Teaching business ethics: have we missed the financial crisis bus? - Julia Clarke

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Presentation given at the HEA Social Sciences learning and teaching summit 'Teaching ethics: The ethics of teaching'

A blog post outlining the issues discussed at the summit is available via http://bit.ly/1lndTnX

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Teaching business ethics: have we missed the financial crisis bus? - Julia Clarke

  1. 1. Leeds University Business School Teaching Ethics, the Social Responsibility of Business Schools? Julia Clarke HEA Social Sciences learning and teaching summit: Teaching Ethics: The Ethics of Teaching June 2014
  2. 2. Leeds University Business School Overview • What are the responsibilities of Business Schools? • How do we meet these responsibilities? • A case study from the University of Leeds
  3. 3. Leeds University Business School 20th Century Leaders “Whoever has the most when he dies, WINS.” (Larry the Liquidator, Other People’s Money)
  4. 4. Leeds University Business School 21st Century Leaders ETHICAL MINDSET • Honest and ethical was the second most sought-after characteristic that employers seek in a new manager, cited by 55%. • Employers want business schools to emphasise the importance of ethics and prioritise sustainability in their teaching. • Professional bodies have a role to play in embedding standards of ethics and practice in the curricula of business schools (ABS, CMI, QAA, 2014, p.9)
  5. 5. Leeds University Business School Principles for Responsible Management Education Principle 1 | Purpose: We will develop the capabilities of students to be future generators of sustainable value for business and society at large and to work for an inclusive and sustainable global economy. Principle 2 | Values: We will incorporate into our academic activities and curricula the values of global social responsibility as portrayed in international initiatives such as the United Nations Global Compact. Principle 3 | Method: We will create educational frameworks, materials, processes and environments that enable effective learning experiences for responsible leadership.
  6. 6. Leeds University Business School Principles for Responsible Management Education Principle 4 | Research: We will engage in conceptual and empirical research that advances our understanding about the role, dynamics, and impact of corporations in the creation of sustainable social, environmental and economic value. Principle 5 | Partnership: We will interact with managers of business corporations to extend our knowledge of their challenges in meeting social and environmental responsibilities and to explore jointly effective approaches to meeting these challenges. Principle 6 | Dialogue: We will facilitate and support dialog and debate among educators, students, business, government, consumers, media, civil society organisations and other interested groups and stakeholders on critical issues related to global social responsibility and sustainability.
  7. 7. Leeds University Business School Integrating Ethics into Business (Teaching) “The natural tendency in our society of professionals is to call in the experts …. When the problem is how to relate ethics to business decision-making, that tendency leads us to call in ethics specialists much as we would call in specialists in international relations when faced with a question about the US balance of trade.” Goodpaster, Conscience and Corporate Culture
  8. 8. Leeds University Business School The Inter-Disciplinary Ethics Applied CETL  Established in 2005 following successful bid for HEFCE funding  Integrating ethics into the curriculum  Founding members included School of Philosophy, Business School and Faculty of Earth and Environment  Close links from start with HEA as remit to spread good practice beyond Leeds
  9. 9. Leeds University Business School Achievements  Developed a series of case studies that are delivered within personal and professional development modules in year 1 and year 2.  Developed final year, taught postgraduate and MBA optional modules on Business Ethics and CSR.  Developed an online MA in Professional Ethics  Undertaken a range of consultancy work  All of the teaching is genuinely inter-disciplinary
  10. 10. Leeds University Business School Use of Case Studies in Corporate Ir(responsibility)  Integration  Grounded in practice  Content Outcomes  Facts  Ethical concepts  Process Outcomes  Critical scrutiny of beliefs  Analysis of arguments  Novel solutions
  11. 11. Leeds University Business School The Story so Far – The Positives  Bringing students into contact with corporate responsibility professionals  Student projects applying ethical theory to real life business scenarios  Extension of inter-disciplinarity into pedagogical research and knowledge transfer  Students taking ethics beyond the curriculum
  12. 12. Leeds University Business School The LUBS CSR Interns • of
  13. 13. Leeds University Business School Successful Facebook Page • 141+ followers • UPDATE • INVOLVE • AWARENESS
  14. 14. Leeds University Business School CSR Industry Insight Evening • Guest speakers • Strong attendance • Engaged students • Networking opportunity
  15. 15. Leeds University Business School Wordpress Blog • Clear, concise articles • Engaging students & faculty • Providing case studies & examples
  16. 16. Leeds University Business School CSR in Action Day • Strong student involvement • Building links with the community • Projects completed in collaboration with recognized organizations • Local benefits
  17. 17. Leeds University Business School Other Activities • Green Impact • Links with other interest groups • Professional development • Earth Hour Big Switch Off
  18. 18. Leeds University Business School Benefits to Other Students • Opportunities to get involved with CSR • Raised awareness of CSR in LUBS & industry • Opportunities to develop C.V • Greater communication of other LUBS opportunities
  19. 19. Leeds University Business School The Story so Far – The Less Positives  “The Social Responsibility of Business Schools is to teach students how to make a profit”  “Too much in my module already”  Disincentives created by the University’s financial model
  20. 20. Leeds University Business School Business schools being ethical • CSR internships can have an impact • But should only be one part of a School’s CSR strategy • => Business Schools should have a CSR strategy and leadership from the top • Those academics who teach and research CSR have a particular responsibility
  21. 21. Leeds University Business School Business schools teaching ethics • A “no escape” model integrating CSR into the core curriculum • Setting and enacting a clear corporate mission that normalises ethics within the curriculum • Helping students appreciate the constructed nature of knowledge across the Business School curriculum

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