The annual social enterprise conference at Columbia Business School features a diverse group of business leaders from the private, public and nonprofit sectors who challenge conventional thinking and define success in terms of social and environmental benefits, as well as financial returns. Building on previous years, the theme for the 2007 conference will be “Creating Value,” and will provide a forum for speakers and attendees to re-define how they create value in business and in society..
The day will bring together industry leaders, students, academics and practitioners to discuss strategies and challenges facing organizations which seek to create value along dimensions beyond pure profits. Topics covered include the new challenges of philanthropy, the impact of green buildings on community development, and how best to encourage entrepreneurship in the developing world, among others. Speakers include experts in their respective fields, all of whom are “Creating Value” outside of conventional means, and in ways that make a positive impact on society at large.
Patrick Cescau, Group Chief Executive of the combined Unilever PLC and Unilever N.V., will give the keynote address. Mr. Cescau will be presented with the Benjamin Botwinick Prize in Business Ethics, which is given annually to an individual or representative of a business organization exemplifying the highest standard of professional and ethical conduct. The award was founded by the late Benjamin Botwinick, BS' 26.
The Social Enterprise Club empowers students to create social value in private and public enterprises. The Club provides networking opportunities and educational experiences for a range of social enterprise careers including: nonprofit management and consulting, corporate social responsibility, for-profit entrepreneurial endeavors, venture philanthropy, government and public finance, microfinance, and community and international development.
The International Development Club provides a forum for MBAs seeking careers at the interface of business and international development, and creates opportunities for MBA students to consult to nonprofits, public sector organizations, small businesses and entrepreneurial ventures in developing countries.
The Social Enterprise Program aims to inspire and prepare leaders who create social value in business, nonprofit and government organizations locally, nationally and internationally. The Program supports a broad range of activities that help expose students to the breadth and depth of social enterprise.
The Leadership and Ethics Board of the Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Center aims to foster a culture and safeguard a tradition of principled leadership throughout the Columbia Business School community. The Board fulfills its purpose by developing, implementing and monitoring programs that cultivate leadership, build character and promote ethical decision-making, which, in turn, enables Columbia Business School students to become productive, moral, and caring participants in their companies and communities.