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2023/2024  KAN-CCMVV2407U  Corporate Sustainability in Global Supply Chains

English Title
Corporate Sustainability in Global Supply Chains

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
Study board
Study Board for cand.merc. and GMA (CM)
Course coordinator
  • Esben Rahbek Gjerdrum Pedersen - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
This course is part of the minor in Sustainable Business
Main academic disciplines
  • CSR and sustainability
  • Globalisation and international business
  • Supply chain management and logistics
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 15-02-2023

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • The student shall be able to write a readable and well-structured mini-project that meets basic academic requirements regarding references, literature list etc.
  • The student shall be able to select and apply relevant theories for the case/problem being addressed in the miniproject
  • The student shall be able to argue for the appropriateness of the theory/theories selected for the case/problem
  • The student shall be familiar with different theories and approaches regarding the management of corporate sustainability in global supply chains
  • The student shall be able to understand and explain the relationship between the theories
  • The student shall be able to select relevant theory to address a particular problems in managing supply chains
  • The student shall be able to combine theories and approaches depending on the problem being addressed
  • The student shall be able to conduct a satisfactory analysis of the case/problem using the theories/models selected.
  • The student shall be able to critically evaluate the choice of theory and methodology used in the mini-projec
Corporate Sustainability in Global Supply Chains:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Project
Release of assignment Subject chosen by students themselves, see guidelines if any
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
if the student fails the ordinary exam the the student will have to hand in a revised product for the re-take or a new project.
Description of the exam procedure

The student selects a case/topic within the theme of the course. The student analyses the case/topic using the theories, models and frameworks introduced at that course. 

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

An increasing number of companies in the Western world outsource parts of their production to low-wage countries with poor social and environmental standards. Such long-distance outsourcing makes it difficult for companies to ensure that their products are being produced under socially and environmentally sound conditions. The course attempts to make the students capable of understanding and managing the opportunities and barriers facing companies, which seek to exercise social and environmental responsibility in their supply chains.

The course will in particular deal with the following topics:

- Introduction to the concept of corporate sustainability and CSR.

- The rise of global supply chains.

- The costs and benefits of corporate sustainability.

- Non-governmental organizations and their influence on corporate behavior.

- Theoretical and practical approaches to understanding the integration of social and environmental issues into supplier relations.

- Social and environmental audits, standards and labels.

- Responses by Third World suppliers.

- Circular economy and global supply chains


Description of the teaching methods
The course will use a mixture of learning styles, including lectures, case-study discussions, and company presentations.
Feedback during the teaching period
Case examples will be presented and discussed in the classroom during the course. During the course, the students will also be given 2 Peergrade assignments, which will subsequently be discussed in class. One of the Peergrade assignments will be linked to the final assignment. Students can get oral feedback on their draft assignment ideas during the office hours.
Student workload
Teaching 30 hours
Preparation 116 hours
Exam 60 hours
Further Information

