MBA students from universities across the globe are at the Sauder School of Business this week to learn about innovation in the clean technology sector.

Sauder is hosting its first Global Network Week after joining the Global Network for Advanced Management, a partnership between top business schools, last summer. GNAM’s network weeks have a reciprocal arrangement: Sauder delivers an intensive week-long course open to students from other GNAM member schools, while MBA students at Sauder’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School have been flying across the globe taking comparable courses at partner universities this month.

There are 27 students (including five UBC MBA students) from universities spanning five continents taking the course, called "Clean Energy and Green Infrastructure – Innovation at the nexus of politics and society." The course is led by Associate Professor James Tansey, executive director of the Sauder School of Business Centre for Social Innovation and Impact Investing, and Associate Professor Walter Mérida, director of UBC’s Clean Energy Research Centre.

“At UBC, we’re especially well-positioned to lead a course about renewable energy, given our location in British Columbia, a hub for both conventional and alternative energy industries,” Tansey says.

“There’s a growing recognition in the business community of the importance of sustainable resource development. It’s key for firms to find innovative ways to reduce their environmental footprint and appeal to an increasingly environmentally-conscious public,” he says.

The students will be learning about what UBC is doing to make its campus a living laboratory in clean technology innovation. The programming for the week includes a tour of UBC’s green buildings and infrastructure such as the CIRS Living Building project, the bioenergy facility, a waste-to-energy converter and a smart grid energy storage system.

The class will also be discussing climate policy by looking at policies such as B.C.’s carbon tax and the piecemeal nature of how carbon regulation systems are being developed.

Over three weeks in March, there are 18 Network Weeks happening around the world, involving over 600 MBA students. GNAM is a partnership of 27 business schools, and was spearheaded by the Yale School of Management as a means to integrate more international experience into graduate business education.


Photo source: Global Network for Advanced Management