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Why Should Management Education Care?

Humanity faces enormous challenges such as migration, climate change, the destruction of the environment, poverty, and hunger. In the globalized world, these problems are impossible to solve by one state on its own. That is why the international community has created a framework for common solutions: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The core of this international agreement consists of 17 objectives - the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) . They define social, economic, and environmental policy milestones to be implemented worldwide by 2030. The SDGs apply to all countries - including Switzerland. Players from the political, scientific, civil society, and private-sector domains are called on to contribute towards the achievement of these objectives.

An important role is played by Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). This body aims to help provide the competencies and knowledge necessary for sustainable development. Swiss universities play an important role in this endeavor as they are important educational centers combining several functions: They impart knowledge, competencies, and values, they educate the educators, leaders, and experts of tomorrow, and they produce knowledge and innovation through their research.

"Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME)" is an initiative designed to ensure sustainable development in business schools. Its Six Principles are Purpose, Values, Method, Research, Partnership, and Dialogue. These serve as guidelines for its signatories, i.e., teaching and research institutions involved in educating future managers, in designing, implementing, and advancing sustainable and responsible educational programs.

The ZHAW School of Management and Law (SML) joined the PRME initiative in August 2014. It has committed itself to implementing and further developing the PRMEs in the areas of its performance mandate, which include academic study, continuing education, research, and services, as well as in its own operational processes. Every two years, the SML issues a PRME progress report that covers the progress it has made in all these areas.

In November 2017, approximately 20 PRME signatories from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, as well as international representatives of leading PMRE universities, will meet at the SML to discuss current issues of responsible management education. On Monday, 6 November 2017, the SML, in association with the UN Global Compact Network Switzerland, is hosting a public event on the SDGs. The event is aimed at the students and employees of ZHAW as well as company representatives and private individuals interested in receiving and exchanging information about the SDGs.