Responsible Organising

Responsible Organising is a joint area of research across subjects at Hanken. This area was evaluated as category A (research of the highest international standard) by an international external evaluation panel in 2018.


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Responsible Organising 

Responsible Organising (RO) corresponds to fields of research on social and environmental responsibility, including gender, diversity, and sustainability, both in organisations and in terms of organisational impacts on society.

In line with Hanken’s strategy for research, RO encourages “co-operation between Hanken’s competence centres on projects with social impact” (Hanken 2025 sub-strategy on research), as it focuses on the synergistic intersections between three research institutes (CCR, GODESS, HUMLOG). Hanken was elected UN PRME Champion school for 2018, signaling its global leadership role in responsibility and sustainability, which includes a commitment to “take transformative action towards the integration of the Sustainable Development Goals across curriculum, research and partnerships.” RO sediments these strategic international research commitments.

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RESPONSIBLE: Common for RO research is a rejection of the idea that moral concerns and business decisions are something separate. Instead, within RO ethics/morality and business as inseparable, intertwined, and interconnected. At the same time recognising the limits of “responsible” as signifier, our research can raise questions and give some answers, while recognizing the complexity, multifacetedness, and intersectionality of societal inequalities.


ORGANISING: RO focuses on “organising” rather than on “organisation”, majority of research denoting the performativity of responsibility - how people do things and organise for transformative action. Examples of this would include the organising of firms and other societal actors, the organising of supply chains and networks across space.

Academic keywords: business-stakeholder relations, corporate social responsibility, diversity, gender, inequalities, intersectionality,  privileges, regulation, resilience,  responsible digitalized organisation, responsible innovation, responsible management education, responsible marketing, sustainability, sustainable supply chain management, work/non-work boundaries

Alignment with the SDGs

At the core of Responsible Organising (RO) is research on how different actors are organising for transformative action towards sustainability, as expressed in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This includes the organising of firms and other organisations, as well as supply chains, networks, and markets, towards sustainable outcomes. The topic areas of all 17 SDGs are actively addressed in RO research, with emphasis on research topics dealing with:

  • (1) social inequalities (SDGs 5 and 10),
  • (2) responsible production and consumption (SDG 8 and 12),
  • and (3) responsible partnerships for development (SDG 17). 

Responsible Organising themes manifested in research

RO is founded in the synergistic intersection of the three research institutes of CCR (Centre for Corporate Responsibility), GODESS (Gender, Organization, Diversity, Equality and Social Sustainability in Transnational Times) and HUMLOG (the Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Research Institute). It currently encompasses researchers and research from subjects of (alphabetical order) Commercial Law; Management and Organisation;Management and Politics; Marketing; and Supply Chain Management and Social Responsibility - but will in the future be open for any relevant research and researchers from any subject to be affiliated.

Hanken’s research on RO can be divided in three main synergistic and interrelated clusters:


A cluster on organising around Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and sustainability, with four main themes:

  • A1) CSR and sustainability as concepts and practice: 
  • A2) Responsible business-stakeholder relations 
  • A3) responsible innovation and technology
  • A4) responsible supply chains and production networks

A cluster on organising around gender, intersectionality and inequalities, with three main themes:

  • B1) diversity, intersectionality
  • B2) (in)equalities, privileges and disadvantages in organisations
  • B3) responsible management of work/non-work boundaries

A cluster where perspectives on social responsibility and inequalities are both present, with three main themes:

  • C1) responsible academia and education.
  • C2) responsible digitalized organisation
  • C3) responsible marketing and markets