The importance of collaboration in sustainable development
In an article 'Sustainability - playing with the others' which he has written for the Manila Times, Dr. Moosmayer explains the importance of cross-sectors collaboration and the development of the competence needed to do so.
To foster sustainability, players need to collaborate across sector boundaries. Specifically, such cross-sector collaborations guide businesses, governments, and nongovernmental players to work together to create solutions that address pressing sustainability issues. In short, we need to learn playing with the others.
Similarly, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal #17 proposes a solution which is to: ' Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalise the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development.'
A positive outcome
A small example of a collaboration that can help overcome missing competencies is ECHOstore's collaboration with NGOs to enhance rural women's capabilities to create goods for the national market. ECHOstore was founded to fill the missing link between developed markets and women producing sustainable products in rural areas. When quality concerns occurred, ECHO decided to collaborate with NGOs such as CLOW (Canjulao League of Women) to work with their suppliers, namely groups of marginalised women, to enhance women's capabilities so that they could produce goods at higher quality levels.
While such cross-sector partnerships help to access competencies missing in their own organisation, such collaboration is a competence that businesses often lack. Developing the competence to collaborate across sector boundaries is thus crucial to harvesting the full potential of cross-sector partnerships for sustainability, particularly, as the sectors did traditionally not like playing with each other.
Which programmes are available at KEDGE to develop cross-sector collaboration?
At KEDGE Business School, I developed a Masters of Business Transformation for Sustainability, in which programme participants have to engage in a two-month compulsory mission with a non-business sector organisation.
In small groups, our business school students were working on global civil society projects, from working on a social issue in their local community to protecting global wildlife as a basis for life and business on our planet. By developing an understanding of the mindsets, operational modes and goals of other sectors, participants acquire first-hand cross-sector competence.
"The Business Transformation for Sustainability Master of Science (MSc) programme is built on an innovative experiential approach that provides the knowledge, skills and attitude to manage transformational challenges within organisations. Supported by solid pedagogical contributions provided by KEDGE "Sustainability" Centre of Excellence, it seeks to foster new value-creation possibilities, and to provide the keys to drive transformation for sustainability. The programme immerses students in a multidisciplinary ecosystem, made up of academic, professional, institutional and non-governmental players, so that they can understand the issues involved in the co-construction of sustainable solutions. Through a learning by doing approach, the MSc Business Transformation for Sustainability encourages the development of a non-dogmatic point of view on current issues, application to concrete problems and greater transferability in multiple professional situations related to CSR."