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2017/2018  KAN-CCBLV1601U  Poverty, Sustainability and the Private Sector

English Title
Poverty, Sustainability and the Private Sector

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Min. participants 40
Max. participants 80
Study board
Study Board for BSc og MSc in Business, Language and Culture, MSc
Course coordinator
  • Andrew Crabtree - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
Main academic disciplines
  • CSR and sustainability
  • Intercultural studies
  • International political economy
Last updated on 20-02-2017

Relevant links

Learning objectives
To achieve the grade 12, students should meet the following learning objectives with no or only minor mistakes or errors: The course’s development of personal competences:
In addition to improving their intellectual skills, students will have the possibility to make presentations and be involved in group work.

At the end of the course, and based on a thorough knowledge of the reading, the students should be able to account for, and critically reflect upon, the most important contemporary definitions of poverty; analyze the leading issues relating to poverty and the private sector and the latter’s effect on poverty and development including sustainability. Students should be able to connect themes relating to global, regional, national and local levels
Course prerequisites
Students should have a basic knowledge of economics or development
Poverty, Sustainability and the Private Sector:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Winter and Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure

In 2016 the United nations unanimously adopted the resolution Transforming Our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development more commonly known as the Sustainable Development Goals. This course considers the role the private sector can play in achieving these objectives.

The course begins with a discussion of how we define sustainable development, present trends, and the present status in relation to the SDGs. It then takes up the individual SDGs, themes and central issues relating each to the private sector concentrating on the green economy, multidimensional poverty, education, health, gender, energy, work, innovation, technology, Planetary Boundaries,

climate action, biodiversity, and peace and justice. Emerging global partnerships are examined by looking at the activities of India, China and Brazil in Africa. The course includes examples from all continents and examines a wide variety of approaches also incorporating microfinance, Fair Trade and the Bottom of the Pyramid approaches.

Teaching methods
Two hours for 15 weeks. A combination of lectures and presentations with active student participation. Students will be required to read approximately 800 pages.
Feedback during the teaching period
Feedback in class and individual office feedback
Student workload
Preparation 136 hours
Teaching 30 hours
Examination 40 hours
Expected literature



Note: The reading is indicative and will be updated to take account of the most recent literature 



Week 1: Introduction  

Sachs, J. (2015) The Age of Sustainable Development Chapter 1 An Introduction to Sustainable  Development,  Columbia University Press.  


Sumner, A. (2011) 'Where Do The Poor Live?', World Development, Vol. 40 Issue 5 May 2012 pp 865-877


Week 2: The Private Sector and Inclusive Green Growth 

World Bank (2012) Inclusive Green growth: the Pathway to Sustainable Development. Overview, Ch. 1 An analytical framework for inclusive green growth, Ch. 2 Influencing firms, consumers, and policy makers through market and nonmarket mechanisms. (pp 1-60)



Week 3: SDGs 1 (No poverty) and 2 (Zero hunger)

Robeyns, I. (2005) The Capability Approach: a theoretical survey, Journal of Human Development, 6:1, 93-117


Pogge, T. (2004). The First United Nations Millennium Development Goal: A cause for celebration? Journal of Human Development, 5(January 2015), 377–397.


Janvry de A and Sadoutet E (2010) The Global Food Crisis and Guatemala: What Crisis and for Whom? World Development Vol. 38 No9 pp 1328-1339


Prahalad C.K. and Hammond A (2003) Can the Bottom of the Pyramid eliminate income poverty? Serving the Poor Profitably Harvard Business Review on Corporate Responsibility.


