Why Business Education Should Include Human Rights Issues

By Michael Posner and Dorothée Baumann-Pauly

Michael Posner

Business schools can and should support the growing interest of companies to embed attention to human rights in their core operations by undertaking research and teaching in this area.

Globally operating businesses routinely face human rights issues. However, very few business schools offer programs or even individual classes examining how businesses should address these concerns most effectively.

What should managers of an apparel or sportswear brand do to remedy unsafe working conditions? How can tech companies address the privacy concerns of their users and ensure freedom of expression when they offer their services in closed societies? How can extractive companies ensure the safety of their assets, employees, and the communities when they operate in conflict zones?

These challenges pose serious reputational and operational risks for corporations. Business schools therefore need to ask themselves whether their graduates are being prepared to manage these and other human rights matters.

Read the full article as published by AACSB.

Michael Posner is a Professor of Business and Society and Co-Director of the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights. Dorothée Baumann-Pauly is the Research Director for the Center for Business and Human Rights.