The Conversation: Business Schools Should Focus on Sustainability, Not Profit

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

According to Professor Landrum of Chicago’s Loyola University, Business Schools are spending too much effort teaching students how to run a profitable business.

US business schools failing on climate change

April 21, 2017 5.34am AEST

Author: Nancy E. Landrum, Professor of Sustainable Business Management, Loyola University Chicago

Coca-Cola and Nestlé have recently closed facilities, and Starbucks is bracing for a global shortage of coffee – all due to effects from climate change. Climate change impacts every resource used by businesses: from agriculture, water, land and energy to workers and the economy. No business will be untouched.

As a researcher and professor of business management, I have found that sustainable business courses across the U.S. do not align with the scientific consensus that we need radical change to avert disastrous consequences of climate change.

These future business leaders are not being prepared for the climate change challenges their companies are certain to face.

Reducing carbon emissions is the most common sustainability goal for companies. Many companies do this by becoming more energy efficient and reducing waste. But, as a whole, corporate sustainability efforts are best described as business as usual, with only small gradual improvements being made. Businesses are simply failing to grasp the deep change that is needed.

Companies need to work within this scientific “carbon budget.” There is, indeed, a small group of businesses setting ambitious targets that are consistent with the science.

For our research, we studied 51 of the hundreds of business programs in the U.S. We found that when an introductory sustainable business course is offered, it often remains an elective in the business school curriculum. Only a few business schools offer minors, majors, certificates or graduate degrees in sustainability management or sustainable business.

The 51 schools in our study are actually at the forefront of training students in environmental sustainability – that is, compared to the majority of business schools, which do not offer sustainability coursework at all. What we found is that even these schools are doing a poor job of preparing their students for the future.

Future business leaders must be equipped with the scientific understanding of how climate change is currently impacting business, how it will impact business in the future and the profound change that is required of business and industry.

Professors of these courses should assign readings that communicate the scientific need for businesses to operate in a more sustainable way to address climate change. Such readings should note that “substantial changes” in policies, institutions and practices are required.

Such education can help shift the focus and motivation for corporate sustainability away from legal compliance and corporate profit toward a need to repair the environment and live in balance with the natural world.

Read more: http://theconversation.com/us-business-schools-failing-on-climate-change-75905

Nancy’s study referenced by The Conversation;

Content trends in sustainable business education: an analysis of introductory courses in the USA

Nancy E. Landrum , (Quinlan School of Business and Institute of Environmental Sustainability, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA)

Brian Ohsowski, (Institute of Environmental Sustainability, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA

Purpose

This study aims to identify the content in introductory business sustainability courses in the USA to determine the most frequently assigned reading material and its sustainability orientation.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 81 introductory sustainable business course syllabi reading lists were analyzed from 51 US colleges and universities. The study utilized frequency counts for authors and readings and R analysis of key words to classify readings along the sustainability spectrum.

Findings

The study reveals the most frequently assigned authors and readings in US sustainable business courses (by program type) and places them along the sustainability spectrum from weak to strong. In total, 55 per cent of the top readings assigned in the sample advocate a weak sustainability paradigm, and 29 per cent of the top readings advocate a strong sustainability paradigm.

Research limitations/implications

This study focused on reading lists of introductory courses in the USA; cases, videos and supplemental materials were excluded, and the study does not analyze non-US courses.

Practical implications

The findings of this study can inform instructors of the most commonly assigned authors and readings and identify readings that align with weak sustainability and strong sustainability. Instructors are now able to select sustainable business readings consistent with peers and which advance a weak or strong sustainability orientation.

Originality/value

This is the first research to identify the most commonly assigned authors and readings to aid in course planning. This is also the first research to guide instructors in identifying which readings represent weak versus strong sustainability.

Read more: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJSHE-07-2016-0135

What I find most objectionable about Professor Landrum’s point is her demand that sustainability courses be a mandatory component of business education.

Students have the choice of whether to sign up to sustainability electives. Studying sustainability might be useful if the student wants to work for a green champion like Apple Corp. But it probably makes more sense to study business, if the student wants to work for a normal company.

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SteveC

Hello Pluto…. we have someone for you to meet.

