Accelerating a Framework for Societal Impact Leadership

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AACSB’s Innovation Committee explores the required competencies needed for societal impact leaders.

AACSB’s Innovation Committee—composed of the AACSB Board of Directors and business school deans, educators, and business leaders—engaged in an accelerator workshop in April 2022 focused on advancing AACSB’s ongoing work in societal impact. The committee applied Three Horizons thinking to examine business schools’ role in driving positive change and preparing future societal impact leaders.

Key takeaways include:

  • Present faculty recruitment models, research priorities, incentive metrics, learner accessibility, and overall university structures are often not conducive to evolving societal demands.
  • Business schools must be cognizant of the unique needs of their local communities and expanding learner populations.
  • Disruptive innovations are required for creating positive impact. Leaders can promote change through action-oriented collaboration, organizational decision-making, and encouraging greater equity and access to education and employment.
  • Five key competencies for a societal impact leader, which emerged from the Innovation Committee’s exploratory work, include courage, empathy, curiosity, long-term focus, and a data approach to decision-making. 


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