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CSSI news

New links forged weekly! Sometimes daily! Also check out CSSI's Links for connections to helpful people, events and information.

John Beale of VillageReach will talk about innovating for effective social entrepreneurship, Friday, October 25, 2013 from 1-2 pm in Business and Economics Building 363 at UVic

Peter B. Gustavson School of Business recently received the 2013 Outstanding Post-Secondary Program award from the Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication.

“The Peter B. Gustavson School of Business demonstrated a commitment to infusing triple bottom line thinking into curricula across the faculty,” said Bruce Ford, Sustainability Education Coordinator for Metro Vancouver and Director at Large for EECOM. “It provides a tangible model of social and ecological responsibility to its students as future business leaders, [and its] Green Fact Sheet outlining achievements is extensive and impressive."

Here's the Green Facts Sheet.


Congratulations to BCom student Darrin Mah, who has been awarded an Export Development Canada international business scholarship! Darrin's application essay focused on food security and was one of five (of the total 30) scholarships earmarked for sustainability applications.


Gustavson MBA students Taryn Roy, Rebeca Saenz, Jesal Shah, and Andrew Spence have made the top three in Nespresso's MBA sustainability challenge! They face down the other two teams in presentations to Nespresso execs in Switzerland in late June, and we wish them bon courage!


Post-doctoral fellow wanted!

CSSI is seeking a post-doc for a one- or two-year term. More info here.


This is a wonderful video that captures the essence of Gustavson.


Dr. Josh Ault presents his research on The Institutional Context of Poverty: state fragility as a predictor of cross-national variation in commercial microfinance lending. Friday, April 5, 2013, Business and Economics Building Room 402, at UVic


Gustavson honoured with a five-year re-accreditation from the European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS)!


Article about Gustavson's Innovation Centre for Entrepreneurs, featuring program manager Chris Forrest, in The Martlet.


Open House information session about UVic's proposed biomass thermal energy plant on March 27, 2013 from 3 pm to 7 pm in the Upper Lounge at the Student Union Building. 


March 8, 2013: Gustavson Greenshifters got the front page of The Ring this week, with their fantastic success at the Walmart Green Student Challenge - and a delightful photo.


March 1, 2013: This article in the Vancouver Sun highlights the huge variety and potential of mining-related jobs - potential that includes changing the industry from the ground up.


Feb 26, 2013: BCom students Vinson Chen, AJ Qin, Jennifer Sallows and Rebecca Staynor earned a top-two place in Walmart's Green Student Challenge! Pitting their innovative, international, sustainable business idea against more than 150 students from across Canada, the team won the right to present to six of the country's top CEOs today. And they did it exceptionally well, appearing polished and professional. Come on back or visit CSSI's Facebook page; we'll post details about the webcast archive as soon as they're available.


Feb 19, 2013: Canadian mining company Goldcorp Inc. has recognized Gustavson School of Business's pioneering work in integrating sustainability throughout our business education with a $500,000 donation to CSSI! The gift will allow CSSI to expand support for sustainability and social responsibility throughout education, research and operations at Gustavson. The Ring has a nice article here.


Since 2009, Gustavson School of Business has been measuring our greenhouse gas emissions. We go beyond the scopes of emissions that universities and public institutions in BC are mandated to offset - we also include a detailed inventory of faculty, staff and student travel, as well as faculty and staff commuting. Here is a summary of the school's emissions for 2011 as well as the year over year changes since 2009, and a glimpse of our plans to reduce and counteract our impact on the environment.


Gustavson Greenshifters goin' to Toronto on Feb 25 to wow Walmart Green Student Challenge judges!


Gustavson students rock PitchIt! on Jan 24, 2013. Find out who and what in The Ring.


Year in Review 2012 cover

Big news. BIG.

CSSI's first-ever, first annual Year in Review is out and it's beautiful! Please take a look at what Gustavson has done in one very fast year!


Gustavson's work to integrate sustainability and social responsibility into all of our educational offerings is the subject of a case study that was chosen by the National Wildlife Federation for its Campus Ecology Program! Read all about it here!


Hoffman seminar

Dr. Andrew Hoffman of the University of Michigan gave two presentations on his research into Culture, Ideology, and the Public Debate Over Climate Change.

His public lecture is available here, and his interview with CBC is here.


Is Walmart trying to create good change or a shiny green facade?

Find out as CSSI Research co-chair Dr. Matt Murphy gives the scoop on Walmart's Green Student Challenge in The Martlet.
You're invited!
The eminent scholar Dr. Tom Pedersen, Executive Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions, is speaking about "Climate Change, Climate Sceptics, and Tough Choices for Canada and BC" on Wed, Oct 3 from 6 to 7:30 pm in DSB C103.
Dr. Pedersen's talk is specifically geared toward Gustavson's BCom students, but everyone's welcome at this special event!

And the world-wide winner is...