Bryan A

Tsk Tsk Tsk, you nasty business schools, imagine the audacity of actually teaching the precepts of business in business schools, these people obviously haven’t touched their Kool-Aid yet.
C R A Z Y

Jbird

Without profit a business is unsustainable.

george e. smith

An MBA degree has destroyed more companies than it has created.
G

wally

Yep, here we go again, “carbon” rather than CO2.
As if we’re all inhaling lumps of coal,

george e. smith

Well without profit, there is NO sustainability.
One of the first US colonies eschewed profit, and came close to all starving.
Parasitism only works until you find where you put the fly swatter.
G

Karen

Ah, sweet irony. Without profit, there is no tax revenue, and therefore no EPA, fed, state and local governments, government workers unions of all levels fighting for a mélange of advocacy issues, etc., etc., etc.

brians356

“I have to go now, Duane, because I’m due back on the planet Earth.”

the only truly sustainable human activity is poverty.
everything else consumes resources, most of which are finite because planet earth is finite, and no process can be 100% efficient. even if one was to totally recycle solar panels to make new solar panels, eventually you would run out of usable materials and be left with 100% waste.

vukcevic

Precisely, the aim of the extreme ‘environmentalists’, getting rid of the world’s population.

Interesting thought experiment. Since we have no experience with this eventuality, we might also imagine a future with new technologies that converted atom A to atom B, dirt to gold, for example (not that gold is all that useful.) But then we’d have the Left inciting panic over the lack of dirt.

without profit, plants and animals go extinct, because they do not have the excess resources required to create the next generation.
when an organism has enough to sustain life and no more, the organism eventually dies without successfully reproducing. When all individuals of a species suffer the same fate, the species goes extinct.

joelobryan

They might as well say, “and forget about capitalism and market-based economies too. The most successful economic scheme ever.”
There may indeed be a coffee bean shortage *some day*, but it ^will not* be due to too much CO2 fertilizer in the air or “too much” milder temperatures.
When it ocurrs, It will be due to market forces shifting prices due to supply and demand. A supply controlled by acres/hectares cultivated, by rational human farmers responding to market price fluctuations that can take several years to adjust to.
It is the same old story, new cause. Crop shortages occurred throughout history. Only now, everything from climatism study authors is attributed to too much CO2. The best explanation is it is simply to ride the climate gravy train grant funding by the study authors. If it is climate change, no critical thought skils needed. The perfect Millenial decision tree.

Hugs

I wrote a long piece and then realized this is just communism and there is little new a say about it. Don’t be daft, don’t be a communist.

Bob boder

Except this is communism that they market can take care of, how many of these kids do you think will actually be-able to keep their jobs? If they do how long will the business they work for last? Then how many kids will want to go to these schools? The key is to get the government out of financing these universities, then they too will have to bow to the market.

RockyRoad

This reminds me of the competition in world-wide gold production near the end of the Soviet Union era, at which time South Africa ranked #1 and the Soviets, cost be damned, boasted they were the #2 producer.
When the Soviet Union fell, they finally put a “sharp pencil” to their gold production and found that fully a THIRD of all the ounces they produced annually cost them MORE to produce than the spot price of gold!
Duh!
In effect, the Soviets were taking precious capital from other endeavors to maintain that coveted #2 spot in world-wide gold production. Consequently, those gold mines that were losing money were quickly suspended because even those silly Russian Commies finally realized it was a stupid thing to do.
I’ve heard that Soviet-era communism fell but in truth it just sneaked into the West and rebranded itself as “sustainability”. And true to its implementation during the Soviet era, it’s all just one big economic Ponzi scheme.

MarkW

Bob, the problem is when these kids lose their jobs and start whining to politicians that it isn’t fair that their sustainable company went under, while those evil companies that only care about profits continue to survive.
The political answer will be to subsidize those companies that meet the politicians definition of “sustainable”.
Better to cut this monster off at the knees before it has a chance to get entrenched.

Correct. Ctrl-Left.

Bob boder

Rocky Road
Reagan had about a thousand jokes about the cleverness of communist Russian and their economic system. Take few seconds a google them, there are great.

Bob boder

MarkW
Unfortunately of course you are correct and then the market will take care of that too by flushing our entire system down the tubes.

MarkW

As someone who would rather not go down with the system, I’ll continue to fight.

DonM

I wish Hugo Chavez were still alive to see the fruits of his labors.
I wish others had the ability to learn from his mistakes.
(cause or effect? … are they daft because they of the socialist bent, or are they of the socialist bent because they are daft?)

Mickey Reno

Ooooh, sustainability really presses my buttons. A few profanities follow. Apologies to the mods.
I have news for these goddamned sustainability experts.” You have NO CLUE what is and what is not sustainable. Try to imagine in your feeble little zombie brains what an economist from 100 years ago (1917, Verdun, the Somme, etc.) would have thought was headed humanity’s way. Trying to be futurist is a difficult task, with no possible path to any outcome of any kind. Because you don’t know what the economy of the future is going to be. You don’t know jack. Better you adopt the temporary aberration of humility of ClimateGate hockey team player Ed Cook when he said “we know f**k all.” Do us all a big favor. Close down your stupid graduate schools of sustainability and try to find productive employment.

