Management Educators Commit to Advancing the SDGs

Teaching, research, and thought leadership will become new avenues through which the SDGs will become a key feature of business and management education globally.


19 July 2017 | New York, USA — Over 660 business and management-related higher education institutions have made a formal declaration to become sources of thought leadership, knowledge, and innovation to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Andrew Main Wilson, Chair of the PRME Steering Committee, hands the Outcomes Declaration to United Nations Assistant Secretary-General Thomas Gass. Credit: Joel Sheakoski

The move was announced today as part of the Outcomes Declaration of the 2017 Global Forum for Responsible Management Education — 10 Years of PRME, a document adopted by acclamation from nearly 300 deans, faculty, and thought leaders in attendance during the event.

The Forum was organised by the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), a United Nations-supported initiative that is now the largest established relationship between the UN and business schools. Convened in conjunction with the UN High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, and organised under the theme of Making Global Goals Local Business: Bringing the SDGs to Every Classroom, representatives from higher education institutions and other academic stakeholder groups noted ongoing progress within schools and through the global PRME network to advance the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Of particular note during the Forum was that despite the relative infancy of the 2030 Agenda — only in force since late 2015 — the SDGs have already become a major component of higher education institutions worldwide.

Nearly 300 participants from over 40 countries discuss how to make the SDGs a part of business and management education. Credit: Joel Sheakoski

With the advent of the SDGs, the PRME initiative recently updated its mission statement: realising the Sustainable Development Goals through responsible management education, reflecting the initiative’s future strategy and following the celebration of its 10th anniversary this year. The Outcomes Declaration of the 2017 PRME Global Forum underscores the commitment of PRME’s signatories — over 660 business and management schools across 83 countries — to continuously engage with the SDGs and increase their visibility in teaching, research, and thought leadership.

During a high-level event in the United Nations headquarters convened by the Higher Education Sustainability Initiative, Jonas Haertle, Head of PRME, handed the Outcomes Declaration to the President of the United Nations General Assembly, H.E. Peter Thomson, and reaffirmed PRME’s commitment to making the SDGs a part of business and management education globally.

Jonas Haertle, Head of PRME (left), and H.E. Peter Thomson, President of the 71st Session of the UN General Assembly (right)

Launched in 2007, PRME’s mission is to transform management education, research, and thought leadership globally through a framework of Six Principles. PRME has evolved from this set of Principles to becoming the largest relationship between business and management-related higher education institutions, with participation in over 80 countries and a network that reaches over 20 million students. An initiative of the United Nations Global Compact, PRME engages higher education institutions to produce the responsible leaders of the future.

For more information, email info@unprme.org, or visit www.unprme.org.