2016 Good Practices in Responsible Management Education (Part 1)

It is once again it’s time for PRiMEtime’s year-end review. 2016 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. PRiMEtime provides an extensive and growing database of examples from schools around the world on how to embed sustainability, ethics and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into management education as well as tips on how to move forward.

This year, 60 new articles were posted featuring over 143 examples from more than 65 schools in 38 countries. In this 2-part year-end post we review the examples featured this year, organized roughly around the SDGs, and what we have to look forward to next year. (Click on the links to read the full article).

SDG1SDG2SDG3The Hong Kong Polytechnic University has developed an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Business School and the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, call the Wellness Clinic. It provides preventive care programmes designed, promoted, administered and implemented by students. IEDC-Bled School of Management partnered with members of the UN Global Compact Local Slovenia to organize workshops around the theme of “Health promotion in the workplace as part of the corporate social responsibility and sustainable business development’.

For one week in March, EADA Business School’s campus transforms into a model refugee course where students taking the Managing Humanitarian Emergencies elective learn about the main components required to respond to humanitarian emergencies and extreme situations in general.



La Trobe Business School (Australia), ISAE (Brazil), Audencia Nantes School of Management (France) and Hanken School of Economics (Finland) founded CR3+ Network, a new program that provides a supportive platform to build international collaboration and enables the four schools to work together to build capacity in responsible management education. In the USA, Western Michigan University (USA) partnered with Christ University in Bagalore in India to create an experiential experience to engage students in sustainability discussions in India. Reutlingen University in Germany shared their experiences with the Ethikum Certificate awarded to students who complete a number of special experiences and courses during their time at university. Hult International Business School shared their experiences integrating the SDGs into the core Business and Global Society course. Hult International Business School and Ashridge Business School also shared their experiences integrating the Sustainable Development Goals into their PRME Sharing Information on Progress Report. The University of St. Gallen and oikos work together to offer the PhD Fellowship Programme, a unique opportunity to support international PhD students writing their thesis on sustainability in economics or management.

PRiMEtime also explored a range of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) available on sustainability topics. These courses are free online and open to anyone with an interest in the topic. A series of posts provided an overview of the MOOCs available in the Spring (Part 1 and Part 2) and summer (Part 1 and Part 2).



The American University of Beirut’s University for Senior Programme aims to redefine the role of older people in society by providing them opportunities to remain intellectually challenged and socially connected through a range of lectures, study groups, educational travel programmes, campus life and intergenerational activities. The American University of Beirut also paired up with Citi to provide crucial support and mentoring for female entrepreneurs in Lebanon and the MENA region with the goal of increasing their numbers significantly. Altis Postgraduate School of Business and Society in Italy introduced us to E4Impact, a special programme aimed at training a new class of African leaders who will be able to create jobs in the sustainability sector in their country.



Ryerson University (Canada) designed a unique interdisciplinary programme that brings together faculty from all of the university’s six department called the Environmental Applied Science and Management (EnSciMan) with a focus on environmental management. In Italy, the University of Bologna’s Launch Pad aims to leverage the know-how of the hundreds of PhDs and post-docs studying at the university to facilitate its transformation into valuable products and services, many focused on social and environmental topics. PRiMEtime also looked at a range of global student networks engaged in sustainability that are active within and across business schools.



Antwerp Management School’s ID@Work research programme aims to support organisations in attracting, developing and retaining employees with an intellectual disability. The Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience at the University of Wollongong is an educational programme that supports Indigenous students through high school and into university, employment or further education. Also in Australia, Deakin University has been exploring how to encourage and train more Indigenous Australians to become accountants (currently of the more than 180,000 Australian professional accounting body members, only 30 identify as Indigenous). The Northwest Aboriginal Canadians Entrepreneurs Programme at the University of Victoria Gustavson School of Business is a partnership between several organisations including regional and provision government to offer first class entrepreneurial learning to the Indigenous people of Northwest British Columbia with the aim to enhance the self sufficiency and full economic participation of Indigenous people

Using Pitch Competitions to Develop Sustainability Skills and Businesses

Faso-Soap-GSVCMany business students enter their degree programs hoping that, one day, they will become entrepreneurs, starting and growing their own businesses. In addition to a range of courses and electives focused on entrepreneurship, there has also been a significant increase in the number of local and global pitch competitions. At a pitch competition, teams of students can pitch their business ideas with the opportunity to win significant cash prizes and investments to kick-start their businesses. Win or lose, the competitions allow for important mentorship, advisory support, opportunities to network with important people in the industry, including investors and instant validation for a business idea.