DonM

…applause…

Dave Fair

The hilarity of it all is the absence of any “climate harm” to existing businesses, contrary to the author’s claim of current impacts.
Engendering fear in the population of a future harm is a time-tested way to riches.

Dave Fair

Included is also lies about what is going on.

Bryan A

Of course it could also be directly proportional to the quantity of Starbucks franchises in the world currently at 24,300 stores.

rogerthesurf

I think that we shdrumould all jump off the nearest cliff now. Nancy Lundrum hopefully will lead us.
Can anyone really be this crazy?
If everyone follows her warped doctrine, there will be no businesses and no supply of anything – hence her dream will come true.
Hurrr? (The toolman has the only answer.
Roger
http://www.thedemiseofchristchurch.com

The only sustainability course I can see making any sense in a business school is one dealing with how to handle the myriad of regulation likely to be seen. Knowing that these idiots will throw up roadblocks with every chance can be valuable to know.

With idiots like this, who needs enemies?

Goldrider

I’m very glad one nephew is in a Merchant Marine academy (no snowflakes!) and the other is an apprentice plumber. Nowadays a “college education” is hanging a millstone of idiocy around your neck that will take 30 years to unlearn. Witness the meltdown of the Democratic Party!

Bryan A

With idiots like these, the government needs an enema

rtj1211

20 years ago, when I did my MBA, one of the interesting areas was learning about all the legal forms of organisation that can be set up to run an enterprise. By no means all of them have maximising shareholder value as the overarching goal.
My definition of a sustainable business is one which remains solvent for 20 years or more. There is a difference between maximising profits and creating surpluses, after all. Surpluses are necessary in the real world as every business experiences short-term difficulties and needs a cash buffer to ride it out.
The balance which always has to be struck is between reinvesting profits in the business, retaining a strong cash reserve and paying shareholders dividends. The other balance is between profits achieved and salaries paid to staff and Directors. In a fast-moving competitive environment, reinvestment is essential, even if the investment is significantly in marketing and advertising rather than NPD.
However, it is a uniquely Anglo-Saxon position to assume that only shareholders matter. In other value systems, employees and local community health also matter, and it is not just self-righteous business owners who can create community health….
What is silly in this discussion is the unevaluated postulate that climate change will wipe out every business.

rogerthesurf

Climate Change wont wipe out every business but this “sustainable” doctrine is designed to do just that.
Check out this document I found on the UN website. Habitat is one of a number of “Sustainability” “initiatives” formulated by the UN.
https://thedemiseofchristchurch.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/unitednations-conference-on-human-settlements_habitat1.pdf
Check page 8 in particular – the high lights are mine.
Cheers
Roger
http://www.thedemiseofchristchurch.com

Rhoda R

It reads like communist wet dream.

Robber

Would be good if they ran some courses on how business works for those in government employment.

SAMURAI

Wow….
“Sustainable” is Leftist Newspeak for totalitarianism and government command/control economies…
It’s feckless political hacks that ultimately decide what “sustainable” economies can and cannot do through: regulations, tax policies, mandates, price fixing, labor laws, monetary controls, interest rate manipulation, money printing, subsidies, cronism, etc., etc.,
All such totalitarian economies can ultimately “accomplish” is to create awful dystopian economies and societies of shared pain and despair. The feckless tyrants and their cronies live well, but the rest of society suffers from tyrannical oppression and poverty.
Just let the free market decide what and how goods are produced and how limited resources are best utilized and allocated, with all parties protected by just, reasoned, and fair product liability and commercial laws and pollution/production standards. The market can figure out the rest…
God save us from tyrants that wish to save us from ourselves and are “only doing what they think is best”… screw them…

wws

A load of peasants living in mud huts, with the Lord in his Manor and the Clergy in their Cathedrals is “Sustainable”. Sustained for several centuries, in fact.
Not really surprising that the wanna be lords and wanna be clergy want to go back to that time.

Kurt in Switzerland

Should be a required part of Gaia seminary curriculum.
Cost: benefit analyses are “oh so 20th Century”…

Warren Blair

Our Chinese associates love this stuff.
White men teach next gen how to be less competitive with Asia.
My prediction in less than 100-years most giants of commerce will be based in China and India.
Go for it stupid white men!

Leo Smith

Without proifit, businesses are unsustainable, There, That’s all you need to say.

Jer0me

You took the words right out of my mouth there.

Richard G

I was going to post the same comment but would add: Unless the taxpayer subsidizes your losses. In that case you could continue until the taxpayer ran out of money.

Russ Wood

Want some bad examples? Look no further than California or South Africa’s “State Owned Enterprises” for tax-eating! Why, the SA Government made losses on owning a diamond mine!

jon

The most “climate Favourable” business is one that doesn’t exist. So it makes sense that they would want to train people to fail in business.

