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Sustainable Management


Hoffmann V.

Course director


Objective of the course

In this course, students will learn about key concepts in sustainable management and about methods and tools to implement the concepts in the real world. The lecture aims at enabling students to become champions for sustainable business practices in their later careers.

After the course, students should therefore be able to:
1. Understand and explain sustainability challenges companies are facing;
2. Critique sustainability and related strategies;
3. Evaluate decisions taken by managers;
4. Suggest alternative approaches;
5. Develop action plans;
6. Reflect on strategies for sustainability in organizations they work for in the future.



Although many companies nowadays report on their sustainability actions, only few successfully integrate sustainability into their business operations. In this seminar, we will cover three main questions that will help you to critically analyze and develop strategies for sustainable business:
1. What is sustainability in business?
2. How do I design a sustainability strategy?
3. How do I implement a sustainability strategy


Examples of the content include a critique of typical sustainability statements of firms, an analysis of IKEA’s sustainability activities, group exercises on sustainable product design, and a discussion of the financial consequences of sustainable management.


Structure of the course

Traditional lectures introduce key concepts, before they are complemented with discussions of “Harvard-style business cases”. Students have to prepare these case studies at home and provide written answers to some questions (mandatory coursework). The course is organized as a block course and will be highly interactive. Dates will be communicated in due course.



Written exam of 90 minutes



Relevant materials will be distributed in class.