There are several business schools around the world offering such opportunities, including, but not limited to, the following:

The Global Social Venture Competition, based at the University of California, Berkeley, provides aspiring entrepreneurs with mentoring, PR, and $50,000 in prizes to transform their ideas into businesses that will have positive real-world impact. Teams are evaluated over three rounds: at their school, at the regional semi-finals and at the global finals. At each stage, they get support and feedback from local experts and social entrepreneurs. Last year, GSVC received more than 500 entries from 40 countries. This year, the finals will take place in Thailand at Thammasat Business School. This will be the first time the finals are held outside the US.

Morgan Stanley and Kellogg School of Management, along with international partners INSEAD and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, created the Sustainable Investing Challenge. This pitch competition for graduate students focuses on developing institutional-quality investment vehicles that seek positive environmental or social impact and competitive financial returns. The winners of last year’s challenge formed their own start-up in the world of conservation finance based on their winning entry involving the creation of Forest Resilience Bonds in the US. This year, the deadline for applying is February 24th, 2016 and ten finalist teams will gather in Hong Kong in April 2016 to pitch their financial investment proposals for specific social or environmental projects. Last year, 127 teams entered, representing 78 schools from 20 countries.

The Intel Global Challenge at University of California, Berkeley, is the world’s largest and most prestigious technology entrepreneurship competition, attracting more than 20,000 young innovators and entrepreneurs from 60 countries. Finalists present their work to experienced entrepreneurs and venture capitalists at regional and final competitions as they vie for $100,000 in prizes. The winners are considered those that have the most potential to make a positive impact on society.

The Sustainability Innovation Student Challenge Award was launched by Dow in 2009 to promote forward-thinking in social and environmental responsibility. The challenge engages students from 18 universities around the world to come up with solutions that are interdisciplinary in nature, represent innovative thinking, and have the potential for solving world challenges in alignment with the spirit of Dow’s Sustainability Goals. The winning university receives $10,000 USD in prizes.

The Lee Kuan Yew Global Business Plan Competition at Singapore Management University is aimed at undergraduate students from around the world who, if chosen, stand to win up to $60,000 USD in cash, prizes and business development opportunities. Teams submit a business plan that goes through preliminary and semi-final rounds before making it to the final round in Singapore. There is also a cash award granted to the “Most Promising Young Entrepreneur.” Last year’s competition saw 121 business plans from 336 students representing 28 countries. Over time, there has been an increase in the number of plans that relate to sustainability.

London Business School and the University College of London launched the Cleantech Challenge. Teams of students from around the world develop their clean technology business ideas through a three-stage competition that runs from November through April. They receive guidance, feedback and mentorship from industry professionals throughout the Challenge. Ten finalist teams compete in a live “Boot Camp” final in London for a chance to win GBP 10,000 in cash.

The Hult Prize Foundation is a start-up accelerator for budding young social entrepreneurs emerging from universities worldwide. The prize, awarded annually, aims to inspire the creation and launch of the most compelling social business ideas. Winners receive USD 1 million in seed capital, as well as mentorship and advice from the international business community. Last year’s winner was National Chengchi University from Taiwan. The 2016 challenge looks at crowded urban spaces, and poses the following question: can we build sustainable, scalable and fast growing social enterprises that double the income of 10 million people residing in crowded urban spaces by better connecting people, goods, services and capital?

Does your school have a pitch competition? Share the details in the comments below.

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.

Creating a Useful Tool for Communicating Sustainability Efforts – KEDGE Business School

KEDGE SIPOne year after its merger, which brought BEM and Euromed Management together to form KEDGE Business School, the new group ranks amongst the top 30 European business schools. Their latest Sharing Information on Progress (SIP) report, is their first integrated sustainability report as a merged business school, and explores the linkages between the organisation’s strategy, governance and financial performance, and the social, environmental and economic context within which it operates. Their report received a Recognition for Excellence in Reporting at the PRME Global Forum in June in New York City.

I spoke with Jean-Christophe Carteron, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, and Chloé Pigeon, Marketing & Communication Director at KEDGE, about their report and advice for others working on their SIPs.

Introduce your report, and the approach you took to putting it together.

C. Pigeon: Since signing the Global Compact in 2005, we started to produce COP reports (Communication on Progress, the equivalent of a SIP for PRME). By the time we engaged in PRME in 2008, we decided to start publishing our SIP as a sustainable development (SD) report. Fortunately, a consulting company (UTOPIE in Paris) offered to help us. Three years later, our Dean asked the CSR Department to expand our work and move towards an integrated report (SD report + activity report). The third edition of this report that just came out was put together by our two departments.

