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CSR Research Coming into Focus at the Gabelli School

Event Recaps | Nov 20, 2019 |

Sustainability. Humanistic approaches to business. Corporate ESG profiles and banking relationships.

These topics wouldn’t typically be grouped together in a lecture or guest talk, but they recently brought a group of professors together at the Gabelli School’s Lincoln Center campus at a research-centered event.

More than 40 professors dedicated to corporate social responsibility (CSR) research, shared their ideas and learned from each other in an interdisciplinary presentation spearheaded by An Yan, associate dean of research and faculty development at the Gabelli School.

The presentations gave faculty the opportunity to vet and give feedback on social innovation research topics ranging from corporate CSR disclosures on websites to controversial topics like social responsibility of gun manufacturers, and the correlation between mass shootings and increased revenue.

They also helped encourage future collaboration among areas across the business school, according to Sertan Kabadayi, area chair and professor of marketing, director of Teacher Excellence, the Gabelli School.

“It was great to see many colleagues from different disciplines working on CSR related research,” said Kabadayi. “Those presentations showed that some of us share similar research interests and will probably lead to more research collaborations with colleagues from different areas.”

One presentation on the notion of open hiring – hiring people without an interview – sparked perplexed but purpose-driven banter among colleagues. Another presentation, a “Sustainability Accounting Toolkit,” comprised of two distinct lectures that were designed to be adapted by faculty across disciplines who wish to include material related to sustainability accounting, environmental, social and governance reporting, and/or triple bottom line concepts in their courses.

Because CSR research is a rapidly popular but still relatively new subject, many faculty members were grateful for the opportunity to share their topics and look forward to participating in more of these events in the near future.

“I consider CSR research to be in its infancy,” said John Shon, director of the Professional MBA program, and associate professor of accounting and taxation, the Gabelli School. “And as such, it’s important for us to cross-pollinate ideas because it’s only in this way that we’ll know that we are properly triangulating the important issues at hand.”

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