IBESCC Goes Virtual

In mid-March, the world was on the verge of a COVID-19 shutdown and LMU was faced with a critical decision. The university’s annual International Business Ethics and Sustainability Case Competition (IBESCC) – organized by the Institute for Business Ethics and Sustainability (IBES) in the College of Business Administration – was all set for mid-April on the LMU campus with booked hotel arrangements, international flights, judging schedules and student presentation times/locations.

Senior leadership made the executive decision to move the competition to a virtual format and quickly alerted all constituents to the new plan.

“The 2020 IBESCC will be remembered for superior student performance at a time that required agility and a massive collaborative effort, which made it one of the most memorable and successful competitions in its history,” said Jeff Thies, director of IBES.

Teams from four continents presented across three divisions before 45 executive judges. Each team selected a business ethics topic related to one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), prepared a presentation describing the legal, financial and ethical dimensions of the problem, and proposed a solution. Judges listened to the team’s presentation, asked questions and provided feedback. The competition showcased the skills that employers value: ethical reasoning, adaptability, agility, problem solving and opportunity seeking focused on sustainability and resilience.

Presentation topics covered supply chain labor practices; the mobile industry’s race to 5G; fake news in social media; ocean health and the cruise industry; and gender equality and women’s workplace rights, among others.

“The student presentations gave me confidence that the next generation of business leaders will make a positive impact on the world,” said Dayle Smith, dean of LMU College of Business Administration. “Business must have a voice at the table if we as a global community have any chance of addressing the most significant challenges of our time – including the coronavirus and rebuilding economies in sustainable and ethical ways.”

Winning teams were announced during a virtual awards ceremony.

Click here to view a full list of winners.

Special thanks to our senior executive judges for their insights and guidance: H. Thomas Fehn, retired securities lawyer; Luis Millan, SVP Global Fraud Execution, Citi; Barney Rosenberg, President, Ethics Line LLC; Nathan Russell, Senior Manager, Raytheon Technologies; Tiffany Scurry, VP and Legal and Chief Compliance Officer at WD, a Western Digital Company; Joe Wilkins, Principal, TRG Healthcare LLC; and Megan Weiss, Ethics Director at Raytheon Technologies.

We are also grateful to our corporate sponsors: Epson America Inc., Meggitt and Raytheon Technologies.