The purpose of this chapter is to describe the First Contact Pilot Program carried out in collaborative work between ISAGEN, a partly government-owned firm within the energy sector, and Universidad EAFIT, a private university in the city of Medellin.
The First Contact Pilot Program was developed following an existing model implemented at the Universidad Externado de Colombia, a private university located in Bogotá. Nevertheless this pilot program took methodology elements from ISAGEN and its suppliers relationship policy. Additionally content concerning the Global Compact and its principles was provided within the subject “Senior Seminar.” Students from this subject were voluntary participants in the pilot program.
The chapter provides a brief survey conducted by ISAGEN wherein some findings are visible. In this survey the First Contact Pilot Program participating entrepreneurs were asked about their motivations in order to voluntarily be part of the program and they recognized the great importance of this initiative for their businesses to change lots of practices and to become part of a global market culture.
This first version of the program was at the same time a way to invite other big organizations in the city of Medellin to take part in such activities. Massive participation, not only from the big players but also from small and medium enterprises, is necessary to achieve the goal of spreading the Global Compact’s principles. In the longer run it assures the creation of a fairer market place where all players in all sizes contribute to respect and promote a core of best practices in business.
One of the most remarkable implications by designing and implementing the pilot program was the fact of having interactions between International Business Students and local small and medium firm managers together talking about the Global Compact and the way it may improve many aspects within the firm and toward stakeholders.
Originality/value of the chapter
A particular feature of this chapter to be considered as original and valuable is the establishing of networks for the dissemination of the Global Compact’s principles. Collaborative work among private and public sectors and with higher education institutions in fostering the transformation of business practices to achieve a fairer global market place constitutes the aim of this particular pilot program. At the same time this pilot program embodies the spirit of the UN PRME in giving the students of International Business the opportunity to develop their capabilities to become the future managers aware of the sustainability value for business.
Diaz Vasquez, J.C., Ospina Gallo, J.A. and Montoya Peláez, M.M. (2015), "First Contact Pilot Program: A Contribution for the Dissemination of the Global Compact in Medellin, Colombia", The UN Global Compact: Fair Competition and Environmental and Labour Justice in International Markets (Advances in Sustainability and Environmental Justice, Vol. 16), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 199-216. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2051-503020140000016024
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