Mike the Morlock

I think a more appropriate course would be on the risks and “sustainability” of doing business in workers paradises like Venezuela.
http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2017/04/20/venezuela-seizes-gm-warning-sign-to-u-s-companies.html
michael

SAMURAI

Mike-San:
Yes, one would think the economic collapse of Venezuela would be a wake up call to Leftists, showing clearly their economic philosophies don’t work and are both unethical and immoral… but, alas.
5 years ago, my Leftists friends were singing the praises of the utopian Venezuelan Socialist economy…. Now they say, “it just needs to be tweaked a little”, if they say anything at all….
If we fail to learn the lessons of history, we’re doomed to repeat them…

Juan Slayton

Well, you gotta admit that Coke and Nestle have taken some hits. But they seem to have more urgent problems than climate change. Nothing is sustainable when the government can seize your assets and generally mess up the economy.
Venezuela just became one of the few countries in the world that does not sell Coca-Cola.
http://www.npr.org/2016/05/29/479913331/coca-cola-halts-production-in-venezuela-due-to-nation-s-sugar-shortage
Venezuelan troops occupied a Caracas warehouse complex used by local food giant Empresas Polar and Nestle to distribute food and beverages, workers and company officials said on Thursday.
http://www.cnbc.com/2015/07/30/venezuela-troops-occupy-polar-nestle-food-distribution-warehouses.html

gnomish

it’s a snooze call because they see what people will submit to with nothing more than whining.
they know for certain it takes a near death experience for a liberal apostasy.
ask danny pearl, poster boy.

Mike the Morlock

SAMURAI April 21, 2017 at 12:20 am
I agree.
It is 3:30 am as I write this, Later in Venezuela I cannot help but think what will happen there today.
This is one of those instances where it can quickly become everyone’s problem.
How do you fix something as badly broken as Venezuela?
michael

MarkW

SAMURAI, I still run into leftists who sing the praises of Cuban communism.

Jer0me

These future business leaders are not being prepared for the climate change challenges their companies are certain to face.

Lists, please. If these are “certain”, then the challenges must be well-documented somewhere.
Hint: models are not ‘evidence’.

You need to learn the language, Jer0me.
In this sort of doom-speak, “certain” means “we would like you to believe”. Facts are not permitted to intrude, other than what they deem to be facts which are in these situations … shall we say “flexible”. Documentation is absolutely forbidden. You might try to hold them to the written word!

Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

Fluctuations in coffee production is nothing to do with carbon budget but it is part of natural variability part of climate change. For example, in Ethiopia, the coffee growing region [Gore] presents a 36 year cycle in precipitation [with high rainfall variability during the above and the below average parts] — near to Sudan border [I visited this region].
Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

Bob boder

One early freeze is all it takes, if the planet is warming no need to worry about coffee production.

Griff

Very many major businesses are investing in sustainability and/or renewable energy… they do this as much to reduce costs and increase profitability as for any other reason.
go look at Walmart’s recent announcements, or Ford’s savings from reducing energy use or Johnson and Johnson, Diageo, Pepsi…

MarkW

The sad thing is that everyone of Griff’s examples have been disproven.

Dave Fair

State and Federal government regulations, tax subsidies and direct payments make any number of idiotic schemes look good, Griffie. Stick to polar bears.
Profitability reducing waste, however, is smart.

Only because they are subsidised by your taxes Griff. Just like handing profitable corporations a months pay packet every year.

Joel Snider

That’s PR, Grift.

Anytime that there is news of someone or something not focusing hard enough on Sustainability, and ‘Climate Change’, it is always Good News!

Guess what!
Another generously grant funded study with climate used to generate the dosh!
effing parasites!
!!!!!!!!

vukcevic

If it can be profitable to go green, fewer would be green with envy.
(maybe not but I thought it sounds good).

sophocles

If the winter that hasn’t let the Northern Hemisphere go yet is the climate you get with the onset of global cooling, then our good professor is already way off the `sustainability’ line. Some are predicting cold times for the next fifty years.
Hasn’t he taken on board the instability in the economy? The 2008 crash is part of a business `natural cycle.’
(It means the economists don’t know what causes it.) It seems independent of the climate and solar cycles. And it’s a company killer.
`Profit’ is the major `sustainability’ supply for any business. Sure, business needs to remain agile in the face of as many changes as possible, warming, cooling, Presidential change, elections, etc but to sacrifice `profit’ for `sustainability’ is to sacrifice `sustainability’ and the company.

Steve Fraser

I’d say, FOUNDATIONAL sustainability requirement… you do not have a sustainable business model (for long) without it. Money is business nutrition.

