The School of Business has a strong motivation to continuously develop sustainability
At the beginning of the year, more than 100 students at the School of Business gave their assessment of the school's actions in relation to societal impact and promoting sustainable development. Based on these estimates, the School of Business placed at level 4 in the Positive Impact Rating (PIR), which is the second highest on a scale of 1–5. The term transforming describes the higher education institutions at this level. No European higher education institution placed higher than level 4. More than 12,000 economics students from 71 universities located in 25 different countries participated in the PIR evaluation. Out of all Schools of Business, 7 placed at the highest level 5 (Pioneering) and 39 at level 4. The PIR 2023 assessments were published on 14 June 2023 at the PRME* Global Forum in New York. (*Principles for Responsible Management Education)
‘Building a more sustainable tomorrow requires concrete actions, and the actions require an understanding of how the activities could and should be promoted. It is important that our students get to share their views and influence how the themes of sustainable development are taken into account in the development of activities and operations,’ says Laura Nikola, who was responsible for sustainable development in the KY's Board of Directors in 2022.
We value our students’ views
The management of the School of Business considers the results of the PIR assessment to be good, but there will be more focus on the different areas of the assessment to improve the level of sustainability.
‘I thank all our students who gave their time to complete the survey. It is also very good to hear the students' voices in these matters and I appreciate all the discussions that I regularly have with our students,’ says Dean Timo Korkeamäki.
‘Our school's motto is 'Better Business – Better Society'; according to it, cross-disciplinary work to support sustainable development is strongly present at our school in both teaching and research. One of our most recent actions on sustainability is the development and publication of our new Master's Degree Programme in Sustainable Entrepreneurship. Students could apply for this programme between 2022–23, and it will start for the first time in autumn 2024. The new master's programme aims to educate leading experts in the next generation of sustainable business that are simultaneously committed to promoting societal issues, positive environmental impacts, and economic success,’ says the Dean Korkeamäki.
A key goal of the PIR is to serve as a tool with which schools of business around the world will learn to understand what sustainable development and societal effectiveness mean from the students’ point of view. The rating, which complements traditional university rankings, is aimed at getting schools of business to develop and improve their activities.
In the PIR implemented at the turn of the year 2022–2023 students assessed, for example, how the Aalto University School of Business confronts the challenges of sustainable development and how it prepares its students to work as responsible specialists and managers. The material was collected by the Aalto University Business Students Association KY and the Aalto Sustainability Club. A total of appr. 140 bachelor's and master's students responded to the survey.
The Positive Impact Rating was founded by experts of university level education in business studies together with worldwide NGOs such as the environmental organisation WWF, Oxfam, and the UN Global Compact. The international student organisations oikos, AIESEC, and Net Impact are involved with PIR.
School of Business participates in the 2023 Positive Impact Rating
Positive Impact Rating (PIR) is an international business school rating, in which students evaluate their own school regarding its readiness to help solve sustainability and other societal challenges