GCU submits evidence report to United Nations Global Compact initiative

03 August 2015

Dr Alec Wersun

Dr Alec Wersun

Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) has submitted its first Communication on Engagement (COE) report to the United Nations Global Compact to evidence the specific activities that it takes in support of the initiative.

The United Nations Global Compact is the world’s largest voluntary corporate responsibility initiative. It brings together like-minded organisations to ensure that business, as a primary driver of globalisation, can help guide markets, commerce, technology and finance to advance in ways that work for the overall benefit of economies and societies worldwide.

The initiative has more than 12,000 signatories, of which 8000 are businesses. The University became a signatory in 2013; it was the first university in Scotland to join.

Academic signatories undertake research and stimulate multi-stakeholder dialogue on the evolving concept of corporate citizenship, strengthening the business case for responsible management practices. They also have a key role to play in ensuring that the business leaders of tomorrow are equipped with the knowledge and tools they will need to meet pressing global challenges.

To demonstrate continued engagement with the United Nations Global Compact, non-business participants must submit a COE every two years.

GCU is also a signatory to the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), a closely-linked United Nations initiative that promotes and inspires responsible management education and research in academic institutions around the world.

Dr Alec Wersun, Senior Lecturer in Glasgow School for Business and Society, said: “GCU’s engagement with the United Nations Global Compact and PRME offers an opportunity for academics across the three academic schools to produce research that can contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which will be agreed and published next month by the United Nations.

“The SDGs will build on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), but, while the MDGs focused on halving poverty by 2015, the SDG targets are much broader in that they stress the contribution that business can make to solving social, environmental and economic problems through innovation and greater investment.  
“Therefore, business schools and universities, as generators of knowledge, research and human capital, have a key role to play to team up with businesses, government and social enterprise to make a collective impact on these challenging, but surmountable problems.”