2015 Good Practices in Responsible Management Education (Part 2)

It is once again time for PRiMEtime’s year-end review. 2015 was another exciting year with a lot of innovative new initiatives and approaches at business schools around the world to embedding responsible leadership and sustainability into their programmes. Sixty articles were posted featuring over 182 examples from more than 114 schools in 38 countries. In this 2-part year-end post we review what happened this year and what we have to look forward to next year. (Click here to view Part 1)

Principle 5Principle 5: Partnerships

A growing number of schools are partnering with local businesses to advance sustainability on campus and beyond. In fact, through a new project between Global Compact LEAD and PRME Champions many of these partnerships were highlighted this year including The American University in Cairo’s Women on Boards programme, the development of local sustainability networks by ESPAE, University of Guelph partnership around food, Novo School of Business and Economics’ partnership around children consumer behaviour and the University of Technology Sydney partnership around insurers role in sustainable growth. Additional resources were providing to assist schools in developing new partnerships including 5 Key Messages from Business to Business Schools Around Sustainability and 10 Tips.

Another feature focused on examples of schools engaging with local governments in Turkey, Brazil, Australia, US, UK and Latvia.

Principle 6Principle 6: Dialogue

Most of the examples presented through the year have also involved dialogue around responsible management topics, across the campus and beyond. As always, many posts featured Sharing Information on Progress Reports including an overview of the newly released Basic Guide to Sharing Information on Progress, as well as a two part series on visuals to get inspired by for your next SIP report.

A number of Sharing Information on Progress Reports were featured and celebrated this year including Reykjavik University’s first report, Ivey Business School’s experiences communicating the big picture through their SIP, the recipients of the Recognition of Sharing Information on Progress Reports were highlighted including KEDGE Business School.

Principle “7”: Organisational Practices

PRME signatories globally are increasingly active in creating more sustainable campuses. Coventry University shared their experiences in gaining sustainability accreditation in the UK. A two-part feature on sustainable buildings on campus highlighted a range of approaches being taken by schools around the world.

Last but not least, as businesses become more engaged in sustainability around the world, we are presented with an increasing range of examples of active companies to highlight in the classroom. Featured sustainable business examples collected from faculty in 2015 included:

Thank you for a fantastic 2015 and for contributing all of your good practice examples and stories. We encourage you to engage with the discussion and promotion of PRME and the Sustainable Development Agenda on all levels, including our Chapters and working Groups, as well as through Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

2016 will be another exciting year in the field of management education and sustainability in particular through the Sustainable Development Goals and business-business school partnerships. If there are any topics in particular you would like to see covered, or you would like your initiatives to be featured, please do not hesitate to contact me at gweybrecht@thesustainablemba.com.

2015 Good Practices in Responsible Management Education (Part 1)

It is once again time for PRiMEtime’s year-end review. 2015 was another exciting year with a lot of innovative new initiatives and approaches at business schools around the world embedding responsible leadership and sustainability into their programmes. Sixty articles were posted over the year on responsible management education, featuring over 182 examples from more than 114 schools in 38 countries. In this 2-part year-end post we review what happened this year and what we have to look forward to next year.

Principle 1Principle 1: Purpose

2015 of course was the year of the PRME Global Forum. A post of student views on business as a force for good as well as what the future corporation will look like, highlighted the power of students in being innovative thought leaders. Several key documents were launched during the Forum and featured on PRiMEtime including The State of Sustainability and Management Education.

In September a call to action was made to higher education institutions to join in making a commitment to support refugees in crisis. The PRME community stepped up with a number of initiatives featured in this post. Two posts on Higher Education for Climate Change Action coincided with the Higher Education Sustainability Initiative meeting in October and featured a number of examples of business schools taking action around this important issue.

As the international community is preparing to launch the Post-2015 Development Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals in 2016, a growing focus of PRiMEtime and the wider PRME community has been understanding how business schools can engage in the process and contribute to achieving the goals once they are put in place. Several updates were posted including this overview and update.

