San Francisco, United States

San Francisco State University
College of Business

Organizational Structure:

The Center for Ethical and Sustainable Business (CESB) is currently composed of five full-time faculty in the College of Business teaching only sustainability related courses. Seven faculty comprise our original and growing core teaching group: Denise Kleinrichert, Director; Murray Silverman (emeritus), Tom Thomas, Bruce Paton (emeritus), Peter Melhus (emeritus), Geoff Desa, Caterina Tantlao, and Smita Trivedi. CESB also has an Advisory Board of faculty from across the College of Business.


The Center for Ethical and Sustainable Business (CESB) was launched in the College of Business in 2011, with founding faculty members seeking to integrate ethics, corporate social responsibility and environmental sustainability beyond the classroom for undergraduate and graduate business students, faculty and the Bay Area business community.

Main Activities:

  • Business Ethics Week (2006 - present): In the fall semester, the college focuses a full week on topics related to social, ethical and environmental issues. Speakers and panel discussions are scheduled and are open to students, faculty and the community. In addition, all faculty in the CoB are asked to focus at least one class session that week on ethical, social or environmental topics related to their discipline (accounting, finance, management, marketing, decision sciences, information systems, hospitality and tourism, economics, etc.).
  • Ethics & Compliance Workshops (2013 - present): Executive and academic speakers jointly serve on panel discussions and facilitate roundtable interactive discussions with one another and students to discern the complex organizational challenges and benefits of creating and leading cultures of integrity beyond legal implications of decision-making and best practices (
  • Net Impact (2011 - present): Ongoing support for the Net Impact MBA student organization and alumni (, inclusive of co-hosting of ethics and sustainability speakers, industry executives panel discussions, movie screenings, and international student case study competitions.
  • Women in Business MBA and Providing Opportunity for Women ( student organizations (2015 - present): Support for hosting and promoting MBA and undergraduate student organizations, inclusive of field trips, executive speakers and related events on each campus.
  • Summer High School Student Sustainability Workshops (June 2011 - present). These workshops began as a collaboration between several CESB faculty members and MBA students/alum. which started in 2011 with 12 students from private schools that came together for half days over a one week period. The success of this camp and its students’ enthusiasm encouraged the development of an ongoing project that would be expanded to include the San Francisco United School Districts’ 19 public high schools in 2012, drawing up to 40 students for one week each summer.
  • Speakers Series: Throughout the academic year, CESB brings executives from Bay Area businesses, non-profits and government to speak about their experiences on topics relating to business ethics and sustainability.
  • Conferences: Spring (2012) - a conference for west coast faculty on the topic of Benefit Corporations
  • Case Writing Initiative: The initiative includes a variety of efforts to promote and support the development of business sustainability case studies, by fostering collaboration among leading sustainability case writers who teach to support other faculty who seek to develop and apply case writing skills to publish and teach case studies.


Denise Kleinrichert