Skip to main content

Course Outlines

BSUS 1110

Introduction to Sustainable Business Management

Course Credits 4
Minimum Passing Grade 50%
Start Date September 09, 2021
End Date December 09, 2021
Total Hours 45
Total Weeks 14
Hours/Weeks 3.21
Delivery Type Other
CRN 48222

Acknowledgement of Territories

The British Columbia Institute of Technology acknowledges that our campuses are located on the unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish Nations of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), and xwməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam).

Instructor Details

Name Cindy Ball
E-mail Instructor to provide
Location Virtual via Zoom
Office Hours Instructor to provide

Course Description

Citizens, consumers, regulatory agencies, NGOs, and employees are increasingly demanding change in the social and environmental impacts of businesses and organizations. Business has entered a new era where success is based on the value returned to all stakeholders. As a result, businesses are building social equity and planetary boundaries into their strategy and business models. This course provides students with foundational knowledge of sustainable business theory and practices. It covers the core functional areas of a business (accounting, management, marketing, and operations). Students learn how these core functions are transforming to address the sustainability imperative.

Course Learning Outcomes/Competencies

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Define sustainability and explain its relevance to business.
  • Evaluate business sustainability claims and commitments.
  • Explain corporate social responsibility (CSR); environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG); stakeholder theory; and planetary boundaries.
  • Articulate the role of private sector leadership in global collective action problems.
  • Explain the corporate governance mechanisms that ensure sustainable business practices.
  • Distinguish between sustainable performance and legal frameworks.
  • Understand commonly accepted global frameworks and reporting standards (e.g., SDGs, GRI, B Corp) and the role of reporting in achieving transparency.
  • Explain the role of risk management, supply chain management, business operations in sustainable business.

Learning Resources

This course has two required textbooks as well as supplemental material that will be posted on the Learning Hub. Students are welcome to purchase the digital or the hardcopy of the two required books:

  • Figueres and Rivett-Carnac (2020) The Future We Choose: Surviving the Climate Crisis
  • Sanders and Wood (2020) Foundations of Sustainable Business: Theory, Function, and Strategy (2nd Edition).

Evaluation Criteria

Criteria % Comments
Weekly Quizzes & Summaries55Completed during scheduled class time
Article Presentation15Individual
Final Exam20
Participation and Professionalism10

Course Schedule and Assignments

Week 1:
September 9
Course Introduction
Week 2:
September 16
The Critical Decade

The Future We Choose (TFWC)

Introduction & “Part I: Two Worlds”

Week 3:
September 23

The Future We Choose

“Part II: Three Mindsets”

Week 4:
September 30

The Future We Choose

“Part III: Ten Actions” (Actions 1-5)

Week 5:
October 7

The Future We Choose

“Part III: Ten Actions” (Actions 6-10) &

“Conclusion: A New Story”

Week 6:
October 14
Introduction: Definitions

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 1, “Introduction to Sustainable Business”

Week 7:
October 21
Introduction: Perspectives

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 2, “Perspectives”

Week 8:
October 28
Introduction: Leadership, Change, and Governance

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 3, “Leadership…”

Week 9:
November 4
Accountability: Laws

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 4, “Legal Frameworks for Sustainability”

Week 10:
November 11
Remembrance Day - no live lecture - no quiz
Accountability: Finance and Accounting + Risk Management

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 5, “Metrics, Tools, and Reporting”
Ch. 6, “Risk Management”

Week 11:
November 18
Implementation: Marketing

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 7, “Marketing”

Week 12:
November 25
Implementation: Supply Chain

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 8, “Supply Chain Management”

Week 13:
December 2
Implementation: Operations

Foundations of Sustainable Business

Ch. 9, “Operations Management”

Week 14:
December 9
Final Exam - during class, details to be providedFinal Exam

BCIT Policy

Any student who needs special assistance in the event of a medical emergency or building evacuation (either because of a disability or for any other reason) should promptly inform their course instructor(s) and Accessibility Services of their personal circumstances.

Human Rights, Harassment and Discrimination:
The BCIT community is made up of individuals from every ability, background, experience and identity, each contributing uniquely to the richness and diversity of the BCIT community as a whole. In recognition of this, and the intrinsic value of our diversity, BCIT seeks to foster a climate of collaboration, understanding and mutual respect between all members of the community and ensure an inclusive accessible working and learning environment where everyone can succeed.

Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion is a supportive resource for both students and employees of BCIT, to foster a respectful learning and working environment. Any student who feels that they are experiencing discrimination or harassment (personal or human rights-related) can confidentially access this resource for advice and support. Please see Policy 7507 – Harassment and Discrimination and accompanying procedure.

Students should make themselves aware of additional Education, Administration, Safety and other BCIT policies listed at

Guidelines for

Students must successfully complete a course within a maximum of three (3) attempts at the course. Students with two attempts in a single course will be allowed to repeat the course only upon special written permission from the Associate Dean. Students who have not successfully completed a course within three attempts may not be eligible to graduate from their respective program.

Regular attendance in lectures and labs is seen as integral to student success, therefore, attendance in class is monitored. Unexcused absences in excess of 10% of the time prescribed for this course may result in the assignment of a failing grade. Attendance may be taken at any time during class. A student not present for attendance will be marked absent. A student who leaves class for a period of time deemed excessive by the instructor may be considered absent regardless of whether they are present when attendance is taken.

In case of illness or other unavoidable absence, students must communicate with the instructor, or the appropriate Program Head, as soon as possible (preferably in advance) indicating the reason for the absence. Students who are seeking accommodation for a medical absence must have a BCIT-approved medical certificate ). For other absences, students must be prepared to provide appropriate supporting documentation.

A student who has unexcused absences in excess of 10% of the time prescribed for the course by the Withdrawal Deadline is considered to have ‘Vanished’ and will be assigned a grade of ‘V’. In these cases, no further work will be graded.

These requirements are set out in accordance with BCIT Policy 5101 Student Regulations. More information regarding withdrawals from PTS courses is available at


I verify that the content of this course outline is current.
Cindy Ball, Instructor
June 10, 2021

I verify that this course outline has been reviewed.
Tessa Jordan, Program Head
June 10, 2021

I verify that this course outline has been reviewed and complies with BCIT policy.
Caroline Depatie, Associate Dean
June 15, 2021

Note: Should changes be required to the content of this course outline, students will be given reasonable notice.