Is there a part of your report or the process that you are particularly proud of?

JC Carteron: To be frank, I love the indicators chapter at the end of the report—not because it shows that we are perfect, but because it shows that we are not! In the world of business schools, we too often boast about being perfect and we usually deny recognition of the success of our peers. In a previous edition of our report, I convinced my dean to incorporate in our SIP a double page on “our greatest mistakes” and another on the “best practices of our competitors.” Thanks to that initiative, which I hope to see again in our next version, we have gained credibility and today no one would venture to “traffic figures” to erase bad results. And I hope this will last…

How are you thinking and reporting about indicators and metrics?

JC: A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to be part of the team from the two national associations of higher education in France (CGE for engineering schools and business schools and CPU for public universities), who built the first assessment tool for Higher Education Institutions. The “Green Plan” as it is called, measures a large number of criteria covering research, pedagogy, environmental management of the campus, social and territorial anchoring and governance. It was natural and easy to link the principles of PRME and the Green Plan criteria since they have worked very well for us.

As the Green Plan is de facto linked to the French context, we can recommend to have a look on the platform for sustainability in Higher Education. It brings together organisations which have created sustainability assessment tools designed to support universities and colleges around the world.

What have been some of your successes and challenges in relation to indicators?

CP: The first challenge is finding data. Before starting our report, there was a lot of data that we weren’t collecting regularly, or at all. It took us three years to have more reliable indicators. At this point our school merged (to create KEDGE BS) and after more than a year as a merged business school we are still lacking some of the data we need! The amazing thing though is that looking for this data forces us to work with all the different departments, to ask questions, and to start moving together in the same direction. In a sense, producing the SIP has helped facilitate our merger.

What advice do you have for other schools interested in an integrated report? Could any school do this?

JC: Here are some comments and suggestions based on what we’ve found useful:

1. Do not do a SIP (as integrated report or as a simpler version) simply because PRME requires it. Do it to help advance your own work.

2. The report provides a snapshot of all your actions. Reporting will help you to bring these different initiatives together, as they can often appear highly fragmented. This will highlight the successes of your teams and also allow you to see gaps and weaknesses that need to be worked on.

3. The more you produce the same kind of report as companies, the more you increase your credibility to build partnerships with companies.

4. Given the changes in accreditation criteria, such reports makes it easier during peer review by having required you to collect the info from year to year.

What plans do you have for your next report?

CP: We are hoping to create a report that brings together the PRME Principles, the French Green Plan, Global Reporting criteria (the standard used by many companies) as well as accreditation standards for EQUIS, AACSB and AMBA. We are also planning on doing a new series of stakeholder consultations in order to update to their expectations in terms of reporting. We currently, because of costs, only publish the report in English, which is an issue for French local government or small SMEs who do not master English. We are considering an online bilingual version. Finally we would like to involve students more. The largest student association on campus is focused on sustainability (Unis-Terre), so finding more projects that involve them or even co-writing the report with them would be a great improvement.

What are three initiatives that you are particularly proud of that you are working on at KEDGE that are mentioned in the report?

JC: Of course, the Sustainability Literacy Test we launched a little bit more than one and half year ago. Supported by the UN, this multiple choice questionnaire aims at testing knowledge on Sustainable Development Issues, and can be tailored to different regions. It has been taken by almost 30,000 students from 340 universities. This year will celebrate our tenth session of Model UN. Each year we have more than 300 students that participate. Last year our team came back with the Best Delegation award at the National Model UN event in New York. We are also very proud of our research in the area of CSR. We have a range of strong research collaborations with national businesses. More information can be found in our SIP.


Business School Response to the Refugee Crisis

refugeesSixty million people have been displaced by conflict and over 410,000 people have crossed the Mediterranean from the Middle East so far this year. Although the primary responsibility for peace rests with governments, the urgency of the global refugee crisis is a challenge that requires support from all actors in society on a short-, mid- and long-term basis.

One month ago today the PRME Secretariat, together with AACSB, AABS, ABIS, AMBA, CEEMAN, CLADEA, EFMD, GMAC, GRLI and EAUC issued a call to action to business schools and management-related higher education institutions (HEIs) in response to the refugee crisis. The call was made in response to a similar call made by the UN Global Compact and the UN Refugee Agency for business to take action.

The leaders of the international academic community were called to take action and address the refugee crisis by providing access to scholarships to business and entrepreneurship related classes and knowledge resources to refugees but also by raising awareness and understanding regarding the situation of refugees, and foster social cohesion. By joining forces with business, governments, UN agencies, civil society organisations and/or other HEIs, business schools can forge long-term partnerships for education and sustainable development.

