Message from the Director
2022 has been an exciting year for sustainability at Ivey.
This year Ivey launched a new strategy – Ivey Next – that places sustainability at the core of the purpose and mission of the school. Sustainability is one of three “critical issues” that are the focus of the strategy, a key agenda for business and society in which Ivey has established thought leadership and is well positioned to drive the agenda with business, government, and other stakeholders for real impact.
Through the year, the Centre for Building Sustainable Value (BSV) has worked closely with our Advisory Council, our 20+ faculty group of internationally recognised scholars, and leaders from across industry and government to determine how BSV can best advance Ivey’s bold ambition.
Through this process we clarified the mission of the Centre: to shape pathways of systems change towards an ecologically sound, fair future.
Sustainability challenges are large and complex and we need to make choices on how we can best maximize our impact on systems. We have developed a new strategy that defines five key levers of change, for which BSV has the expertise, partnerships and positioning to transform systems. Please find out more in our Strategy and Mission Statement.
In the last year, we made great progress in mobilizing around our new mission, building on the excellence and dedication of our faculty and staff. This report presents highlights and successes across three key aspects of our work:
- Cross-disciplinary research
- Leadership programming
- Outreach and community building
I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did.
In 2023, we are going even further. We are scaling up our efforts and investments to meet the critical risks that climate change, biodiversity loss, and social inequities pose for society and business. We are organizing our work to focus in particular on driving systems transformation in the agri-food system as a key priority for Canada.
These are the defining challenges of our times and we need “all hands on deck” – please join us.
Faculty Director, Centre for Building Sustainable Value
Associate Professor, Operations Management & Sustainability
Sustainability: At the centre of Ivey's new strategy
Building on a nearly 100-year legacy of real-world leadership, Ivey’s new strategy - Ivey Next - includes a clear statement of purpose:
To inspire leaders for a sustainable and prosperous world
Ivey's mission is to develop leaders who think globally, act strategically, and address critical issues facing organizations and society through impactful research and transformative learning experiences. Sustainability is one of three such critical issues: an area in which Ivey has established thought leadership, and is well positioned to drive the agenda with business, government, and other stakeholders for real impact.
The renewed mission of the Centre:
To shape pathways of systems change towards an ecologically sound, fair future.
We are the thought leaders in sustainable system transitions in Canada. We have the capabilities to bring together diverse leaders to imagine effective socio-technical innovations, assess if and how these innovations generate positive socio-ecological outcomes, examine what incentivize structures and standards would catalyze their uptake, and promote community-based work that shape and sustain the integration of such innovations in our economy.
Click for our Theory of Change
HBA Sustainability Certificate
The HBA Sustainability Certificate empowers Ivey HBA students to build and lead more sustainable organizations and positions them to begin their journeys as responsible C-Suite decision-makers, entrepreneurs, non-profit leaders and policymakers.
The HBA Sustainability Certificate welcomed 82 students in 2022. Students focused on defining their professional and personal purpose statements by taking part in a net-zero simulation as well as learning from many guest speakers including representatives from Cowbell Brewery, Clickeat, Fairtrade Canada, and Sawchuk Accessible Solutions. Students are also mentored by Ivey alumni making an impact.
MSc Graduate Diploma in Business and Sustainability
In collaboration with the Ivey’s MSc in Management program and Centre for Building Sustainable Value, Ivey officially launches the new Graduate Diploma (GDip) in Business and Sustainability. The diploma offers students the opportunity to gain an integrative understanding of sustainability while deepening their management and technical skills. Running concurrently within the 16-month MSc degree, students earn the graduate diploma by taking extra required courses on sustainability, sustainability-themed MSc electives, and doing a service-based milestone activity.
Event: Integrating Sustainability in Business Education
As a follow-up to the Ivey SDG tagging initiative, BSV and Ivey Publishing collaboratively hosted a virtual panel discussion entitled "ESG and SDGs? A shared quest, no longer a question: Incorporating Sustainability into management education." The event, facilitated by Professor Oana Branzei, included panelists Gerry George (Professor, McDonough School of Business, Georgetown University), Mette Morsing (Head, Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) Secretariat), and Laura Morgan Roberts (Professor, Darden School of Business, University of Virginia). The discussion highlighted the need to educate the leaders of tomorrow to accelerate the world's progress towards achieving the SDGs, starting with bringing climate change, human rights, and other issues into the classroom.
HBA Social Impact Conference
Ivey’s fourth annual Social Impact Conference ‘Ripple’ took place in February 2022. The purpose of this student-run event was to teach students about concepts of accountability and responsibility. Keynote speakers included James Arreak, (Political Advisor to the Premier of Nunavut) as well as Ashley Wang (Senior Analyst, Social Finance), Nadia Ladak (CEO, Marlow), and Isabel Taylor (Policy Analyst, Environment and Climate Change Canada).