Principle 2Principle 2: Values

As the sister initiative to the Global Compact, several Global Compact resources were featured including Finance and Sustainability Resources and Ways to Engage and a look at the building blocks for transforming business and changing the world. We also looked at a number of other resources available to the PRME community including ways that schools are using technology in the classroom to teach sustainability, a selection of MOOCs on Sustainability/Ethics for Fall 2015 as well as for Spring 2015.

Several posts featured International Days focused on highlighting and celebrating specific sustainability related topics. This included a look at how management education is engaging high school students in sustainable business for International Youth Day, schools engaged in sustainable energy projects for the International Year of Light, a two part feature on schools engaged in sustainable food for World Health Day, and women and management education for International Women’s Day

Principle 3Principle 3: Method

PRME schools shared their experiences in re-designing their programmes to embed sustainability more fully including Stockholm School of Economics, University of New South Wales, Jonkoping International Business School, and the University of Wollongong. This included new courses such as Peter J. Tobin College of Business introducing all students to not-for-profit management, students engaging in their communities including innovative projects at Great Lakes Institute of Management, and Willamette University Atkinson Graduate School of Management’s MBA for Life programme. ISAE/FGV shared their experiences in engaging stakeholders in prioritising their sustainability strategy moving forward.

Principle 4Principle 4: Research

Schools continue to conduct a number of important research projects around the topic of sustainability, ethics and responsible management focused on their particular regions, including the development of case studies on sustainable production and consumption for the business community at the Universiti Sains Malaysia.

A growing focus is being put on interdisciplinary collaboration and projects including at Stockholm School of Economics, Aarhus University and the Maasai Mara in Kenya, and the development of an interdisciplinary sustainability research network at University of Nottingham.

Several new publications were introduced which highlight research and the key role that faculty play in embedding sustainability and responsible management into the curriculum including Faculty Development for responsible management education and an Inspirational Guide for the Implementation of PRME featuring examples from UK and Ireland.

 Part 2 will be posted on January 4th, 2016.

2014 Good Practices in Responsible Management Education (Part 1)

It is that time again for PRiMEtime’s year-end review. 2014 was another exciting year with a lot of innovative new initiatives and approaches at business schools around the world embedding responsible leadership and sustainability into their programmes. More than 60 articles were posted over the year on responsible management education, featuring over 200 examples from more than 100 schools in 37 countries. In this 2-part year-end post we review what happened this year and what we have to look forward to next year.

Principle 1Principle 1: Purpose

As the international community is preparing the post-2015 agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, a growing focus of PRiMEtime and the wider PRME community has been how business schools can get engaged in the process and be a part of reaching the goals once they are put in place. The Post-2015 process provided an overview of how the goals are being put together through international consultations, and in particular about the business sector contributions to the process through the UN Global Compact (part 1 and part 2). In July we looked at the thoughts of a panel of distinguished guests at the PRME Champions meeting in NYC around what role business schools have in the Sustainable Development Goals. More recently, an overview of resources available for business schools was presented related to the UN Climate Summit and Private Sector Forum—the largest climate meeting yet—bringing together more than 125 heads of state as well as business leaders. We also looked at the discussions happening around Carbon Pricing, one of the main themes of the Private Sector Forum, as well as the growing number of resources available through the Global Compact for faculty and students in particular around Human Rights and Business for Peace.

2014 celebrated a number of International Days (Jan-May) organised by the United Nations, aimed at raising awareness about different sustainability topics, that provide numerous ways to engage students and staff. On World Food Day we took a look at what business schools are doing to raise awareness about food issues at a local level (Part 1 and Part 2). The 2014 International Year of Small Island Developing States gave us a chance to celebrate the approaches taken by Arthur Lok Jack Graduate School of Business (Trinidad and Tobago), Lee Kong Chian School of Business (Singapore) and Barna Business School (Dominican Republic). In recognition of International Anti-Corruption Day on the 9th of December, two posts focused on engaging students in this topic, the first, Ten ways to bring anti-corruption discussions into the classroom and then a second, ten more ways to bring anti-corruption discussions into the classroom.

