Module code: MANM444

Module Overview

The module is an advanced, research-led module on sustainability and social innovation. It offers research-led insights into current issues and anticipated trends in sustainability, social innovation, and the changing role of business in society.
The module will consider the current theory and critically examine the corporate practice of managing for sustainability, including aspects of corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, innovation and strategic, operational and supply chain solutions for improving sustainability on an international scale. We will examine the social, environmental, economic and business case for sustainability in the global context and reflect on the possible trajectories for the advancement of the sustainability agenda.
We will study the emergent trends in organising for the fulfilment of social needs that are insufficiently (or not at all) addressed by either the private or public sector and examine the case for the social enterprise. We will examine the practice of social entrepreneurship and innovation and reflect on the transfer-ability of the model to more traditional organisations. We will examine how value is created through social innovation and enterprise and look at the associated challenges and opportunities for the future.

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader

MATOS Stelvia (SBS)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 117

Lecture Hours: 33

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:
The case for Sustainability - key drivers, theories and arguments
Corporate Governance, Social Responsibility and Sustainability
Current concepts and models of Sustainability
Current issues in Sustainable Management: policy, regulation, and practice
Organising for Sustainability: Strategy, Operations, and the Value Chain
Innovating for sustainable development, including key technological, commercial, organisational ad societal issues facing new innovations, and how they interact
Managing change and transformation towards sustainable business practice
The case for Social Innovation - key drivers, theories and arguments
Theoretical perspectives on achieving change through social innovation and enterprise
Practical approaches to creating value through social innovation and enterprise
Funding social innovation
Current issues in Social Innovation and Enterprise.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework GROUP COURSEWORK (3,000 WORDS) 80
Oral exam or presentation DEBATE (GROUP ASSESSMENT) 20

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate advanced understanding of the subject matter and mastery of the learning outcomes through practical application.

These are assessed as an integrative collaborative project that showcases students' subject-specific knowledge and cognitive skills as well as their practical ability to apply their learning to complex problems and tasks in the relevant domain of professional practice.

Students who may need to re-sit the team assessment will have to prepare an individual business plan for a sustainable social enterprise.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Group project report (3,000 words) 80%

  • An in class debate on the development of a controversial technology 20%

In the event that any student would not be able to contribute to the group project, they will be given an alternative assessment:

  • Alternative assessment: individual business plan (3,000 words) 80%

In the event that any student would not be able to contribute to the debate, they will be given an alternative assessment:

  • Alternative assessment: individual oral examination (20 minutes) 20%Formative assessment

Formative feedback is offered on an ongoing basis during seminars/group discussions, active learning sessions and project tutorials, which may be done face-to-face or online (synchronously).


Formative feedback is provided ass detailed above.

Summative feedback is provided in writing, separately for each of the elements of assessment.

Alternative assessment: individual oral ex



Module aims

  • Develop an advanced understanding of the case and agenda for sustainable management on an international scale
  • Develop an in-depth appreciation of the evolving social, political, economic, and environmental obligations facing business organisations and the ways in which these diverse pressures are being addressed through sustainable approaches to management
  • Provide a critical overview of the theory and corporate practice of sustainable management and associated trends and challenges
  • Develop an advanced awareness of the issues and trends driving the rise and development of the social enterprise agenda
  • Provide an in-depth understanding of social innovation and entrepreneurship as a model for creating social value and an alternative to both private and public business models

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Demonstrate in-depth understanding of the evolving relationship between business and society and the growing environmental, political, economic and societal pressures for change towards sustainability CKP
002 Develop a critical appreciation of the current sustainability issues facing managers and organisations and the emerging trends in sustainable management theory and practice CKPT
003 Demonstrate critical awareness of the opportunities and limitations associated with sustainable management and corporate social responsibility CKPT
004 Identify and analyse the implications of current organisational policies and practices for a sustainable future CKPT
005 Critically engage with the case for social innovation and enterprise and the key theories and debates in the field CKPT
006 Critically evaluate various models of creating value through social innovation applying the relevant criteria covered in the module, including sustainability CKPT
007 Apply advanced skills of analysis, synthesis and critical thinking to evaluate policy and practice in the areas of sustainability and social innovation and offer sound recommendations CKPT
008 Think creatively and apply social and environmental awareness and business acumen to propose innovative solutions for social enterprise and organisations in general CKPT
009 Work independently and as part of a team to identify issues, analyse problems and develop innovative solutions and sound recommendations CKPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed on the principles of project-based experimental pedagogy and this combines research-informed academic content with applied learning through project work.

Learning and teaching is research-led and follows a student-focused, experimental, flipped-classroom methodology with online elements.  It comprises lectures, seminars, group discussions, Masterclass sessions, study trips, practical workshops and project tutorials.  It includes active and self-directed learning - both group and individual.  Prior to attending the lecture and seminar, students are expected to undertake the essential reading and complete any set work for the sessions.

The project work, which is the basis of both active learning and module assessment, is designed to give students the experience of working in an international and cross-cultural context.  It is supported by engagement with practice through a study trip and a series of Masterclass sessions, which may include talks from guest practitioners, research seminars, webinars and company visits.  Together with dedicated group project tutorials - run face-to-face or online (synchronously) - these sessions are designed to support student learning through project work and provide formative feedback in preparation for the assessment.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures are mainly designed to illustrate and explain theoretical concepts and models.

  • Seminars/group discussions are designed to develop a more practical insight into the applied nature of the various topics covered: they help explore the theoretical concepts and models by reference to a range of topical issues and case studies.

  • Active learning includes engaging in classroom practical exercises, video and case analyses, and group project work.

  • Active learning through online study (synchronous and asynchronous)

  • Self-directed learning pertains to engaging with learning materials and undertaking desk-research required for classroom participation and assessment.

  • Study trips are designed to allow students the opportunity to observe the phenomena they study in practice and engage with the relevant practice and practitioners in their own setting and context.

  • Masterclass sessions are there to support the student-led projects, which run throughout the duration of the module and are the basis for the  module assessment.  Masterclass sessions deal with current issues of direct relevance to student projects and are informed by the latest research and business practice.

  • Project tutorials support students in their project work through systematic review of progress, discussion and formative feedback from an academic tutor.  These may be run face-to-face or online (synchronously).

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: MANM444

Other information


Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Management MSc 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.