The newly conceived MBS International Week, which was supposed to bring together various international partner universities at Munich Business School for a joint lecture series, had to be cancelled last year due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. But the planned topic of “Responsibility in Business” was too appealing to simply let it gather dust in a drawer. And so Munich Business School, Université du Quebéc à Montréal and Zagreb School of Economics and Management teamed up for a joint online edition of International Week from March 16 to 18, 2021. The online setting also added another new component: this year, not only students, faculty and staff of Munich Business School but also those of the partner universities represented were able to participate, thus coming together for a kind of global online lecture. Besides lectures on various aspects of Responsibility in Business, the schedule included information sessions by the International Centers of the respective universities to provide an insight into the universities as well as exchange and study abroad programs.
The host university made the start. In his lecture “Responsibility in Business: Corporate Social Responsibility in Family Firms”, MBS Professor Dr. Thomas Röhm gave an overview of CSR, family businesses and their connection and shared his own experience of working in a family firm. He also introduced the current research on CSR in family firms, although there are only very few publications in this field.
With the lecture “Higher Purpose: How Companies Create Value Through Values”, MBS Professor Dr. Christian Schmidkonz led over to happiness research, shared with the students some practical activities for more happiness in everyday life and finally showed, based on two companies Patagonia and Ecosia, why a higher purpose is important for companies and what contribution it can make to a better life on our planet.
On the second day of the MBS International Week, we went to the other side of the globe, to Canada. In his lecture “What Norms for Smart Buildings?”, Dr. Patrick Lecomte, professor at the Université du Quebéc à Montréal, gave an overview of current trends both in the real estate industry and in technology, clarified the difference between intelligent and smart buildings, and explained which problems still exist for smart buildings, especially with regard to safety. He then provided insight into current scoring methodologies for smart buildings, including their benefits and gaps.
Lecomte’s colleague Prof. Dr. Mark Purdon addressed the topic of “Climate and Transport Policy in California and Quebec” in his presentation. He provided information about the carbon market in California and Quebéc and shared how additional policies (can) help with carbon reduction.
On the third and last day of the lecture series, it was back to Europe. In his lectures “Leadership, Intrinsic Motivation & ‘Good Life’”, Prof. Dr. Borna Jalsenjak from Zagreb School of Economics and Management provided various definitions and approaches to the three titled elements. He made his session highly interactive and engaged participants in a discussion to learn more about their ideas. He concluded by presenting a new model for the self-determination theory in the workplace.
Many thanks to all partner universities and speakers for this informative and inspiring MBS International Week 2021. We are already looking forward to further editions!