Presentation (Project) Title

Business for Good: How Universities Can Catalyze the B Corp Movement

Mentor Information

Rebecca Harris Barancik (Department of Economics)

Presentation Format

Event

Abstract

The burgeoning B Corp movement is transforming the global economy with a mission of using business as a force for good to solve social, environmental, and economic problems. Higher education institutions are uniquely positioned to educate the business leaders of tomorrow on this rising method of “business unusual.” Universities can play a key role in catalyzing the B Corp movement, which advocates for corporate social and environmental responsibility, accountability, and transparency. This paper describes how universities can effectively educate and prepare the next generation of changemakers through what are referred to as B Corp programs. Though they take many unique forms, university B Corp programs share the unifying goal of helping businesses earn their B Corp certification while benefitting students with a valuable experiential learning opportunity. This paper features five case studies of existing B Corp programs, including the recently developed Business for Good Internship at the University of South Florida (USF). Finally, this paper discusses the unique circumstances, challenges, lessons learned, and future aspirations for each university B Corp program in the hopes of highlighting best practices to facilitate the further development of successful programs.

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Business for Good: How Universities Can Catalyze the B Corp Movement

The burgeoning B Corp movement is transforming the global economy with a mission of using business as a force for good to solve social, environmental, and economic problems. Higher education institutions are uniquely positioned to educate the business leaders of tomorrow on this rising method of “business unusual.” Universities can play a key role in catalyzing the B Corp movement, which advocates for corporate social and environmental responsibility, accountability, and transparency. This paper describes how universities can effectively educate and prepare the next generation of changemakers through what are referred to as B Corp programs. Though they take many unique forms, university B Corp programs share the unifying goal of helping businesses earn their B Corp certification while benefitting students with a valuable experiential learning opportunity. This paper features five case studies of existing B Corp programs, including the recently developed Business for Good Internship at the University of South Florida (USF). Finally, this paper discusses the unique circumstances, challenges, lessons learned, and future aspirations for each university B Corp program in the hopes of highlighting best practices to facilitate the further development of successful programs.