A Singapore business school has launched Southeast Asia’s first major on sustainability.
The new course at Singapore Management University (SMU) aims to grow and promote the understanding of sustainability in Southeast Asia, a region with social and environmental issues ranging from deforestation and plastic pollution to overtourism and migrant labour.
The curriculum will cover topics such as what businesses can do to reduce their negative impact on communities and the environment.
As reported by Eco-Business.com, modules include sustainable finance, social entrepreneurship, economic development in Asia, development, underdevelopment and poverty, and sustainability and marketing. Compulsory modules include sustainability management and governance.
The major, which will be offered by SMU Lee Kong Chian School of Business, will equip students with “knowledge and skills to implement sustainable practices in businesses that lead to long-term, measurable impact”, said SMU in a statement.
Professor Gerard George, Dean of SMU Lee Kong Chian School of Business said, “Increasingly, businesses have embraced sustainability as part of their strategic goals. Many companies consider a sustainability strategy necessary to be competitive today and in the future.”
One condition for the course is that is done concurrently with another chosen first major. The course will be available to SMU students from this year onwards.
The course is backed by Southeast Asia’s largest bank, DBS, under DBS-SMU Sustainability Initiative, launched Tuesday (Feb 12) which will see the bank committing more than S$1 million to support academics, businesses and students in tackling sustainability issues.
The initiatives include research fellowships, annual undergraduate scholarships, an annual business study mission as well as a talent enterprise development programme.
which plans to commit more than $1 million in funding to sustainability research, scholarships and fellowships.
The bank’s Singapore country head, Shee Tse Koon, said sponsoring the course aligned with DBS’ legacy as the country’s development bank.
DBS Singapore country head Shee Tse Koon said to TODAY Online, “In many ways, Singapore is well-placed to become a model city for sustainable development and our hope is that this partnership will cultivate a thriving pool of talent and businesses.”