Social Value Courses

There are a variety of courses across all disciplines —both core and elective— that incorporate the principles of social value creation into Smith pedagogy. As the social value creation space develops we help Smith stay ahead of the curve by delivering fresh and relevant content. Have an idea for a new course? Let us know – we are happy to hear from you.

BMGT 289A: Social Enterprise – Changing the World through Innovation and Transformative Action 
Faculty: Halley Aelion

Thousands of individuals are inventing creative new approaches to social change, the tools of business to build lasting solutions. Where do social entrepreneurs come from? How do they develop their passion for changing the world? Can anyone become a social entrepreneur? This course looks at the history and theory of social change, reviews the skills, strategies, and ideas of effective change agents and gives students the tools to create a blueprint for their ideas for social transformation.

BMGT289K: Giving Voice To Values
Faculty: Brian Nelson

Giving Voice to Values  (“GVV”) provides students with an effective way of identifying their personal values and, more importantly, giving expression to those values in their present and future individual and group commitments and conduct.  Background in cutting-edge medical and psychological research on the nature of “happiness” at the beginning of the course give way to each student’s detailed reflections (shared in small groups of students) on the meaning to his or her personal histories, relationships and aspirations – together with insights into the personal histories, relationships and aspirations of other students.  The course concludes with a series of real-life mini-cases involving undergraduate university students or recent graduates.

BMGT 411: Ethics and Professionalism in Accounting 
Faculty: Steve Loeb, Jim Staihar, Nile Webb

This course discusses and analyzes issues relating to professionalism and ethics in accounting. Among the various topics covered are truth, corporate social responsibility, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, the PCAOB, corporate governance, accounting and the environment, and international accounting ethics.

BMGT 468U: Social Entrepreneurship Laboratory
Faculty: Christine Beckman, Sara Herald

The Social Entrepreneurship Laboratory will be an active learning environment for students to test their hypotheses around the creation of social ventures and develop a deep understanding of the field in practice. The overarching goal of this course is for students to develop entrepreneurially competencies and hone the ability to develop innovative solutions to social and environmental problems. By design, teams will be created to leverage diverse majors, skills, experiences, cultures, and viewpoints. In this way, we expect novel insights and truly creative models to emerge.

BMGT 468V: Transformative Action – Effective Methods for Social Change 
(Part of the Social Innovation Fellows Program)
Faculty: David Kirsch

This course introduces students to the most effective methods of social change by looking at the social entrepreneurs, innovators and visionaries who are coming up with new methods of solving society’s problems. Students examine traditional methods of activism as well as a new theory of nonviolent social change called “transformative action.” The first few weeks of the course introduce the students to many case studies, and then the course reviews the skills, strategies, and ideas of effective social change advocates in the 21st century. Each student develops an original blueprint for social innovation: a creative proposal for solving a societal problem based on their interest.

BMGT 468W: Social Innovation Practicum 
(Part of the Social Innovation Fellows Program)
Faculty: David Kirsch

Working in teams of four or five, students immerse themselves in a social issue of common concern through a service practicum with a nonprofit organization or social enterprise. Student projects are developed in partnership with the organizations but the goal of the practicum is two-fold: 1) help the organizations develop a new entrepreneurial service or program to address a specific pressing social need in the community, and 2) provide students with a deep understanding of the root causes of a particular social issue and how such issues can be best addressed through entrepreneurial action.

BMGT 468Z: Create the Future through Systems Thinking and Design
Faculty:  Gerald Suarez

This course focuses on application of design thinking strategy and methods to create pragmatic yet innovative product and service ideas. Students will explore, experience, and embrace design as means to new value creation. The course highlights the importance of adopting a multidisciplinary and collaborative perspective, one that recognizes a balance between efficiency, and effectiveness; planning and action; risks and rewards; necessity and utility; and between short-term and long-term implications. Students will learn how to positively influence the future by creating competitive ideas and how to create pathways to introduce them in the marketplace.

BMGT478B: Special Topics in Supply Chain Management; Green Supply Chain
Faculty: Lisa Harrington

This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to current and future best practices, approaches and technologies in the area of sustainable supply chain management - “green” supply chain. The course will focus on supply chain sustainability from the environmental stewardship perspective. As such, it will focus on energy, environment, waste and resource management; it will NOT focus on human/social sustainability (e.g., labor/human resource management practices). Students will have the opportunity to meet and learn from green supply chain practitioners as well as design their own green supply chain operation.

BMGT 496: Business Ethics and Society 
Faculty: Brian Nelson

This course emphasizes a strategic approach by business to the management of its external environment. Students engage in a study of the standards of business conduct, morals and values as well as the role of business in society with consideration of the sometimes conflicting interests of and claims on the firm and its objectives.

