The topics of ethics, responsibility, and sustainability (ERS) are finding increasing resonance in business school teaching and research worldwide.
In 2014, aware of the relevance of such issues, the Ethics, Responsibility and Sustainability Hub (ERShub) was created within the LUISS Business School and the Business and Management Department in order to develop and to give value to all the activities related to such virtues.
As defined by the EQUIS Accreditation Standards:
- Ethicsrefers to the School’s behavior that should be based on the values of honesty, equity and integrity. All these values tightly concern people, society and the environment and imply the commitment to encourage and promote highly ethical behavior of its faculty, staff and students by identifying, stating and applying ethical standards in the School’s decisions and activities.
- The main feature of responsibilityis the willingness to incorporate broader social and environmental considerations into its decision-making process and to be accountable for the impacts of its decisions and activities on society and environment. Responsibility is closely tied to sustainability.
- Sustainabilityconcerns social, environmental and economic challenges and, in addition, common goalsfor the society as a whole, and the planet. It refers to issues such as sustainable usage of resources, sustainable consumption and the development of sustainable society and economy.
ERSHub works on enriching LUISS ERS activities by foste ring synergies and scaling up LUISS ERS initiatives within LUISS Department of Management and LUISS Business School. This is achieved through four groups of activities: ERS Research, ERS Inside, ERS Outside and ERS Teaching.
ERSHubresearch activities incorporate all works of LUISS professors, post-doc researchers, and PhD students, showing the diversity of topics commonly grouped under ERS label. For instance, we lead research in areas such as sustainability, social entrepreneurship, corporate social responsibility, integrated reporting, social innovation, inclusiveness and equality policy, consumers behavior, stakeholder governance, community engagement and entrepreneurship, ethics & info systems, etc. We carry out our research in different contexts that vary by geography (e.g. Italy, EU, Latin America, India, Russia and China), by industry, by social sector, and by studied organizational structure (from social enterprises to large multinationalorganizations). Werely on variety of methodologies, from qualitative research to large-scale surveys and experiments. Finally, ERSHub researchers have been participating to numerous collaborative projects both at an Italian and at an International level, including European Commission funded projects within FP7 and H2020 frameworks.
ERSInside is based on the idea that our students and employees are seeds of positive social change. It encompasses activities that empower our students and employees to improve their awareness as human beings and future leaders through participation to LUISS ERS initiatives. Moreover, through ERSInside activities we align our values and behaviors and we further motivate people by enabling them to fulfill their potential both in their workplace and society. Our final goal is that everyone at LUISS Department of Management and LUISS Business School contributes to our overarching goal of becoming a true ERS university. In a word: this branch puts ERS focus lenses on everyone’s eyes.
ERSOutside aims at building a strong network made of like-minded individuals and organizations that would share best practices ad experiences, build synergies, and promote ERS ideas and ERSHub philosophy around the world. ERSOutside encompasses diverse activities such as: organization of conferences among researchers and practitioners; introductions of research findings to academics, experts and policy makers, with the aim of influencing the decision-making, the creation of international networks, a work with companies, etc.
ERSHub teaching activities are directed towards both business post-graduate students at LUISS Business School and graduate students at the Department of Management. In our teaching, we focus on the social and environmental impact of companies and work on the development of a business mind-frame that enables our students to gather a good economic performance with the creation of positive social and environmental consequences. We use different methodologies ranging from action learning and field work throughout a problem-based teaching. The main one used fits the nature of the related master program, the specialization typology, and the business sector.