve been able to forge links with senior industry figures – many of whom are MBA or executive education alumni, to help us shape the next generation of business leaders.

All our staff are now also encouraged to promote sustainability, through knowledge exchange, representation on external bodies and outreach activities.

We’ve made a great deal of progress since 2010 and have made great strides towards achieving the goals set out by PRME. There’s still a lot of work to be done, but we’ve got some big plans for the future.

How important do you think sustainable business? What else can academia do to promote this? Let us know in the comments below.

(Image courtesy of Strathclyde Business School)

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