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Responsible Management

  • Module code: BS7579
  • Year: 2018/9
  • Level: 7
  • Credits: 15
  • Pre-requisites: None
  • Co-requisites: None

Summary

The module provides a critical understanding of the concepts of business ethics, corporate social responsibility (CSR), and stakeholder management and enables you to analyse, evaluate, and formulate business decisions in the light of ethical and societal considerations. It will enable you to manage organisations and your activities in a socially responsible way through the ability to evaluate CSR practices as applied to various business issues.

Aims

  • To challenge students with the main concepts, issues, and practices of corporate social responsibility and to enable them to manage organisations in a socially responsible way.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

  • display knowledge of the concepts of corporate social responsibility, sustainability and business ethics
  • be aware of the controversies and issues relating to corporate social responsibility and through analysis and deduction to be able to arrive at socially responsible solutions in complex situations
  • demonstrate knowledge of policies and practices relating to CSR in the form of company, industry and global codes and initiatives and understand how these policies relate to business ethics and the concept of sustainability
  • understand the purposes and practices of CSR reporting and accounting
  • analyse and critically evaluate CSR practices as applied to different business issues and stakeholders

Curriculum content

  • Introduction: definitions of corporate social responsibility, corporate social performance, and corporate citizenship; examples of recent corporate social responsibility issues encountered by business organisations; the case for and against corporate social responsibility; the concept of sustainability and the triple bottom line; the three perspectives of sustainability: environmental, economic and social; the precautionary principle.
  • Issues and stakeholders: the concepts of social issues and stakeholders as ways to operationalise corporate social responsibility; stakeholder dialogue; stakeholder management; issues management.
  • Business decision-making and ethics theory and practice: individual and situational factors affecting ethical decisions in organisations. A review of the most well-known ethical theories.
  • Policies, codes and management systems: the development of corporate social responsibility policies and codes of conduct at international, industry, and organisational levels; the implementation of policies and codes of conduct through management systems.
  • Reporting and social accounting: reporting of corporate social performance; social or triple-bottom line accounting.
  • Employee relations: the relationship between employee satisfaction and social performance; discrimination; employee participation/association; working conditions in developing countries; child labour; supply chain management.
  • Human rights - operating in developing countries: human rights principles and frameworks; issues encountered by companies working in conflict zones; examples of corporate initiatives including the Kimberley Agreement on conflict diamonds.
  • Corporate governance: definitions and concepts: ethical issues in governance: executive accountability; executive remuneration; insider trading; corporate governance codes and frameworks; shareholder democracy and ethical investment.

Teaching and learning strategy

The module will consist of lectures and participative learning in the form of group work, exercises, and debates based on case studies. A range of written and visual materials will be used to stimulate and support student learning. The focus will be on applying theory to real-life situations.

Breakdown of Teaching and Learning Hours

Definitive UNISTATS Category Indicative Description Hours
Scheduled learning and teaching Lectures and workshops Full time 40 Executive & Russia 32
Guided independent study Full time 110 Executive & Russia 118
Total (number of credits x 10) 150

Assessment strategy

The assessment consists of two major elements: (i) a practical exam in the form of a group presentation, and (ii) coursework in the form of an individual assignment. The group presentation involves students researching and critically evaluating CSR policies/approaches of specific companies. The individual assignment involves the analysis of a corporate social responsibility, sustainability issue relating to a business organisation case study with the application of the threoratical concepts. Students are expected to carry out this analysis with reference to concepts and frameworks of corporate social responsibility, stakeholder management and business ethics. In addition the course work will include a reflective element.

Mapping of Learning Outcomes to Assessment Strategy (Indicative)

Learning Outcome Assessment Strategy
1) display knowledge of the concepts of corporate social responsibility, sustainability and business ethics. Individual assignment
2) be aware of the controversies and issues relating to corporate social responsibility and through analysis and deduction be able to arrive at socially responsible solutions in complex situations Individual assignment Group presentation
3) demonstrate knowledge of policies and practices relating to CSR in the form of company, industry and global codes and initiatives. and understand how these policies relate to business ethics and the concept of sustainability. Individual assignment; Group presentation
4) understand the purposes and practices of CSR reporting and accounting. Individual assignment Group presentation Plus Formative assessment. Students are asked to review a CSR report of their choice based on Global Reporting Initiative criteria. Formative feedback is given through class discussion with the tutor and other students.
5) analyse and critically evaluate CSR practices as applied to different business issues and stakeholders. Individual assignment Group presentation plus Formative assessment. Students are required to analyse a case study by using models of stakeholder and issues management. Formative feedback is given in class.

Elements of Assessment

Description of Assessment Definitive UNISTATS Categories Percentage
Group Presentation Practical Exam 30%
Individual Assignment Coursework 70%
Total (to equal 100%) 100%

Achieving a pass

It IS NOT a requirement that any element of assessment is passed separately in order to achieve an overall pass for the module.

Bibliography core texts

Crane A. and Matten D. (2016) Business Ethics, Oxford University Press.

Bibliography recommended reading

Lawrence, J.T. and Beamish, P.W. (2013) Globally Responsible Management. Sage Publications.

Carroll, A.B. 1979. A three-dimensional conceptual model of corporate performance. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 4, No. 4, 497-505.

Carroll, A.B. 1999. Corporate social responsibility: Evolution of a definitional construct. Business & Society, Vol. 38, No. 3, 268-295. 

Carroll, A.B. and Buchholz, A.K. (2012) Business & Society: Ethics and Stakeholder Management. 8th edition. Cengage Learning, South-Western College Publishing.  

Clarkson, M.B.E. (1995) A stakeholder framework for analyzing and evaluating corporate social performance. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 20, No. 1, 92-117.

Donaldson, T. and Preston, L. E. (1999) The stakeholder theory of the corporation: concepts, evidence, and implications. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 20, No. 1, 65-90.

Jones, T.M., Felps, W. and Bigley, G.A. (2007) Ethical theory and stakeholder related decisions: the role of stakeholder culture. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 32, No. 1, 137-155.

Matten, D., Crane, A., and Chapple, W. (2003) Behind the mask: Revealing the true face of corporate citizenship. Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 45, No. 1, 109-120.

Trevino, L.K. (1986) Ethical decision-making in organizations: a person-situation interactionist model. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 11, No. 3, 601-617

Walsh, J. P., Weber, K. and Margolis, J. (2003) Social issues and management: Our lost cause found. Journal of Management, Vol. 29, No. 6, 859-881.

Wood, D. J. (1991) Corporate social performance revisited. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 16, No. 4, 691-718.

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