Rutgers University announced Tuesday it is launching the Rutgers Institute for Corporate Social Innovation, aimed to prepare current and future business students for the opportunities and demands associated with sustainable development and shared value creation.
RICSI was founded by Rutgers graduate Gary M. Cohen. Cohen, who currently serves as executive vice president, global health for Becton, Dickinson and Co., intends to contribute $1 million to the Rutgers University Foundation to establish the new institute.
The RICSI will establish new coursework into the Rutgers Business School curriculum to prepare students for successful business ventures in sustainable organizations that are financially, environmentally and socially responsible.
“Throughout my career at BD, I’ve had the privilege of working in a company that is purpose-driven, highly successful and strongly oriented toward achieving positive impact on society. I’ve learned through these experiences that creating positive social impact is not at odds with strong business performance, rather, it is a key enabler to the long-term success and sustainability of companies,” Cohen said. “The business sector has the potential to drive substantial progress in addressing many of the world’s most important problems, and external stakeholders including investors are demanding more of business leaders than at any time in the past. This is a perfect opportunity for Rutgers to advance these practices by preparing current and future business leaders for these important challenges. And it can be a pathway to a fulfilling, purpose-filled life for future business executives.”
“The business sector has the capacity to apply its expertise to some of the most pressing societal issues facing the world today,” said Robert Barchi, president, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. “It is our job to equip future business leaders with not only the knowledge and skills to succeed in business, but also the mindset needed to be a force for positive change.”
Coursework from RICSI will include classes on sustainable business management, development ethical business models, social and green accounting, driving business through positve societal change and ecological and behavioral economics.
The new institute will be housed within the Rutgers Business School’s located in Newark and New Brunswick.
“We are putting together a strong team of highly motivated business school faculty and working with other schools at Rutgers to instill corporate social innovation into our curriculum and classroom teaching,” said Lei Lei, Rutgers Business School dean. “The establishment of the Rutgers Institute for Corporate Social Innovation will allow us to strengthen and sustain our goal of preparing students for leadership in these important competencies and practices.”