BS4CL Climate Leadership Research Conference

Deepening interaction among business school researchers working on climate, while forging collaborations

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Business Schools for Climate Leadership (BS4CL) is a unique partnership between eight of Europe’s leading business schools to help present and future leaders combat the climate crisis facing the planet. The schools, which came together to launch their alliance at COP26 in Glasgow, are Cambridge Judge, HEC Paris, IE, IESE, IMD, INSEAD, LBS and Oxford Saïd.

The first in-person BS4CL Climate Leadership Conference recently took place at IESE’s Barcelona campus on June 1 and aimed to facilitate and deepen interaction among academics and industry leaders working on climate while forging collaborations and providing a platform to share the latest research across disciplines. The aim is, as ever, to build a vibrant community, and in doing so, trigger new opportunities for collaboration and impact.

Academic research is a core part of BS4CL’s contribution to fighting the climate crisis and therefore, the conference aimed to bring together researchers from across all BS4CL schools to support, ignite, and accelerate the School’s joint research impact.

London Business School’s Ioannis Ioannou was a leading figure in devising and running the research event, and provided the opening remarks to the BS4CL Research Committee at the start of the conference. In a video that captures the start of the event, Dr Ioannou says: “As top business schools one key competitive advantage that we have is the ability to study these big challenges in a rigorous and systematic way.”

London Business School’s Wheeler Institute for Business and Development also played a principal role in leading the School’s engagement with BS4CL and, together with Dr Ioannis Ioannou, the Executive Director of the Wheeler Institute for Business and Development, Tiago Martinho, is a member of the core BS4CL team.

The Dean of LBS, Dean Ortalo-Magné, also attended accompanied by the deans of the other participating schools. The conference was also attended by members of our alumni community including:

•  Jean-Philippe Verdier (SLN2010), Founding Partner at Verdier & Co and Corporate Advisory and Chair of Alumni Council at LBS

•  Chris Caldwell (JEMBA2011), CEO United Renewables

•  Ajay Vij (SEMBA2007), Vice President, Strategic Industries, EMEA at Google

•  Josep Trabal (SLN2016), Group Commercial Director at Eden Springs

  Sanmit Ahuja (SEMBA2004), Founder and CEO of impactirr

Milind Goel, a PhD Candidate at LBS (Operations Research, Financial Economics) and Julian Marenz, PhD Student in Economics at LBS, both gave presentations based on research at the conference, respectively 'Do Homeowners Care About Sustainability?', and ‘The Effects of Taxing Carbon Emissions on Carbon Leakage to Developing Countries’. Co-authors of the latter presentation are LBS Assistant Professor of Accounting Marcel Olbert (LBS), and Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at Northwestern University, Diego R. Kanzig, a former Research and Teaching Assistant at LBS, who holds an MRes, Economics and a Ph.D. Economics from LBS.

Since the launch of BS4CL in November of 2021 coinciding with the UN Climate Change Conference 2021 (COP-26), the collaborating schools have produced publications on climate in topics as diverse as EU emission trading system (ETS), ESGs and climate finance. They have also made it a priority to incorporate climate-focused learning into the classroom through a wide variety of measures including the launch of new programs and initiatives and the addition of tracks related to climate and sustainability to existing programs. For more information on the conference, click here

Commenting on the event, Dr Ioannou said: "As the head of the Research Committee for this Climate Leadership Research Conference and Forum, I'm truly pleased by the success of this event. We've seen a powerful exchange of ideas and the formation of promising partnerships aimed at addressing climate change through the lens of business and academia. This conference has clearly shown that when we collaborate, we can innovate and create solutions that make a real difference. I am inspired by the commitment of all participants and look forward to seeing the positive impact of our joint efforts in the near future."