Selected examplary projects and publications
Highlighted projects supported by the former Sustainability BiS PLatform
The objective of this project is to create awareness of how the global sustainability challenges from the Rio+20 Summit are manifested in a local setting, in this case the Roskilde Festival. More specifically, the objective is to identify challenges and solutions for reducing food waste at the Roskilde Festival, which would reduce the environmental footprint and increase the income generated to the festival and the civil society organizations. During the one-week event, the Roskilde Festival becomes one of the biggest cities in Denmark and thus an ideal research lab for running such sustainability experiments.
The partnership between CBS and Roskilde Festival also involves a number of other research institutions, private companies, and industry organizations, including the University of Copenhagen, Aalborg University, Confederation of Danish Industry, Rockwool, and Implement Consulting Group.
The long-term objective of the project is to test a number of new sustainability solutions at Roskilde Festival 2014, which hold potential for alleviating some of the social and environmental challenges experienced by the festival and society more generally. Research results from Roskilde Festival 2013 were presented at an international conference hosted by the Confederation of Danish Industry on January 20, 2014 where key note speakers include Harvard Law Professor Cass Sunstein and Dr. Markus Kerber, Director General and member of the Presidential Board, BDI (Federation of German Industries).
MISTRA Future Fashion
MISTRA Future Fashion is a four-year research project (2011-2015) with an overall objective to promote systemic change of the Swedish fashion industry leading to sustainable development of the industry and wider society, while at the same time strengthening the industry’s competitiveness. The project is based on cross-sectoral and cross-disciplinary collaboration between academia and industry and is divided into 8 research projects. CBS has engaged 6 CBS researchers and is responsible for the planning and implementation of two:
1) Changing markets & business models: Towards sustainable innovation in the fashion industry. The objective of this research project is to identify, develop, and disseminate knowledge about new market and business models for sustainable fashion.
2) Sustainable consumption and consumer behavior, which strives to identify, develop, and disseminate in-depth knowledge about the sustainable fashion system in general and the behavior of specified consumers in particular.
Partners include: SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, Chalmers University of Technology, College of Crafts, Arts and Design (Konstfack), Innventia, Malmö University, Stockholm School of Economics, Swerea IVF, and the University of the Arts London. Partners from the industry?
Copenhagen Biofuels Research Network (COBREN)
Established in January of 2012, COBREN provides a forum for researchers interested in biofuels to share their findings, insights and perspectives on the complex and often controversial subject of biofuels. A multi-disciplinary endeavor, COBREN currently includes researchers from the fields of political science, economics, ethics, law and sociology.
In 2012 COBREN held an international conference on ‘GOVERNING SUSTAINABLE BIOFUELS: MARKETS, CERTIFICATION AND TECHNOLOGY’ inviting 30 researchers from around the world to present and discuss their latest research here at CBS. In addition to the financial support, the CBS Sustainability Platform also contributes to the network by having Academic Co-Director Stefano Ponte as a member of the team of researchers. Selected articles from the conference have been included in two special issues of high-ranking international peer-reviewed journals, both co-edited by Prof. Ponte. One appeared in early 2014 in Geoforum, the other is still under review.
The COBREN network was also the springboard for the current formulation of a large research project application (BioPaths) involving CBS, DTU and KU. This has led to a cross-disciplinary effort across engineering, natural sciences, social sciences and humanities that is seeking to assess the potential and limitations of deploying sustainable biofuels in shipping and aviation.
COBREN has been co-sponsored by the Danish Institute for International Studies, and includes representatives from: University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Law, Danish Technical University, Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen University, Faculty of Life Sciences, and Roskilde University.
The Sustainability Platform is very much involved with students through its collaboration with oikos Copenhagen – a student-driven non-profit organization based at CBS, which engages students around the issues of economic, social and environmental sustainability. Respectively, oikos has three main teams – Academy, Develop Prize and Event Lab, which are responsible for a variety of events and activities on campus.
