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Humanities  2013 

Integrating Sustainability in Management Education

DOI: 10.3390/h2040439

Keywords: sustainability, integration, program design, management education

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Abstract:

Over the last decade, numerous modules, courses, and programs in Management Education have integrated sustainability into their curricula. However, this “integration” has translated into very diverse forms and contents. This article aims to clarify these ambiguities. It maps four forms of sustainability integration in Management Education. These four distinct forms are (1) discipline-based integration, in which the anchoring point is the business discipline (sustainability is added as a dimension of this body of knowledge); (2) strategic-/competitive-based integration, in which the anchoring point is the strategy of the organization (sustainability is viewed as a potential contributor to the firm’s competitive advantage); (3) integration by application, in which managerial tools and approaches from business disciplines are applied so as to contribute to addressing a sustainability challenge; and, last, (4) systemic integration, in which the anchoring point is a social-ecological-economic challenge defined from an interdisciplinary perspective. Implications of this chapter for the design of courses and programs and the practice of sustainability in Management Education are twofold. First, this article contributes to going beyond the prevailing tendency of studies in the field of sustainability in Management Education to focus mainly on tools and applications. In doing so, this article helps frame these challenges on the level of course and program design. Second, this article helps management educators map what they are intending to achieve by the integration of sustainability into the Management Education curriculum.

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