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Corporate Sustainability: Driving Competitive Advantage and Better Performance

$3,344.00 $3,800.00 Save $456.00
Corporate Sustainability: Driving Competitive Advantage and Better Performance

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NYU Stern School of Business
44 West 4th Street
New York, NY 10012

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Corporate Sustainability: Driving Competitive Advantage and Better Performance

$3,344.00 $3,800.00 Save $456.00

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PLEASE NOTE: This program is currently being taught as a live online course. See agenda below for schedule.

Corporate leaders are confronting a growing list of environmental and social issues that pose serious risks and opportunities for their businesses.  To succeed in today’s uncertain world, managers need the skills, knowledge and tools to build a future-fit organization that has broad stakeholder support and innovative solutions to challenges such as climate change and societal inequities.  NYU Stern’s Center for Sustainable Business had developed globally recognized research and training on corporate sustainability.

Participants will learn how to identify and tackle material ESG issues, understand how to develop business strategy related to climate change and other ESG issues, receive insights into ground-breaking research on consumer purchasing of sustainable products, develop the analytical tools to monetize financial returns on different sustainability practices, understand investor trends, and be conversant with the major reporting and disclosure standards.  They will leave the course with the skills and tools needed to design and implement sustainable practices in their organization as well as improve their own career development.

Certificates and Credits

Upon completion of this course, participants will receive a Certificate of Achievement.

Program Takeaways

During this course, participants will:

  • Leadership Skills

    Develop the skills required to lead businesses in a rapidly evolving environmental, social and political ecosystem, including: system and design thinking, developing and executing strategy, managing radical transparency, balancing ESG issues and priorities, managing productivity in an era of resource constraints, and more
  • Stakeholder Engagement

    Broaden executive perspectives beyond Milton Friedman’s view that companies exist solely to deliver profits to shareholders and consider how other stakeholders in the company (i.e., customers, employees, suppliers, etc.) can be recruited as partners to help your organization succeed
  • Innovation & Efficiencies

    Develop the skills to identify and accelerate innovation in the organization by embedding the evaluation of sustainability impacts and outcomes in your products, services, and processes
  • Sustainability Roadmap

    Understand the evolution of corporate response to environmental and social issues impacting business and establish an organizational strategy by setting a sustainability vision, evaluating best practice, and outlining a sustainability roadmap
  • Make an Effective Business Case

    Participants will learn how to monetize the returns on various sustainability strategies through training and case studies in NYU Stern CSB’s cutting edge Return on Sustainability Investment methodology.

Who Should Attend

Although there are no formal education or background requirements, this course is designed for executives who meet the criteria below. While we strongly encourage global participation, please note that all courses are taught in English. Proficiency in written and spoken English is required.

  • Years of Experience

    Designed for professionals with 5+ years of work experience
  • Job Functions

    Ideal for executives across job functions who are interested in learning more about business sustainability efforts, and how to embed sustainability within their organization
  • Prerequisites

    There are no formal prerequisites for this course. The course is intended for individuals with limited exposure to corporate approaches to sustainability.


The following agenda is a sample and subject to change.

This agenda has been modified for live online instruction.

9:00 - 10:30 am ET: Session 1: Key Issues in Sustainable Business

  • What is sustainable business
  • Key economic, environmental, social and governance issues
  • Sustainable business: profitability and social impact performance
  • The sustainable consumer and consumer demand for sustainability
  • Current trends for embedding sustainability in corporate strategy

10:30 - 11:00 am ET: Break

11:00 am - 12:30 pm ET: Session 2: In-depth Case Study - Companies Setting the Standard for Embedded Sustainability

  • Characteristics of Embedded Sustainability with case examples
  • Nike: HBS case for discussion
  • 25 minute small group working session: How did Nike organize itself to deliver on sustainability? What lessons did they learn that are important to all businesses?  How should they resolve their dilemma outlined at the end of the case? 
  • 10 minute debrief

This agenda has been modified for live online instruction.

9:00 - 10:30 am ET: Session 3: ESG Materiality: Foundation for Strategy and Impact Measurement

  • Why is materiality important?
  • How to identify material ESG issues
  • Mapping an organization’s stakeholders
  • Developing a materiality matrix
  • Building blocks for a sustainability strategy
  • 30 minute small group working session on Unilever: What are the most financially material ESG issues for Unilever? Who are the company’s key stakeholders, and where do they stand on the material ESG issues. Create a materiality matrix for Unilever. Discuss the Unilever Sustainable Living 2010-2020 report.  Pick one of the three pillars to analyze.  Then discuss the prompt questions, which include:  Do the goals support the aimed for impact?  Are they material to Unilever’s business?  Anything material missing?  Do the measurement methods seem comprehensive and rigorous?   Anything vague or incomplete? 
  • 10 minute debrief

10:30 - 11:00 am ET: Break

11:00 am - 12:30 pm ET: Session 4:  Understanding Climate Change from a Business Perspective

  • Climate change trends, risks, and impacts on business
  • Understanding components of climate change strategy: e.g. science-based targets, carbon credits and offsets, internal price on carbon.
  • Climate disclosure standards, tools, and trends

This agenda has been modified for live online instruction.

9:00 - 10:30 am ET: Session 5: Sustainability as a Driver of Consumer/Employee Engagement, Operational Efficiency and Innovation

  • Trends in consumer and employee demand for sustainability
  • Exploration of sustainability driving innovation, operational efficiency, risk management
  • 20 minute small group discussion:
  • 10 minute debrief

10:30 - 11:00 am ET: Break

11:00 am - 12:30 pm ET: Session 6: The View of the Investor

  • The current state of sustainable investing
  • Unpacking different ESG investing strategies
  • Sustainable investing by asset class
  • The evidence for delivering alpha from sustainability
  • Key challenges for sustainable investing (data quality, greenwashing, regulation)

This agenda has been modified for live online instruction.

9:00 - 10:30 am ET: Session 7: Monetizing the Value of Sustainability

  • New measures for quantifying operational ESG performance
  • Turning non-financial performance into financial value
  • Quantifying the impact of ESG performance on the corporate bottom line
  • Monetizing the benefits delivered outside the company
  • Overview of exercise

10:30 - 11:00 am ET: Break

11:00 am - 12:30 pm ET: Session 8: Monetizing the Value of Sustainability

  • 30 minute small group session: working on cases.
  • 30 minute report out to group; large group discussion
  • Debrief and wrapup: Prompt:  what is one take-away you will bring to your company and act on?

Customer Reviews

Based on 1 review
Kathleen M Camilli
Great intro course on Sustainability for executives

I took the Sustainability Training for Business Leaders Course with Tensie Whelan and Kevin Eckerle on October 17 and 18th, 2019. There was some foundational reading before the course. I thought it was a great overview of what we as business leaders can do to make sustainability work in our companies. I met senior executives from all over the world working in for-profit and not-for-profit enterprises. The course allows for deep note-taking, without mathematics. Easy to pass along to colleagues who might want to know the basics. We worked in small groups on case studies, and problems, and developed some connections with classmates over these activities and the breaks. The staff was extremely helpful, and the participants were collegial. I highly recommend this course.