Teaching plan for the course unit



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General information


Course unit name: Corporate Social Responsibility and Business Ethics

Course unit code: 573222

Academic year: 2021-2022

Coordinator: Rosa Anna Ricucci

Department: Department of Business

Credits: 2,5

Single program: S



Estimated learning time

Total number of hours 62,5


Face-to-face and/or online activities



-  Lecture





-  Lecture with practical component




Supervised project


Independent learning




Competences to be gained during study


General competences

CG1. Creative and entrepreneurial skills (capacity to conceive, design and manage projects, and to research and integrate new knowledge and approaches).

CG2. Capacity to propose a business project based on an original idea and to assess its feasibility.

Basic competences

CB6. Knowledge forming the basis of original thinking in the development or application of ideas, typically in a research context.

CB7. Capacity to apply the acquired knowledge to problem-solving in new or relatively unknown environments within broader (or multidisciplinary) contexts related to the field of study.

CB8. Capacity to integrate knowledge and tackle the complexity of formulating judgments based on incomplete or limited information, taking due consideration of the social and ethical responsibilities involved in applying knowledge and making judgments.

CB9. Capacity to communicate conclusions, judgments and the grounds on which they have been reached to specialist and non-specialist audiences in a clear and unambiguous manner.

CB10. Skills to enable lifelong self-directed and independent learning.

Specific competences

CE1. Capacity to apply the main concepts and management tools to resolve advanced problems and business situations related to the strategic, financial, commercial, operational and logistics management of international companies.

CE2. Capacity to adopt a strategic, integrated approach to business problems and ability to address them effectively at an international level.

CE9. Capacity to examine the options, potential and opportunities presented by different regions in the global economy and to identify the specific features of the various markets and societies involved, with a view to improving effectiveness and complying with demands on professional responsibility.

CE10. Capacity to acquire an advanced level of competence in the writing of scientific documents, specialized reports and research papers in which value judgements are formulated, complying with standard criteria for publication or for presentation to potential stakeholders or other interested parties at the global level.





Learning objectives


Referring to knowledge

At the end of the course, students should be able to:

— Understand the ethical implications of doing business in a global context.

— Promote ethical and responsible thinking in the international business framework.

— Assemble different CSR actions and strategies for the international activities of a company.

Students are also expected to develop social awareness, critical thinking and groupwork skills.



Teaching blocks


1. Fundamentals of business ethics

1.1. Ethical decision-making
1.2. Codes of ethics
1.3. Ethical leadership

2. Fundamentals of CSR

2.1. Basic content of CSR
2.2. Stakeholders and materiality assessment
2.2. Contributions of CSR to other business areas

3. Development of CSR strategies

3.1. Planning CSR
3.2. Implementing CSR
3.3. Assessing CSR



Teaching methods and general organization


The methodology of the subject combines lectures to introduce theoretical concepts with more practical sessions based on group work, problem-solving exercises and case studies.



Official assessment of learning outcomes


Continuous assessment requires regular attendance and submission of assignments.

The final grade is based on the following:

— Assignment 1 (group work): 20%

— Assignment 2 (group work): 20%

— Class participation and activities: 20%

— Final project (written assignment): 40%

The characteristics of the assignments and the final project are presented at the beginning of the course.

Repeat assessment

Students who do not obtain a minimum grade of 5 must submit a revision of their final project (100% of the grade).


Examination-based assessment

Single assessment is designed for those students who cannot attend classes regularly or submit the assignments.

Students may choose to be assessed under single assessment only if they are not able to attend at least 70% of the lectures.

In this case, the final grade is based on the following:

— Final project (written assignment): 100%

Students who do not obtain a minimum grade of 5 must submit a revision of their final project (100% of the grade).



Reading and study resources

Consulteu la disponibilitat a CERCABIB


Freeman, R. E. (2010). Strategic management: A stakeholder approach. Cambridge university press.

Catàleg UB  Enllaç


De George, R. T. (1999). Business ethics and the information age. Business and Society Review104(3), 261-278.

Den Hartog, D. N., & De Hoogh, A. H. (2009). Empowering behaviour and leader fairness and integrity: Studying perceptions of ethical leader behaviour from a levels-of-analysis perspective. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology18(2), 199-230.

Brown, M. E., & Treviño, L. K. (2006). Ethical leadership: A review and future directions. The leadership quarterly17(6), 595-616.

Kaptein, M. (2004). Business codes of multinational firms: What do they say?. Journal of Business Ethics50(1), 13-31.

Carroll, A. B. (1991). The pyramid of corporate social responsibility: Toward the moral management of organizational stakeholders. Business horizons34(4), 39-48.

Haski-Leventhal, D., Roza, L., & Meijs, L. C. (2017). Congruence in corporate social responsibility: Connecting the identity and behavior of employers and employees. Journal of Business Ethics143(1), 35-51.

Kaplan, R. S., & Norton, D. P. (1998). Putting the balanced scorecard to work. The economic impact of knowledge27(4), 315-324.

Conference papers and lectures

NV, KPMG Advisory (2014). The Business Codes of the Fortune Global 200. What the largest companies in the world say and do in: http://www. kpmg. com/BE/en/IssuesAndInsights/ArticlesPublications/Documents/The-Business-codes-of-the-Fortune-Global-200. pdf5(2016), 282.