Moderately Cross of East Anglia

This is really about creating a whole new academic industry of Sustainability Studies to match the absurd expansion in tenured posts in climate studies; just to screw things up even more.

craig

As a holder of an MBA, why would I put my equity and capital upfront and risk it all just to be ‘sustainable’? Just whose purpose am I serving here and knowing that I would be wasting my time in pursuit of profit, why even bother trying at all? Imagine if all business like minded person decided to not spend or close shop because it’s not worth it? The economy would be completely ####ed and you can kiss goodbye to a cohesive functioning society as we know it.

Bob boder

Ah yes but with the economic crash and the destruction of the capitalist society comes the inevitable mass starvation and depopulation of the world. A communist/environmentalist dream come true. People living in huts in tune with nature with no strife, no worries, no problems. The dream come true, we will all love each other and mother nature will provide everything we need, No one will have reason to fight over resources and we will all get along and simply discuss our issues away with each and everyone of us happy to do for others first and life will be wonderful again just like it was millions of years ago. See Craig now you should understand why you should think about sustainability first and not silly profits.

gnome

It’s true though, about global warming, if it happens, making coffee scarcer and more expensive.
As the world becomes wealthier, demand will rise and even though the land suitable for coffee-growing will increase, it is a labour-intensive activity and people will be less willing to work at it for the small wages they get now.

Archer

It’s labour-intensive at the moment because it’s cheaper to hire third-world workers than it is to automate the process. As demand continues to rise and the supply of cheap labour decreases, automation will inevitably occur.
In fact, it’s already happening.

Dave Fair

Gnome, I’m sorry, but it is not true that global warming, as modeled in IPCC climate models, will result in “making coffee scarcer and more expensive.” They only say that some areas will get slightly dryer and some slightly wetter and the globe slightly warmer. They don’t, however, consider the beneficial impacts of CO2 fertilization.
Extreme activists twist any projected changes into scary scenarios.

lewispbuckingham

Cola consumption in the US, home of the fattest people on earth, with attendant sugar consumption, is at a 30 year low.
It looks as if the climate change we are to fear is on a win win path, controlling addictive caffeine and sugar consumption while at the same time slowing down Santa Claus, a Coca Cola product.
http://fortune.com/2016/03/29/soda-sales-drop-11th-year/
The biggest problem for business is honesty in dealings, particularly with the vulnerable, neurotic, easily led and exploitable.
The climate change debate is now at a stage where business leaders and educators need to look carefully at the difference between projections of climate and reality before telling students that things are bad for their futures.
The credibility gap just keeps widening.
What Loyola and all Jesuit institutions need to train are ‘Men for Others’,students who want to assist their clients in any way possible, so become people oriented.
They need to be level headed, fair and competent.
Those are the leadership skills needed.
Were Loyola to at least offer a ‘sustainability’ course it needs a ‘red team’ and real debate.
Make it a realistic course and it won’t be ignored as an option.
Teach them how to think.
Make it compulsory and students will attend and serve up what the lecturer wants.

Berényi Péter

I wonder how an unprofitable business is supposed to be sustainable.

Another Ian

“I’m from the government and I’m here to help you”

Bob boder

Because once it fails it can no longer hurt mother nature of course.

Curious George

There are whole unprofitable systems, based on Marxism. They sustain themselves, look at Cuba and Venezuela. I wonder why the esteemed Professor is based in Chicago, not Caracas or Havana.

MarkW

I’ve always wondered why those people who are most enthusiastic about communism never show any interest in moving to a place where they actually have communism.

Another Ian

MarkW
Remember that the further you are from the subject the more you know about it /s

tom0mason

Business should be about maximizing profit but sustainability has them spooked.
Sustainability is the powerful all new mirage, ghost, and imaginary comfort blanket of good intentions, all rolled into one, that every modern business now needs.
Business has to follow the bottom line but if push comes to shove then we at United Narnia offer hyper-imagineered positive outcomes with Narnianian Sustainability Endeavors Dept., and Chronycles of Narnia Publishing.
‘Narnianian Sustainability Endeavors Dept. International™’ has all good intentions pre-hyper-imagineered for you, and just awaiting your bespoke specification for our prefabricators seamlessly nail together.
And when you sign-up with Narnianian Sustainability Endeavors Dept. you will be automatically recorded and published in our Chronycles of Narnia at no extra expense! So, please sign-up now for all the sustainability blather and free anal annual ring.
Call today at UN.org
Narnianian Sustainability Endeavors Dept. International™ is owed by United Narnia and is part of the Goresorosclinton International family of inbred companies.