The Platform provides oikos Copenhagen with financial and consulting support for many of the organization’s activities. The Platform regularly meets with oikos to discuss future activities and to assist them whenever possible. For example, the Platform has collaborated with oikos Academy in organizing extra-curricular sustainability-related lectures, culminating with a case competition among many other activities.
The collaboration between oikos and the Platform aims to align the sustainability agenda of CBS with the projects of oikos. And also, to foster a two-way knowledge sharing network between CBS and its students.
Sustainability Platform Clusters (2011-2016)
The purpose of the six Sustainability Platform Clusters was to contribute to sharpening the definition of what CBS does and what it invisions to do for sustainability for the future. The Clusters worked independently with researchers across CBS to highlight and position sustainability competences at our business school and facilitate multidisciplinary collaboration within and beyond CBS.
With seed funding from the Platform, the Cluster leaders conducted a number of activities within research, education and outreach. For example, clusters developed new content for Sustainability related teaching, pursueed new research projects and applications for external funding, some co-writie publications on sustainability, and some work closely with students and external stakeholders on conferences, seminars and workshops.
See below for a description of the six sustainability clusters:
Cluster 1: Green Innovation and New Business Models
The Cluster on Green Innovation and New Business Models focused on discussions and challenges around the increasing problems of global warming, resource scarcity and environmental deterioration which have a substantial and comprehensive impact on future business conditions. Companies must develop strategies to mitigate risks from supply disruptions, social unrest, rising materials costs, and pressures from regulators, NGOs and the general public. The efficient use of resources is important for competition, and the need for sustainable production and resource use will open up new opportunities for innovations in technology, products, services and business models. This Cluster explored and analyzed theories, frameworks and empirical evidence on the conditions and tools for promoting and managing sustainable innovation and business models, with focus on environmental issues. The Cluster seeked to align both technological (and product and process) development and business model innovation, including market platforms and infrastructures.
Cluster 2: Sustainable Transitions in Developing and Emerging Economies
The focus of the Cluster on Sustainable Transitions in Developing and Emerging Economies stems from the notion that developing and emerging economies (DEEs) are one of the main engines of contemporary growth in the global economy. They face massive transitions in economic, social and environmental terms. In order to explain how business in these countries can contribute to sustainable growth, the Cluster explored (1) innovative approaches and North-South partnerships on technology co-production and transfer within clean-tech industries; (2) green innovation networks and capacity building in DEEs; (3) social entrepreneurship and social business models in DEEs; and (4) sustainability strategies of global firms that have implications in DEEs (Base-of-the-Pyramid markets, Sustainable Value Chains).
Cluster researchers: Associate Professors Søren Jeppesen, Department of Management, Society and Communication, and Stine Haakonsson, Department of Business and Politics.
Cluster 3: Governing Sustainability
The Cluster on Governing Sustainability took its starting point in the recent flourish of the private governance of sustainability initiatives. Private actors, such as business firms and civil society groups, have created numerous initiatives addressing pressing social and environmental problems, both at the national and transnational levels. Some of these are strictly private; others are collaborative efforts with the public sector. The cluster was particularly interested in examining corporate codes of conduct, public-private partnership agreements, labeling schemes, and standard setting by multi- stakeholder initiatives, with a focus on (1) legitimacy and accountability processes and strategies related to private sustainability governance; (2) the effectiveness and impact of sustainability initiatives; (3) the dynamics of the relationship between hard and soft law; (4) the influence of the state on private sustainability governance; and (5) the organization of sustainability management in transnational firms.
Cluster researchers: Professor Andreas Rasche, Department of Management, Society and Communication, and Associate Professor Steen Vallentin, Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy.
