The study of being wrong was a session led by two of our classmates that focused on accepting that being wrong is okay, if not imperative to success. The discussion mentioned one pioneer in this field, Kathryn Schulz, who has authored books that focus on this theory. Schulz’s proposition that failure is necessary to lead to learning opportunities and success is an innovation in the business world. Furthermore, our classmates argued that this theory needs to applied to our everyday lives, for us to continue to learn and grow. We have to understand that failing is not bad, but just another chance to be create the change we want to see in the world.
Last week, Christoph Koffler, technical director for PE International, Inc., came into our Sustainable Theories and Models class to train our cohort on how to use the GaBi software. GaBi is the #1 life cycle assessment tool, and we will be using this software as we begin our analysis of different products.
GaBi software can model every element of a product or system from a life-cycle perspective, equipping businesses to make the best informed decisions on the manufacture and lifecycle of any product, everything from a mobile phone to a match-stick to an airport. The software is used by over 1500 companies, including Dupont, Bayer, Siemens, Timberland, Ford, Bombardier and Daimler. Understanding LCA for products gives organizations a competitive advantage.
Christoph explained that he was willing to do any life cycle analysis comparison during his training. One classmate, Dallas, suggested that we compare hand dryers and paper towels. This comparison proved to be a complex analysis, and it showed that hand dryers produce more global warming than paper towels, which surprised the vast majority of us!
Throughout the upcoming weeks, each group within the cohort will do its own life cycle analysis and present their findings on two comparable products. The GaBi training was challenging; however, we have a much better grasp of the LCA process.
To learn more about GaBi visit the following website: http://www.gabi-software.com/america/index/
Our professor, Dr. Robert Sroufe, was recognized in New York City as a 2013 Aspen Faculty Pioneer Award finalist! Other finalists include, David A. Besanko, Alvin J. Huss Distinguished Professor of Management and Strategy, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University; and Christopher Marquis, Associate Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School, Harvard University.
The Faculty Pioneers winners were Mauro F. Guillén, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business who studies management practices in various countries; and Nicola M. Pless, professor at ESADE Business School, Ramon Llull University in Barcelona who researches “Responsible Leadership.”
It is inspiring to see Dr. Sroufe recognized with leaders from top business schools in the world. We have the honor to work with Dr. Sroufe each week in our Sustainability Theories and Models for Innovation course in the MBA Sustainability program, and we our whole cohort is honored to work with him.
One classmate Angela put it perfectly when we were discussing Dr. Sroufe’s recognition, she said” I am not surprised that Dr.Sroufe was selected among so many great applicants. He is a very motivated man and his passion for sustainability is very inspiring to me as a student. He has opened so many doors for me on the possibilities of sustainable practices, and is enthusiastic about their importance. He has been a true inspiration and is a great role model for what we need in order to achieve a sustainable future.”
In New York, Dr. Sroufe was not only recognized as a finalist, but he also spoke at the two-day program hosted by the Aspen Institute. He introduced the sustainability curriculum involved with our program; focusing on the Sustainable Theories and Models for Innovation class that has inspired Angela and the rest of our cohort this semester.
For more on Dr. Sroufe and the Faculty Pioneer Award recipients: http://www.aspeninstitute.org/vi/policy-work/business-society/faculty-pioneer-awards