richardscourtney

Eric Worrall:
It seems that somebody should inform Chicago’s Loyola University that the sustainability of a business is determined by its profitability and nothing else. Profitable businesses make money so grow and unprofitable businesses cease to exist.
Circumstances constantly change so long-term businesses maintain their profitability by adjusting to alterations of supplies and/or demands. Other businesses come into being and close as circumstances change to permit or remove their profitability. Any “potential climate change challenges” are merely potential causes of alterations of supplies and demands.
Providing Loyola University with this elementary economic information would remove all reason for the university to provide the course operated by Prof Landrum so the university could free her to do something more useful such as flipping burgers.
Richard

Bob boder

A lesson in capitalism thanks Richard.

richardscourtney

Bob boder:
I stated basic economic principles, not economic principles.
Richard

richardscourtney

I intended
I stated basic economic principles, not political principles.
Sorry.
Richard

rwoollaston

Great points.
It’s very simple. Investors won’t invest in businesses that put sustainability (particularly this warped version of sustainability) before profit.
Why does the world increasingly remind me of the period in Harry Potter when Dolores Umbridge was the emissary of the Ministry of Magic?

Curious George

To sustain a business you need a profitability – or guns. That’s what the Left recommends.

richardscourtney

Curious George:
Guns don’t enable business profits except for organised crime. The Left is not in favour of organised crime: libertarians (e.g. Al Capone, the Kray twins, etc.) practice it.
Richard

Curious George

Richard, look at Venezuela where hungry rightists get killed while looting bakeries.

This makes perfect sense considering how many environmental groups are focusing on profits.

In 50 years what is now considered essential will be irrelevant; thank you capitalism.

“Sustainable” is a very sketchy and vague concept when applied to something other than the
fish industry. It has no logical connection to CO2 emissions and one can argue that it is meaningless in a field where technology is involved. It also has no value economically as there are no “sustainable” power plants : solar panels die of old age at an early age, as do windmills. So
the economic argument in favor of wind/solar due to the sustainability of wind and sun makes no sense when the “unsustainable” oil and natural gas reserves outlast the solar panels and windmills
and produce far cheaper energy – money saved that could be used for improving the human condition. And in the case of uranium/Thorium nuclear reactors, their fuel source will not be depleted in any foreseeable future, so how can a “sustainable” fuel source have any advantage
here either, even disregarding economics? A nuclear reactor has a sustained lifespan at least three times longer than a solar panel or wind turbine’s practical lifespan. And its geographical environmental footprint is thousands of times smaller than equivalent solar/wind farms. So geographically, solar/wind does nor sustain our land area even remotely as well as nuclear (or gas or coal) plants. Wind/solar will require more and more land area as energy requirements increase, while adding additional nuclear/coal/gas power plants require very little additional land area, sometimes none at all, when added to existing plants. Environmental extremists toss around “sustainable” as if it were some Holy Grail, but can’t even make a case for prefering it to “unsustainable” power sources, from any viewpoint.

commieBob

One of the foundations of sustainability is doing more with less. That is already happening. Exhibit A is the smart phone.

The digital revolution isn’t just introducing novel ways to amuse ourselves, it’s rapidly displacing a wide variety of “revenue-generating” products and services: typewriters, newspapers, magazines, books, maps, cameras, film development, camcorders, yellow pages, music players, VCRs and DVD players, encyclopedias, landline telephones, television and radio broadcasts, calendars, address books, clocks and watches, calculators, travel agents, travelers checks, and so forth. link

The process is called ephemeralization or dematerialization. Here’s an interesting example:

Many manufacturing processes start with a block of metal, which is then cut down by machines to produce a final component. As a result, a 1-tonne aircraft engine may be manufactured from about 6.5 tonnes of metal. The opportunities to dematerialise using 3D printing are therefore considerable, as material usage could be cut by more than 80%. link

We are moving toward sustainability naturally. The perverse thing is that, if we bork the economy by imposing ‘sustainability’, we will become less sustainable. The technological innovation we need to improve sustainability requires a healthy economy.

Bruce Cobb

You are confusing innovation, which is laser-focused on profitability, with “Sustainability”, which is an ideology rooted in Ehrlichian nonsense, with the added idiotic notion that we should “save energy” because it’s good for “the planet” (or something).

commieBob

You are confusing innovation, … with “Sustainability” …

Not really. Erlich and the Club of Rome have it wrong. A long time ago the Malthusians predicted that we would deplete our resources and civilization would collapse. Buckminster Fuller pointed out that it wasn’t going to happen. Every time we run out of a material we find a way to use something else. He also pointed out that we can build almost everything using less material.
Sustainable just means we can keep going. People like David Suzuki would have us believe that it has some mystical deeper meaning. They’re wrong.
Malthus was wrong because he didn’t account for the fact that the free market economy adapts to changing conditions. Suzuki is wrong because he doesn’t account for the fact that a command economy doesn’t adapt and eventually comes crashing down around its own ears.

