Fouthsector.net defines the fourth sector as “an emerging sector of the economy which consists of ‘for-benefit’ organizations that combine market-based approaches of the private sector with the social and environmental aims of the public and non-profit sectors.”
B Corporation is an organization leading the effort to define the role of for-benefit organizations. Part of its work was the development of the B Corp Declaration of Interdependence, which includes the following:
- That we must be the change we seek in the world.
- That all business ought to be conducted as if people and place mattered.
- That, through their products, practices, and profits, businesses should aspire to do no harm and benefit all.
- To do so requires that we act with the understanding that we are each dependent upon another and thus responsible for each other and future generations.
B Corporation also developed the B Impact Assessment, which includes five areas in which for-benefit organizations should strive to have a positive influence. Organizations scoring 80 or more points on the assessment are eligible for certification.
The MBA curriculum at MBU is built from the ground up around these five areas. Our primary objectives are to teach students what it means to use business as a force for good and then apply it through the development of a business plan or a strategic plan for a social enterprise.