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To examine the conditioning factors leading to the development of the sustainability agenda

Module Title: Responsible Business Strategy

Module Code: 3013MKT

Assessment Information

This assignment is designed to assess learning outcomes:

o To examine the conditioning factors leading to the development of the sustainability agenda

o To evaluate the challenges faced by businesses from the demands of the sustainability agenda

o To compare and contrast alternative sustainable business management options for impact-free or impact-positive profit

o To critically apply sustainable business models in order to evaluate the effectiveness of sustainable business strategies and tactics

If we are to live in a more sustainable world, much depends on how well the demands of the sustainability agenda are addressed, not just by business, but by consumers and other stakeholders such as governments. Verweij and Thompson (2007) and Emery (2013) refer to sustainability issues as wicked problems, which can lead to clumsy solutions and result in uncomfortable knowledge, generating a new set of wicked problems. Evaluate how any one provider from your chosen sector is dealing with the business challenges presented by the sustainability agenda. Assess the extent to which your chosen provider is managing the sources and consequences of any sustainability-related wicked problems through its business activities and how it is encouraging consumer engagement with sustainable consumption, indicating the suitability of its overall strategy and tactics. You may select a provider to use as your case example from one of the following sectors:

o Fashion

o Energy

o Dairy (food)

o Mobile telephones


Emery, B. P. (2013) Higher Education Academy (HEA) conference presentation - Embedding sustainability in the curriculum: Practising what we teach - Sustainable Marketing Conference for United Nations’ initiative - Principles for Responsible Management Education within the curriculum (UN PRME) held at London South Bank University, March 2013. Verweij, M. and Thompson, M. (Eds.) (2007) Clumsy Solutions for a Complex World: Governance, Politics and Plural Perceptions Basingstoke: Palgrave. Support / Feedforward You are advised to check with your lecturer regarding the suitability of your chosen provider and how you intend to develop your study. Students are expected to make the most of the advice and support offered for this assessment including attendance at any planned assignment support sessions and feedforward. Expectations – and answers to some of your frequently asked questions

o My expectations are always high…as are yours.

o Your answer can only be as good as your research. The more you read and research the greater your potential to produce a piece of work of excellent quality.

o At this level I would expect an assignment of these characteristics to be resourced thoroughly and this should be evidenced by approximately 30 entries in the final references list.

o It should be demonstrated how each referenced resource has contributed to the work. That is, you cannot just add a long list of references at the back of the work – they need to be used and referred to inside the report too!

o As a consequence of the above, good quality answers tend to result from consistent research over an extended period of time – not last-minute reading. 

o You are required to select and use an example (a provider from your chosen sector) to demonstrate your in-depth understanding of how sustainability issues affect the sector and appraise how the resulting marketing challenges are being met by that provider.

o You may have doubts about whether your chosen provider is appropriate and how to structure your work – if so, ask me.

o You may find it useful (and necessary) to critique the performance of your chosen example from the perspective of other similar providers who are more successful (or less) in dealing with sustainability issues.

o You are not allowed to contact your chosen provider; this work should use secondary sources of information. o Use headings and sub-headings at your discretion to guide the reader. Tables, figures (of your own choice and reading or developed from lectures and seminars) and other illustrations (examples of marketing communications) may be included when appropriate and will not affect the word count.

o No appendices. Format for the submitted work The assignment will be submitted as a report and be presented in polished and professional manner complete with a contents page, with each section clearly identified and a final references section. The standard conventions of report writing will be followed, including the overall presentation of the work and the use and inclusion of supporting references and quotations within the text when appropriate. University policy regarding the use and format of supporting references within the text and the presentation of the final references section must be followed. The maximum word count will be 4000 words +/- 10%. Weighting This assignment carries a weighting of 100% for the Responsible Business Strategy module.

Getting started Not sure where to start? o Why don’t you have a look at the Defra website as they have produced a lot of sector-based reports on sustainability? Not sure how to demonstrate you have met the learning outcomes of the module?

o Have a look at the next page

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