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Research is one of the core activities at the University of St. Gallen. Our staff conducts research and publishes academic articles that address diverse subject areas – responsibility and sustainability is among them.

Institutes and Centers

A variety of HSG institutes and centers conduct research in the area of responsibility and sustainability. Together they shed light on sustainable development from different perspectives. Eight of the 42 institutes and centers have a dedicated focus on sustainability topics.

Institute for the Economy and the Environment (IWOE)

The Institute for Economy and the Environment (IWÖ-HSG) focuses on sustainability management and management of renewable energies. It is an interdisciplinary organization that seeks to make relevant, scientifically sound contributions to the economy and society. The institute also focuses on promoting the sustainable alignment of corporations and energy supplies. The institute includes two chairs:

1. Chair of Sustainability Management: Prof. Dr. Judith Walls, Professor of Sustainability Management
2. Chair for Management of Renewable Energies: Prof. Dr. Rolf Wüstenhagen, Professor of Management of Renewable Energies.


Institute for Business Ethics (IWE)

The Institute for Business Ethics (IWE-HSG) is focused on research and instruction concerning corporate responsibility, examining business and economic systems as well as analysing morality, justice and responsibility issues from various perspectives. The IWE is headed by Prof. Thomas Beschorner and Prof. Florian Wettstein.


Center for Leadership and Values in Society (CLSV)

The Center for Leadership and Values in Society (CLVS-HSG) is focused “Public Value Management”: determining the Public Value of corporations, public administrations and non-governmental organizations. Headed by Timo Meynhardt, the CLVS provides a theoretical framework that addresses important questions about the common good within the scientific community as well as in management practice.

One of the CLVS’s most influential projects is the Public Value Atlas Switzerland (GemeinwohlAtlas), an online platform presenting data from a large-scale online survey of the public value of Switzerland’s biggest and most important organisations. The study was replicated in Germany in 2015 (Public Value Atlas for Germany). Together with iF Design, the CLVS organises the iF PUBLIC VALUE AWARD, awarded yearly to projects and products that break new ground and have a positive impact on regional and global societies.


Center for Energy Innovation, Governance and Investment (EGI)

Four HSG institutes are jointly conducting research in the 2014 established Center for Energy Innovation, Governance and Investment (EGI-HSG) and focus on questions regarding the energy turnaround.

EGI-HSG is an interdisciplinary collaboration of four University of St.Gallen institutes on socio-economic energy research. This center provides the scientific basis for decision-making processes in business and politics. The University of St.Gallen and its partners from academia, industry and public administration aim at providing a valuable contribution to the implementation of the Swiss Energy Strategy 2050. EGI-HSG participates in a national research initiative called the Swiss Center of Competence in Energy Research (SCCER), which the Federal Government funds. The center at the University of St.Gallen was established in close cooperation with the City of St. Gallen and the municipal utilities (Sankt Galler Stadtwerke).

Directors of the founding institutes

Center for Disability and Integration (CDI)

The Center for Disability and Integration (CDI-HSG) is an interdisciplinary research center that contributes to the inclusion of people with disabilities through innovative research, teaching and practice projects. The center has three research groups: management, economics and applied disability research.


Competence Center for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI)

The Competence Center for Diversity and Inclusion is part of the Research Institute for International Management. The CCDI conducts cutting-edge research on diversity and inclusion (D&I) and provides guidance and training to companies on how to promote and manage D&I in their organisations.


St. Gallen Institute of Management in Latin America (GIMLA)

In 2018, the University took a step further and inaugurated the St. Gallen Institute of Management in Latin America (GIMLA) at the heart of Avenida Paulista, in São Paulo, Brazil, seizing the opportunity to institutionally anchor the hub like it already did with its existing Institute in Singapore.

The Institute is mandated to foster and strengthen academic partnerships via bilateral and multilateral teaching agreements and research projects, and it also contributes to the formation of high-quality professionals via executive education. Committed to produce real social impact, the Institute works in close relationship with local University partners, the HSG Alumni community and practice.


Competence Center for Social Innovation (CSI)

The Competence Center for Social Innovation (CSI-HSG) was founded to enable new forms of collaboration towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Its mission is to help people and organizations from different sectors to work more effectively towards positive impact, by increasing their know-how and capabilities for collaboration, developing a shared mindset and bridging rationalities. Launched in December 2018, CSI-HSG teaches students to be changemakers, conducts research to shape the debate on achieving the SDG, offers tailor‐made trainings for executives of the different sectors, develops formats that generate public values in new ways, and provides a platform to promote experience and knowledge transfer within the field of social innovation.



in 2021 (selection)

Markard, Jochen; Rinscheid, Adrian & Widdel, LindaAnalyzing transitions through the lens of discourse networks: Coal phase-out in Germany.Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions
Hahn, Tobias; Howard- Grenville, Jennifer; Lyon, Thomas; Russo, Michael V. & Walls, Judith LLeadership forum on organizations and sustainability: Taking stock, looking forward.Organization & Environment
Mikkelson, Gregory M.; Avidan, Miron; Conevska, Aleksandra & Etzion, DrorMutual Reinforcement of Academic Reputation and Fossil Fuel DivestmentGlobal Sustainability
Gloor, Jamie; Cooper, Cecily; Bowes-Sperry, Lynn & Chawla, NityaRisqué Business? Interpersonal Anxiety and Humor in the #MeToo Era.Journal of Applied Psychology