Sustainability Report 2022
Challenging what is,
inspiring what could be
President Jean-François Manzoni reviews IMD’s sustainability journey in 2022: the significant strides we made in deepening our commitment through our teaching, research, outreach, and in our own campus operations.
Our purpose to develop leaders who ‘challenge what is and inspire what could be’ has never been more relevant than it is today, as the world faces rising uncertainty amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the energy crisis and the return of inflation. This past year was especially important in IMD’s sustainability journey, as we made significant strides in deepening our commitment through our teaching, research, outreach, and in our own campus operations.
In particular, we significantly increased our MBA program’s focus on threats and opportunities associated with sustainability, and equity, inclusion and diversity (EI&D), including by redesigning core courses in this direction. We believe that by educating our future business leaders on the importance of sustainability, we can equip them with the mindset and knowledge necessary to drive change within their own organizations, and that we can therefore truly have a positive impact in the world.
Sustainability has also become a core component of many of our custom and open executive education programs. In particular, 2022 saw us launch several new sustainability-related programs, including Driving Sustainability from the Boardroom and Driving Innovative Finance for Impact.
To further advance our efforts, we also deepened our partnerships with leading organizations such as the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and the Business Schools for Climate Leadership alliance.
Together with leading Swiss universities UNIL and EPFL and through our joint Enterprise for Society Center (E4S) we are driving new research and educating young graduates enrolled in our joint Master of Science in Sustainable Management and Technology program.
Underscoring the need for stronger leadership in sustainability, we are also holding workshops for boards as part of the Swiss Boards for Agenda 2030, which is striving to commit Swiss CEOs and board members to a high level of board accountability to drive sustainability and business resilience.
Through 2022 we broadened access to executive education as we continued to invest in technology enabling participants to join our award-winning programs regardless of ability to travel, while also reducing the related carbon footprint.
Our research on sustainability now has a strong foundation with the development of the Center for Sustainable and Inclusive Business. Our research has resulted in important insights for senior executives, with numerous faculty members and researchers publishing articles in leading journals on topics such as sustainable marketing, supply chain, strategy, and wellbeing in the workplace.
IMD is also committed to promoting equity, inclusion, and diversity within our community. We have implemented many initiatives to foster a more inclusive culture, including training for faculty and staff, and have also accompanied corporate partners as they embed EI&D in their operations.
Beyond our sustainability initiatives and partnerships, we have also taken great strides in measuring and reducing our own carbon footprint. We have conducted a comprehensive review of our impact on the environment and are developing a far-reaching strategy to reduce our emissions and energy consumption. This will entail regular energy audits, clear carbon reduction targets and energy efficiency measures in our buildings and operations.
By measuring and reducing our carbon footprint, we will reduce our environmental impact and set an example for other organizations. And while travel has increased with the return to more face-to-face learning after the COVID-19 pandemic, we have invested in technology to provide executives with more flexibility in the way they access our programs, enabling them to reduce their own environmental impact. Together with our stakeholders, we believe that we have the power to create a lasting and meaningful difference in the global effort to combat climate change.
Our carbon reduction efforts are part of a holistic approach to demonstrating our commitment to sustainability and our role as a responsible business school. We are dedicated to continuously improving and finding ways to reduce our footprint and make a positive impact.
All of these efforts demonstrate our commitment to the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), which aim to create a more sustainable and just world through business education. Our initiatives align with these principles and this report shares our journey towards meeting our sustainability goals.
Overall, the progress we have made this year to educate executives who will transform organizations and contribute to society fills me with hope for the future. I am confident that with the dedication and hard work of our faculty, staff and participants, we will continue to make a positive impact on society.
Fullfilling our Purpose
Sustainability is embedded in IMD’s purpose and is a key element of our vision for the future: challenging what is and inspiring what could be, we develop leaders who transform organizations and contribute to society.
Responsible Leadership Development
Through our teaching, research and outreach, we develop responsible leaders who transform organizations and contribute to society. Sustainable business transformation requires leading with our heads, hearts, and hands.
Cutting Edge Education
Leveraging cutting-edge technology and pedagogical tools allows us to reach more executives and deliver learning with impact.
Access to Executive Education
Ensuring access to executive education for a diverse range of participants is a key priority for IMD. We also seek to make certain that diverse experiences and viewpoints are represented in our programs. Balanced representation by gender, nationality, ethnicity, and race in programs enhances our opportunities to broaden perspectives and increases IMD’s competitiveness.
Workforce Equity, Inclusion & Diversity
Our EI&D strategy at IMD and the leading role we play in shaping the future of work with a deliberate approach to embedding Equity, Inclusion & Diversity into our research, teaching, content, outreach and client advisory activities.
Mobility & Emissions
At IMD, our goal is to both minimize our own carbon footprint and to maximize our positive impact, or “handprint”, by equipping leaders with the mindset and knowledge necessary to drive sustainable business models. Together with our stakeholders, we have the power to create a lasting and meaningful difference in the fight against climate change.
IMD’s sustainability objectives for 2023 and beyond are rooted in our five core focus areas, where we have clear goals for the future.