Principle 2Principle 2: Values

KU Leuven Faculty of Economics and Business shared their experiences aligning sustainability efforts across numerous campuses after a merger, and described how they created their joint Sharing Information on Progress Reports (SIP) report. We also had the chance to learn about how Hanken School of Economics put together their Sharing Information on Progress (SIP) report and what tips they have for others.

Soegljapranata Catholic University, in Indonesia, and Management College of South Africa, are both developing their own “Green” and “Ethics” strategies for their students while UASM-Universidad de los Andes, in Colombia, is currently exploring the impact of internalising PRME and exploring the extent to which academic programmes and research in this area influence students. EMFD shared information about their Business School Impact Survey launched this past year.

Schools continue to organise several special events for students and staff to engage in sustainability related topics. Louvain School of Management (Belgium) organised the “LSM Cup: Ethics in Business,” an inter-faculty, multidisciplinary business game focused on CSR. San Francisco State University College of Business (USA) reported on their Business Ethics Week with ethics related modules and speakers. Universidad del Cono Sur de las Americas (Paraguay) has an annual event called “Contest of Crazy Ideas,” which invites students to develop creative ideas focused around social responsibility. Lviv Business School (Ukraine) five-day interdisciplinary retreat brings together faculty, entrepreneurs, religious leaders, artists and other individuals to discuss and explore leadership, ethics, values and trust. Cameron School of Business (USA) and ESIC (Spain) have both created microcredit lending programmes. IE Business School (Spain) Venture Lab incubates the development and consolidation of social and responsible startups.

Principle 3Principle 3: Method

Several schools engage their students in thinking about business in different ways, right from the first day on campus. The University of Guelph College of Business and Economics (Canada) runs a student competition where students are given 1$ of seed capital and challenged to take their ideas, develop and operate a business, and generate as much real wealth as possible within a month. At Gustavson School of Business (Canada), “MIIISsion Impossible” is an innovative one-day programme that engages students to build a social responsible business idea in teams.

Schools continue to develop a range of different ways to teach students about responsible management topics. Several MOOCs were run quite successfully between September and December (part 1 and part 2). Otto Beisheim School of Management (Germany) shared their approach to using online tools to engage students in sustainability through their Sustainability Lab. HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management (Germany) is using co-teaching as a better way to communicate responsibility and ethics to students. Stephanie Bertels from Beedie School of Business (Canada) shared with us an example of an assignment she uses in the classroom focused on sustainability.

Several schools continue to provide more structured options for students to get hands on experience. “Humacite Service Learning Mission,” at La Rochelle Business School (France), is a mandatory three-month service learning mission for students. University of Victoria Gustavson School of Business (Canada) has 3 four-month work terms through its Co-op Programme, giving students the opportunity to try out different jobs, build competencies and earn income. Auckland University of Technology Business School (New Zealand) requires students to reflect on ethical decision-making during their nine-week work placement.

Principle 4Principle 4: Research

Schools continue to conduct a number of important research projects around the topic of sustainability, ethics and responsible management focused on their particular regions, including Nova School of Business and Economics’ (Portugal) research on business and economic development in Africa. Management Center Innsbruck (Austria) focuses on social responsibility in eastern Austria and the University of New England (Australia) focuses research around carbon taxes. ESCI (Spain) has been exploring how to improve the recycling of clothing and fabric in collaboration with Spanish company Mango. Universidad del Norte (Colombia) is creating a database of case studies focused on sustainability in collaboration with the Global Compact Local Network. Gordon Institute of Business Sciences (South Africa) launched the GIBS Dynamic Market Index, and is the new host of the Network for Business South Africa in partnership with the Graduate School of Business at the University of Cape Town.

