Balancing Profit and Purpose: Global Network Voices Confer on Business and the SDGs

Posted by Byline ICS on Apr 8, 2019 3:29:58 PM

Hitotsubashi ICS, a founding member and the only member school in Japan of the Global Network for Advanced Management, launched Knowledge Week 2019 with a virtual speaker series on the “Business Action towards the SDGs” (the UN Sustainable Development Goals). The aim was to introduce students to "many cases from many places": speakers from across the Network, from four continents shared cases of intentional initiatives from business actors to advance the SDGs in their countries and regions. Hitotsubashi ICS students actively participated and exchanged views with the speakers.

Contributors:

 

Speaker: Todd Cort, Lecturer in Sustainability, Yale SOM, USA: The Global Business Student and the SDGs: Global Network Survey 2018

The United Nations Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015 adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the centerpiece of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which include 17 goals, 169 targets and 241 indicators. How future business leaders perceive the SDGs is the focus of this year’s Global Network survey. Cort, a principal investigator of the Global Network Survey 2018, conveyed to students the rigor required for high-quality survey work, the universality of concern for some of the biggest challenges facing us, and the space for continued questioning and search for understanding. And not least, a sneak preview of the results coming soon from the GN Survey!

 

 

 
Speaker: Sebastian Gatica, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Chile

Sebastian Gatica, the founder and director of CoLab Innovación Social UC, discussed B-Corp, the Hybrid Organization in Latin America. “B Corp” is a certification awarded to businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability. Gatica explained how the B Corp movement has grown and developed in the region. Using a recycling station as one example, he demonstrated the transformation of old business models into new ones.

 

 

 

Speaker: Murali Chandrashekaran, the University of British Columbia Sauder School of Business, Canada

Murali Chandrashekaran offered an overview of SDG background and principles, and presented a case study of a global conglomerate’s solution for a local market addressing SDG5 on gender equality. Coca-Cola India provides Ekocool solar coolers to female entrepreneurs in rural India. The initiative not only contributes to the entrepreneurs’ family welfares, but also raises their social and economic status in the home.

 

 

Speaker: Rofikoh Rokhim, Director of MM-MBA Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Indonesia, Indonesia and an independent commissioner of Bank Rakyat Indonesia

Rofikoh Rokhim presented the Indonesian government’s policies for the SDGs for each Goal and its commitment to implementing the SDGs to aid the transformation to a more just, peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable global civilization.

 

 

 

Speaker: Felipe Calderon PhD, CPA, CMA, Assistant Professor at the Asian Institute of Management, and head of the Washington SyCip Graduate School of Business, Philippines

Felipe Calderon reviewed the tenets of sustainable finance and discussed its feasibility in the Philippines market. He shared case studies on several banks that are members of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV), focusing on local banks in Asia. Calderon also introduced Human Nature, a cosmetic company in the Philippines that offers local workers fair living wages. Dr. Calderon closed the session with an explanation of the impact of the SDGs on local economies.

 

 

Speaker: Kutlwano Ramaboa, UCT: UCT's Local Initiative: Solution Space Philippi Hub (Cape Town)

Kutlwano Ramoboa described a fascinating and innovative initiative of the University of Cape Town business school. The school created Solution Space Philippi Hub to provide active and varied forms of support to local entrepreneurs. The Space offers a shared, modern, open physical setting for sharing ideas and services as well as discussing and assessing business models in a collaborative spirit.

 

 

Speaker: A. Damodaran, Indian Institute of Management Bangalore: Biodiversity Initiatives in India: A Public Sector Perspective (Bangalore)

Damodaran’s message from Bangalore was about public sector efforts to preserve biodiversity, a concern of overarching importance and relevance for SDG implementation. Today’s MBA students, as future business leaders, will find themselves having to consider environmental and ecological factors in their decisionmaking to an unprecedented extent. Damodaran offered students an opportunity to think differently about their physical environment and to understand the kinds of actions we can take to change established patterns of urban development.

 

 

Speaker: Ijeoma Nwagwu, Lagos Business School (Lagos): The Role of Business in Transforming Food and Agriculture

Ijeoma Nwagwu’s presentation addresses the role of business in transforming food and agriculture, and includes a case study of Babban Gona, an "investor owned social enterprise serving small networks of smallholder farmers with an inclusive business model created specifically to create wealth and create jobs". There is also an accompanying video, found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AEKTE8KqhvQ

*Due to technical problems on the day of the event, the above presentation was not possible via videoconference and therefore, no recording is available.

Hitotsubashi ICS is deeply grateful to these fabulous colleagues at Global Network partner schools who so kindly contributed their time and expertise to produce the virtual speaker series, creating yet another great example of the power of networked learning. 

Topics: Life at Hitotsubashi ICS, Network

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About Knowledge Week 

Knowledge Week (#KNW2019), a signature feature of the Hitotsubashi ICS MBA since the school's founding, advances students' integration of their leadership development with their awareness and understanding of social and economic issues looming large both currently, and in the future of Japan, Asia, and the world. The objective is to build competence as global leaders and managers, as big-picture thinkers who are prepared to understand a wide range of interests when making business decisions.

The three-day 2019 program devoted to “Business and the SDGs” featured group discussions, virtual sessions with experts from Global Network partner schools from all around the world, a simulation game, an in-person panel, and a film screening.

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