Widening the Lens of Business Education Exploring Systemic (In)Justice Through Public Exhibitions of Student Art and Creative Writing

Main Article Content

Oscar Jerome Stewart
Geoffrey Desa
Ian Dunham


This article describes and reflects upon a student art project assignment and accompanying issue-advocacy written piece that allows students to explore topics of social justice and environmental sustainability in a business and society senior seminar course. The process of producing art and creative writing allows students to critically reflect on current business ethics concepts that are relevant to their interests. The art is displayed in a gallery exhibit, allowing for further intellectual exploration as students explain their work to others. The learning outcomes of this art project are two-fold. First, students and faculty develop a greater sense of liberatory consciousness, a social identity-shaping mechanism that extends beyond disciplinary boundaries. Importantly, as faculty, we learn a great deal from our students, particularly during the art exhibit. Second, students develop competency in, and a passion for, issue advocacy about important social and environmental issues. Ultimately, this assignment inspires students to become future leaders in professional organizations that are ethical, inclusive, and environmentally sustainable.

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How to Cite
Stewart, O. J., Desa, G., & Dunham, I. (2022). Widening the Lens of Business Education: Exploring Systemic (In)Justice Through Public Exhibitions of Student Art and Creative Writing. Prompt: A Journal of Academic Writing Assignments, 6(1). https://doi.org/10.31719/pjaw.v6i1.93
Author Biographies

Oscar Jerome Stewart, San Francisco State University

Oscar Jerome Stewart is an Assistant Professor of Management in the College of Business and a member of the Sustainable Business Group. Oscar primary teaches the seminar course on Business and Society while his research focuses on the intersection of organizational theory, strategy, and business ethics. Oscar’s main research streams focus on corporate irresponsibility and misconduct as well as organizational discrimination. He is also interested in human rights and environmental sustainability.

Geoffrey Desa, San Francisco State University

Geoff Desa is a professor of management in the Lam Family College of Business. He is a member of the Sustainability Group within the Lam Family College of Business and teaches business and society, strategic management, and social entrepreneurship. Geoff's research examines resource mobilization and venture development in the technology and social entrepreneurship sector. He earned his Ph.D. in business from the University of Washington in Seattle with emphases in technology entrepreneurship, strategic management, and public affairs. Prior to that, Geoff worked at Novera Optics and at Hewlett Packard as an optical engineer. He earned his M.S. in electrical engineering from Stanford University. He is on the board of the Common Data Project, a technology social venture engaged in information technology privacy.

Ian Dunham, San Francisco State University

Ian M. Dunham is Assistant Professor of Business and Society/Sustainable Business in the Management Department in the Lam Family College of Business at San Francisco State University. He currently teaches the seminar course Business and Society (BUS 682). As an instructor, his main goal is to help students question conventional wisdom about social, ethical, environmental, and regulatory issues facing businesses by analyzing case studies and thinking critically about current events and macroeconomic trends. His research explores new ways of examining the impact of business on society and the natural environment. Specific interests include consumer finance and financial inclusion, entrepreneurship and environmental sustainability, and the ability of the private sector to innovate to alleviate poverty. His service to the University includes helping to organize Business Ethics Week with the Center for Ethical and Sustainable Business (CESB). Dr. Dunham received his Ph.D. in Geography and Urban Studies from Temple University, M.B.A. from the University of Oxford where he was a member of Green-Templeton College, and B.A. from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Prior professional experience includes working in consulting in Silicon Valley, teaching at Temple University, and service in public policy as a Legislative Aide on Capitol Hill. In his spare time he enjoys attending cultural events in San Francisco, spending time outdoors, and keeping current with innovation and technology in Silicon Valley and beyond.