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Responsible Business and Corporate Social Responsibility

Debates as to the scale of corruption and poor governance in major institutions alongside general global CSR concerns have led to questions as to the legitimacy and purpose of business in society and the need to develop more sustainable and responsible working practices.

We undertake research to develop evidence, tools and educational approaches that demonstrate how business can be responsible, legitimate and credible in working for the greater good of society and facilitate innovative responses to complex social problems. Our work spans a broad range of sustainability topics including; Responsible Management Education; Sustainable Operations, CSR Reporting, Sustainability Governance and Strategy and Sustainable Business models.


Responsible Management Education

Dr Alex Hope: Beyond Business Ethics: Sustainability and Responsible Management in Business School Programme Curricula.

This project involves a content analysis of business and management degree programme curricula in global business schools in order to develop a common understanding of responsible management education practices. The research led to a mapping of the taught curriculum against the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) resulting in redevelopment of business and management undergraduate programmes.

Recent Publications

Hope, A., Croney, P. and Myers, J. (2020) Experiential Learning for Responsible Management Education, in Moosemayer, D.C., Laasch, O., Parkes, C. & Brown, K.G. (Eds) The SAGE Handbook of Responsible Management, Learning and Education. SAGE. London.

Molthan-Hill, P., Hope, A & Weston, R. (2020) Tackling climate change through management education in Moosemayer, D.C., Laasch, O., Parkes, C. & Brown, K.G. (Eds) The SAGE Handbook of Responsible Management, Learning and Education. SAGE. London.

Molthan-Hill, P., Robinson, Z., Hope, A., Dharmasasmita, A and E. McManus (2020) “Reducing carbon emissions in business through Responsible Management Education: Influence at the micro-, meso- and macrolevels,” International Journal of Management Education, 18(1)

Gadelshina, Gyuzel, Vemury, Chandra and Attar, Arif (2018) Meaningful Learning and The Integration of Responsible Management Education in the Business School Courses. International Journal of Modern Education Studies, 2 (1). pp. 24-33. ISSN 2618-6209

Jones, David (2017) Restorative, heterotopic spacing for campus sustainability. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 35 (4). pp. 752-771. ISSN 0263-7758 Item not available from this repository.


Sustainable Supply Chains and Operations Management.

Honhyi Zhang (2020) DBA project supervised by Dr Alex Hope: Exploring Institutional and Organizational Complexity: A Study of Rationales for and Barriers to Sustainability Activities in English Universities’ Campus Operations.

This DBA research seeks to understand the rationales for and barriers involved in engaging in sustainability activities on campus operations in English universities, based on the perceptions and experiences of universities’ personnel who directly involved in operational sustainability (OS) at a managerial level. Based on this aim, the following research questions are developed to guide the study: (1) Why do universities in England engage in OS-related activities? (2) What are the barriers encountered by universities in England while engaging in OS activities, and how do these barriers hinder such activities?

Recent Publications

Shokri, Alireza and Li, Gendao (2020) Green implementation of Lean Six Sigma projects in the manufacturing sector. International Journal of Lean Six Sigma. ISSN 2040-4166 (In Press)

Nath, Prithwiraj and Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan (2020) Impact of Environmental Initiatives on Environmental Performances: Evidence From the UK Manufacturing Sector. In: Encyclopedia of Renewable and Sustainable Materials. Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp. 408-413. ISBN 9780128131961 (In Press) Item availability may be restricted.

Yeoman, Ruth and Mueller Santos, Milena (2019) A complex systems model for transformative supply chains in emerging markets. International Journal of Emerging Markets, 15 (1). pp. 50-69. ISSN 1746-8809




Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

Rajeev Vazhappully (2020) PhD project supervised by Dr Alex Hope: The confluence of image use in communication and CSR - Investigating the representational practices of images in CSR reports.


This PhD project proposed that the conceptually confusing field of CSR can be best explained by the social constructionist perspective. This perspective privileges the role of communication in making sense of CSR. Conceiving legitimacy as a desired end state for an organisation engaging with CSR, this thesis differs from most of the past research by also acknowledging the role and propensity of image use in CSR communication. Making use of well-established concepts from the fields of visual social semiotics and multimodal analysis besides others, this thesis develops an analytical framework for the study of the representation of an image in a multimodal document. This framework is the basis of the longitudinal empirical study that qualitatively analyses image use in the CSR reports of five of the biggest oil companies of the world -BP, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Shell and Sinopec


Patten, Dennis and Shin, Hyemi (2019) Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal’s Contributions to Sustainability Disclosure Research: A Review and Assessment. Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, 10 (1). pp. 26-40. ISSN 2040-8021

Bradley, Oliver and Botchway, Gloria (2018) Communicating corporate social responsibility (CSR) in the coffee industry: An examination of indicators disclosed. Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, 9 (2). pp. 139-164. ISSN 2040-8021


Sustainability Governance and Strategy

Recent Publications include:

Nyuur, Richard, Ofori, Daniel F. and Amponsah, Millicent (2019) Corporate social responsibility and competitive advantage: A developing country perspective. Thunderbird International Business Review, 61 (4). pp. 551-564. ISSN 1096-4762 Item not available from this repository.

Nyuur, Richard, Brečić, Ružica and Murphy, Patrick (2019) Managerial Perceptions of Firms’ Corporate Sustainability Strategies: Insights from Croatia. Sustainability, 12 (1). p. 251. ISSN 2071-1050


Khojastehpour, Morteza and Shams, Riad (2019) Addressing the complexity of stakeholder management in international ecological setting: A CSR approach. Journal of Business Research. ISSN 0148-2963 (In Press)



Sustainable Business Models

Suman Bhattacharya PhD project: ‘Designing value creating and sustainable business models: An investigation of telehealthcare service ecosystem in NE England’(2020)

This research project investigates the challenges of adoption of digital technology-enabled assisted living (Telehealthcare) services at an increased population scale, and subsequently, the opportunities of new value-creating and sustainable service business models, within the socioeconomic context of North-East England. Based on a multiple case study-based research design, the project examines five major telecare services in the region, involving the service commissioners (local authorities), providers and other key regional and national stakeholders.

Recent Publications include:

Hope, Alex (2018) Sustainable Business Model Design: A review of tools for developing Responsible Business Models. In: Sustainable Business Models: Principles, Promise, and Practice. CSR, Sustainability, Ethics & Governance . Springer, Netherlands, pp. 377-394. ISBN 9783319735023, 9783319735030


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Our students learn from the best – inspirational academic staff with a genuine passion for their subject. Our courses are at the forefront of current knowledge and practice and are shaped by world-leading and internationally excellent research.

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