Cluster 4: Cluster on Communicative Dimensions of Sustainability
This cluster explored the communicative construction of sustainability across a variety of interests and stakeholders. Organizations are traditionally understood as instrumental spaces for managers to produce products and processes towards a more sustainable society. However, increasingly organizations appear as social and moral spaces where the meaning and role of sustainability is communicatively negotiated and co-constructed and no definite agreement seems to be achieved across publics. This development poses new challenges for business in their continous work to appear as legitimate participants vis á vis civil society, the political system and other organizational/corporate actors. Focus was on (1) how communication of sustainability has become a strategic tool for managers working in business, ngos and policy-making, (2) how traditional and social media play an important role in mediating issues of sustainability across publics, (3) how marketing and branding of sustainability influences consumption and public opinon, and (4) how different forms of political and corporate communication (via persuasion, facts, dialogue, etc.) about sustainability raise questions about the democratic models that underpin sustainability discourses. Against this backdrop, the Cluster brought together leading academics from a range of disciplines to explore the role and meaning of communication in a broad sense for the development of sustainability.
Cluster researchers: Professor Anker Brink Lund, Department of Business and Politics, and Assistant Professors Julie Uldam and Anne Vestergaard,Department of Management, Society and Communication.
Cluster 5: Corporate Governance and Leadership for Sustainability Strategy
The Cluster on Corporate Governance and Leadership for Sustainability Strategy focused on managerial behavior and performances related to responsibility in corporations, with a particular interest in how managers and leaders in firms relate to and behave vis á vis expectations to corporate sustainability strategies, policies and action. The Cluster pursued discussions that engage with how responsibility issues play a role in shaping systems and models of corporate governance and leadership and, conversely, how different models impact corporate responsibility and performances.Emphasis was placed on introducing the concept of to what extent responsibility brings demands for new management competences and management models into the management debate. The Cluster was particularly, but not exclusively, interested in exploring the relationships between sustainability and corporate performances with (1) board of director characteristics; (2) corporate ownership structures; (3) shareholder activism; (4) leadership approaches; (5) ethical considerations regarding corporate governance and leadership; and (6) comparisons of corporate governance and leadership approaches in a Scandinavian context vis-à-vis other global contexts.
Cluster 6: Sustainability in the Post-Growth Economy
The Cluster on Sustainability in the Post-Growth Economy started from the realization that the era of perpetual economic growth may be over. The Cluster explored and developed ideas and images of what a sustainable post-growth economy might look like. The purpose of such effort is to transform the end of growth from being the cause of social, economic and ecological depredation into being an opportunity for the creation of new forms of economic organization that do not rest upon the condition of growth. This challenge is approached by starting to rethink some fundamental economic concepts from the perspective of a post-growth economy: What is a company? What is work? What is leadership? What is money? What is consumption? What is a market? And what is in fact economic growth? The Cluster approached these questions theoretically, by looking into assumptions rooted in the paradigm of growth capitalism, and empirically – by studying actual practices of alternative economic organization.
Research Cluster 1: Green innovation and New Business Models - Christian Erik Kampmann (INO) and Jens Frøslev Christensen (INO)
Research Cluster 2: Sustainable Transition in Developing and Emerging Countries - Søren Jeppesen (ICM) and Stine Håkonsson (DBP)