Sustainability Solutions Business Lab (Launching Spring 2015)
Faculty: Rachelle Sampson

Environmental and their related social problems present some of the most significant issues facing society and business today. Accelerated depletion of natural resources, deforestation, dwindling water supplies, increased waste accumulation and climate change all pose challenges for the current generation to solve. While government policy is part of the solution to these issues, private solutions that harness the power and speed of capitalist markets may present some of the fastest and most effective change. This seminar is designed to give students tools for solving sustainability related problems through companies (whether for or not for profit).  In this seminar, we begin with a discussion of the underlying economics and market failures that have led to many of the environmental problems we currently face. With an understanding of the issues, students then develop a business plan for a new idea whose main objective is to solve a sustainability related problem.

BUSI 650: Marketing Management 
Faculty: David Godes, Robert Krapfel, Sanjay Rao

Students analyze marketing problems and evaluate specific marketing efforts regarding the organization's products and services, pricing activities, channel selection, and promotion strategies in both domestic and international markets.

BUMO732: Entrepreneurship and New Ventures
Faculty: Brent Goldfarb

Provides an introduction to important tools and skills necessary to create and grow a successful new venture. Integrates research findings from a range of different practical and intellectual perspectives, including psychology, sociology, economics, strategic management, and history into practical, hands on lessons for an entrepreneur. Class projects provide the foundations for new, real businesses.

BUMO761: Creativity for Business Leaders and Entrepreneurs 
Faculty: Oliver Schlake

Examines the concept of creativity as it applies in today's and tomorrow's complex business environment. An overview of the cognitive foundations of creativity, examines many of the preconceived notions about creativity in business and discusses multiple ways in which creativity can help business leaders and entrepreneurs to succeed. Topics include creativity techniques for groups and individuals, creativity as a foundation to recognize business opportunities and develop innovative products and services, selecting ideas and making them stick, mental and organizational obstacles to creativity as well as an overview of electronic tools to increase creative capability.

BUMO767: Cross-cultural Communication and Teamwork 
Faculty:  Nicole Coomber, Hui Liao

Provide managers a sound basis for developing such competencies. Specifically, we will develop an understanding of key cultural differences, and how these differences influence the management of individuals, groups, and organizations.

BUSI 673: International Economics for Managers 
Faculty: Wilbur Chung

This course focuses on understanding critical aspects of the global business environment that influence firm decisions and behavior. Globalization is present in market competition, capital markets, and managerial talent as evidenced by free trade areas and the formation of economic unions, the volatility in global financial markets, and the continued rise of transnational firms.

BUSI 681: Managerial Economics and Public Policy 
Faculty: Rachelle Sampson, Robert Windle, Jahangir Boroumand

This course introduces students to basic microeconomic Principles by firms, including supply and demand, elasticities, costs, productivity, pricing, market structure, and competitive implications of alternative market structures. 

BUSI 683: Global Economic Environment 
Faculty: Charles Olson, Bennet Zelner

This class discusses the relationship between national and international economic environments, determinants of output, interest rates, prices, and exchange rates. Topics include an analysis of the effect of economic policies on the firm and the economy.

BUSI 690: Strategic Management 
Faculty: Paolo Prochno, Waverly Ding, David Waguespack

This integrative strategic management course focuses on strategy formulation and implementation in domestic and global settings. Industry and competitor analysis, industry and firm value chain, leadership, goal setting, organizational structure and culture. It uses a case study approach to top management and organizational problems.

BUSI 718: Social Venture Consulting Practicum 
Faculty:  Melissa Carrier

The Social Venture Consulting Practicum is a 3-credit Smith Experience course. The course consists of semester-long consulting engagements with 501(c)3 nonprofits, social enterprises, and governmental organizations who have contracted with the Center for Social Value Creation at the Robert H. Smith School of Business to receive business management consulting services. 
The program is designed to help social value driven organizations increase their organizational capacity and social impact by providing them with direct access to business consulting including but not limited to marketing, financial, operational, or strategic projects. Read more about this course.

BUSI 738: Sustainable Systems Practicum
Faculty: Karen Lipps, Melissa Carrier

The Sustainable Systems Practicum is an experiential, multi-disciplinary research project in the identification, evaluation and recommendation/resolution of problems at the intersection of business and environmental science. In teams of 4 to 6 students, MBA students from the Smith School of Business collaborate with experienced MS students from the Program in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development (CONS) to solve complex problems or research new initiatives in Environmental Sustainability. This is a course that marries the business skills learned in the MBA program with the environmental knowledge of sustainability issues developed in the CONS program to give students critical thinking skills, creative problem-solving abilities, collaborative teamwork and the ability to communicate with leaders in both fields. Read more about this course.

