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Education for sustainability in business education programs : a question of value
journal contributionposted on 2017-12-06, 00:00 authored by Elizabeth SidiropoulosElizabeth Sidiropoulos
This paper posits that sustainability is essentially a question of value, a notion that is situated within the context of an individual, organisational and community perspective. Each person or group interprets sustainability through their own value lens, so messages promoting sustainability need to be positioned according to the receptivity (value driver) of the audience. Individual and social values around the world are reviewed both theoretically and empirically and the case is made to integrate sustainability concepts into all tertiary education business programs. The focus of this paper is on Education for Sustainability (EfS) in tertiary business programs for mixed student cohorts. The author outlines a particular pedagogical philosophy and praxis using values to incorporate sustainability concepts into business courses taught to international and domestic students. Practical examples are provided for courses in Economics and Marketing at diploma, undergraduate, and postgraduate levels, during the period 2005-2013. These demonstrate a variety of possibilities to integrate discussion of values for sustainability such as cleaner production and consumption as well as social equity into the curriculum, depending on the teacher’s influence on curriculum content and assessment. Educational practices range from incremental integration (such as class discussion of curriculum topics) to course-specific introductory sustainability seminars to deeper integration of sustainability into course curriculum and assessment. Student feedback indicating the impact of these escalating interventions on their views, attitudes and behaviour towards sustainability is also discussed. Finally, the paper concludes with suggested pedagogies for educators to navigate their students learning journey.
Number of Pages16
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