Mike the Morlock

commieBob April 21, 2017 at 3:47 am
Oh, and it will get better wait until Three D printers are common in the average house hold. Need a replacement widget? just program it and print. Want a custom door knocker – design it program it and print.
I will probably be investing in one for my boys to learn on in the near future.
michael

commieBob

I fully agree with getting a 3d printer for the kids. Just banging out stuff that they download isn’t real educational. On the other hand, if you can get the kids using 3d modelling software, you’re giving them a real leg up.
Here’s a link to some free software. I haven’t used any of it so you’re on your own. Being free means you can try several programs. Have fun!
My favorite 3d printer fail was the guy who printed a new handle for his espresso pot. It melted immediately. 🙂 link Every affordable 3d printer I am aware of prints meltable plastic. The results aren’t very strong and they melt easily. On the other hand, for building and modifying kids toys, I think cheap 3d printers are awesome.

MarkW

I’ve read of recent attempts to make 3d printers that can work with metal. All are still in the early laboratory stages.

commieBob

MarkW April 21, 2017 at 7:08 am
I’ve read of recent attempts to make 3d printers that can work with metal. …

It’s a ‘thing’ in the aircraft industry. 3d printed titanium parts are lighter, cheaper, and just as strong as conventionally machined parts. link

Boeing is no stranger to using 3D-printed parts (it’s previously deployed them in jet engines and its space taxis), but Norsk says its products are the first approved by the FAA as structural, load-bearing components. Later this year, the company expects to get its entire manufacturing process approved, rather than each individual part, allowing it to produce even more parts for Boeing and other firms.

Patents are expiring and 3d printing is getting cheaper. It won’t be too long before 3d printers turn up in your local machine shop.

EricHa

3-D printing glass objects
https://phys.org/news/2017-04-d-glass.htmlcomment image
A team of researchers at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany has developed a way to 3-D print objects made of pure glass.

MarkW

About 20 years ago I read about a device for 3D printing houses. It sprayed concrete to form the walls and was jacked up as the walls got taller.

Patrick MJD

“MarkW April 21, 2017 at 2:11 pm”
No, that was more a way of building tall regular structures like chimneys. Very efficient.

Steve Fraser

This is the difference between subtractive and additive synthesis, like sculpting vs casting.

MarkW

Doing more with less is called efficiency, something every company that has ever existed strives for.
Those that don’t end up losing market share to those that do.

Owen in GA

So, what this study is saying is: “If you are a business hiring manager, DON’T HIRE ANYONE WHO GRADUATES FROM LOYOLA SCHOOL OF BUSINESS!” I am glad they made resume screening just that much easier.

Plus many. From an MBA not from Loyola. There are exactly two good Bschools,in Chicago: Northwestern and Chicago. Used to hire from both. Never from Loyola.

Dave Fair

Working my way up to the top in government and government-influenced businesses, I ran across a number of slick suck ups. Almost without fail, the posers had the latest management book of the month displayed prominently on their desks. All the buzz words!
Now, all the drones in government and other large bureaucracies have hopped on the climate change gravy train. That will change only when the government subsidies and mandates go away.

lewispbuckingham

This brings back memories of my own education in a Jesuit school.
When discussing where the leaders of the US sent their sons, in the Kennedy era, they chose universities that were not Catholic.
It was not just the ‘Cathlophobia’ prejudice of the time, but the impression that the products of such universities were not fit to compete adequately in the modern, multicultural, world.
Hopefully that may change.

Curious George

Not with Professor Landrum aboard.

tadchem

Businesses that cannot make a profit are not sustainable. Governments that steal businesses’ profits kill businesses.

Curious George

Ronald Reagan on a role of government:
If it moves, tax it. If it still moves, regulate it. If it stops moving, subsidize it.

How many businesses has she run? My guess is zero. Next question, why would I want to take a course from someone with zero experience?

Suicide. (What other word for killing oneself, figuratively, in business, would one choose?)
I might also add, straight-line projections (extrapolations) into-the-future have ALWAYS worked so well too. Within out own LIFETIMES we have seen several radical changes that none except the sci-fi community foresaw or projected, like Dick Tracy’s 2-way wrist “TeeVee” …

Bruce Cobb

Any business (such as Wal Mart) claiming to be implementing “green” or “sustainable” practices are merely greenwashing, and do it solely for the PR value.

BallBounces

“Climate change impacts every[thing]…. No business will be untouched.”
If by climate change you mean the ideology of climate change, you are right. They’ll be “touched” all right. The damage caused by the ideology of climate change will cost more and do more damage to nations than actual climate change.

Tom in Florida

I would expect any of her courses would have a section on how to approach and ask your parents to allow you to come back home and live in their basement.

