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Speaker session

Sustainability, from surviving to thriving

16:00 - 17:30

Ioannis Ioannou

Associate Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship

About this session

A number of critical global trends are radically shifting the world’s competitive landscape. The winning sustainable organisations of the future will be the ones that acknowledge these tectonic shifts today, and are able to strategically and uniquely integrate such broader social and environmental issues into their business models, their corporate cultures and their strategies.

Dr Ioannis Ioannou’s research seeks to understand whether, how, and the extent to which the modern business organisation contributes towards building a sustainable future. In this session, Dr Ioannou will discuss some of his recent pioneering work in the domain of corporate sustainability that provides empirical evidence for the emergence of the “sustainable organisation”; a new type of the modern business organisation that genuinely and effectively integrates environmental and social issues into its business model, strategy, organisational structure and conduct. Importantly, he will present rigorous academic evidence regarding the significant long-term out-performance of this type of organisation compared to the traditional corporate form and evidence regarding the fundamental innovations that are needed in order for an organisation to become a sustainable one. He will also discuss the links between corporate sustainability and capital markets as they pertain to investment analyst recommendations, and more broadly, as they relate to the realisation of value in public equity markets through a commitment to sustainability.

The emergence of sustainable organisations not only challenges but also redefines the role of the modern corporation in civil society and its contribution towards tackling the world’s biggest future challenges. It is therefore high time for bold, unique, innovative and sustainable business strategies and for rebuilding the trust between business and society.

About the speakers

Dr Ioannou is a strategy scholar whose research focuses on Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). More specifically, he seeks to understand whether, how, and the extent to which the modern business organisation contributes towards building a sustainable future. His academic work evolves around two main themes: a) understanding how investment analysts, and the public equity markets, perceive, evaluate and react to corporate engagement with, and integration of, environmental and social issues into strategy and b) understanding the multiple factors (e.g. institutional, regulatory, behavioural) that may affect, drive or hinder, the corporate decision to adopt environmentally and socially responsible strategies.

Dr Ioannou regularly publishes in top-tier peer-reviewed academic journals including the Strategic Management Journal, Management Science, Organization Science, The Accounting Review and the Journal of International Business Studies. He is currently a member of the Editorial Board of the Strategic Management Journal and in 2015 received an Outstanding Editorial Board Member Award for his service. He is also active on social media and a frequent contributor to articles in the popular and managerial press including outlets such as the Financial Times, the Guardian, and Forbes. In further recognition of his impactful work, Dr Ioannou has been shortlisted for the Future Thinker Award of Thinkers50, the first-ever global ranking of management thinkers whose mission is to recognize ideas that have the power to change the world.