Executive Education

5 EMBA Programs Advancing Social Impact Leadership

EMBA social impact leadership

More and more business leaders care about the social impact they’re making in the world. That should come as no surprise, as a recent survey from Cone Communications says that 86 percent of consumers expect businesses to care about correcting social and environmental injustices.

As a cultural shift places businesses into changemaking roles, EMBA programs are also catering to students who care about socially-impactful business leadership. Many students seek out EMBAs that will help them expand their skills in socially-responsive leadership.

Here, we’ll talk about five EMBA programs that prepare future business leaders who care about the social good.

University of Connecticut Executive MBA

The University of Connecticut’s EMBA encourages students to solve real-world problems. With the motto of “Real World, Real Learning, Real Impact,” the program orients students to finding private sector solutions to issues in their communities.

For instance, the Connecticut Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation is home to a number of programs that foster socially-innovative business. The Accelerate UConn program helps students research their entrepreneurship ideas for feasibility and success. The InsurTech Initiative encourages students to deploy disruptive technologies to shake up business as usual.

If you’re focused on becoming a socially-oriented business leader, UConn’s EMBA program will help you start considering solutions to problems while you’re still earning your degree.

The INSEAD Global Executive MBA

“I was drawn to INSEAD because of the powerful reputation it has as a leading graduate business school. More than that, though, when I looked at the program outline, I liked the way it integrated practical business tools for building successful impact ventures with a theoretical approach,” graduate Jessie Coates remarks of her choice to attend INSEAD.

Launched in 2006, the INSEAD Social Entrepreneurship Programme (ISEP) is one of the leaders in socially-oriented business. The focus of these week-long programs – which take place around the world – is to encourage students to solve social problems using private sector solutions. These intensives can serve as inspiration for your focus on impact ventures during your EMBA coursework.

London Business School Executive MBA

The London Business School believes that all business leaders will have an impact on the world. Students can build in a social justice focus into their individualized curriculum. For instance, when students take on a Global Experience in their studies, they can explore the real-world impacts of social justice on businesses.

What’s more, the Social Impact Club (SEC) asks students to envision the kind of social footprint they want to make before graduation. 2019 was the SEC’s first Social Impact Week, described as “a week of events to demonstrate how business can, and is, playing a crucial role in shaping societies of tomorrow.”

EMBA–Global Americas and Europe

This EMBA program is a joint initiative among three top world business schools: the London Business School, the Columbia Business School in New York City, and the University of Hong Kong learning about social good embaBusiness School. So, this program lets students take advantage of the social initiatives at each of the three universities.

In addition to the options discussed earlier at the London Business School, Columbia Business School is home to The Tamer Center for Social Enterprise, which prepares business leaders to use their knowledge to find solutions for environmental and social concerns. Students can also join clubs like Social Enterprise Club (SEC) or the Nonprofit Board Leadership Program, which matches business school students with nonprofit board member mentors.

Students at the University of Hong Kong can take advantage of the recently-launched Social Innovations for Sustainable Communities program. This program offers courses that encourage sustainability and social entrepreneurship in Hong Kong.

Cornell Executive MBA/MS in Healthcare Leadership

Cornell’s EMBA/MS program is inherently socially-oriented, since it prepares students to be leaders in the healthcare industry. In fact, it’s the only one of these dual enrollment programs in the Ivy League.

The program prepares students to become changemakers in the field immediately after graduation. Students are inspired by leaders in the industry in roundtable discussions like the Learning Table Series during in-class weekends. Further, electives like Design Thinking in Healthcare and New Venture Management help students envisions the changes they want to make in the industry.


These five EMBA programs have definitive focuses on social impact initiatives. But if you’re looking to become a socially-oriented business leader, you may want to consider other factors, like prestige, career advancement, or even life balance, when choosing the right EMBA for you. Each year, Ivy Exec compiles its list of the Best Executive MBA Programs around the world. Using this list, you can further explore these five programs or expand your search for other social good-focused EMBAs.

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