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Christopher Wickert is Associate Professor of Ethics & Sustainability and Director of the VU Center for Business & Society. He is also Research Director of the Department of Management & Organization at VU Amsterdam. 

His research examines corporate social responsibility (CSR) and corporate sustainability as well as the broader relationship between business and society by drawing on various strands of organization and management theory.

Christopher obtained his PhD in Management from the University of Lausanne in Switzerland in 2013. During his doctoral studies, he has also conducted research and taught at University of Zurich, University of St. Gallen and at IESE Business School in Barcelona. Prior to becoming a researcher, he worked as a consultant with the United Nations Global Compact Office in New York. He holds an MSc degree in business administration from WHU Otto Beisheim School of Management in Vallendar, Germany. 


In his research, Christopher explores different patterns of corporate social responsibility implementation in globally integrated companies, paying particular attention to how firm size influences the way companies organize CSR. Furthermore, Christopher has been studying a range of phenomena under the umbrella of CSR, such as the evolvement and diffusion of CSR standards, the influence of organizational identity orientation on the implementation of CSR practices, or the prevalent mismatch between CSR “talk” and CSR “walk” in small and large firms. Furthermore, he has investigated dynamics at the individual level of analysis by looking at CSR professionals inside large corporations and their concomitant struggles when selling CSR issues intra-organizationally. Christopher is also interested in Critical Management Studies (CMS), philosophy of science, business ethics, and social entrepreneurship. In 2019, he published a book with Cambridge University Press, "Corporate Social Responsibility (Elements in Business Strategy)", which provides a critical introduction to contemporary approaches to CSR.

He is also affiliated with Makerere University Business School in Kampala, Uganda, where he is involved in different research and capacity-building projects that aim to promote local CSR initiatives in rural agricultural value chains.

Christopher’s research has appeared in journals such as Academy of Management Discoveries, Business & Society, Harvard Business Review, Human Relations, Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Management Studies and Organization Studies, as well as in several book chapters. He was associate editor of Business & Society, and is currently associate editor of the Journal of Management Studies and member of the editorial board of Business & Society.


Christopher's teaching activities include courses at the graduate and post-graduate/PhD level, for instance on business ethics, strategy and organization, social entrepreneurship, philosophy of science, and CSR, as well as the supervision of Bachelor, Master and PhD theses.


Christopher is currently involved in a research project in collaboration with Makerere University Business School in Kampala, Uganda that is funded by the Dutch National Science Foundation (NWO) and its Global Science for Development (WOTRO) research scheme. Website: http://knowledge4food.net/research-project/arf2-agri-quest-uganda/; www.agriquestuganda.com

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Academic qualification

PhD, University of Lausanne


Award Date: 22 Apr 2013

Master, Otto Beisheim School of Management


Award Date: 31 Aug 2008


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