The CSR Awareness Month was a wonderful learning experience for the NUS Student Community with distinguished speakers addressing various key topics. 

The CSR Awareness Month, an annual event started in 2006, was co-hosted by the NUS MBA Corporate Ethics Focus Group (CEFG) along with the NUS CSR Student Group this year. As a part of this event, there were Movie Screenings, CSR Exhibition and Speaker Series spread over the entire month of March 2007. The CSR Exhibition happened from March 12th to March 16th in the Business School Foyer. This was intended to spread awareness of Corporate Social Responsibility among the Business School student community. The speaker series was spread over three weeks and the details about the series are as follows:

March 16th 2007 
This event kicked off the CSR Awareness Month Speaker Series for the 2007 edition. Students from all disciplines at NUS gathered to discuss CSR issues facing the Asian region along with a panel of experts from the industry. The distinguished guest for this event was Mr. Thomas Thomas from the Singapore Compact for CSR. The evening also included guest speakers Mr. Ryan Ang from World Bank and Ms. Laura Crow from CSR Asia.

Prof. Nitin Pangarkar, Academic Director of the MBA program, kicked off the evening with a short speech stressing the importance of understanding CSR. Mr. Thomas followed with a discussion on the basics of CSR and the role of businesses in Singapore and the rest of Asia. His talked highlighted the challenges faced and future direction of CSR practices in the region. Next up was Mr. Ang who gave a World Bank perspective on CSR. He talked about World Bank’s lending policies and how these loans had helped developing countries. Ms. Laura Crow focused in on how organizations can find the training and resources necessary to start up CSR programs in the region. All three speakers then got together on stage to join a panel discussion.

March 23rd 2007 
The theme for this series was “Managing Human Assets” and the speakers were Ms. Cheryl Liew, Director from Employer Alliance, Ms. Tan Joo Hymn, President, Association of Women for Action and Research and Ms. Charlotte Thng, Head of Human Resources, Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking. Ms. Cheryl spoke about the importance of work life balance and about her organization’s contribution in this area. Ms. Tan Joo Hymn focused on various issues faced by women in their working place. She also stressed upon the importance of removing these challenges which would help in bringing in more women into the workforce. One of the responsibilities of Ms. Charlotte Thng as Head of Human Resources is to help the employees of the Corporate and Investment banking division to maintain a healthy work life balance. She spoke about the various policies that are being implemented at Citibank in order to achieve the same.

March 30th 2007
The theme for this speaker series was ‘Green Money’. As environmentally conscious corporate citizens, it’s the responsibility of every company to gauge the impact of their actions on the environment. The speakers were Mr. Howard Shaw, Singapore Environment Council and Ms. Jasmine Teo, ST Microelectronics. Mr. Shaw was well placed in the nexus between corporate action and environmental impact. He had contributed towards shaping Singapore’s environmental policies, strategies as well as action plans. On the other hand Ms. Teo was to give a corporate perspective to this issue of environmental awareness. ST Microelectronics has been deploying CSR values and commitments in its daily activities, and integrating a culture of responsibility and accountability in its decision making process. Environmental resources conservation initiatives at STM have resulted in huge savings for the company and it has become a role model for other Singaporean companies to look up to.

This event marked the conclusion of a wonderful interactive learning experience for the entire NUS Student Community – the CSR Awareness Month 2007. We, the CEFG from NUS Business School, are delighted to have played a constructive role in this event. We thank the NUS Business School, the NUS CSR Group and the elite speaker community for having supported us in conducting such an important and large-scale event.

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