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Motivated and reflective professionals for more sustainability

April 19, 2024

Daniela Ortiz and Katharina Salomon from the Institute for Business Ethics and Sustainable Strategy (IBES) show a way in which training geared towards sustainability skills can be designed and implemented in their latest publication in the “Palgrave Handbook of Social Sustainability in Business Education” from the renowned publishing house Palgrave Macmillan.

To initiate, facilitate and monitor transformation processes towards sustainability in companies, motivated professionals with sustainability-related knowledge and competencies are needed. However, there is still limited literature on the design of courses and curricula for the development and assessment of these sustainability competencies in business education.

Building on their experience with the “Certificate for Sustainability Change Agents” offered since the winter semester 2022/23, IBES researchers at FHWien der WKW, Daniela Ortiz and Katharina Salomon, now offer a pathway for designing and implementing a course focusing on sustainability competencies. Specifically, the authors demonstrate how learning objectives, learning activities and assessment methods can be linked in relation to social sustainability. This supports the development of competencies such as systems-, futures-, values- and strategic-thinking as well as the implementation and practical application of sustainability practices in companies.

Sustainable competencies and networking

The “Certificate for Sustainability Change Agents” is a voluntary, extracurricular continuing training program. It promotes the individual competencies of participants to enable them to initiate changes towards sustainability in organizations. These include strategic thinking, communication, teamwork and self-reflection to independently master future challenges in the area of sustainability.

These competencies are conveyed and practiced in seven modules through lectures, discussions and reflections. During the training program, participants develop an increased awareness of sustainability in their own (professional) everyday lives. Sustainability experts from science and practice illuminate the respective aspects from different perspectives. The “Certificate for Sustainability Change Agents” not only offers an innovative further education for students of FHWien der WKW, but also enables networking with exciting personalities.

The extracurricular continuing education program was developed as part of the recently completed City of Vienna Competence Team “Change for Corporate Sustainability (TransformS) funded by MA 23 and will be offered for the third time in the winter semester 2024/25.

You can find the publication “Designing a Course for Developing Sustainability Competencieshere.