6th Environmental Management Leadership Symposium

Project: Research

Project participants


With "Advancing the Profession: From Environmental to Sustainability Management" as the central theme of the 6th Environmental Management Leadership Symposium (EMLS) in March 2010 a clear statement is made: Not only is there a need to further integrate the management of ecological and social challenges and opportunities with a company's economic business goals. There is also a need for educating highly skilled professionals, who are sufficiently qualified to develop and implement innovative solutions and manage the dynamic facets of their professional field.

Corporate sustainability management clearly is interdisciplinary making it quite a demanding task to accomplish. Moreover, the ever evolving expectations from a sustainability manager's role are far from having been fully framed yet. That is why a good understanding and definition of a sustainability manager's profession cannot be accomplished without an ongoing discourse between business professionals providing their valuable hands-on experience and researchers exploring and analysing scientific advancements in the field of sustainability management.

Throughout the 6th EMLS about 60 handpicked professionals and scientists were invited to discuss and further determine the sustainability manager's role. A mix of plenary sessions and workshops allowed for intensive exchange of ideas and opinions with experts on an international cross-company and academic level. Additionally to presenting the advancements of corporate sustainability management in larger MNEs such as Hyundai Motor Company, Deutsche Post DHL and Accenture, the symposium offered insights into struggles that small and medium-sized companies face with regard to implementing corporate sustainability management. Furthermore, the symposium highlighted a sustainability manager's various fields of operation, may it be in terms of supply chain management, material and energy flow accounting, socio-controlling, communication through financial ratings and rankings, driving sustainable consumption through innovative ideas, biodiversity management or the development of an alternative business model for sustainability. As the central thread we promoted the debate how to improve the education of change agents for sustainability to make them capable of facing the present and upcoming challenges of corporate sustainability management.