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Practical Wisdom: Making and teaching the governance case for sustainability
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Business Administration.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8391-9378
2017 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 140, p. 117-124Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper examines the larger role that business education must begin playing in developing a generation of new leaders with the skills required to tackle the complex and increasingly serious challenges of sustainability. It posits a new framework for cultivating more responsible ways of thinking and acting in our current and future business students. The foundation of this framework seeks not just to complement, but to strengthen the two most common arguments for sustainability – the moral case and the economic case – with a third argument—the governance case based on Aristotle’s concept of practical wisdom (Gr. phronesis) as the ‘middle ground’ of thoughtful action. Practical wisdom stands between science (Gr. episteme) and cunning (Gr. metis) and is the habit of acting in ways that are both ethically and economically effective, but above all that support the common good. Practical wisdom strikes balances between individual and common interests, short-term and long-term perspectives as well as between adapting to and shaping the environment. The article notes how accreditation standards for business schools are now including sustainability issues and practices, but more must be done. The article proposes several fundamental changes in how we educate students to start leading businesses beyond the profit motive and corporate social responsibility (CSR) paradigms into responsible and sustainable practices that serve the common good

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2017. Vol. 140, p. 117-124
Keywords [en]
Business school; practical wisdom; phronesis; common good; sustainability; leadership
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-28314DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2015.10.135ISI: 000388775100012Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84949681359OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-28314DiVA, id: diva2:871408
Available from: 2015-11-13 Created: 2015-11-13 Last updated: 2017-07-06Bibliographically approved

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Roos, Johan

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