The University of Southampton
Courses

MANG3029 Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Business

Module Overview

This module covers the development of the concept and the meaning of the term corporate social responsibility; how CSR is being implemented in today’s corporations, its impact and likely future directions. The module summarises the latest thinking of the strategic significance of CSR, and how CSR goes to the heart of the way in which businesses make decisions and conduct their activities. In the process, the module demonstrates how CSR can lead to innovation, new business opportunities and towards solutions to many of today’s long-standing business, social and environmental problems.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

The key aim of the module is to enable students to understand the role of business in the context of the wider society and the future challenges, such as sustainable development, that face us in the future.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the relevance of stakeholder theory and the role and importance of CSR in 21st Century organisations
  • the changing role and expectations of business in society
  • the extent to which business can meet the challenges of sustainable development
  • how CSR is being practiced in various organisations
  • the strategic significance of CSR for business
  • the role and importance of non-financial reporting
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • critically evaluate existing CSR initiatives, and appropriate courses of managerial action from a range of alternatives
  • apply logical and critical analysis to complex ethical issues
  • present convincing and well-argued cases for particular CSR-related decisions
  • be aware of, and understand, the appropriate relevant research literature
  • synthesise information and write and debate analytically on the subject
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • confidently present a particular course of action and justify it with reference to theoretical literature and relevant examples
  • contribute successfully to a peer work group

Syllabus

Historical context, theoretical overview of CSR, stakeholder theory and stakeholder management; Cross cultural issues, partnerships with NGOs, Sustainability issues: how business is responding to the challenge of sustainable development; Role of finance-related metrics e.g. Dow Jones sustainability index, FTSE4Good. Initiatives such as UN Global Compact, Ethical Trading Initiative; Strategic CSR – business case for CSR, reputation risk; CSR in global supply chains; Ethical investment; Trade, labour and corporate citizenship in a globalising world; Introduction to ethical theories. Application of ethics to real life business dilemmas; Applied CSR: Case studies: how other companies and industries manage CSR; Standards, codes of conduct, professional bodies, guidelines; Social Reporting and accounting; Support agencies: CSR service providers. Future trends: emergence of CSR legislation, shift from corporate responsibility to corporate accountability, Career development for CSR professionals.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

The module will be primarily lecture-based, with a number of high profile visiting speakers from industry and relevant organisations. It will also involve e-learning discussion groups, open debate, case studies, group work, games and videos. You will be expected to actively participate in the learning process, using Blackboard or other facilitative media.

TypeHours
Follow-up work25
Wider reading or practice25
Lecture24
Tutorial10
Revision16
Preparation for scheduled sessions25
Completion of assessment task25
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Blowfield and Murray (2008). Corporate Responsibility: A Critical Introduction. 

Andrew Crane, Dirk Matten, Laura Spence (eds.) (2008). Corporate Social Responsibility: Readings and Cases in a Global Context. 

Assessment

Formative

Tutor and Peer Assessment

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (1.5 hours) 50%
Group presentation  (10 minutes) 10%
Learning log  (2000 words) 40%

Repeat

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (1.5 hours) 100%

Referral

MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (1.5 hours) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Costs

Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Textbooks

Recommended texts for this module may be available in limited supply in the University Library and students may wish to purchase the core/recommended text as appropriate.

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at www.calendar.soton.ac.uk.

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