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UN-backed corporate responsibility initiative reaches milestone of 100 schools

UN-backed corporate responsibility initiative reaches milestone of 100 schools

A global educational initiative developed to promote social responsibility in private enterprise has now been endorsed by more than 100 business schools around the world, the head of the corporate partnerships programme at the United Nations announced today.

“We are very happy about reaching this milestone because it brings us closer to mainstreaming UN values into the corporate world,” Manuel Escudero, Head of Academic Initiatives at the UN Global Compact told reporters in New York.

“Business schools are a powerful multiplier of business ideas, since they prepare the business leaders of the future,” he added, describing the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), which was launched less than one year ago under the patronage of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Institutions participating in the PRME make a commitment to align their mission and strategy with UN values in such areas as sustainability, labour practices and the fight against corruption, Mr. Escudero said.

They are encouraged to develop curriculum, research and outreach as part of the initiative, which was formulated by an international task force of 60 deans, university presidents and other academic officials.

As part of PRME’s further development, a Global Forum for Responsible Management Education will be convened on 1-2 December at UN Headquarters, according to a press release from the Global Compact.

In addition to the Compact, the PRME steering committee includes the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) and the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD).

Also on the committee are the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Program, the European Academy for Business in Society (EABIS), the Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative (GRLI), the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), and Net Impact.

The UN Global Compact pledges participants – which include some 3,600 businesses in over 100 countries – to observe principles regarding human rights, labour rights, the environment and combating corruption.