Suggested further reading: Crabtree, A. (2008) The Bottom of the Pyramid: Much ado, but is it enough? (2008) Effective Executive, ICFAI University Press, Hyderabad


Week 4: SDG 3 Good Health and Well-being 

Drèze, J., & Sen A. (2013). An uncertain glory: the contradictions of modern India. London: Allen Lane Ch 6 India’s Health Care Crisis pp 143 - 181 


Meng-Kin Lim, Hui Yang, Tuohong Zhang, Wen Feng and Zijun Zhou (2004). Health and the private sector: Changes in China Public Perceptions of Private Health Care in Socialist China,Health Affairs, 23, no. 6 (2004): 222-234


Scheyvens, R (2007)'Exploring the Tourism-Poverty Nexus', Current Issues in Tourism,10:2,231 — 254


Remero-Daza N. and Freidus, A., (2008) Female Tourists, Casual Sex and HIV Risk in Costa Rica Qualitative Sociology 31: 169-187


Connolly, M.D., Padilla, M.P., Reyes, A.M., and Natsui, S (2012): Beyond ‘state pimpage’: insights from local leaders on HIV/AIDS prevention in the Dominican tourism industry, Critical Public Health, 22:3, 355-371  


Week 5: SDG 4 Quality Education

Unterhalter, E. (202) Poverty, education, gender and the Millennium Development Goals: Reflections on boundaries and intersectionality, Theory and Research in Education November 2012 vol. 10 no. 3 253-274


Tooley J and Dixon P (2012) Private Education is Good for the Poor Cato Institute


Nambissana GB (2010) The global economic crisis, poverty and education: a perspective from India Journal of Education Policy 


Week 6: SDG 5 Gender Equality and Empower Women 

Kabeer N (2005) Gender equality and women's empowerment: a critical analysis of the third Millennium Development Goals Gender and Development Vol. 13, No. 1, March 2005 


Low, W., and Davenport E., (2005) Postcards from the Edge Sustainable Development 13, 143–153  


Lyon S, Bezaury JA, Mutersbaugh T Gender equity in Fair Trade–organic coffee producer organizations: Cases from Mesoamerica, Geoforum Volume 41, Issue 1, January 2010, Pages 93-103 


Rice, J. S. (2010), Free trade, fair trade and gender inequality in less developed countries. Sustainable Development, 18: 42–50


Beuchelt T.D., Zeller, M. (2011) Profits and poverty: Certification's troubled link for Nicaragua's organic and fairtrade coffee producers. Ecological Economics Volume 70, Issue 7,  15 May 2011, Pages 1316–1324


Week 7: SDG 7 Affordable and clean energy & SDG 13 Climate Action 

Pauw, P., & Pegels, A. (2013). Private sector engagement in climate change adaptation in least developed countries: an exploration. Climate and Development, 5(January 2014), 257–267.


Pulver, S., & Benney, T. (2013). Private-sector responses to climate change in the Global South. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change, 4(December), 479–496.              


Banerjee, A and Duflo, E (2010) Giving Credit Where It Is Due.  The Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 24, No. 3 (Summer 2010), pp. 61-79


Akter, S. (2012) The Role of Microinsurance as a Safety Net Against Environmental Risks In Bangladesh Journal of Environment & Development 21(2) 263–280


Shardul, A. and Carraro, M. (2010), Assessing the role of microfinance in fostering adaptation to climate change, OECD Environmental Working Paper No. 15, 2010, OECD publishing.


Hammill et al. (2008) Microfinance and Climate Change Adaptation IDS Bulletin Volume 39 Number 4 September 2008


Week 8: SDG 8 Decent Work and Economic Growth

World Bank (2012) Inclusive Green growth: the Pathway to Sustainable Development.


Ch 4: Human Capital: Implications of green growth policies for labour markets and job creation   http:/​/​siteresources.worldbank.org/​EXTSDNET/​Resources/​Inclusive_Green_Growth_May_2012.pdf 

Discuss exams


Week 9: SDG 9 Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure

World Bank (2012) Inclusive Green growth: the Pathway to Sustainable Development.Ch 3: Green Innovation and Industrial Policies, Ch 5 Natural capital  Human Capital: Implications of green growth policies for labour markets and job c: Managing resources for sustainable development. Ch 6 Physical Capital: The role of infrastructure in green growth strategies. http:/​/​siteresources.worldbank.org/​EXTSDNET/​Resources/​Inclusive_Green_Growth_May_2012.pdf


