Thunderbird Among First 100 to endorse Principles for Responsible Management Education
(GLENDALE, Ariz.) April 7, 2008 — The Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), a UN-backed global initiative developed to promote corporate responsibility and sustainability in business education, has now been endorsed by more than 100 business schools and universities from around the world, including Thunderbird School of Global Management, which played a key role in developing the principles.
Institutions participating in the initiative, launched under the patronage of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in July 2007, make a commitment to align their mission and strategy, as well as their core competencies – education, research and thought leadership – with UN values embodied by the six PRME principles. Actions encouraged under the initiative’s framework include curriculum development around the corporate responsibility agenda and research in support of sustainable management systems, as well as public advocacy and opinion leadership to advance responsible business practices.
“Thanks to the joint outreach by all partners, the PRME initiative has reached this critical milestone of 100 signatories,” said Dr. Manuel Escudero, Head of Academic Initiatives at the UN Global Compact, which is one of the initiative’s co-conveners. Speaking on behalf of the PRME steering committee, Dr. Escudero stressed that “this will enable the initiative to bring good efforts to scale and truly embed the sustainability agenda in the training of future business leaders.”
As a senior advisor to the UN Global Compact, Thunderbird President Ángel Cabrera chaired the international task force that developed the Principles. The task force included sixty deans, university presidents and official representatives of leading business schools. Thunderbird’s Lincoln Center for Ethics in Global Management was a strategic partner and primary sponsor of the PRME initiative, and Professor Greg Unruh, director of the center, also was on the task force that developed the principles.
Thunderbird’s participation in these efforts to advance corporate social responsibility build upon the school’s curricular efforts in global citizenship, its professional oath of honor for its graduates and its mission to educate global leaders who create sustainable prosperity worldwide.
“Thunderbird is committed to educating management professionals who are also global citizens and who understand that businesses should contribute to creating economic and social prosperity worldwide. We believe that management is a true and very important profession that, at the end of the day, exists to serve society at large,” Dr. Cabrera said. “At Thunderbird we incorporate the principles of professional practice and global citizenship throughout the curriculum, and we hope to convey to our students the idea that business can be a leading force in eradicating poverty, protecting our natural environment and advancing peace — while at the same time meeting its objective of creating economic value to customers and financial returns to shareholders.”
The PRME Steering Committee includes the UN Global Compact, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD), the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Program, the European Academy for Business in Society (EABIS), the Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative (GRLI), the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), and Net Impact.
Following its early outreach and awareness-raising efforts, the initiative is currently establishing several participant working groups to facilitate implementation of the principles and identify best practices. In addition, a Global Forum for Responsible Management Education will be convened on Dec. 1-2 at UN Headquarters in New York. The event will present a first opportunity to take stock of the PRME initiative so far, to exchange experiences and forge a closer link between the United Nations’ mission and the work of business schools.
For more information about the UN Global Compact and the PRME, please visit www.unprme.org.