This course explores the relationship between corporations, society, and the natural environment. Specifically, it examines the ways in which governments, corporations and civil society (fail to) have positive impact and manage issues where the pursuit of private goals is deemed inconsistent with the public interest. There are two modules to the course: (1) The first module examines these issues and the tensions that arise between the different stakeholders. In particular, we will discuss different types of market failures (due to negative externalities, imperfect information, public goods, and market control) and their impact on the natural and social environment. (2) The second module explores how (non-profit and for-profit) organizations can take private actions to mitigate the previously identified market failures and respond to the increasing pressure to address environmental and social issues through the adoption of sustainable business practices. This course is ideal for any student interested in social impact such as corporate social responsibility, environmental sustainability, nonprofit & public management, sustainable finance & responsible investment, social entrepreneurship, global health, and clean technology & sustainable energy. It is open to all full-time MBA and PEMBA students, and it is the foundational course for students in the Social Impact MBA program.
[ 3 cr.]