Course 2015-2016 a.y.



Department of Management and Technology

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31
CLEAM (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/08) - CLEF (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/08) - CLEACC (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/08) - BESS-CLES (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/08) - BIEMF (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/08)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (I sem.)

Course Objectives

The course explores how sustainability is becoming both a condition for business and a potential competitive advantage. Organizations are increasingly choosing to exceed the legal requirements they face and to take action to address social and environmental issues. Students will be confronted with the theoretical bases of sustainability, seen as a perspective that shapes the role of the organizations within society and promote sustainable development, and the challenges of incorporating this perspective into the practices of organizations. A strategic approach to sustainability is more complex than traditional strategy, because it requires managers to engage with the non-market environment including regulators, activists, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The course is oriented around understanding the conditions under which sustainability can benefit all the stakeholders involved. At the end of course, the student must be able:
  • to identify the key sustainability issues that challenges today and tomorrow business models;
  • to evaluate the extent to which different types of sustainability or social responsibility initiatives are strategic;
  • to understand the best practices adopted by the organizations that want to perform on the financial, social and environmental dimensions.

Theory and practice are combined dynamically, making room for class discussion and case studies aimed at showing how sustainability can be interpreted in the business world. A global perspective is adopted.

Course Content Summary

  • Sustainability: what does it mean?
  • Global social and environmental issues.
  • Competition, sustainability and responsibility: a strategic view.
  • Market and industry contexts for being socially responsible (or irresponsible).
  • Social responsibility in the marketplace, in the workplace, and in the community.
  • Environmental sustainability: strategy, innovation, and performance.
  • Organizational processes to promote sustainability and social responsibility.
  • Social innovation and social entrepreneurship.
  • Socially-responsible investment in global financial markets.
  • Public-private partnerships.
  • Sustainability reporting: Global Reporting Initiative and integrated reporting.

Detailed Description of Assessment Methods

For attending students:
Mid-term and final-term written exams on a selection of the reading materials. Active participation during classes (including assignments either by individuals or by groups of students) is taken into consideration for the final mark.

For non attending students:
Written exam on all the reading materials.


A reading list, consisting of articles, papers, cases, and/or book chapters, will be provided at the beginning of the course.

Exam textbooks & Online Articles (check availability at the Library)


Students are expected to have attended the course of Economia Aziendale e Gestione delle Imprese / Management.
Last change 27/03/2015 12:44