BUFN 738B: New Markets Venture Fund
Faculty: Mark Grovic, Don Spero

The New Markets Venture Capital Clinic allows you to gain professional experience commensurate with that of an Analyst or Associate in a Venture Capital Firm. You will be trained by members of New Markets Venture Partners, plus guest lecturers from the area’s leading venture and service firms. The course will expose you to real life activities covering the entire deal process from research, diligence, selection, negotiation and investment, as well as management and exit of portfolio companies. In addition to the training you will receive, you will be personally responsible for the conduct of several of these activities.

BULM758P: Special Topics in Logistics, Business and Public Policy; The Political and Social Environment of the Multinational Firm
Faculty: Bennet Zelner


BUSI 758N Strategic Management for Nonprofit & Public Organizations 
Faculty: Rob Sheehan

Serving as a successful leader for a nonprofit or public organization of any kind requires an understanding of the strategic management process and a well-developed and managed strategy is a key to an organization’s performance. This course provides an integrated approach to leadership theories and concepts, research, and modern practices related to strategic planning and execution. Leading strategy approaches will be discussed and students will gain a deep understanding of how strategy can be effectively developed, implemented, and managed in these organizations. The course will be relevant for students who want to work for and/or consult with nonprofit and government organizations. Course cross-listed as PUAF 689Z. 

BUSI 788: Global Business Experience 
Faculty: Paulo Prochno, Charles Olson, Sunil Mithas, Hank Boyd, , Hassan Ibrahim, Sandy Boyson

These short-term abroad courses provide in-depth immersion for students to learn about a particular aspect of business and culture of a country. Topics range from environmental stewardship in China, green technologies in the EU, to social issues in South Africa, microfinance and many more.

BUMO 758D: Social Entrepreneurship 
Faculty: James Sanders

This course is about using entrepreneurial skills to craft innovative responses to social problems. Entrepreneurs are particularly good at recognizing opportunities, exploring innovative approaches, mobilizing resources, managing risks, and building viable enterprises.

BULM 720: The Green Supply Chain 
Faculty: Taylor Wilkerson

In response to international regulation of carbon emissions and increasing corporate responsibility pressures, companies are seeking to develop greener supply chains. Companies such as WalMart have undergone a paradigm shift in how they manage their businesses to emphasize environmental stewardship and due diligence on product sustainability. Students are provided with key concepts and tools for designing and managing environmentally sustainable, low-impact supply chains.

BULM 758F: Economics of Sustainable Development 
Faculty: Rachelle Sampson

Sustainability issues facing firms are multi-faceted and, in most cases, without clear strategic solutions. The goal of this course is to better understand the issues of sustainability in a series of different contexts. Within each context, we examine the underlying market failures that lead to sub-optimal social outcomes along with commonly employed economic solutions to these problems.

BULM 758M: Emerging Economies, Government Policies, and International Trade 
Faculty: Jahangir Boroumand

The objective of this course is to enhance managers’ understanding of the economic environment of firms operating in the international economy with emphasis on emerging markets of the global economy. Managers misreading of emerging economies and associated government polices leads to less than optimal strategies by firms to enhance profits or prevent losses in these markets.

BUFN 758G: Sustainability & Investing 
Lecturer: Cary Krosinsky

This course will provide a walk through the framework, analysis and metrics involved with the growing practice of factoring sustainability into investment strategy, especially as it pertains to financial measurement of environmental, social & governance risks and opportunities. Students will actively participate in the construction of a model sustainable equity portfolio, as well as how sustainability affects other asset classes, while reviewing macro sustainability trends that will likely affect regions, corporations and public policy.

BUMK 758V: Marketing for Social Value 
Faculty: Rebecca Ratner

Key objectives of this course include exposing students to scholarly frameworks, empirical findings and case studies in two primary areas of growing interest to managers: 1) For-profit social value creation (e.g. cause-related marketing, in which consumer loyalty generated by the for-profit's connection to a social cause is a desired outcome), and 2) Social marketing (e.g., in which behavior change in the public interest is itself the desired outcome).

Classes offered through the School of Public Policy

PUAF 689Y NonProfit Fundraising
Faculty: Noah Drezner

Stemming from the disciplines of economics, psychology and sociology, this course explores the theoretical understandings of fundraising for nonprofit organizations and how they are applied to the practice of raising voluntary support. Students will also investigate different theoretical paradigms in which scholars and scholar-practitioners can approach the study and practice of fundraising. Additionally, students will discover the fundraising theories and practices that engage communities across diverse social identities including, communities of color, LGBT, and gender.

PUAF 798Y Nonprofit Management 
Faculty: Dr. Bob Grimm

This course provides an introduction to the nonprofit sector and the leadership and management skills required to achieve a social impact. During the semester, students examine and discuss the trends, issues, and challenges facing a nonprofit leader as well as management approaches and innovations by examining case studies and engaging in management simulations. The course includes the opportunity to conduct a mini-consulting project with a nonprofit or nongovernmental organization.