Research Cluster 3: Governing Sustainability - Andreas Rasche (ICM) and Steen Vallentin (DBP)
Research Cluster 4: Communicative Dimensions of Sustainability - Anker Brink Lund (DBP), Julie Uldam (ICM) and Anne Vestergaard (ICM)
Research Cluster 5: Corporate Governance and Leadership for Sustainability Strategy - Bersant Hobdari (INT) and Georg Wernicke (INT)
Research Cluster 6: Sustainability in the Post-Growth Economy - Ole Bjerg (MPP) and Bent Meier Sørensen (MPP)
'Talk-Action Sustainability' - Mette Morsing (ICM), Lars Thøger Christensen (ICM)
The Translations of EU regulation on CSR disclosure - Thomas Riise Johansen (ACC) & Peter Skærbæk (ACC)
Social Banking - Itziar Castello (ICM)
Sustainability MBA - Robert Strand (ICM)
SMART Meter - Rasmus Uslev Pedersen (ITM), Peter Møllgaard (ECO) & Lars Ringe
Mini smart-grid project, phase 2 - Rasmus Pedersen (ITM)
Pilot Study/ Sustainability - Jette Steen Knudsen (DBP)
Celebrity-Business-Development Nexus Symposium - Anne Vestergaard (ICM)
Statoil teaching case - Andreas Rasche and Anne Mette Christiansen (ICM)
Survey: Sustainability in Business - Implications for Marketing - Karin Tollin (marktg) and Lars Bech Christensen (ICM)
Field work and conference participation - Louise Lyngfeldt (INT) og Julia Kirsch (DBP)
Research project: consumers adoption of sustainable cars in DK - Suzanne Beckmann (marktg)
Fieldwork - Juan Ignacio Staricco (DBP)
Fieldwork - Kirsti Reitan Andersen (ICM)
Research project: Social Media Analytics for Sustainability - Ravi Vatrapuri (ITM)
Book editing in Brazil - Bent Pedersen
Training sessions for student consultants - 180 Degrees Consulting
The Copenhagen Speech Event 2013 - Peter Juel Henrichsen
Research Proposal - Battista Severgnini (ECON) 3rd Org. Governance Conference - Linne Marie Lauesen (ICM)
San Diego IBECC 2012 - 3 CBS Students
Partnership Conference 2012 - Glen Whelan (ICM)
Transparency Sustainability Nexus workshop - Hans Krause Hansen (ICM)
SMEs, CSR and competitiveness - Peter Lund-Thomsen (ICM) and Søren Jeppesen (ICM)
COBREN Bio-fuel Conference 2012 - Stefano Ponte (DBP) Sarah Dahlman (DBP)
Social Media - Michael Etter (ICM), Sine Nørholm Just (DBP) Anne Vestergaard (ICM)
Convener's thematic Opening - Signe Vikkelsø (IOA) and Ursula Plesner (IOA)
Ha.fil Intro - Stig Nyman Christiansen
CBS Goes Green - (Gert Bechlund and Kathrine Johansen)
Robert Strand Standard - Rober Strand (ICM)
Field Assistance in Pakistan - Peter Lund-Thomsen (ICM)
Social Enterprise World Forum 2012 - 180 Degrees Consulting
Global Social Business Summit 2012 - Bo Kock-Christensen (marktg) and Ian Choo (marktg)
180 Degress Consulting - Ingrid Bacquet and Nadine Köcher
Anne Vestergaard (ICM) and Julie Uldam (ICM)
JMS Paper Development Workshop - Andreas Rasche (ICM)
Sustainability in a Scandinavian Context Conference 2013 - Robert Starnd (ICM)
Seminar, report and survey on 'Har tilbudsaviserne en fremtid?' - Per Østergaard Jacobsen (OM)
Network activities: Sustainable Fashion - Esben Rahbek Pedersen (ICM)
Brussels IBP Sustainability Conference, MSc IBP students - MSc IBP student group
CBS student sustainability event, MSc IBP students - MSc IBP student group
Workshop on “The influence of corporations on the political discourse on how to manage non communicable diseases - Jette Steen Knudsen (DBP)
Weekday - A Year After - Wencke Gwozdz (ICM), Sarah Netter (ICM) and Lucia Reisch (ICM)
The CBS Sustainability Platform started activities in June 2011, with the purpose of stimulating research, educational activities and outreach on issues related to business and sustainability. In 2007-10, CBS accounted for a total of 143 publications on sustainability. In 2011-2014, the count was 552. Even adjusting for a growing number of faculty in this period, the average of publications per capita/work-year increased from 0.07 in 2007-2010 to 0.21 in 2010-14, a 200% increase.
More detailed information on these publications and the methodology used in the calculations is provided. Check out the file:
Regarding publications related with CBS Sustainability Platform activities, an aggregated list has been created to list up most publications during the period 2011-2015.
For the total list of publications, check out the total_list_of_publications.pdf