Milgard School of Business (USA) shared their experiences in creating the effective Centre for Leadership & Social Responsibility and the impact it has had on the University and beyond. European College of Economics and Management (Bulgaria) created a new peer-reviewed journal for students called Science and Business. The Benedictine University’s College (USA) has created new innovative PhD programme focused on ethics. Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg students work with the German Development Agency (GIZ) to analyse projects carried out by the organisation.

Copenhagen Business School (Denmark) has launched a collection of cases around responsible management available for free through their website.

Part 2 will be posted on January 1st, 2015.

The Future Corporation–The Future Business School

LEAD Symposium

Every year, a number of leading companies in the field of sustainability who make up the Global Compact LEAD group meet to discuss current issues and key trends and to shape future developments in this area. The 2014 LEAD Symposium challenges participants to sketch a vision of The Future Corporation, identifying key characteristics of what the sustainable corporation could and should look like in the future. They look to provide a beacon for the transition of the global business community that is already underway, fuelled by deeper integration of sustainability into strategies and operations.

On 20 November, LEAD companies want to hear from business school professors and students about their vision of The Future Corporation and invite the PRME community to engage via Twitter.ber, students are invited to watch the Live-stream and join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtags #FutureCorporation and #GCLEAD. The live Twitter feed will be displayed in the conference, and attendees in the room will be encouraged to engage in dialogue with those watching the live-stream: www.unglobalcompact.org/LEADSymposiumOnline.

To create The Future Corporation, we also need to explore The Future Business School. What kind of training is needed to ensure that future generations of employees, managers, and leaders have to create the future corporations we want and need? What, specifically, should future business schools look like, in terms of curriculum, partnerships, dialogues, campus greening, etc.?

“The Future Business School will have to serve an increasing number of stakeholder groups and, at the same time, have to survive in an increasingly competitive environment. The successful Future Business School copes with these challenges by combining academic rigor and relevance for society. Relevance for society includes, first of all, the learning experience of students; it includes the close interaction with companies but will also include, to a larger extent, services and cooperation with other relevant groups of civil society. This prepares students for careers in The Future Corporation, which will be a more social responsible corporation. However, there is no single best answer on the main characteristic of “The” Future Business School–rather the expectation is that diversity will increase. Personally, I would like to see business school graduates as people beneficial for society–like dentists (this is what J. M. Keynes formulated for economists). Business schools, as institutions, should be independent players that provide thought leadership and are acknowledged partners of companies, which are not only striving for profits but understand their more complex role in society.” – Prof. Dr. Rudi Kurz, Pforzheim University Business School, Germany

“The Future Business School needs to position itself as part of a broader ecosystem of partners, both within and outside of the university, exploring ideas and innovation. To facilitate this, students, faculty, and staff need to learn about opportunities and solutions together as part of a larger learning community. Our Queen’s Social Impact Academy is a co-created campus-wide learning platform for students and faculty and the source of existing and new traditional and online courses in the areas of social innovation and human-centred design.” Tina Dacin, Director, QSB Centre for Social Impact, Queen’s School of Business, Canada

Parts 2 and 3 of this series capture visions from PRME schools of what The Future Business School may look like. I encourage you to contribute your own.

 

For more ideas visit the Future MBA Project, a growing database of ideas from around the world on what the future of management education might/could/will look like.

Universities Divesting in Fossil Fuels (Part 1)

Monash University

As universities around the world are exploring how to embed sustainability into their programme offerings, curriculum and campus, a growing number of them are also looking deeper to see how they can ensure that they are being consistent in how they run their own operations. For example universities are increasing taking a closer look at their endowment funds and the kinds of companies that they invest or choose not to invest in.