The following are just a few of the many ways that business schools are responding to this crisis.

Through Collaborative Solutions

The Centre for Education on Social Responsibility at the Leeds School of Business, CU Boulder (USA) is taking a leadership role by convening relevant groups (local government, non-profits, businesses, and business schools) to address the topic of the responsibility of business and business schools to help address the refugee crisis. The meetings will consider the economic stability, employment for refugees and benefits to local employers within the Denver and Boulder business and civic communities.

By Engaging Students and Staff

ALBA Graduate Business School (Greece) collected information on how individuals can help the incoming refugees that was sent to all students, alumni, faculty and staff. Among other things, it gave directions on how to collect items and send them to the NGOs. ALBA has already offered an MBA full scholarship to a young refugee from Africa

The French Education & Research Ministry made a recent appeal to universities in France to propose solutions and actions that would facilitate the welcoming and integration of Syrian, Iraqi and Eritrean refugees. Grenoble Ecole de Management (France) has extended their criteria for the school’s volunteer skills-sharing policy to encourage GEM employees to dedicate 1- 5 days a year of their work-time to help welcome and integrate newly arrived refugees in collaboration with local associations and humanitarian organisations. GEM’s annual Geopolitical Festival in March 2016 will also highlight this urgent issue by hosting a range of activities focused that will examine and discuss the causes, the consequences and potential sustainable and human-focused solutions to this global crisis.

Engaging Refugees

Roughly 3000 refugees are accommodated in Leipzig at an emergency camp located next campus. HHL – Leipzig Graduate School of Management (Germany) opened a collecting point for donations, which are allocated to the refugees. Financial donations received via their graduate students will be used to purchase picture dictionaries in order to support language efforts. Fifteen language interpreters from across campus coordinated the matching of language interpreters with activities. One of these activities is “Neighbour meets Neighbour”, where the refugees can introduce their regional food to students and staff on campus and get in touch with the community. Another initiative has also been put in place to host indoor activities for the refugees at campus, such as a seminar room for a Refugee Law Clinic. HHL is currently organising a field project where students will work for three months with refugee support coordination bodies and a PhD thesis is underway focusing on opportunities and challenges of labour market inclusion for Germany is also in progress. The School is also planning trainings and mini courses aimed at supporting the necessary qualifications of the refugees.

Through Coursework

Hanken School of Economics (Finland) hosts the Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Research Institute (HUMLOG Institute), which is a joint research institute founded by Hanken School of Economics and the National Defence University of Finland. The aim of the HUMLOG Institute is to “to research the area of humanitarian logistics in disaster preparedness, response and recovery with the intention of influencing future activities in a way that will provide measurable benefits to persons requiring assistance”. Through this Institute, Hanken offers a course on humanitarian logistics and students in the course have been encouraged to volunteer to help in coping with the current refugee crisis. They are currently exploring the opportunity to have one project on the refugee crisis in the course this year.


  • Alfred Nobel Open Business School (China) will provide five scholarships to their online e-MBA for registered and selected refugees having business background.
  • Euclid University (Gambia) will be announcing specific full and partial scholarship programmes for qualifying displaced persons and refugees.
  • Haaga-Helia University (Finland) has a proposal a special intake for refugees to study entrepreneurship, languages, sales and service skills as well as career planning. After these studies, they could be admitted as regular students.
  • ESAN Graduate School of Business (Peru) will offer three scholarships to refugees.
  • University of Warsaw (Poland) will provide an access to business and entrepreneurship related classes and a number of scholarships will be offered.
  • University of Strathclyde Business School (UK) is developing a scholarship with the Scottish Refugee Council intended to help asylum seekers and those staying in the UK on humanitarian grounds.
  • SDA Bocconi School of Management (Italy) already offers two open courses (strategy and finance) free of charge aimed at increasing the employability of young people. This course will now also be open to refugees.
  • Grenoble Ecole de Management (France) will offer admission to 5-10 qualified student refugees to study in one of the schools’ programmes.


To submit your pledge visit https://business.un.org/pledge_refugee_crisis

Higher Education for Climate Change Action – Business School Engagement (Part 2)

hesiOn October 14th, the Higher Education Sustainability Initiative (HESI) will be meeting in Paris to discuss the Higher Education for Climate Change Action. HESI is a consortium of UN entities created in the run in to Rio+20. Through HESI, higher education institution signatories commit to teach sustainable development concepts in the core curriculum, encourage research on sustainable development issues, green their campuses and support sustainability efforts in the communities in which they reside.

