Hult’s Joanne Lawrence proposes a universal framework for teaching how global businesses should conduct their day-to-day operations to be both socially responsible and strategically competitive.

(BOSTON – June 14, 2012) Globally Responsible Leadership: Managing According to the UN Global Compact has been launched just as societal expectations of business are growing and economic challenges are intensifying, making the need for ethical, courageous and enlightened leadership ever greater.

Today’s interconnected society is increasingly interested in how organizations address global issues. Yet – despite the fact that companies manage enormous resources and cross international borders – there are no systematically, universally applied business principles that govern how companies should address these issues. The results can be devastating for both the company and society.

Challenged by teaching her globally diverse Hult students, Professor Lawrence determined that the UN Global Compact – with its Ten Principles covering human rights, labor, the environment, and bribery and corruption – could provide this universal, international framework. The Compact encourages business leaders to focus on the means, as well as the results, generating both economic and social impact. Lawrence and co-editor Paul Beamish, Professor at the Richard Ivey School of Business, invited academics from around the world to comment on the principles, which are then illustrated through Ivey international case studies.

Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact, states in the introduction, “A new level of corporate performance will be needed to deliver on sustainability’s promise….This will involve increasing the scale and intensity of current efforts. This book is a welcome addition to these efforts as it gives valuable guidance….”

Lawrence, who heads to the UN’s 3rd Global Forum for Responsible Management Education (PRME) and Rio+20, the UN’s Conference on Sustainable Development, adds, “Multinational companies can truly transform societies for the better, but we need a universal code that helps to level the playing field so those who behave responsibly are the norm, not the exception.”

Joanne Lawrence lectures on corporate responsibility and social innovation at Hult. She gained a wealth of international experience first-hand as a corporate executive and consultant, working with globally recognized organizations such as SmithKline Beecham, BP and the World Bank.

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