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2013/2014  BA-HA_E171  Introduction to Sustainable Business

English Title
Introduction to Sustainable Business

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Bachelor
Duration One Semester
Course period Spring, Fourth Quarter
changes in schedule may occur.
tuesday 14-16,18-22 and
thursday 15,17,19-21
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Study board
Study Board for BSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Course Coordinator : Morten Thanning Vendelø
    Satu Reijonen - Department of Organization (IOA)
Secretary: Ane Lindgren Hassing alh.ioa@cbs.dk
Main academic disciplines
  • Business Ethics, value based management and CSR
Last updated on 14-10-2013
Learning objectives
The students should be able to demonstrate:
  • a clear understanding of the main issues covered during the course,
  • a good command of the key concepts and theories introduced by the course, and
  • that they can apply key concepts and theories in an analysis of sustainable business.
24-hour individual home assignment:
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Assignment type Case based assignment
Duration 24 hours to prepare
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Spring Term
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure
The course is an introduction to sustainable business and will provide the
students with an understanding of Corporate Social Responsibility issues in relation to organization, marketing, finance and accounting. The course will to this end discuss stakeholder approaches to strategic management, branding through CSR, market development for ecoinnovations, CSR in supply chains, environmental management systems, green/CSR management accounting and socially responsible investing. The students will hereby acquire knowledge about how corporations integrate corporate social responsibility issues in order to identify new business opportunities, communicate with their stakeholders, compete in global markets, and solve the highly complex problems of the 3rd millennium. Beside of introducing a number of CSR topics, the course will also provide the students with analytical concepts and theories to critically interrogate CSR ideals and practice.
Sustainable Business and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) concerns the governance of environmental, social and economic aspects.  In a world where corporate reputation is essential to the success of business, CSR with its focus on stakeholder dialogue and responsible business development can enhance the market share of enterprises. Furthermore, CSR strategies may include optimization of operational efficiency (eco-efficiency), to increase workplace productivity (human resource management) and to reduce cost associated with environmental risks (risk management). The course seeks to develop the students’ competencies with regard to govern such new business opportunities to the advantage of the corporations.
The course rests upon a stakeholder view of the corporation. Its central proposition is that organizational wealth is created (or destroyed) through a corporation's interaction and communication with its stakeholders. Emphasis will be given to characterizing and discussing what constitutes as effective stakeholder engagement. To this end, the course will, in particular, look into how corporate social responsibility issues can be integrated in business through stakeholder engagement processes.
Teaching methods
The course will be based on a mix of cases, lectures, discussions, group work in class as well as on student presentations. Guest lecturers from companies will provide the students with practical examples of some of the challenges involved in sustainable business. By drawing on the experiences of these practitioners and on the recent developments within research on sustainable business, the course seeks to enhance the students’ abilities to analytically address the issue of sustainable business.
Student workload
Preparation 168 hours
Teaching 33 hours
Examination 24 hours
Expected literature
Preliminary list of readings:
Last updated on 14-10-2013