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Centre for Business, Organisations & Society

University of Bath School of Management

Director of Centre

Professor Andrew Crane

Deputy Directors

Dr Krista Bondy
Dr Sarah Glozer
Dr Johanne Grosvold (on sabbatical)

Connect with CBOS

Follow the blog: research and analysis on the role of business in society

Find us on Twitter: current news and comment on sustainability and business

Contact us: for any queries about our research and activities

Welcome to the Centre for Business, Organisations and Society (CBOS). We conduct interdisciplinary, high quality and high impact research on sustainability and business.

Our mission

  • rethink the role and responsibilities of business in creating a sustainable society; and
  • provide a theoretically and empirically robust evidence base to help get us there

We work with business, government and the third sector to encourage collaborative research and develop best practice.

CBOS has an active programme of doctoral research. The School of Management offers an MSc in Sustainability and Management.


We seek to produce world leading research that influences thinking, teaching and practice. Our inter-disciplinary approach brings together colleagues from across the School of Management and the University of Bath.

There are seven themes to our current research:

  • Accountability and standards
  • Behaviour change for sustainability
  • Decent work
  • Philanthropy and business
  • Sustainable supply chains
  • System change and regulation
  • Social innovation and enterprise

Corporate partnerships

Corporate engagement is central to our research agenda. We have long term, research intensive relationships with major corporate partners including Waitrose and Nationwide.

Waitrose: Community Matters

This collaborative project investigates what the Waitrose 'Community Matters' scheme tells us about consumer preferences for local charities. Through the scheme, each Waitrose store makes a monthly donation to three local charities in proportion to in-store customer votes. Community Matters is a leading example of a scheme that combines corporate philanthropy with local democracy. Customers can direct the distribution of philanthropic funds to what they see as the most worthy causes. Customers can also respond to local circumstances, and favour charities that address important local issues. Customer voting can therefore help corporate philanthropy to be responsive to local needs.

The research has considered more than 70,000 donations across more than 300 locations. The analysis provides insights into which characteristics of charities are favoured by Waitrose customers and describe how voting patterns vary across locations. It also reveals tendencies for customer voting, and the resulting corporate donations, to reflect local circumstances in the environs of each Waitrose store. This ensures that corporate philanthropy is targeted at the most prevalent and acute local needs.

Contact: Prof Stephen Pavelin