One movement that has gained momentum this past year has been for universities to divest from fossil fuels. These universities individually and collectively hold endowments that invest millions, sometimes billions, into fossil fuel companies. Strong campaigns, lead by students and staff, focus on several reasons why their institutions should not be investing in fossil fuels. It is seen as a sound financial decision to take a closer look at an institution’s financial portfolio and the risks that certain investments decisions take for the university, but also for the planet. Universities have a responsibility to shape public discourse, change through influence and raise awareness about this topic.

The campaigns to divest from fossil fuels have been slightly different at each school, but generally push for some, or all, of the following points:

  • To freeze any further investments in fossil fuel companies
  • To divest from fossil fuel companies completely in five years
  • Disclose the potential greenhouse gas emissions in the university’s investments
  • Shifting funds to lower risk, ethical investments (such as renewable energy, local community projects, and so on)
  • Calling on pension funds to exclude fossil fuel companies from their portfolios
  • Cutting research, advertising and career ties with fossil fuel industry
  • Create, strengthen and adhere to a Socially Responsible Investment Policy
  • Publicly declare divestment in order to encourage other universities, institutions and individuals to do the same

Most of the campaigns are specifically looking at a group of 200 or so publicly traded companies that hold the vast majority of listed coal, oil and gas reserves. However, quite a few other schools have publicly stated that although divesting is a strong gesture, they do not see the necessity or utility in doing so. They argue that universities should keep their ownership in these companies and instead exercise leverage as a shareholder. The act of divesting will not have real impact other than raising awareness and that although it is inspiring to see the students organise such strong campaigns, divesting completely doesn’t actually make sense for the universities. Instead they are choosing to respond in a number of different ways including strengthening their Investment Policies and investing in alternative energy companies.

Despite mixed thoughts on the matter, the movement now also includes a number of companies (Ben & Jerry’s Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund), religious organisations (a petition for the Vatican to divest is underway), cities (Seattle, Oxford) and countries (one of the Swedish national pension funds announced they are divesting from 20 fossil fuel companies) from around the world.

A number of toolkits and resources are available for students and staff interested in learning more including www.wearepowershift.org, www.gofossilfree.org, www.350.org, www.endowmentethics.org and http://www.asyousow.org.

Part 2 will look at specific examples from signatories in the US, Canada, UK and Australia.

 

 

Should Universities divest in fossil fuels or not? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments box below. 

Business Contributions to the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals – Issue Briefs (part 2 of 2)

Post 2015Over more than a decade, the international community has been working on reaching targets set forth by the Millennium Development Goals, a set of eight goals which focused global attention on a limited set of concrete human development goals and provided targets for national and international development priorities. As these targets are set to expire in 2015, the international community, including the private sector and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are currently discussing what will comprise the new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) post-2015.

Based on extensive consultations with the UN Global Compact network of companies around the world, a series of ten issue briefs have been developed to explore the critical role business has to play in achieving sustainable development goals, and the willingness of the business community and HEIs, to support the efforts of government and civil society in this work. These briefs provide suggestions of issues and accountability mechanisms to be included in the SDGs, and outline business’ role in helping to achieve these goals. These papers were presented to the co-chairs of the inter-governmental Open Working Group on SDG.

Here, in Part 2 of the blogpost, is an introduction to the issues of infrastructure & technology, peace & stability, poverty, water & sanitation and women’s empowerment. For more detailed information click on the links below to access the full issue brief. (See Part 1 for energy & climate, education, food & agriculture, governance & human rights, and health)

Infrastructure and Technology: Technology is the beating heart of economic transformation, and good infrastructure protects the environment while providing the leverage people need to lift themselves out of poverty. This includes deploying investment sufficient to meet requirements for “green” transport, energy, and water systems in the developing world and upgrading and replacing old infrastructure in the developed world, increasing the share of the population with access to public transportation, stepping up R&D in both public and private sectors and reducing carbon emissions from the construction and operation of buildings. Equally important, is creating universal and affordable access to the internet and computing technology, and effective use of e-governance to increase managerial capacity and transparency. Businesses are engaging in these issues in a variety of ways, including through the Green Growth Action Alliance launched by the World Economic Forum.