MBA Social Impact Days
MBA students gave back to the community in August 2022 during the annual Ivey Social Impact Day. The full day event included volunteering opportunities with the City of London, Habitat for Humanity, London Food Bank, Reforest London, Urban Roots, YU Ranch, and Stevenson Children’s Camp.
Leading the World in Research
According to a new ranking published in the Financial Times, the Ivey Business School placed third in the world for the degree that its faculty’s research connects with one or multiple of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Featured in the Financial Times’ Responsible Business Education report, the ranking examined the SDG “significance” of hundreds of peer-reviewed papers published in globally prestigious FT50 journals from 2018 to 2021.
Circular Economy Lab
The Circular Economy Lab is working to accelerate system transformation towards a circular economy in Canada by providing insights into how circular supply chains can function and how current supply chains can be transformed. The focus of the research program – how firms can realise waste synergies through opportunity recognition and operational agility – is both addressing a major gap in the circular economy literature and generating important insights for practical action. The program is building a case that harnessing these capabilities of firms will greatly accelerate progress towards circular production systems.
Highlights from 2022 include:
- The release of a landmark study, Scaling the climate-smart circular economy, examining two Canadian “hot spots” for circular innovation in the agri-food sector - the Guelph-Wellington (Ontario) and Montreal (Quebec) regions. The multi-year study analyzed over 110 “waste exchanges,” in which one firm took the food waste from another firm for an intended beneficial use.
- Launch of a new project focusing on circular clusters in agri-food supply chains and their climate and ecological benefits, funded by Western’s Carbon Solutions program.
- Initiation of the Circular Leadership Program, an innovative new learning program working with SMEs and entrepreneurs to develop circular ideas to implement into their company that are technically feasible, economically viable, and ecologically impactful. Executives will develop these ideas through innovative tools and experiences grounded in systems thinking.
Innovation North is embedding systems thinking into the innovation process to transform products, services, and process for the betterment of organizations and for society.
Highlights from 2022 include:
- A mix of in-person and virtual Lab sessions. Each session is anchored by a renowned speaker in innovation. This year featured Gerry George, Banny Bannerjee, and Jennifer Garvey Berger.
- The formally launched Compass – a tool to help innovators solve complex problems by generating novel, actionable ideas. Unlike other approaches to innovation and the design, the Compass recognizes that navigating systems is messy. The interactive tool is available on Innovation North’s website along with a set of downloadable worksheets.
- Application of the Compass through various Innovation Projects. In 2022, Innovation North collaborated with Co-operators, NEO & RBC, and the University of Guelph to co-create solutions that tackle systems-level challenges these organizations are facing.
Net Zero Lab
The Net Zero Lab engages and convenes a unique cross-sector group of leading Canadian businesses taking bold climate action. Through exchange, dialogue and research, the initiative is identifying the opportunities and decision points to build ambitious and actionable net-zero strategies that position firms to thrive in a net-zero future. The project has interviewed 25 executives from 10 leading Canadian firms in 2022, with the first report due for publication early in 2023.
Other highlights from 2022 include:
- Continuation of the Ivey Net Zero Event Series, including two events focused on addressed climate change challenges using the En-ROADS simulation (April 2022) and the strategic dimensions of ambitious climate leadership for Canadian businesses (November 2022).
Sustainable Finance Lab
The Sustainable Finance Lab is enabling the development of innovative financial instruments that can catalyze the transition to sustainable development. The research focuses on key priorities for sustainable development in Canada – including ecosystem conservation, green infrastructure, blended finance, and investment in the success of Indigenous communities. The insights garnered here can inform sustainable finance practices worldwide.
Highlights from 2022 include:
- The Deshkan Ziibi Conservation Impact Bond (DZCIB) received an international 2022 Finance for the Future (F4TF) Climate Leader Award. DZCIB was recognized as a Climate Leader among 33 finalists from 13 countries.
- Diane-Laure Arjaliès was awarded the inaugural Canadian Sustainable Finance Network (CSFN) Research Grant of $50,000, to extend the conservation impact bond model to support regenerative and nature-based solutions in agriculture.
The 15th annual PhD Sustainability Academy, co-hosted by the Ivey Business School and the Alliance for Research on Corporate Sustainability (ARCS), convened 11 promising PhD students and 7 senior researchers representing universities from 7 different countries.
The purpose of the event is to champion path-breaking research on sustainability across disciplines and to provide intensive feedback to students. The PhD Academy is organized and hosted by Professor Oana Branzei.
Research awards and recognitions
Our faculty are doing ground-breaking research in sustainability and are recognized globally for their work and achievements.
