Partner Sites

Logo BusinessBecause - The business school voice
mobile search icon

Muhammad Yunus Starts Germany's First Social Business Chair

Danone Chair of Social Business, founded by the Nobel Laureate at EBS, will apply research to both developing and developed economies

By  Maria Ahmed

Mon Nov 15 2010

Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus founded Germany's first Chair of Social Business this month, at Frankfurt-based European Business School (EBS).

Yunus is the founder of the Grameen Bank, which successfully turned micro-loans to poor Bangladeshi households into a self-sustaining business model and spawned dozens of copycats in other poor countries.

The Danone-endowed Chair of Social Business will be at the heart of EBS’ new Center of Responsible Economy, which will focus on social entrepreneurship

Social entrepreneurship is a buzzword in business at the moment, the idea being that businesses can help alleviate poverty while generating enough financial return to survive and grow.

However the new Center at EBS won’t just focus on developing economies. It will lead research on innovative business models that can resolve social issues in industrialised economies too.

“We aim to inspire individuals and develop personalities who will make a sustainable and values-driven contribution towards shaping economic activity both in Germany and throughout the world", said EBS President, Professor Christopher Jahns at the November 1 opening ceremony.

Out of over hundred business faculties in German universities, the EBS is the only one which now has such a program.

"Together with the EBS we will develop capabilities for social business leadership, which will contribute to positive social change throughout the world. We are delighted to have this partnership with one of the leading business schools in Europe", said Yunus, who is patron of the Danone-Endowed Chair, during the founding ceremony.

The Chair is sponsored by French multinational health food firm Danone. In 2006 the firm teamed up with Yunus to found "Grameen Danone Foods", an initiative to fight malnutrition and poverty in Bangladesh.

Findings from the Center’s first study, titled "The Future of Social Business in Germany in 2030", are expected in February 2011.