Development of a curriculum integrating sustainable development in management education

Project A2-1

The project introduces sustainable development as a core topic to the curriculum of the Major in Business Administration at the University of St. Gallen. Instead of placing one or few course(s) on sustainability, the project aims at strengthening sustainable development throughout the whole curriculum. Thus, the project goals do not only include increasing students’ knowledge on sustainable development but also developing their attitudes towards sustainable development. In particular, students should be able to critically reflect upon the paradigms, goals, approaches, and decisions in management; they should solve problems in interdisciplinary teams by connecting concepts and theories from multiple disciplines, cultures, etc. and by taking into account different interacting aspects, e.g. the ecological, social and economic goals of different stakeholders according to the triple-bottom line model. Finally, students should appreciate the importance of individual responsibility and action regarding sustainable development. In our understanding, sustainable development encompasses economic and social progress, as well as the effective protection of the environment. Sustainable development is not seen as an issue to be added to the curriculum but as a different view on the traditional curriculum, on teaching, on organizational change and on ethos.
To assess whether the curriculum development has the expected effects to support the students’ competence development in the domain of sustainable development, an existing questionnaire on student attitudes will be extended to include sustainable development. The outcomes of the project include a concept, methods, and experiences on how to introduce sustainable development as a core topic throughout a bachelor’s curriculum, a questionnaire on knowledge and attitudes towards sustainable development as well as an evaluation of the concept’s effectiveness concerning students’ competences in the domain of sustainable development.

Project leader
Prof. Dr. Taiga Brahm
University of St. Gallen
Institute for Business Education

Involved universities
University of St. Gallen

Project duration
01.06.2013 - 31.12.2016



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