At UVic's 50th anniversary Open House on Saturday, Sept 29, CSSI hosted a sustainability game. We gave away GSB$500,000 (Gustavson Bucks) to every player, so they could help the mythical Gustavson Corporation decide how to spend its money to make the world a better place.

Should Gustavson Corp support ethical sourcing? Retrofit its operations to reduce resource use? Provide micro-loans to help start-up entrepreneurs? Or support research and development for more sustainable processes and products? Or a combination of these?

Players voted with their money and the count is in!

Ethical Sourcing won 19% of our Gustavson Bucks votes.

Retrofitting earned 20.5%

Research and Development garnered 26%.

And the winner is Microfinance, which took 34.5% of the voting dollars!

A half-million thanks to all our players!


UVic's quarterly Energy and Conservation newsletter is out now! Find out how many thousands of cubic metres of water the university is saving (hint: Nine Oly swimming pools' worth from one project alone!) and how much waste we're diverting from landfill and more!


Bob Willard by Greg MillerUndergrads, MBAs, faculty, staff and the public were delighted with Bob Willard's presentations on Sept 11 and 12. Lively discussions sprouted during his talks and afterward, and are still resounding in the hallways of Gustavson as well as throughout the Greater Victoria business community. Dr. Willard has made available the PowerPoint slides that he used during his faculty and MBA/public presentations and hopes that they spread like Johnny Appleseed's trees. Here are the MBA/public slides and the faculty/staff slides!


Bob Willard, champion of business and sustainability, is coming to Gustavson in September! With 34 years at IBM to back him up,
Dr. Willard has taken on the task of communicating the business value of sustainability to entrepreneurs, academics, industry, governments and NGOs.

Free and open to the public, his talk is on Sept 12 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm in DSB C103. CSSI is calling it "The Business Case for Sustainability: What Kick-Ass Capitalism in Pursuit of the Common Good Can Achieve" and we hope to see you there!


CSSI's Communique is featured on the United Nations' Principles of Responsible Management Education blog this week, along with several other great communicatins initiatives from B-schools around the world.

To enjoy your own copy of the Communique every week, email or visit the Communique archives on this website.


Gustavson students juice up for a good deed


Gustavson's GreenTech Exchange in The Ring!


Buzz marketing for Red Bull and protecting Spanish wine: Gustavson students analyze the issues

Gustavson's international exchange program is the largest in Canada, with 79 active partnerships at universities in over 37 countries. By travelling to and being educated in these many countries, students develop an international management perspective through direct experience and during their exchange, many of our students enrol in the International Business Research course (COM 470), to broaden their knowledge of the nation and enhance their research and writing skills by analyzing a business issue related to this destination.

This year, nine of the 52 papers have a sustainability or social responsibility angle, including one of the five best!

The best COM 470 papers of 2011-12 are available here. Enjoy!


"I am absolutely in love with your newsletter. I think this is the most fantastic idea," wrote Giselle Weybrecht, author of The Sustainable MBA and of the United Nations' Principles of Responsible Management Education (PRME) blog.

Find out what she's so enthusiastic about!


"You have hit the perfect program," wrote one GreenTech Exchange participant after Gustavson's event on May 24.

"This is what GTEx should be about," another agreed.

Oh, and bonus points: two Gustavson students came away from the evening with internships!


Sustainable leadership interns wanted!

“I was an intern through this program in 2001," says Andrea Lloyd, Gustavson's Experiential Learning Officer. "It was a wonderful experience.

“[It] really set me up for my current career path in experiential education. I also became fluent in Spanish as a result of my work with my internship partners in Mexico. IISD provides excellent training before they ship you overseas and great ongoing support throughout the experience.”

The application deadline is June 24, 2012.


CSSI is sponsoring GreenTech Exchange at UVic on May 24 to help connect businesses and researchers. Come and meet like-minded cleantech folks for networking and a panel of guest speakers: John Stonier of Signature Renewables, Janice Cheam of Energy Aware Technology Inc., and Dr. Bryan Imber of International Composting Corp. No charge, but please pre-register.

The business case for plumbing: UVic's Revolving Sustainability Fund backs new fixtures for business and economics. See the whole story in The Ring online.

Cssi Gustavson is Facebooking links to thoughtful people and relevant events around the world. We'd love to hear from you, so please keep us in mind when you hear or read about something cool in the world of sustainability and social responsibility.

Find out what Gustavson is really up to: United Nations Principles of Responsible Management Education (PRME) Sharing Information on Progress Report.

Connor Bildfell, third-year BCom student, took home $3,800 in prizes from the campus-wide Pitch It and Plan It competitions, including the $1,500 social entrepreneurship award for Soul/Food, his concept of a magazine to inform and support people with eating disorders and their loved ones!

Carrotmob rules: Commerce Students' Society Sustainability Club topped its old record! The March 21 reverse boycott of Sauce Restaurant raised $9,000 to help green the restaurant.

