Extension Location

The Exchange, a place for communities to shape ideas and solutions together, to make our cities and regions better places to live, work and learn. Located in Centenary Square in Birmingham City Centre.

Strategies for Creating Sustainable and Responsible Practices

The Exchange – University of Birmingham, City centre, Birmingham, UK

September 16, 2022


Probably the largest of all grand challenges facing businesses globally, especially in the medium to longer term, is how to develop practices that are more sustainable and responsible in response to climate change and related issues such as inequality and human rights violations. The United Nations’ sustainable development goals (SDGs) are perhaps the most prominent effort to formulate specific objectives for tackling these problems. Meeting these goals and making progress requires transcending organizational boundaries and national borders and openness is therefore a key mechanism for achieving this.

Organizations are using different strategies to address market concerns for more responsible business in both their national and transnational operations. These include, inter alia, cooperative strategies where they collaborate with other firms or stakeholders for social innovation, use of innovative tools for tracing the value chain, and proposals for more circular options in their services by using recycled material and recycling their products. Such strategies appear powerful for tackling societal needs, in both developed and developing countries.

Cooperative strategy has been highlighted in the United Nations’ SDGs as the means and mechanism for delivering sustainable development. It can be employed to realize innovation aimed at delivering social impacts. The commitment of multinational enterprises in engaging and cooperating with market or non-market actors in host countries (notably in emerging or less developed countries) is especially imperative for the attainment of societal goals of SDGs.

The purpose of this extension is to take stock of what we have learned about strategies companies use to create sustainable and responsible practices and propose an agenda for what must follow next. That includes continuing the scholarly discussion on how larger and smaller companies adopt sustainable practices in their strategies and how organizations orchestrate resources and develop capabilities to enable the transition towards a more sustainable future. Moreover, what might be some of the enablers as well as the inhibitors of such practices on organizational and institutional levels and across different contexts? We seek to bring together a number of leading strategy scholars with an interest in this area, as well as UK-based scholars from outside business schools and thought leading practitioners from companies and potentially non-governmental organizations or the public sector who have actually worked with sustainable and responsible practices. There will also be opportunities for members of the audience to interact with these people. Participants will have an opportunity to discuss their work in a roundtable session with well-established scholars. If you would like to participate in a roundtable discussion, please submit an extended abstract or working paper to Veselina Stoyanova, email: no later than 5th September, 2022. The details of each roundtable will be circulated via email on 9th September, 2022. Both theoretical and empirical papers are welcome!



Extension Organizers

picture of Alison E. Holm
Alison E. Holm
Nova School of Business & Economics
picture of Linda Hsieh
Linda Hsieh
University of Birmingham
picture of Michael Mol
Michael Mol
Copenhagen Business School & University of Birmingham
picture of Veselina Stoyanova
Veselina Stoyanova
University of Birmingham

Tentative Schedule

9.30   Opening and Welcome Address by Deputy Dean of Birmingham Business School, Professor Finola Kerrigan

9.45 - 10.30     Jonathan Doh (Villanova University)

10.30 - 11.00   The view from business - Lee Mellor, Vice President Europe (SC Johnson) 

11.00 – 11:30   The view from business – Jim Hagemann Snabe, Chairman of the Board (Siemens) 

11.45 - 12.30 Olga Hawn (University of North Carolina) 

12.30 - 14.00   Lunch and networking

14:00 - 15.00   Guided roundtable discussions of participants’ research.

15.00 - 15:30  Steve Brammer (University of Bath)

15:30 – 16:00 Aiofe Brophy (University of Oxford)

16.15 - 16.45  How should strategy research contribute to the development of sustainable and responsible practices? Panel discussion.

17.00 onwards  Drinks and Dinner