University of Granada (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Pages: 7075-7081
ISBN: 978-84-613-2953-3
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain
In this Innovation Project we create a web page in which alumni can get information about the firms’ environmental and financial performance. We distinguish two main objectives. Firstly, this project contributes to increasing the students’ understanding so that they can make use of a group of environmental and financial variables and analyse real data at the firm-level. Second, it contributes to undertaking different types of activities that reinforce the students’ dynamic learning through the analysis of environmental and financial situations. Hence, the use of Information and Communication Technologies will enrich the students’ productivity, promote their self-learning, and the applicability of the acquired knowledge through the study of real business cases. Definetely, this project contributes to the generation of capabilities which reinforce the discussion and arguing abilities of university goers.

The current study is the result of the implementation of an educational innovation project sponsored by the University of Granada, which is called “A direct link between corporate financial performance and corporate social responsibility: special methodologies applied to the teaching method”. We have already elaborated the financial and environmental databases and prepared the software to start its use next September 2009 in four different courses at the Management and Economics Faculty of the University of Granada. We have included Multinational Companies (MNCs) with units based in different countries and that belong to the chemical or energetic industry due to their great repercussion on the natural environment. Each company has its own environmental and financial report. In relation to the environmental issues, we consider the degree of toxicity of the different chemicals and releases in order to obtain information related to the real environmental impact that the different units have in each country. In relation to the financial information we include a great variety of ratios.

Students will work in groups of 5-6. They will get access to each report and will be able to apply the theoretical knowledge to real case studies. We have organised different activities related to the identification of MNCs that undertake certain environmental and financial policies, including cross-country analysis. Moreover, students will be able to establish a relationship between environmental and financial performance and integrate social responsibility issues within the corporate strategy. Finally, they can also participate in a forum available in the platform for all the students and professors, giving their opinions and sharing their experiences.

The evaluation method is integrated by the punctuation of the final exam (7 points), the punctuation of the activities of the platform (2,5 points) and participation in the forum (0,5 points). Once the courses are finished, not only students’ final results are analysed but also the students’ satisfaction level and the resources used by them. We have prepared a questionnaire to determine the level of self-learning that students have reached and assessed the role that members of the different groups have assumed. We will also group the different opinions related to the advantages and disadvantages of the use of the platform. Finally, professors’ opinions about the platform’s success and the incorporation of these new methodologies will be considered as well.
innovation project, teaching methods, environmental and financial.