Business and Society (BAS)

Course description

We live in an era in which global social and environmental problems are impending and where significant political, technological, economical, cultural and social changes prevail. Business firms play an important role in these dynamics. An essential question that arises in this context is: what is corporations’ role and responsibility in society, particularly in a global context? In order to understand and critically evaluate the role of business in society, the first part of this course explores changes in the context conditions of business operations. These comprise globalization processes, changing ideas and ideologies about the role of business in society and the resulting changes in the political landscape, and the recent increase in prominence of financial markets. On the basis of such a politically and economically informed understanding of the changing context of business, the second part of this course critically analyzes the role of business firms in society. A particular focus will lie on issues such as political activities of business, corporate social responsibility, sustainable development, and global governance. The third part of the course discusses different avenues for continually negotiating the role of business in society, e.g. through governments, transnational organizations, consumers, and civil society

Intended Learning Outcomes

Intended Learning Outcomes

The course focuses on corporations’ role in society and on the specific ways in which this role changes. The main purpose is to develop an understanding of the complexity of the interaction between business and This is a translation of the Swedish original society and the impact this complexity has on corporations’ role and responsibility. Upon completion of the course, students should be able to: Knowledge and understanding.

1. Define, describe and explain the changes of business’ role in society, the drivers of these changes, and their implications for business, society, and the natural environment.

Skills and abilities

2. Conduct a theoretically grounded problematization and analysis of corporations’ role in a globalizing world.

3. Show accuracy and stringency in scientific approaches, argumentation and formalities. Judgment and approach.

4. Critically assess the limitations of so-called mainstream approaches to corporations’ role and responsibility in a globalizing world.

5. Develop an understanding of political perspectives on business and on this basis critically evaluate the role and responsibility of business in a globalizing world.

Please Note !

There will be no new admissions to this course.

Course title:
Business and Society
Semester: Autumn term 2019
Study period: 3
Rate of studies: 100%
Level: Graduate level (second cycle)
Credits: 7.5
Language of instruction: English


Course coordinator:
Christina Gabrielsson
Head of course:
Anselm Schneider