Cranfield MBAs Want To Take Responsibility For The Planet
Can the business world save the planet and provide prosperity for everyone? Cranfield MBAs will grapple with these questions at the
Five MBAs have organized the first sustainability, social enterprise and corporate social responsibility symposium at the Cranfield University School of Management, which will be held later this month.
The event, titled ‘SEE BUSINESS: The future of sustainable business’, will bring together experts to address innovation and sustainability in business on Thursday, July 26 at CMRI Gallery, Cranfield School of Management. It will also include a hands-on session on building your own social enterprise!
We spoke with one of the event organizers, Pankaj Arora, full-time MBA in the class of 2012 and also president of the Net Impact Club at Cranfield. Pankaj was inspired to host the symposium at Cranfield after attending several sustainability, CSR and social entrepreneurship-themed events earlier in the year.
Head of the SEE Business symposium organizing team, Pankaj Arora
Cranfield University already does a lot of research on sustainability and offers science, IT and business related degrees for graduates keen to pursue careers in that arena. Pankaj and the rest of the organizing crew saw this as a platform to build on. The idea of the symposium is to show individuals that they can make a difference through their work.
John Elkington, author of 18 books including the recent ‘The Zeronauts: Breaking the Sustainability Barrier’, will give the keynote speech. A career development and recruitment session in corporate responsibility will be led by Oakdene Hollins, a research and consulting company that promotes more sustainable and less carbon-intensive products, processes and services.
There will also be a hands-on session on building your own sustainable social enterprise led by Jan Matern, Director of Emerge Venture Lab, a start-up accelerator for social ventures; and Tom Rippin, CEO of On Purpose, an organisation that attracts and develops talent to work in social enterprise.
Speakers include Professor Simon Bolton, an award winning designer and expert in design-led innovation and visual thinking, and director of the Centre for Creative Competitive Design at Cranfield University; Belina Raffy, a Cranfield MBA and Director at Maffick Ltd, a consulting firm with clients such as Nestle, London Business School and the Charity Finance Group; Charles Perry, founding partner at SecondNature Partnership, which works to 'make sustainability second nature' in organisations isuch as Tesco, GE, BP and the UK government; and Steve Hope, General Manager for Environmental Affairs and Corporate Citizenship at Toyota Motors Europe. They'll discuss how innovation and sustainability can go hand in hand.
Social entrepreneurship and corporate social responsibility will be addressed by Craig Bennett, Director of Policy and Campaigns at Friends of the Earth; Gib Bulloch, the man behind Accenture Development Partnerships, the “not for loss” business unit of Accenture; and Sandy Rodger, Director at Lighthouse Leadership Ltd, a consultancy focusing on leadership and strategy for environmental sustainability.
This incredible lineup was pulled together with help from the Doughty Centre for Corporate Responsibility at Cranfield, reaching out to Cranfield MBA alums and through personal networks. Pankaj is expecting around 100 to 120 guests and the event is open to anyone with an interest in sustainability.
He said, “We would like to provide an enriching experience for the audience and also provide a chance for them to learn something new through the hands-on approach, and to interact with each other during the drinks reception”.
He hopes people will be able to gain the confidence to make a difference through their entrepreneurial ideas through the event. After graduating from the Cranfield MBA Pankaj,29, would like to move his career into sustainability. In his pre-MBA career he was in the IT industry, working for Cognizant Technology Solutions in the US and India. He is already working on a business plan to for provide preventative healthcare support to people aged 45 years and above in second and third tier cities in India.
If you would like to see more details about the conference and to book your place, click here, and if you have any questions, feel free to message Pankaj via BusinessBecause!
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