SFU Business’ Undergraduate and MBA Programs have again made the top ten list (out of 35 Canadian MBA programs) for “sustainable education”. The study looks at the integration of environmental and social sustainability issues into university programs. The research and report is done by a quarterly magazine publication called the Corporate Knights. The Corporate Knights study and report on about the corporate social responsibility and sustainability practices of Canadian Business, Education, Commerce, and Industry. Their overall goal is to help Canada become a leading country with regard to socially responsible commerce. This link will allow you to learn more about the Corporate Knights “Clean Capitalism” Magazine.
SFU Business and Graduate Business for the second time in a row has placed in the top ten for Sustainable Business Programs. Notably, the SFU MBA program in Vancouver has moved from the ninth position in 2009 to the eighth spot for 2010. While this full-time, one-year MBA program is still only in it’s third year of existence, it is steadily and consistently climbing the ranks of programs that have integrated social and environmental responsibility into their curriculum. It is in part due to the SFU MBA program administrator’s commitment to a dedicated Sustainability course along with a Business Ethics class that place SFU Grad Business among these top ranks. The fact that SFU is the first university in the world to name a Sustainability Entrepreneur in Residence, along with a fully supported student-run Net Impact chapter also helps the rankings. Read on for a more detailed view of the study as well as a link to the methodology.
This MBA Program Blog has been recently touting the SFU MBA program as a good option for someone looking to do an MBA that emphasizes corporate social responsibility and sustainability. The Corporate Knights Magazine, from what I’ve seen so far, seems to have the most comprehensive and exhaustive research methodology for their study. The research focuses on 3 core areas of the MBA program: institutional support, student-led initiatives (thought to be supported and endorsed by the program’s culture), and course work. While institutional support and course work are controlled mostly by the business school itself, student-led initiatives tend to be an interesting measure of how the school and the curriculum has influenced the students, along with a measure of the type if students the MBA program attracts. Since the SFU MBA Program is located in Vancouver, along with UBC’s Sauder, there exists an automatic advantage that comes part in parcel with the culture of sustainable business in British Columbia.
Interestingly, something that is not considered by the study is the duration of the MBA programs and how that might effect a “culture” within the institution. Since the SFU MBA Program is a 1 year full-time program with very little immediate interaction between cohorts year after year, this student culture tends to get reset after each cohort graduates. There are two student-led groups at SFU Graduate Business that work to minimize this effect and carry on the student culture, be it with ethics and sustainability, social and networking programs, or simply student advocacy. The first program is the SFU Graduate Business Chapter of Net Impact, a group of emerging business graduates committed to making a positive environmental, social and economic impact in the Vancouver community. Net Impact at Segal has a group of advisers that carry over for a number of months in order to coach and assist the new Net Impact leaders. The group is growing in popularity and membership at SFU Graduate Business, and promises to continue its upward trend with this year’s leaders. Be sure to click on the link above to learn more about this group and to get involved.
The second group that works to acculturate SFU Graduate Business cohorts is the Graduate Business Student Association (GBSA). The GBSA is the Graduate Business arm of the SFU Graduate Student Association, which organizes social events, extra-curricular learning experiences, and advocates student rights and awareness. The GBSA also has a group of executive directors that carry over and advise the incoming student executives.
The Corporate Knights has also published a list of best practices for creating a more sustainable university program. The following A Few Good Minds article highlights the business program related tips, and provides a commentary as it relates to SFU Business specifically. Read about Best Practices for Sustainable MBA Programs – derived from the Corporate Knights.