TA

I read where more Americans between 18 and 34 live with their parents than with a Spouse (see below), and I also read where 25 percent of these “children” who stay at home don’t work or study. I guess they just sponge. Maybe ole Trump will get some of these freeloaders a job soon. I imagine the parents would appreciate it.
http://www.breitbart.com/tech/2017/04/20/report-americans-18-34-live-parents-spouse/

Sustainability was a useful element in the design process until these clowns came along and messed it up. They have corrupted other concepts such as resilience. Anything termed “smart” isn’t.
I am a “GreenSmart” accredited designer but no longer rely on using the term. I can still practice “sustainability for the rest of us”, as long as I avoid saying that is what I am doing.

Rich Lambert

I’d suggest that the current higher education system in the USA will face a big problem with sustainability. The system keeps getting more expensive and appears to be producing a lower quality product.

Resourceguy

Speaking of which, I just came across the statistic that shows how low Vermont’s funding effort is a percent of a student’s public education bill. It’s less than 14 percent. That explains the Bernie and Hillary tactic of promising free college tuition. They want to throw it on the national debt pile where no one looks and absolve states of any funding responsibility–like Vermont.

Kenneth Kibler Gray

Only profit-making businesses are sustainable! If it loses money consistently, the business will eventually go bankrupt and cease to exist. Lose money, lose jobs. Make profit, gain jobs. It’s not rocket science.

Resourceguy

Let’s see what the business school Dean has to say about it and the institutional development officer.

Mark T

There’s nothing objectionable about this at all. Loyola is a private university that gets to choose its own teaching methodology and curriculum. After a few years of their graduates failing to compete with thiose of other schools, the market will deselect them as viable candidates. People will stop attending the (expensive) school. Problem solved.

Resourceguy

…and donations will go down because the alums will not have the wealth to spread.

MarkW

I don’t know if anyone is objecting per se.
Ridiculing on the other hand …

Butch

….The only thing liberal socialists are good at is spending “Other Peoples Money” !!

MarkW

They are also pretty good at trying to run other people’s lives.

vukcevic

OT. There is a new research claiming that the 100 Ky Milankovic cycles didn’t start about 800 Ky ago but were present during the previous 6 My, however, the mystery remains since eccentricity is the weakest cycle.

MarkW

Interesting article. Glad to see there are some scientists who are still doing real science.
Was disappointed to see the obligatory mention of global warming though.

Dave Fair

Reading the summary of their work, for the life of me I couldn’t find any mention of CO2 in their research nor findings. CO2 impacting the future Northern Hemisphere just pops up whole cloth.

Latitude

First they cleaned up the water…..then they cleaned up the air
….then realized the real money was in cleaning up the thermometers
…the war and tax on sugar sweet drinks, boko haram and upside down So American countries, hiring illegal refugees.etc……had nothing to do with it

Duane

So the “coffee study” predicts warmer temperatures AND drying in Latin America where a particular variety of coffee been is grown (arabica).
First of all, warmer temperatures are going to create a MORE humid atmosphere, not dryer. How do these “scientists” think atmospheric moisture comes from – cold continental deserts, or warm oceanic waters? Duhhhh!
Second of all, the climate is changing all the time anyway. If whatever changes that are in store for us result in negative impacts on some plant species, overall the effects will be positive with greater CO2 concentrations (i.e., “plant food”). If our horticulturists detect a particular negative impact on a particular cash crop, then markets will devote research funds and efforts to develop new strains of old species that are more tolerant of whatever change occurs (less moisture, or more … higher temps, or lower temps … more of this bug, or less of that bug … etc. etc. etc.).
That’s exactly how mankind evolved technologically over the last 10 thousand years since we moved from hunting gathering by wanderers to agricultural based societies with permanent infrastructure. We evolved and adapted and commanded our world, at least, to some degree if not totally so.

Lars P.

“Author: Nancy E. Landrum, Professor of Sustainable Business Management,”
Now if nobody would study ‘Sustainable Business Management’ than the professor job would become unsustainable isn’t it?
chiefio just had a post about ‘unlimiting’ growth here:
https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/unlimiting-growth/

Dave Fair

‘Sustainable Business Management’ is a euphemism for socialist control of the economic sector.
Academia is a hotbed for this sort of nonsense. The UN, EU and U.S. Democratic Party have also been seduced by progressive/collectivist propaganda.

Jim G1

Much better that business students, and all students for that matter, should learn some statistics and research methodology so that are not easily bullshitted by studies and research poorly designed and executed with propaganda as their main objective.

Catcracking

Well stated, I firmly believe in teaching and understanding the fundamental tool that allow one to evaluate claims and perform useful product.

MarkW

Businesses that don’t focus on profits, don’t remain in business very long.

ARW

Yes Yes – less focus on legal compliance… What a joke. Obviously this person has never worked in a company of any size.