Ivey's Rob Klassen and Tima Bansal recognized for Research Excellence
Research.com ranked the top 1% of academic researchers based on publications, citations and h-index, which evaluates the cumulative impact of an author’s scholarly output over the course of their career.
Professors Deishin Lee and Hubert Pun awarded Faculty Scholar Award from Western University
Ivey’s Deishin Lee and Hubert Pun are among the 17 faculty members receiving this year’s Faculty Scholar Award from Western University for their outstanding teaching or research achievements.
Professor Jury Gualandris wins 2022 teaching award
“Learning through research and difficult case discussions makes us free of our biased assumptions and illuminates new possibilities,” says Gualandris. “I wanted to teach because I loved the idea of learning, continuously expanding my own and others’ knowledge.”
OUTREACH AND COMMUNITY BUILDING
OUTREACH AND COMMUNITY BUILDING
OUTREACH AND COMMUNITY BUILDING
Ivey Sustainability Alumni Community
In 2022, this BSV-managed community was launched. The Ivey Alumni Sustainability Community provides a multifaceted platform for engaging and connecting Ivey alumni involved or interested in sustainability and its importance and relevance in their careers and organizations.
Alumni were brought together at a Homecoming event, as mentors for the HBA Sustainability Certificate, and digitally through a LinkedIn-hosted community.
Our alumni are at the frontlines of leading the shifts towards a more sustainable future. Learn about how alumni are making an impact.
Dan Nejman and Will Wang (HBA '21): Ivey alumni tackle soil degradation through composting
Jason Robinson (MBA '16): Ivey alum using plant-based chemistry to revolutionize the sustainable materials industry
Network for Business Sustainability (NBS)
The Network for Business Sustainability (NBS) is a non-profit advancing sustainable development to build a fairer and more environmentally sound future. As the international outreach arm of BSV, we work together as a coordinated team.
Established in 2008, NBS aims to improve business practice by facilitating knowledge sharing across an international community of business leaders, scholars, students and policy makers. With these stakeholders, we co-create high-quality content that enables practical action.
Highlights from 2022 include:
- The publishing of 37 sustainability knowledge resources in six core areas: Sustainable Innovation, Climate Change, Circular Economy, Sustainable Finance, Social Justice, and Sustainability in Business Education.
- The attraction of 345k users who viewed NBS content 525k times.
- The growth of the Sustainability Centres Community to more than 200 centres around the world.
- NBS held meetings on priority topics for sustainability centre leaders globally, including student engagement and the Ukraine War.
NBS article highlights:
The Basics: How to Be a Net Zero Company
Many businesses are setting a “net zero” target to help address climate change. Find out how to tackle net zero in your company.
NBS' series, The Basics, provides essential knowledge about core business sustainability topics.
What Migration Means for Business
International migration is part of our world. Businesses have a central role in managing this workforce.
5 Ways Companies Can Transform to Social Purpose
A 5-part framework shows how companies can adopt social purpose. Lafarge Eastern Canada has used it to guide transformational change.
Ivey Net Zero Event Series
In the second session of the Ivey Net Zero Event Series, participants worked in teams to identify and assess effective ways that individuals, corporations, and governments could collectively address climate change challenges using the En-ROADS simulation. Ivey faculty Rob Klassen and Wren Montgomery provided key insights and the linkages with leading climate-focused research at Ivey, including the Corporate Strategies for Net Zero initiative.
Part three of the series focused on The Strategic Dimensions of Ambitious Climate Leadership. The audience listened to initial insights emerging from this research, discussing key questions that many executive leaders are now grappling with:
- How can an ambitious approach to climate action shape your organization’s strategy for success in the emerging net zero economy?
- What are the key factors and critical capabilities your company needs to consider in setting ambitious climate targets?
- How do you avoid “greenwashing”?
The high-level panel featured three guests: Teanne von der Porten, MBA '05, Executive Director, ESG, KPMG Canada; David Huck, Director of Sustainability, CP Rail; and Rob Klassen, Professor, Ivey Business School.
Advisory Council spotlight
Our Advisory Council provides advice and inspiration to the Centre’s Directors and Faculty with the aim of deepening and expanding the Centre’s impact and reach. It is composed of forward-thinking leaders from business, government, and not-for-profit organizations.
Sponsor & Partner Recognition
Foundations & Not-for-Profits:
Beryl M. Ivey Fund for Corporate Social Responsibility
Chisholm Family Foundation
MaRS Discovery District
Middlesex-London Food Policy Council
National Research Council of Canada
Natural Resources Canada
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council
Maple Leaf Foods
Next Generation Manufacturing (NGen)
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
L’Université du Québec à Montréal
University of Alberta