To foster an ethically responsible culture, an organization must establish ethical leadership and encourage all its members to value and practice integrity. In order to inspire ethical leadership and promote discussion concerning business ethics, service and civic engagement, BAESR has established corporate partnerships to support Bentley’s workshops, seminars, lecture series and research in the area of business ethics, corporate responsibility, and service-learning, and to provide internships for students who wish to study corporate governance.
The FleetBoston Financial Foundation (now Bank of America) has had a long-term partnership with the Bentley Service-Learning Center (BSLC) intended to support our efforts to continue to develop service-learning as part of a "new paradigm for education in business.” FleetBoston's contribution allowed BSLC to renovate and expand its office space on campus, adding individual offices for BSLC administration, work space for project managers, a reception area for guests, and a meeting room for students, staff, and faculty. The partnership also enhanced specific initiatives within the BSLC program, including the development of an Immigrant Assistance Program, a Public Schools Technology Initiative, and our Business and the Arts Initiative. FleetBoston staff also work with Bentley faculty and students to conduct semi-annual workshops for community partners. These workshops, on topics ranging from grant writing strategies to not-for-profit tax filings, have assisted our community partners in building their organizational capacity to more effectively serve their own clients.
Bentley recently joined the WGBH Forum Network as a corporate partner. The WGBH Forum Network is an audio- and video-streaming website devoted to presentations, thought-provoking lectures and panel discussions hosted by distinguished cultural and educational organizations. Raymond Gilmartin's Raytheon lecture, "Ethics and the Corporate Culture" and Norm Bowie's Verizon Professor lecture on "Information Technology and Intellectual Property" are currently posted on the site.
BAESR has formed a partnership with OpenPages, a Waltham, Massachusetts, software company that provides IT support for compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. CEO, Michael J. Duffy ’79, has facilitated OpenPages’ gift of software, coordinated that company’s research partnership with Bentley and has ensured access to companies implementing its software. Bentley’s partnership with OpenPages has also facilitated the creation of professional development workshops and seminars, and has created internship positions for students interested in studying corporate governance.
Bentley has also partnered with the Evoke Software Corporation in San Francisco, California, a software company that has contributed its high-end data quality management software to BAESR.
Business Ethics Partnerships
To create and sustain an ethically responsible organizational culture requires"ethical leadership": the quality of leading others by a strong ethical example, encouraging them to value and practice integrity. Ethical leadership inspires organizational members to reason and act act in a morally appropriate and effective way. CEOs can model ethical leadership – but so can individuals at any level of an organization – simply by striving to do the right thing.
Bentley and State Street Corporation have established a partnership in Global Business Ethics in memory of Timothy B. Harbert, chairman and CEO of State Street Global Advisors and Trustee and Alumnus of Bentley College (’76). The partnership is intended to unite business and higher education in the common goal of building a strong ethical foundation from which to serve our many constituencies and communities. The Bentley Global Business Ethics Symposium sponsored by State Street Corporation brings together international experts, corporate leaders, academics and media for in-depth discussions of best practices and challenges in business ethics and ethics education. Our goal is to both learn and inform by: (1) exploring current practices in other institutions, countries and cultures; (2) identifying ways to enhance issues of ethics and corporate responsibility in business education and in outreach to the corporate community; and (3) disseminating this experience throughout the academic and practitioner worlds.
In its efforts to inspire ethical leadership, while sparking a vital discourse around ethics in business, The Center for Business Ethics has created lectureship programs, in partnership with Raytheon and Verizon, inviting prominent corporate leaders and ethical thinkers to come to Bentley to share insights and ideas with students, faculty and invited guests.
Babson-United, Inc., in collaboration with our Center for Business Ethics (CBE), created the Babson-United, Inc. Essay Prize in Ethical Financial Reporting, in June 1998. After a review of more than a dozen worthy organizations, Bentley’s CBE was identified by Babson-United, Inc. as its top candidate institution for awarding the prize. The prize has now turned into an annual research fund, intended to heighten student awareness of the ethical issues in financial reporting. The money is given to a faculty member who will work in collaboration with a student to support research (buying data, traveling to interview company representatives, etc.) in this area.
Sears, Roebuck and Co. established the Sears Lectureship, which brought high-profile CEOs to the Bentley campus in the fall and spring semesters, from 1988 until the end of 2002. The Center for Business Ethics has published the text of each lecture and highlights of the question-and-answer session. Sears is the current sponsor of our CBE's Ethics Matters online magazine.