Summary of project proposal:
The societal problems we face transcend sectors and disciplines, and while businesses and organizations are well-positioned to solve them, they need responsible leadership. Unfortunately, the future situations students will find themselves in are ambiguous and difficult; determining what’s best for all stakeholders is challenging. The solution is not simply teaching students about corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability, but also entails giving them hands-on experiences with creative problem-solving about leading responsibly from where they stand.
This is why we three students, Henry Milander, Alex Urasaki, and Nabilla Gunawan, with support from the Global Business Center and Foster’s Certificate of International Studies in Business program (CISB), have formed a planning committee to found the Global Leadership Forum this spring, April 4th. Its purpose is to convene a campus-wide dialogue on CSR and sustainability in different sectors, and provide practical creative problem-solving experiences for students. A campus that doesn’t speak to these issues in a sustained and comprehensive way is letting its own students down by not properly preparing them for a present and future that demands, if not depends on, greater social responsibility and sustainability in leadership.
The Forum will focus on responsible leadership in socially-responsible business, tech, public health, and environmental policy, all in a global context. Through its workshop format, the Forum will provide a space for UW students and the Seattle community to engage with real-world cases and discussions on topics related to leading responsibly and sustainably in world. The element of leadership we believe most fundamental is the willingness to learn from everyone and everything, and help others do the same. In the end, the format of our Forum is about helping students become hands-on learners in the field of CSR and sustainability so that when they face ambiguous situations or companies with dubious corporate governance, they can act responsibly and teach others to do the same.
Date: Wednesday, April 4th (4/4/18)
Anthony’s Forum in Dempsey Hall (Introductory Panel)
Classrooms in Paccar Hall (Breakout Sessions)
Deloitte Commons in Paccar Hall (Reception)
Expected Attendance: 150-200 students
Format: Introductory Panel > 2 Rounds of Workshops > Reception
5:15-5:30 – Start (Until 5:30 it’s check-in, taking seats, drinks, and mingling)
5:30-5:35 – Opening Remarks + Overarching gravitas
5:35-5:45 – Introductions by Workshop Speakers
5:45-5:50 – Transition Period/ Head to first breakout rooms
5:50-6:30 – Workshop Round 1
6:30-6:35 – Transition Period/ Head to second breakout rooms
6:35-7:15 – Workshop Round 2
7:15-8:00 – Reception
Business Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility
Sustainability and Innovation in the Tech World
Environmental Public Policy and Impact Reporting
Lead RSO: Certificate of International Studies in Business (CISB)
Co-Sponsors: Global Business Center, Net Impact UW, and ReThink
Co-Conspirators (Planning Committee): Henry Milander, Alex Urasaki, Nabilla Gunawan
Brief explanation of how the project will meet the requirements and preferences of the CSF:
This kind of public education can have huge implications for how our students come to act mindfully as future leaders, and think creatively about bringing their actions in harmony in our complex world of diverse stakeholders. Students going into public policy, research, business, and health organizations can lead change in their roles for policies, practices, and innovations that help mitigate and heal our environment. With responsible leaders in government, corporations, and research institutes , these entities can be more easily enlisted in improving community health, green tech innovation, and ending global hunger. Moreover, students who attend the forum and get involved with environmentally-minded RSOs as a result of mingling at the reception or working together in the workshops will go on to strengthen their RSO’s projects and create a more sustainable campus.
Student Leadership & Involvement
Any project or change that has progressed in history surely hasn’t come about through one person. Teamwork is a perquisite for achieving lasting change and is a product of its members’ willingness to serve, learn, and lead. The Forum’s primary student leaders are Henry Milander from Certificate of International Studies in Business, Alex Urasaki from ECOREPS, and Nabilla Gunawan from Net Impact UW. Surrounding these personae dramatis are the members of the RSOs and programs they represent. It is our belief that the Forum’s success rests on the involvement of students from all disciplines on campus. It was a student’s idea that bore the idea for a forum, and it has been student energy and consultation that has evolved the idea to its present state, and will continue to do so in the years to come.
Education, Outreach, & Behavior Change
The Forum will quite possibly be students’ first step in engaging with and discussing sustainability and social responsibility in a global context. The Forum offers the very practical experiences that teach students, hands-on, how to become learners in complex and sensitive fields so that when they face ambiguous situations they can act responsibly and teach others to learn how to do the same. The strategies and experience developed through this project will thus continue to help students in serving their communities.
