Teaching Interest

IXP Course: South Africa; Innovating for Sustainability in an Emerging Market

by George Serafeim


This course is intended for future business leaders who are interested in how companies can develop more sustainable strategies, especially in emerging markets. A sustainable strategy is one that enables a company to create value for its shareholders over the long term by contributing to a sustainable society. This requires minimizing negative and maximizing positive externalities along all material dimensions of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance. South Africa is a leading emerging market in terms of companies working to develop sustainable strategies. This is particularly important for certain sectors, such as mining, which are very important in this resource-rich country. South Africa's leadership in sustainability has been driven by three major codes of corporate governance: King I (1994), King II (2002), and King III (2009). King III mandates integrated reporting-the combination of financial and ESG data in a single document-of all companies listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. This IXP will focus on what companies and the investment community are doing to create sustainable strategies and the resultant impact on the South African economy and society.

Keywords: sustainability; corporate accountability; corporate social responsibility; governance; accounting; reporting; leadership; emerging economies; Africa;