(List #104)5 Ways to Use Podcasts as Tools to Engage in the SDGs

In teaching, research and community engagement.

(List #104)5 Ways to Use Podcasts as Tools to Engage in the SDGs
Photo by Matt Botsford / Unsplash

There are many tools that you can use as educators to engage your students and your community in sustainability and the SDGs. Podcasts, both listening to them and creating them, are one. But while most business schools now produce podcasts, most seem to be slow at producing new sustainability focused ones or embedding sustainability into their existing podcast series.

 Try this: Have students develop a podcast that looks at sustainability in relation to any course they are taking this term and connected to your immediate community or campus. The podcast needs to follow certain criteria in terms of length and format but also must include at least one interview and make the connection to that topic, be it marketing, accounting, finance or HR, clear. Choose the best ones to create a series of podcasts for all students to listen to. Repeat this every term as a regular series.

1.         To Introduce Your Approach

In the Spring of 2022, two MBA students, supported by the Office of Sustainability and Climate Change, created a Sustainability at Haas podcast miniseries, where they looked at how Haas School of Business is shaping the next generation of sustainable business leaders. The episodes include talks with the Dean on the school’s vision for leading the efforts to reshape how business schools think and teach about sustainability, an overview of the Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Business, faculty integrating sustainability into the curriculum, careers and opportunities as alumni. 

2.         To Inspire Students

INSEAD (France) launched its “Mission to Change” podcast featuring entrepreneurs and changemakers from business and other areas, working in many corners of the world and in industries like eyecare, healthcare, fashion and publishing. In each episode, guests share how to make a difference regardless of region, industry or position.

3.         As a Teaching Tool

Students taking the fourth year Teamwork in Organisation course at University of Fraser Valley in Canada are required to interview a community leader whose job is impossible without teamwork and produce a 15-minute podcast. Teams have interviewed ER doctors, young Indigenous changemakers, police officers, a diversity and inclusion leader and Think Tank Operations Director, among others. The experience not only contributes to their learnings but teaches how to produce podcasts and adds to the tools available to teach future editions of the class. 

4.         To Build Momentum and Action

Climate Talks was launched in 2021 by Melbourne Climate Futures to facilitate informed discussion in the lead-up to the annual United Nations Climate Change Conferences (COP). It is hosted by Professor Jackie Peel, Associate Professor Cathy Oke, and PhD Candidate Bek Markey-Towler, with guests including experts, politicians, and civil society organisations. Season two was released in 2022, following the journey to COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. Season three was released in 2023 and follows the journey to COP28 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

5.         To Engage Your Community

Feliciano School of Business in the US launched the Re-Fresh podcast in 2021, a non-commercial, alternative rock and talk college radio station located in New Jersey and owned by Montclair State University. The podcast radio series shares stories and strategies of how corporations and communities are moving toward a more sustainable planet.

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Have a great week!