This course is part of the minor in Sustainable Business

Expected literature
  • Andersen, M. & Skjoett-Larsen, T. (2009), Corporate Social Responsibility in Global Supply Chains, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 14, 2: 75-86.
  • Erikson, D. and Svensson, G. (2015), Elements affecting social responsibility in supply chains, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 20 (5): 561-566.
  • Xiao, C., Wilhelm, M., Van der Vaart, T., & Van Donk, D.P. (2019). Inside the Buying Firm: Exploring Responses to Paradoxical Tensions in Sustainable Supply Chain Management, Journal of Supply Chain Management, 55(1), 3-20.
  • Halldorsson, A., Kotzab, H. & Mikkola, J. (2015), Complementary theories to supply chain management revisited - from borrowing theories to theorizing, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 20(6), 574-586.
  • Seuring, S., Müller, M. (2008) From a Literature Review to a Conceptual Framework for Sustainable Supply Chain Management, Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 16, p. 1699 - 1710.
  • Pagell, M. & Shevchenko, A. (2014), Why research in Sustainable Supply Chain Management should have no future, Journal of Supply Chain Management, 50(1), 44-55.
  • Pedersen, E.R. & Andersen, M. (2006). Safeguarding Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in Global Supply Chains: How Codes of Conduct are managed in Buyer-Supplier Relationships, Journal of Public Affairs, 6, p. 228-240
  • Short, Jodi L., Michael W. Toffel, and Andrea R. Hugill (2016), Monitoring Global Supply Chains, Strategic Management Journal, 37 (9): 1878–1897.
  • Helin, S. and Babri, M. (2015), Travelling with a code of ethics: a contextual study of a Swedish MNC auditing a Chinese supplier, Journal of Cleaner Production,  107: 41-53.
  • Baden, D.A., Harwood, I.A., Woodward, D.G. (2009), The effect of buyer pressure on suppliers in SMEs to demonstrate CSR practices: An added incentive or counter productive?, European Management Journal, 27(6): p. 429-441.
  • Foerstl, K., Azadegan, A., Leppert, T., and Hartmann, E. (2015), Drivers of Supplier Sustainability: Moving beyond Compliance to Commitment, Journal of Supply Chain Management, 51(1): 67-91.
  • Morsing, M. and Spence, L. (2019), Corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication and small and medium sized enterprises: The governmentality dilemma of explicit and implicit CSR communication. Human Relations, 72(12) 1920–1947. https:/​​/​​doi.org/​​10.1177%2F0018726718804306
  • Ingenbleek, P., Binnekamp, M., Goddijn, S. (2007), Setting standards for CSR: A comparative case study on criteria-formulating organizations, Journal of Business Research, 60, 539-548.
  • Manning, S. & Reinecke, J.  (2016), A modular governance architecture in-the-making: How transnational standard-setters govern sustainability transitions, Research Policy 45(3): 618-633.
  • Alvarez, G., Pilbeam, C., Wilding, R. (2010), Nestlé Nespresso AAA Sustainable Quality Program: An Investigation into the Governance Dynamics in a Multi-Stakeholder Supply Chain Network, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 15 (2): 165-182.
  • Perez-Aleman, P. & Sandilands, M. (2008) Building Value at the Top and the Bottom of the Global Supply Chain: MNC-NGO Partnerships, California Management Review, 51, 1, 24-49.
  • Bowen, F., Newenham-Kahindi, A., & Herremans, I. (2010), When Suits Meet Roots: The Antecedents and Consequences of Community Engagement Strategy, Journal of Business Ethics, 95, 2: 297-318.
  • Kortmann, S. and Piller, F. (2016), Open Business Models and Closed-Loop Value Chains, California Management Review, 58(3): 88-108.
  • Murray, A., Skene, K. and Haynes, K. (2017), The Circular Economy: An Interdisciplinary Exploration of the Concept and Application in a Global Context, Journal of business Ethics, 140 (3): 69-380.
  • Geissdoerfer, M., Morioka, S.N., Carvalho, M.M., Evans, S. (2018). Business Models and supply chains for the Circular Economy, Journal of Cleaner Production, 190, 712-721.
  • Montabon, F., Pagell, M., Wu, Z. (2016), Making Sustainability Sustainable, Journal of Supply Chain Management, 52(2): 11-27.
  • Boyd, E., Spekman, R.E., Kamauff, J.W., and Werhane, P. (2007), Corporate Social Responsibility in Global Supply Chains: A Procedural Justice Perspective, Long Range Planning, 40, 3, p. 341-356.
  • Alghababsheh, M., Gallear, D. and Rahman, M. (2019): Balancing the Scales of Justice: Do Perceptions of Buyers’ Justice Drive Suppliers’ Social Performance? Journal of Business Ethics, 163, p. 125-150. https:/​​/​​doi.org/​​10.1007/​​s10551-018-3993-0
Last updated on 15-02-2023