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The Prince of Wales attends a conference at the London Business School

27th May 2015

The Prince of Wales with Sir Andrew Likierman, Dean of the London Business School

The Prince of Wales visited the London Business School today to attend a meeting about finance and sustainability.

His Royal Highness called on business schools to step out of their comfort zones and consider providing courses that embrace sustainability and equip MBA students for the future.

The Prince told senior representatives from academic institutions gathered at a one-day conference that with growing environmental threats like climate change and a global population explosion businesses will need to adapt their approach. 

Among the guests were senior representatives from companies and institutions like Barclays, Harvard Business School, Oxford and Cambridge Universities and University of Bath - School of Management.

The event was staged by two organisations His Royal Highness is closely associated with - his Prince's Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S) and the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, of which he is Patron. The Prince also visited a lecture given by Professor Andrew Scott to second year MBA students on sustainability and asked the students about their thoughts on the issue.

His Royal Highness said: "Far too often sustainability is seen as a 'nice-to-have', with no requirement for a seat at the boardroom table. Well, this really is, I would have thought, a very short-sighted and outdated view.

"More and more leading businesses are recognising that addressing environmental and social issues systematically is not only necessary, but delivers improved commercial returns.

"The bottom line is that sustainable business equals good business."

A speech by HRH The Prince of Wales at the London Business School

Published on 28th May 2015

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am fully aware that you have been locked in here since 9.30 or something and I suspect that you have been talked to furiously all that time. The last thing you want is another lecture when most of you are probably used to giving lectures rather than having to listen to them.

But if I may say so I am delighted to see so many leading figures from the business school community here today and to hear you discuss such an important topic. Needless to say, I really am immensely grateful to you all for taking the time to join this meeting – even if at the end of the day it is only out of curiosity!

In particular, I would like to thank Sir Andrew Likierman, who was involved in my Accounting for Sustainability Project at its inception, and of course the London Business School for kindly hosting us all, particularly in its anniversary year.  And I also wanted to say 'many happy returns of the day'.

I understand that 50 years ago, London Business School was established based on the notion that management needed to be professionalized, in the same way as law and accountancy, in order to improve Britain’s economic performance.  With over 150,000 students passing through its doors since then, it is clear that the London Business School and other business schools have played an important role in shaping global economic success. 

Anniversaries are a time not just to look back, but also, perhaps to look ahead and consider what the future may bring.  It is therefore perhaps fitting that we are here in L.B. ...

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