Peace and Stability: Businesses consider peace and security to be crucial to sustainable development, and an area where their own interests give them reason to complement the responsibility of public institutions to build and maintain peaceful situations. This includes improving access to justice, services and economic opportunity for diverse ethnic, religious and social groups; improving mediation, dispute resolution and dialogue mechanisms to prevent and resolve conflict and to build peace; and reducing violent deaths, preventing and reducing the illicit trade of small arms, and reducing the reach and extent of organised crime—especially through the provisions of the UN Convention against Transnational Organised Crime. Violent crimes are bad for business, and companies are looking at the means they have at their disposal to defuse social conflicts before they get out of hand or, in post-conflict situations, help to weave a strong social fabric leading to shared prosperity and stability. Businesses are engaging in these issues through platforms such as the UN Global Compact’s Business For Peace.

Poverty: The eradication of poverty is widely expected to be the overarching objective of the Sustainable Development Goals. This includes eliminating extreme poverty (those living under $1.25/day in 2005 real US dollars), creating jobs , eliminating child labour, ensuring full access to private finance and reducing the Gini co-efficient rating, a measurement of income inequality, in each country. Recognising the drawbacks that even moderate poverty poses to societies and economies, a growing number of companies are adopting new policies and practices that are inclusive of the poor as employees, customers, suppliers, and neighbours. This includes work being done through the Women’s Empowerment Principles and the Poverty Footprint Methodology.

Water and Sanitation: Water and sanitation are key given their cross-cutting nature in relation to sustainable development priorities—including energy, food, and women’s and girl’s empowerment. This includes universal access to affordable and safe fresh water, and basic and improved sanitation facilities to bring freshwater use in line with supply, and ensure establishment and full implementation of national water effluent standards. A growing number of companies are adopting new policies and practices to reduce their corporate water use, improve the quality of water returned to the environment, and to provide decent water, sanitation and hygiene services for employees, and the communities in which they operate. Further efforts include the UN Global Compact’s CEO Water Mandate and the CEO Water Mandate’s Water Action Hub.

Women’s Empowerment: A key target for the sustainable development priorities will be to achieve women’s and girl’s empowerment. This includes increasing the proportion of leadership positions held by women in public and private sectors, universally recognising and enforcing equal pay for equal work, increasing full and equal access of women to ownership, property rights and land titles, and reducing the rates of violent acts committed against women and girls. In addition to gender equality being a fundamental and inviolable human right, women’s and girls’ empowerment is essential to expanding economic growth, promoting social development, and enhancing business performance. The full incorporation of women’s capacities into labour forces would add percentage points to most national growth rates. Business is engaging through the Women’ Empowerment Principles among a range of efforts, to further this goal.

For more details about the business sectors contribution to the Post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals visit the UN Global Compact site and stay tuned for future Primetime Posts on the topic.

From now through July 2014, the Online Consultation for the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda on Engaging with the Private Sector is being held on the World We Want platform, hosted by the UN Global Compact and UN Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO). You can contribute to the dialogue at www.worldwewant2015.org/privatesector2015.

 

Business Contributions to the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals – Issue Briefs (part 1 of 2)

Post 2015

Over more than a decade, the international community has been working on reaching targets set forth by the Millennium Development Goals, a set of eight goals which focused global attention on a limited set of concrete human development goals and provided targets for national and international development priorities. As these targets are set to expire in 2015, the international community, including the private sector and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are currently discussing what will comprise the new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) post-2015.

Based on extensive consultations with the UN Global Compact network of companies around the world, a series of ten issue briefs have been developed to explore the critical role business has to play in achieving sustainable development goals, and the willingness of the business community and HEIs, to support the efforts of government and civil society in this work. These briefs provide suggestions of issues and accountability mechanisms to be included in the SDGs and outline business’ role in helping to achieve these goals. These papers were presented to the co-chairs of the inter-governmental Open Working Group on SDG.

