ICN Business School - International Research Chair in Art and Sustainable Enterprise (IRCASE)
Creative thinking makes the difference

Creativity, Art
and Sustainable Enterprise"

June 12, 2014 (2-5 PM)
ICN Business School
Room 253

Learn more...


Creativity, Art and Sustainable Enterprise

June 12, 2 - 5 PM 2014, Room 253, ICN Business School Nancy, France


International Research Chair in Art and Sustainable Enterprise, ICN Business School, Nancy, France and David O'Brien Centre for Sustainable Enterprise, Concordia University, Montreal, FIRE - MAMBO – GROOVE and CEREFIGE

The purpose of the workshop is to illustrate some of the work that is going on in the Chair for Art and Sustainable Enterprise, share it with CEREFIGE members and invite their ideas for expansion and collaborations. The academic presentations will focus on ongoing papers or studies. In addition we will have artistic and mindfulness presentations to illustrate aesthetic practices or art-based methods using music, painting and mindfullness meditation. These convey the importance of going beyond traditional "cognitive understanding" to "embodied learning" which is at the core of aesthetic inquiry.

Vera Ivanaj, Encre acrylique sur papier, 65x50 cm, 2012



2:00 - 2:30 PM IRCASE - Art and Sustainable Enterprise -Introductions + Set up (30 minutes) Co-Moderators: Paul Shrivastava and Tamym Abdessemed
2:30 - 3:40 PM

Panel Discussion  on how art/aesthetics can enhance organizational creativity and sustainability. We can also explore tensions between aesthetics, creativity, and autonomy.  While art/aesthetics is vehicle for creativity, it needs true autonomy and freedom to function. Organizations restrict autonomy because by definition they are instrumental and goal driven. How can creativity and art prosper in organizations to make them more sustainable.

Panelists  (8 minutes each):
Sybille Persson - What could a 'Beautiful Organization' look like ?
Gunter Schumacher - Aesthetic Rationality in Organizations
Olga Ivanova - Studying Organizational Legitimacy using Art
Silvester Ivanaj – Art for Sustainable Development

Q/A – Discussion 30 min

3:40 - 3:55 PM Coffee break
3:55 - 4:20 PM Inspiring music – Blues music captures well the spirit of sustainable living.
Bertrand Agostini
4:20 - 4:30 PM Yoga Breather – Olga Ivanova provides advice on how to 'stretch' our body and mind through simple exercises
4:30 - 5:15 PM

Breakout Groups
Groups discuss ways on incorporating aesthetics and creativity in their disciplines, their own work, and possible further collaborations


Vera Ivanaj, Encre acrylique sur papier, 2x(30x21 cm), 2011



Creativity, Art and Sustainable Enterprise workshop was held on June 12, 2014.  It focused on the role of creativity and art in enterprise sustainability The academic presentations focused on ongoing studies at the IRCASE.  In addition artistic (music and painting) and mindfulness (Yoga- breathing) presentations illustrated aesthetic practices or art-based methods for promoting sustainability.  The workshop sought to go beyond traditional cognitive understanding of sustainability to "embodied learning"  which is at the core of aesthetic inquiry.

In introducing the workshop Tamym Abdessemed raised important questions about the theoretical and empirical possibilities of aesthetic inquiry and its practical applications.  Paul Shrivastava introduced the need for the workshop by pointing to the  “Creativity/Innovation Gap” in organizations due to over-bureaucratization, task fragmentation, conformist culture, risk avoidance, self-protection attitude of workers.  There is also an unfulfilled  “sustainability demand” on organizations who are facing stakeholder, governments, public demands to become more socially and ecologically sustainable.

IRCASE was established based on 2009 Multinational Enterprise and Sustainable Development Conference at ICN.  The conference identified the need to go beyond past science-based analyses of sustainability with its focus on eco-modernization and eco-efficiency.  Scientific studies need to be complemented with aesthetic inquiry encouraging transdisciplinary, creative, embodied engagement for real change.  Arts as a vehicle for emotional knowing can serve as the basis for renewing the emotional connections between humans and nature.

The workshop panel included presentations by Sybille Persson on “What can "Beautiful Organization" be.  Gunter Schumacher examined Aesthetic Rationality in Organizations and how it complements traditional instrumental rationality.  Olga Ivanova presented a study of Organizational Legitimacy using Art and Silvester Ivanaj presented a paper on using Arts for Sustainable Development.    A lively discussion engaged the panelists on how these ideas can help make organizations more sustainable.

Following the panel Bertrand Agostini presented how Blues music capture well the spirit of sustainable living.  He demonstrated it by playing a few Blues songs.  This was followed by Olga Ivanova exhibiting the skill of powering our bodies with simple breathing and energy exercises.  During the entire workshop Vera Ivanaj served as the “keynote listener”, she listened to the conversations and painted an image expressing sustainability themes discussed.  She invited the participants to collectively paint their own ideas of sustainability.  See images below…