In preparation for this meeting, here are five examples of how the PRME network is engaged in climate change topics. (Click here to read Part 1)

Measuring Carbon Footprints

The American University in Cairo became the first institution in the Middle East and North Africa to conduct a comprehensive study of its impact on climate change. It released the publication Our Carbon Footprint in 2012, prepared by the Office of Sustainability and the Desert Development Centre, the result of campus-wide efforts incorporating the work of faculty, staff and students. The school developed seventeen measures around which to reduce their carbon footprint including air conditioning, heating and ventilation, transportation, lighting, paper use, and water supply. They formed two separate university-wide task forces, one focused on reducing their energy consumption by one third overall within three years, and the other focused on conserving and recycling water. AUC issued its third Carbon Footprint Report earlier this year based on three years of reliable data. The school is actively engaging its students, staff and community in helping to reduce its emissions and become more energy efficient. For example, measures taken to encourage carpooling have resulted in 45% of people carpooling at least once a week in 2014 as compared to only 19% in 2012.

Supporting the development of new solutions

Strathmore University in Kenya hosts the Kenya Climate Innovation Centre (KCIC), an incubator that provides holistic, country-driven support to accelerate the development, deployment and transfer of locally relevant climate and clean energy technologies. The Centre provides incubation, capacity building services and financing to Kenyan entrepreneurs and new ventures that are developing innovative solutions in energy, water and agribusiness to address climate change challenges. The Centre supports 83 client enterprises selected from over 330 applicants who have developed a wide range of businesses from clean technology start-ups that develop clean cook stoves and bio-ethanol fuel to one that recycles blood from a community based slaughterhouse to create biogas for cooking. KCIC is a consortium consisting of Strathmore University, Global Village Energy Partnership International, PriceWaterhouseCoopers and the Kenya Industrial Research and Development Institute. KCIC is supported by the World Bank, the United Kingdom’s UKaid and the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Conducting ground breaking research

Glasgow Caledonian University in Scotland’s Centre for Climate Justice, in partnership with the Mary Robinson Foundation for Climate Justice, has taken a global lead in creating a repository for the collection and collation of research data within the increasingly important field of climate justice. The Centre hosts the Climate Justice Research Hub, a repository of peer-reviewed materials on the socio-economic effects and human-centred implications of climate change. The Centre is involved in a number of local and international projects including a 20 month project called ‘Scotland Lights up Malawi’ which aims to encourage communities in Malawi to replace dangerous and costly kerosene lamps, batteries and candles with environmentally more friendly solar lighting that also helps families reduce expenditure and thus has the potential to reduce poverty. The Centre also delivers an MSc in Climate Justice.

Through specialised programmes

Toulouse Business School has a specialised Master’s in Sustainable Development and Climate Change accredited jointly by the National Meteorological School and the National School of Life Sciences. The Masters started in 2008. It also organises a number of talks bringing a range of stakeholders together from inside and outside the university to discuss climate change. The school also offers training on carbon accounting for students and more generally across the school

Energy efficiency on campus

A number of business schools in the UK, including the University of Winchester, University of Leicester and the University of Bristol, are members of the Carbon Trust’s Higher Education Carbon Management Programme. The higher education sector in the UK is a growing sector which growing emissions, around 3 million tonnes per year. The initiative believes it is possible to reduce these by around 25%. The purpose of the programme is to raise awareness of the impact so climate change on the sector by helping institutions to develop the capacity to identify and deal with these impacts. To do so schools are encouraged to focus on reducing energy in three areas: heating, lighting and energy management. Universities engaged in the project report regularly through Carbon Management Plans. The Higher Education Funding Council for England also offers a range of funds for projects on campus that reduce an institutions’ emissions.

A growing number of business schools around the world have put in place systems to increase energy efficiency on campus. Ivey Business School in Canada has a five-year plan to eliminate inefficient lighting on campus. Energy-saving T8 ballasts are replacing nearly 50,000 T12 fixtures that illuminate the rooms and halls in dozens of campus buildings. The project will pay for itself through energy savings in about three years. The new fixtures are estimated to use at least 30% less energy than the previous fixtures. In addition to being more efficient, the new lamps also have a greater quality of light output. They also have a system that can remotely control campus air systems allowing areas that aren’t occupied to shutdown in particular on weekends and evenings. The majority of the buildings on campus are connected to this system.


For more examples of business school action around climate change take a look at these past PRiMEtime posts:

Networks and associations are also invited to co-sign an open letter to COP21 Ministers and Governments developed by a global alliance of tertiary and higher education sustainability and student networks and associations.

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