In February this year, I entered a writing competition conducted by the PRME UK and Ireland chapter(UKI) and Oxford Brookes University. This is the second year the competition is being conducted with the aim of promoting understanding of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The concept is that though every year business and management students produce insightful work about sustainability issues, business ethics dilemma and responsible business and management practise as part of their course, it is rarely read by more than a few. Hence, the writing competition is established as an opportunity for students to be assessed by experts and provide wider readership for their work. I am happy that my submission has been selected as one of the Top 10 finalists amongst entries submitted by Post Graduate students from all across the UK and Ireland. My work will also be published shortly on the PRME website.
I submitted the essay that I had written for the Responsible and sustainable leadership module, led by Prof. Mollie Painter-Morland. My essay analysed the sustainability report of a leading oil and natural gas company, assessing its stakeholder practices, sustainability reporting practices using the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) standards and the company’s contribution to SDG-13, that deals with urgent action to combat climate change. Though the company fared well on some of these measures, it was found to be under a lot of pressure from its shareholders and environmental, social and government (ESG) organisations to set sustainability targets and faced the risk of the loss of institutional investors if it failed to do so. Hence, I suggested a socially responsible investment to the company in green energy storage research with a cross-collaboration model starting with a company such as Alphabet with a Cambridge model of leadership. I drew from examples of states such as California that suffered from excess green energy production and built a case for green energy storage research as such an investment could create long-term value for the company and the society.
As I was researching for the essay, the importance of green energy storage became very evident to me. With the cash reserves enjoyed by oil and gas companies, such investments seem viable and thus it became the essence of my essay. I thoroughly enjoyed researching and writing on this topic and truly believe that such investments are necessary if green energy can be used on a large scale in the future. I hope this is just the start on the path of sustainability for me and hope to research more such issues in the future.
-This blog post was written by Deepa Anantha Narayana an NTU Student in the Nottingham Business School. Many thanks from the Green Academy!