Several learning goals the planning committee has for the students that attend the Forum are to:
Grow students’ awareness of ethical, health, business and environmental considerations in an international context through experience in practical application
Build students’ creative problem-solving ability through cases and discussions that span different cultures and national contexts
Connect students from different backgrounds to different RSOs and campus organizations that strive to continue the conversation through real application
Collaborating with diverse groups at the UW and leveraging cultural and ideological differences is important to producing an event that serves the many sub-communities at the UW. The planning committee’s members came together in part because they believe they can conduct outreach and engage with UW’s diverse sub-communities and RSOs, and in doing so, make this even a forum for students and RSOs.
Changing behavior is necessarily hard; we are, after all, creatures of habit. Notwithstanding this, the Forum seeks to take students down one step of the way in a learning process of how to effectively advocate and express their ideas for sustainability and social responsibility. Each student will bring their own background and beliefs with them of course, however, all we can hope to achieve is to contribute to a conversation that night, and encourage them to continue it the next day.
Feasibility, Accountability, & Sustainability
Each planning committee member has experience with outreach and large event planning, and a familiarity with the Forum’s key concepts of social responsibility and sustainability in global leadership. Be it through planning the Global Health Business Case Competition, a national conference on UN MDGs in Indonesia, or presiding over the ECOREPS program, it is our collective experience that has guided, and will continue to guide our efforts and ambitions for the Forum.
While we each hold each other accountable for our commitments and action items, we still have regular check-ins with our mentors at the Office of Sustainability (Sean Schmidt) and Global Business Center (Theresa Maloney), the latter of which helps with logistics and administrative support. We also look forward to working closely with CSF staff if awarded a small grant in order to ensure funds are used properly, as well as to share any ideas on how to improve the forum or post-event efforts.
Institutionalizing the Forum and its values is the very task students who attend our discussions and forum will be charged with when they go on to advocate for responsible leadership in their own organizations. However, we the planning committee plan to use this first year’s results in determining how best we move towards institutionalizing the project. It is planned that CISB’s leadership team for 2018-2019 will have a Responsible Global Leadership chairpersonship who will represent CISB in the annual forum and ensure intra-program events and discussions continue to address and incorporate CSR and sustainability.
We, the planning committee, also plan to develop an ECOREPS position over the spring and summer quarters to continue leading campus-wide discussions on responsible leadership. In the long-term, this project’s goal is to establish a Center for CSR, and offer a minor open to any UW student, similar to SeattleU and UW-Tacoma’s centers. This will not be an overnight process. The fact that initiatives like the Global Reporting Initiative and the Paris Climate Accord are still being improved demonstrates how positive change must be doggedly pursued. Support from this grant will help ensure this dogged pursuit continues long after the members of this Forum’s planning committee graduate.
Through community engagement, hands-on work with questions of ethics and CSR, and the chance to foster deep relationships with extraordinary people, we believe this project will stay with the UW community for years to come, and better prepare students to be responsible leaders in their careers, and operate therein successfully.
Estimated Project Budget
Total Planned Expenses: $1420
Venue Fee ($140)
2 Poster boards (1 for advertising, 1 for day-of event details - $70)
Catering of Food and Drink for 150 people ($1000)
Parking permits for speakers ($100)
20 color tabloids ($100)
Quarter sheets for advertising ($10)
Planning Committee Meeting Timeline (Mondays 3:30-4:30pm)
1/29, 2/12, 2/26, 3/12, 3/26, 4/2, 4/15
1/29 - Reach out to Speakers
2/7 - Finalize logo and promo materials
- Listserv blurbs, quarter sheets, full size posters (print and digital)
2/8 - Finalize Facebook event page and make public
2/9 - Increase Outreach Efforts
- Share and promote event on Facebook
- Deliver quartersheet handouts to advising offices and desks
- Contact school listservs (GBC, JSIS, etc)
- Advertise event on Trumba
2/26 - Addend RSVP google form to Facebook event and promo materials
2/28 - Finalize Speaker List
3/28 - Finalize Volunteer List
- Set-up, Room Leads, Clean-up
4/4 - Global Leadership Forum (Manage Day-of Logistics)
4/6 - Send out Feedback surveys to Volunteers, Participants, and Speakers
4/15 - Planning Committee Meeting to assess efforts and determine path forward for