CAS Responsible Leadership 2021

The leaders’ toolbox to maximize the level of engagement of your team through fair and effective leadership and to improve your own professional satisfaction.



February 2021 - June 2021
18 ECTS credits
144 Teaching hours
1 semester




On-site – switch over to online-learning if required


+41 (0)22 379 81 32


University of Geneva


Registration deadline

31 October 2020
Modules can be followed individually


  • CAS: CHF 9500.-
  • Individual module: CHF 1800.-
  • Registration fee (non-refundable): CHF 350.-

Contribution to the SDGs

Goal 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable


  • Innovate and increase the viability of projects in large corporations, start-ups and SMEs and non-profit organizations
  • Become an inspiring leader and implement fairness-based leadership in order to maximize the team’s commitment and performance
  • Develop your professional agility


Manager seeking to boost his career and his employability by adding business development tools and effective leadership skills
Executive from major corporations liable to launch or manage a business unit or a company, or take over the management of a family business
Engineer, doctor, or researcher who wish to improve his managerial skills and his ability to innovate

Learning outcomes

  • Improve capacity to manage a team through fair and effective leadership, to develop and innovate business that contributes to the evolution of one's career and increases  employability. This is the case in large companies (intrapreneurship)


6 modules:

  • Team Engagement
  • Business & Society
  • Change Management
  • Influencing with Emotional Intelligence / Coaching
  • Managing Stakeholders
  • Negotiation / Effective communication


Prof. Judith SCHREMPF-STIRLING, Geneva School of Economics and Management (GSEM), University of Geneva and Dr. Raphaël COHEN, GETRATEX SA


Gloria LEONI CARLUCCIO, University of Geneva
The Certificate of Advanced Studies (CAS) in Responsible Leadership teaches future leaders the soft skill tools to maximize the commitment of their team(s). True leadership signifies the ability to win the hearts and minds of people with a view to reaching a common goal. This requires a subtle understanding of their psychology as well as the art of positively influencing others.
Participants can continue on with the CAS in Entrepreneurial Management to obtain a Diploma of Advanced Studies (DAS) in Entrepreneurial Leadership. This DAS can then lead to an Executive MBA upon completion of the 1st EMBA year (conditions apply).


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In today’s world, managers regardless of their institutional affiliation or country of operations are increasingly confronted with societal matters and global issues. Hence, today’s managers are not only required to understand the complexity of the environments and social contexts they operate in, but also to make strategic and outcome oriented decisions which demonstrate social and environmental responsibility.

After an introduction on the roles and endeavors of the main actor groups in society, the course will dive into the business case for engaging in society and in particular provide learning about corporate motivations and approaches to business engagement in society and for the environment. The course focus will lie on the different ways in which companies can and do engage socially, and how they can benefit society and the environment, including a zoom‐in on measuring, rating and reporting and Cross‐Sector‐Partnerships. The course will provide a broad range of practical company case examples of "Business & Society" engagement. Overall, angles covered will include: philanthropy and charity, values and ethics, compliance and corporate governance, corporate responsibility and sustainability, social innovation and corporate social entrepreneurship, as well as corporate global citizenship and multi‐stakeholder collaboration.


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Today’s business environment is characterized through hyper-competitive markets that constantly challenge an organization’s functioning. Within the past 10 years, firms twice experienced conditions of turbulent market environments indicated through the bursting of the dot-com bubble in 2000-01 and the sub-prime crisis in late 2008. These economic conditions have increased the complexity of today’s business environment and unambiguously underline the importance of knowing how to deal with environmental changes, difficult business situations, and corporate growth. Managing such conditions consists of multiple organizational challenges and implies that firms must constantly adapt to evolving market environment. This course aims at developing an understanding on how to behave and manage such situations. It familiarizes participants with how to manage change under situations of corporate crisis, global competition and environmental change.


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The 1st part of the course (Influencing with Emotional Intelligence) strives to help students engage more effectively in the workplace by improving their emotional intelligence. Cutting-edge research will be presented to help students better understand how emotions function and how they come to bear on managerial behavior and decision-making. While theoretical models will be presented, the emphasis in this course will be on providing the practical tools necessary to improve students' ability to influence others (clients, peers, subordinates and bosses), while managing their own emotions more effectively.

The 2nd part of the module (Coaching) is an introduction to the topic of coaching and how this skill can support you when leading and inspiring people and teams.


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Analysis: This course aims at giving participants an overview of the specific organizational forms, tools and behavioural skills required to lead projects with a stakeholder orientation. At the end of the course, participants will understand the specificities of projects and know some tools, principles and tricks to successfully face these peculiarities. Furthermore, they will learn some frameworks to map stakeholders and foster their inclusion in projects.

Communication: This module aims to provide a structured approach to communications, so that it can be applied in any organisation, small or large. It provides a basis on which to build communications knowledge and practice, which can then be expanded through implementation in the workplace.  While everyone communicates on a daily basis, as a discipline communications requires an in-depth knowledge of the company and its strategies, an understanding of internal and external stakeholders, a grasp of processes, products and markets. The module therefore presents a methodological approach and a toolkit to plan and implement a communications strategy, whatever the size of the organisation.

Cultural Intelligence: The global economy presents many opportunities and challenges for businesses and their leaders. Senior executives need to develop a repertoire of strategic leadership capabilities to remain effective and manage stakeholders. One of the most important capabilities needed is cultural intelligence (CQ) – the ability to function effectively across a variety of cultural contexts. This course will equip participants with a working understanding of Cultural intelligence (CQ) and its relevance to their industry and organization.


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The 1st part of the module (Negotiation) provides practical tools ready for immediate professional application. It allows the distance and mastery necessary for conducting all types of negotiations, whether these are external or internal, or whether they apply to commercial, managerial or social activities. It is addressed to all those who are called on to buy, sell, solve disputes, build teams, induce change. In short, this course is meant for all those who know what they want and who give themselves the means to get it.

The 2nd part of the module (Effective Communication) concerns Public speaking. The mere thought of it can set hearts pounding! And yet, being able to communicate one’s ideas in public is an important and sought-after skill. Communicating effectively is not only a matter of having good ideas but also having the ability to engage people. Business managers, senior executives and entrepreneurs are called on regularly to make presentations to colleagues, clients and the general public. The goal of this course is to familiarize the students with key public speaking.


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This module focusing on Engaging Through Caring and Fair Leadership addresses the following challenges:

  • 65% of employees say they would take a new boss over a pay raise. This is the proof of a serious leadership problem
  • Many new employees start their job with a high level of motivation. It usually does not take too long for their motivation to significantly drop. What should it take to keep them motivated?
  • According to a study by Price Waterhouse Coopers, employees who are engaged in their work provide up to 35% increased productivity and profitability. How can we reach such a level of commitment and motivation in order to achieve excellence?
  • Using power and traditional authority to manage teams cannot deliver such results, particularly with Generation Y employee who want to be lead and inspired rather than being managed. What is expected of today’s and tomorrow’s leaders?
  • In a highly competitive environment where business models are being challenged and where everything moves very fast managing with systems and process prevents organizations from being agile enough to cope or even anticipate. What kind of leadership can maximize agility?

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Read more:


Each course is subject to an assessment that may include one or more of the following: Individual in-class exam, take-home assignment, individual or group in-class presentation, individual or group Online quiz or assignment

Pedagogical method

The program encourages lively interaction between students and professors and stimulates the sharing of knowledge through group work. The students’ learning experience is enhanced by corporate work projects, in-class discussions, and presentations that build on their previous experience.

Diploma awarded

Participants who pass the assessment requirements and successfully complete all 6 modules will be awarded the Certificate of Advanced Studies in Responsible Leadership / Certificat de formation continue en Leadership responsable by the GSEM of the University of Geneva.

Admission criteria

  • University Degree or equivalent (i.e., BAC+3)
  • at least 3 years of managerial experience
  • English proficiency required (both written and spoken)

Steering committee


Number of participants

Max. 35 students per group; GSEM Executive reserves the right not to open a program due to an insufficient number of participants.

Detailed fees

CAS (Certificate of Advanced Studies - 6 modules): CHF 9'500

Individual module : CHF 1'800

Handling fees: CHF 350


Refund policy

In case of withdrawal from the program, the tuition fees are still due. However, refunds may apply as follows:
- 90% of the tuition fee for cancellations made at least 30 days prior to the first day of class.
- 50% of the tuition fee for cancellations made after the 30 day deadline but before the first day of class.
- After the first day of class, the tuition fee will not be reimbursed.
- There is no reimbursement of any kind in case of course failure or expulsion from the program.
- The registration fee is non-refundable.

Handling Fees:
- Handling fees are nonrefundable and nondeductible.
- These fees do not apply to isolated module(s).
- If a program is canceled, the handlig fees are reimbursed


The modules are generally scheduled twice a month, Friday (2.15 pm - 9 pm) & Saturday (8.15 am - 1 pm). Some modules are organized on 3 consecutive full days (9 am - 6 pm). Presence/participation in all the courses is mandatory. For each teaching hour, you should count 1 to 2 hours for reading, preparation, case study, and assessment work.


The CAS lasts one academic semester, a fee will apply in case of a further extension (two semesters max.).



The teaching team is made up of faculty from Geneva University, guest faculty from other institutions and professionals with hands-on entrepreneurial experience. The variety of origins of the professors and their combined experience as executives or in start-ups guarantee delivery of a highly concrete approach to the learning content while ensuring that all the necessary theoretical bases required are in place.


Danièle CASTLE, Genevensis, Sàrl, Geneva

Raphaël H COHEN, Getratex SA, