Notre Dame Executive Education

Executive Education News

Notre Dame MBA ranks 4th worldwide for ethics, social impact

by Carol Elliott

September 21, 2011

Business Chart


The Notre Dame MBA program at the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business ranked No. 4 worldwide in the Aspen Institute’s Beyond Grey Pinstripes 2010-2011 Global 100, up one slot from its No. 5 ranking earned in each of the three previous three surveys.

The biennial survey, released today, is the only MBA ranking that measures how well business schools are preparing their students for the environmental, social and ethical complexities of modern-day business. It’s based on a rigorous, year-long review of the school’s teaching and research pertaining to business and society.

“We believe business education has the responsibility to inspire students to recognize their impact on and contribution to the wellbeing of society through effective and innovative businesses,” said Carolyn Y. Woo, Martin J. Gillen Dean of the Mendoza College of Business. “Our students and our world deserve nothing less.” 

The top five programs were Stanford Graduate School of Business, York University, IE Business School, Mendoza College of Business and Yale School of Business, respectively.

The Aspen Institute noted that competition in the current round of submissions was significantly greater than in 2008-2009. Of the 149 schools from 22 countries that submitted data for the 2011-2012 edition of Pinstripes, 142 were eligible for inclusion in the ranking. The 2011-2012 data submitted from the schools included more than 6,000 course descriptions and about 6,000 abstracts of faculty research. The competition in each scoring category was greater this cycle, including an increase in the number of relevant courses, "business impact" courses, and research articles submitted over prior years. Student enrollments in relevant courses also increased.

All 20 of the Notre Dame MBA required courses and a notable 143 electives integrate social, ethical or environment issues.

“In all scoring categories used to determine the ranking, business schools have raised the bar,” said Judith Samuelson, executive director of the Aspen Institute Business and Society Program, which conducted Beyond Grey Pinstripes. “There more courses about the role of business as a positive agent for change, more exposure of students to this content, and more research published by faculty on relevant topics.”

Samuelson noted that the 2011 survey marked the first opportunity since the global economic downturn to comprehensively measure the extent to which MBA programs have altered the content of their courses, and whether faculty are pursuing research that questioned assumptions about the role of business in society.

“The focus on ethics and societal impact is foundational to the business school at Notre Dame; it’s not a reaction to financial misfortunes,” said Edward J. Conlon, associate dean of graduate programs. “But the recent economic downturn shows how critical it is that business leaders have a values-based perspective.”

The Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Program, along with its Center for Business Education, seeks to create business leaders for the 21st century who are equipped with the vision and knowledge necessary to integrate corporate profitability with social value. To that end, it offers programs that provide business educators with the resources they need to incorporate issues of social and environmental stewardship into their teaching, research and curriculum development. The complete ranking of the “Beyond Grey Pinstripes 2010-2011 Global 100” can be found at www.beyondgreypinstripes.org.

The Notre Dame MBA at the Mendoza College of Business enrolls approximately 340 students annually in its one-year and two-year programs. The program is designed to sharpen students’ analytical and problem-solving skills, enhance their leadership ability and increase emphasis on ethical decision making. Students have the opportunity to study the complexities of global business through international immersions in Asia, Latin America and other locations.

During the week-long Interterm Intensives, the MBA students analyze, investigate and offer solutions for real-life problems presented by executives from large global organizations. The Notre Dame MBA is ranked 24th among U.S. business schools by Bloomberg Businessweek.

For more information about the Notre Dame MBA, contact Brian Lohr, Director of Admissions, at (574) 631-8488 or Lohr.1@nd.edu, or visit business.nd.edu/mba.