“Carrotmob was a massive success from my perspective,” says owner Steven Hof. “Not only did we exceed our [dollar] goal, we had a room full of outstanding, like-minded people, who seemed to have a great time. I know I did."

Chantal Orr, managing partner of Synergy Enterprises, says the funds will go toward energy-efficient lighting, interior and exterior insulation, and if they'll stretch that far, will also make a start for upgrading the kitchen to Energy Star equipment.

IdeaFest button

Standing room only! CSSI congratulates professors Josh Ault, Merwan Engineer, Budd Hall, Basma Majerbi and Michael Read with Anushka Ngaji, a student in the Faculty of Law and an activist with the Occupy Victoria movement, on their sold-out (okay, it was free) multi-disciplinary debate on the globalization of revolution.

If you missed out, you can read about it on The Ring online!


Gustavson professor A.R. Elangovan wins prestigious 3M teaching award

Heather Ranson, associate director and education chair

Heather Ranson, CSSI associate director, receives Innovation Award

On Dec 3, 2011, Heather Ranson accepted the Innovation Award at the Gustavson School of Business Evening of


The award goes to a faculty or staff member who is "creative, has bright ideas and the capability to think outside the box and has used this ability to move the Gustavson School towards its goals."

With more than 100 possible nominees, these are some of the endorsements that got Heather the nod:

"[She has been] absolutely instrumental in providing her excellent ideas to the shaping and, indeed, grounding of the CSSI Strategy. ...Her ideas, while so often unconventional and sometimes counter-intuitive, are also eminently doable; she has a knack for actually making that connection from Vision to Action."

"[Heather makes] great contributions to enriching the life of our faculty, staff and students with her passion for building a sustainable environment in education, research and operations."

"She is always thinking about the sustainability agenda – whether she is at work or not. Heather does not just want to be a great employee (which she is), she also wants to to create a better world. Ultimately, this is the vision of the Gustavson School, and Heather strongly embodies it."Charlene Zietsma

Our congratulations also to Charlene Zietsma for her richly deserved Faculty Research Award!

The world comes to CSSI

Dr. ZhangCombining Innovative, International, Integrative and Sustainable – the four pillars of the Peter B. Gustavson School of Business – the Centre for Social and Sustainable Innovation was honoured on December 2, 2011 to welcome Dr. Zhang Jianfei, mayor of Changsha, China. Dr. Zhang gave a public talk on innovative sustainability initiatives he has implemented in his capital region of seven million people.

"We need to rethink our past models of development," he told students, faculty and staff. "The driving people's mentality."Dr. Howard Brunt

Leadership and mindset were also front and centre at the CSSI's website launch earlier that day, when Dr. Howard Brunt, vice-president research, pointed out that as the first intra-faculty research centre on campus, CSSI marks a historic point in the university's history.

"Your school," he said, "has taken a leadership role in the business community."

For the crowd of faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members, Gustavson dean Dr. Ali Dastmalchian put CSSI in an international context.

Dr. Ali Dastmalchian"The centre reinforces our educational leadership in business and sustainability and showcases our significant research capacity and extends our long-standing commitment to the United Nations Global Compact's Principles of Responsible Management Education," he said.

"In fact," he added, "twenty-five percent...of our faculty members specifically teach and research social and/or environmental issues. So we have depth, presence and purpose and we intend to be very loud and proud about the work spearheaded through the centre."

Dr. Monika Winn, director of the centre, described her hopes and plans for the centre.

"The CSSI's role as an initiator, a resource, a catalyst and a supporter is to allow everyone else at Gustavson to shine when it comes to building and sharing our growing expertise on linking business with sustainability and social responsibility," she explained.Monika Winn at launch "Indeed, the Gustavson School has been a pioneer in integrating sustainability into our culture and fabric, and it is the CSSI's role to help us go further.

"Real integration is a challenging task, and few business schools have even begun to undertake this task.  We on the other hand have being doing this for twenty-plus years and have tremendous expertise."

Guest speaker: Jason Boyce makes it real

Fifty percent of the food that is produced in the world is wasted.

That’s just one of the startling facts Nature’s Path Sustainability Manager Jason Boyce offered Dr. Monika Winn’s COM362 students on Oct 31, 2011. Mr. Boyce followed his revelation with an explanation of Nature’s Path policy to donate excess food well before its expiry date, so food-bank users gain the full nutritional value of the organic cereals that his company produces. In a broad topic like waste reduction, this is the kernel that students will remember: specific proof that innovation pays off for everyone.

“Guest speakers like Jason are a huge gift to a business school,” said Dr. Winn. “Students can learn from lectures and textbooks, but deeper understanding comes from the insights that guest speakers offer and their examples of practical application of policies and operations.

“Jason," Dr. Winn added, "made sustainability real for the students.”

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