Business and the greater good courses ask you to think critically about the choices that confront businesses today and how businesses might contribute to the greater good. These courses include some with a focus on environmental sustainability, or corporate social responsibility, or particular issues such as the impact of business and entrepreneurship on marginalized communities.

As a BUEN major, you will be challenged to develop the ability to see the commercial world from various perspectives, and equipped to be thoughtful about the connections between business, culture, community, and the natural environment. Those connections will appear in the introductory Business and Society course, and also in other courses throughout the major, but they will be the focal point of courses that fulfill the business and the greater good requirement.

Current courses for the Business and the greater good requirement:

Environmental, Social and Governance Issues in Business (new course)

This course examines the social responsibilities of business organizations in both the for-profit and non-profit fields using a multi-disciplinary approach.  The idea that the social responsibilities of business should play an important role in decision-making has been an established, though controversial, subject since at least the mid 20th century.  In this course, students will consider the social, environmental, ethical, and legal dimensions of social responsibility, and the ways in which they have evolved over time.

The course will highlight a contemporary approach to implementing a social responsibility strategy: ESG or “Environment, Social, and Governance.”  ESG is both a guide for decision-makers within organizations and a standard used by outsiders to rate and evaluate investment decisions.  

History of Black Business in 20th Century America (new course)

This course will center on the history of African-American entrepreneurship, the American Civil Rights movement, and legal history relevant to Black business development. We will start with a discussion of the African origins of Black business, follow the trajectory of African-American entrepreneurship in the United States to the Civil Rights movement, and the emergence of the superstar Black athlete as an entrepreneur and the Hip Hop Superstar as an entrepreneur in post-Civil Rights America. We will conclude with a discussion of present-day laws and legal decisions impacting African-American entrepreneurship with a specific focus on the Fox Valley.

Introduction to Environmental Policy (ENST / ECON / GOVT 151)

This course applies principles of economics and political science to environmental issues, including pollution, resource limitation, and environmental degradation. It is designed to foster an understanding of the environmental policy-making and regulatory process in the United States and globally.

Environmental Politics (GOVT 465 / ENST470)

An examination of selected aspects of environmental policy in the United States. Topics include the historical development of U.S. environmental policy, environmental justice, urban environmental issues, connections between food systems and the environment, and the application of economic reasoning to environmental policy-making.

Global Environmental Politics (ENST / GOVT 270, GLST 271)

This course provides an examination of the environment as an issue in world politics. Emphasis will be placed on the role of both state and non-state actors (i.e., the UN, NGOs) in global environmental regimes that are designed to deal with global warming, ozone depletion, and other environmental issues. Particular attention will be paid to the positions taken by both developed and developing countries. As part of the course, students will participate in a simulation of an international negotiation on an environmental issue.