Week 10: SDG 10 Reduced Inequalities

Ravallion, M., (2009) A Comparative Perspective on Poverty Reduction in Brazil, China and India World Bank


Hanlon, J. (2004) Is it Possible to Just Give the Money to the Poor? Development and Change Vol. 35 Issue 2 Pages 375-383


Pereira S (2010) Payment for Environmental Services in the Amazon Forest: How can conservation and development be reconciled? The Journal of Environment and Development 19 (2) 171-190


Week 11: SDG 11 Sustainable Cities and Communities

Macomber J.D. (2013) Building Sustainable Cities Harvard Business Review July-August 40-51

Jenkins, P. (2001) Strengthening Access to land for Housing for the Poor in Maputo, Mozambique International Journal of Urban and Regional Research Vol. 25 Issue 3 Pages 629-648

Week 12: SDG 12  Responsible Consumption and Production

Sluitter L (2009) Clean Clothes: A global movement to end sweatshops. Pluto Press Ch 3 Asia, Ch 7 Support for the workers, Ch 8 Consumers.


Laudal, T (2010) An Attempt to Determine the CSR Potential of the International Clothing Business Journal of Business Ethics  96:63-77 


Plieth H, Bullinger A.C., Hansen E.G. (2012) Sustainable Entrepreneurship in the Apparel Industry.Vol. 2012 Number 45,1 pp 123-138Journal of Corporate Citizenship


Arnold, D., Shih T.H. (2010) A Fair Model of Globalization? Labour and Global Production in Cambodia. Journal of Contemporary Asia Vol. 40 Nr 3 pp 401-424


Week 13: SDG 14 (Life below water) and 15 (Life on land): Biodiversity

Palmer, C., & Di Falco, S. (2012). Biodiversity, poverty, and development. Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 28(1), 48–68.  


Filer, C. (2012). Why green grabs don’t work in Papua New Guinea. Journal of Peasant Studies, 39(February 2015), 599–617


Spenceley A and Goodwin H, (2007) Nature-Based Tourism and Poverty Alleviation: Impacts of Private Sector and Parastatal Enterprises In and Around Kruger National Park, South Africa, Current Issues in Tourism vol. 10 Nos. 2&3.


Kirkby CA, Giudice-Granados R, Day B, Turner K, Velarde-Andrade LM, et al. (2010) The Market Triumph of Ecotourism: An Economic Investigation of the Private and Social Benefits of Competing Land Uses in the Peruvian Amazon. PLoS ONE 5(9): e13015. doi:10.1371/​journal.pone.0013015


Week 14: SDG 17 Partnerships for the Goals: technology

May, J., Waema T.M., and Bjåstad, E., ICT Pathways to Poverty Reduction Empirical evidence from East and Southern Africa Chapter 1 Introduction: The ICT/poverty nexus in Africa Chapter 5 Timothy M. Waema and Obadia Okinda Miroro Access and use of ICT and its contribution to poverty reduction in Kenya http:/​/​idlbnc.idrc.ca/​dspace/​bitstream/​10625/​52420/​1/​IDL-52420.pdf


Sife A.S., Kiondo, E., Lyimo-Macha J, G., (2010) The Contribution of Mobile Phones to Rural Livelihoods and Poverty Reduction in Morogoro Region, Tanzania


The Electronic Journal on Information Systems in Developing Countries, 3, 1-15

Lee, M. (2011) A feminist political economic critique of the human development approach to new information and communication technologies International Communication Gazette 2011 73: 524


Week 15: SDG 16 Peace and Justice and Strong Institutions

Berdal M., Mousavizadeh N (2010) Investing for Peace: The private sector and the challenges of Peacebuilding. Survival vol. 52 no.2 April-May pp 37-58


Tripathi S., Gündüz C (2008) A role for the private sector in peace processes? Examples and implications for third-party mediation. The OSLO forum Network of Mediators



Last updated on 20-02-2017