Here is a brief introduction to the different issues presented including, in part 1, energy & climate, education, food & agriculture, governance & human rights, and health, and in part 2 infrastructure & technology, peace & stability, poverty, water & sanitation and women’s empowerment. For more detailed information click on the links to access the full issue briefs.

Energy & Climate: Climate change and unmet energy demands are challenges that recognise no political or physical boundaries, crossing all sectors and industries globally. The private sector has a role to play as solutions-providers in mitigating and adapting to the impacts of climate change and ensuring energy security, while simultaneously generating attractive financial returns. It also plays a role in developing new and innovative solutions to climate and energy challenges, and finding ways to collaborate and form partnerships, seizing opportunities for greater investment in technological solutions. Additionally, businesses themselves are aligning business practices to advance climate solutions—raising standards, increasing efficiency and reducing emissions, and committing to longer range sustainability objectives and goals in order to better align their efforts and strategies in relation to the broad global sustainable development agenda. For more on one active private sector participation, see Caring for Climate, an initiative aimed at advancing the role of business in addressing climate change.

Education: Businesses consistently single out education as the first or second priority for the post-2015 world, and also one of the areas where they are best positioned to make a difference. This includes ensuring that every child completes primary education, facilitating computing skills in secondary schools, increasing the percentage of young adults with skills needed for work, achieving parity in enrolment and educational opportunities at all levels for girls and women, and including sustainable development concepts at all levels of schooling with special emphasis on business school. The business community is doing this through partnerships, on the job training, the development of new technologies, and through initiatives such as the Framework for Business Engagement in Education and the Principles for Responsible Management Education.

Food & Agriculture: Farming and food occupy a pivotal position in sustainable development. Enhanced harvests, food processing and distribution will help to eradicate hunger, renovation of the rural sectors of the developing world, where the great bulk if the poor are found, is key to an advance on prosperity, and current agricultural practices are at once contributing and threatened by, climate change. The business sector believes the goals in this area should focus on eradicating hunger and halting increase of obesity and malnutrition, doubling the productivity of agriculture in the least developed countries, stopping and turning back the increase in greenhouse gas emissions and deforestation resulting from farming and livestock, decreasing overexploitation of ocean fish stocks, and reducing food waste. Business can play a role through development of new crops, training of farmers, utilising new technologies and processes, and increasing collaboration and lesson-sharing through issue platforms such as the Food and Agriculture Business Principles.

Governance & Human Rights: The business community identified both fair and efficient governance and an environment where human rights can flourish as not only benefiting business, but being necessary features of a sustainable society. This includes raising awareness and implementation of all UN human rights conventions and instruments, achieving competitive and transparent procurement processes, further developing an open, rule based, non-discriminatory international trading and financial system, and establishing a climate supportive of business and investment at home and from overseas—including further incentives in favour of sustainability. Business can play a role through scrupulous respect for human rights in the workplace and in their dealings with stakeholders, as well as through the framework laid out in the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights.

Health: Health is central to development and is an investment that enables economic growth and wealth, as well as better quality of lives. This includes affordable access to quality treatment and care for all, the reduction of the reach of TB, malaria,HIV/AIDS, and non-communicable diseases, universal reproductive health services, and reducing maternal and under-five mortality. Health care constitutes a major industry and is involved in global campaigns to fight disease and make medications more affordable. They are also involved in innovative partnerships in wide-ranging areas such as research & development, disease elimination, new business models, community partnerships, and innovative licensing.

 

From now through July 2014, the Online Consultation for the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda on Engaging with the Private Sector is being held on the World We Want platform, hosted by the UN Global Compact and UN Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO). You can contribute to the dialogue at www.worldwewant2015.org/privatesector2015.

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