This week we look at some research on the concept of responsible management learning and education.

A map and research agenda for the responsible management learning field 
The emerging field of responsible management learning is characterised by an urgent need for transdisciplinary practices. The authors conceptualise constellations of transdisciplinary practices by building up on a social practice perspective.

From this perspective, knowledge and learning are ‘done’ in interrelated practices that may span multiple fields like the professional, educational, and research field. Such practices integrate knowledge across disciplines (interdisciplinarity) and sectors (intersectorality) in order to learn to enact, educate, and research complex responsible management. Accordingly, constellations of collaborative transdisciplinary practices span the three layers of the responsible management field: Professional responsible management, responsible management education, and responsible management research. The authors apply this framework to map both recent responsible management learning publications and contributions to this special issue.

The authors notice that although the responsible management field’s aspiration for transdisciplinarity is high the degree to which it has been realised is low. This results in the proposal for a research agenda, which points out impediments to transdisciplinary, and research directions for the responsible management learning field. The authors also highlight theoretical implications of the conceptual framework for the larger transdisciplinarity discussion.


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Oliver Laasch, Dirk Moosmayer, Elena Antonacopoulou & Stefan Schaltegger. 2020. Constellations of Transdisciplinary Practices: A Map and Research Agenda for the Responsible Management Learning Field. 
Journal of Business Ethics, 162(4), 735–757.


How to encourage social entrepreneurship action in higher education  
University students will be our future business leaders, and will have to address social problems caused by business by implementing solutions such as social entrepreneurship ventures. In order to facilitate the learning process that will foster social entrepreneurship, however, a more holistic pedagogy is needed.

Based on learning theory, the authors propose that students’ social entrepreneurship actions will depend on their learning about CSR and their absorptive capacity. The authors propose that instructors and higher education institutions can enhance this absorptive capacity by exploiting Web 2.0 technologies.

The authors tested the proposition with a sample of 425 university students using structural equation modeling and found support for the proposed relationships.

Víctor Jesus García-Morales, Rodrigo Martín-Rojas and Raquel Garde-Sánchez. 2020. How to Encourage Social Entrepreneurship Action? Using Web 2.0 Technologies in Higher Education Institutions. 
Journal of Business Ethics, 161(2), 329–350.


Varieties of responsible management learning 
Over the past two decades an increasing number of research papers have signalled growing interest in more responsible, sustainable and ethical modes of management education. This systematic literature review of peer-reviewed publications on, and allied to, the concept of responsible management learning and education (RMLE) confirms that scholarly interest in the topic has accelerated over the last decade.

Rather than assuming that RMLE is one thing, however, this review proposes that the literature on responsible management education and learning can be divided into four distinct categories: (1) Teaching Responsible Management; (2) Organising for Responsible Education; (3) Responsible Individual Learning, and; (4) Responsible Organisational Learning.

Although the literature on RMLE has grown, work on how managers learn responsible management in organisational or workplace settings, particularly without the intervention of external educational providers, is minimal. The Special Issue of the Journal of Business Ethics is the first to address this significant lacuna. The vast majority of published peer-reviewed research is related to organisational provider-centric organising for responsible management education. Each category is explored and the implications of organising the literature this way for the field of RMLE are discussed. Finally, an agenda for future research and theory development on RMLE is proposed.


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John G. Cullen. 2020. Varieties of Responsible Management Learning: A Review, Typology and Research Agenda. 
Journal of Business Ethics, 162(4), 759–773.


Achieving responsible management learning through enriched reciprocal learning
Through its focus on deep and experiential learning, service-learning (SL) has become increasingly popular within the business school curriculum. While a reciprocal dimension has been foundational to SL, the reciprocality that is emphasised in business ethics literature is often on the relationship between the service experience and the academic content, rather than reciprocal learning of the service providers (students) and the recipients (organisations and their managers), let alone other stakeholders.

Drawing on the notion of enriched reciprocal learning and on Aristotle’s typology of modes of knowing, the authors (1) revisit reciprocal learning by illustrating what kinds of learning occur for server and served in four SL projects from a project course in CSR, and (2) emphasise the role of boundary spanners from the project organisations in making this reciprocal learning happen and translating the various types of student learning in ways that are useful for their organisations.

The authors find that when boundary spanners are particularly engaged at making the projects impactful, they contribute to making the learning experiences of students, managers (including themselves) and sometimes other stakeholders useful, multidimensional, and ultimately rewarding.


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Martin Fougère, Nikodemus Solitander & Sanchi Maheshwari. 2020. Achieving Responsible Management Learning Through Enriched Reciprocal Learning: Service-Learning Projects and the Role of Boundary Spanners. 
Journal of Business Ethics, 162(4), 795–812.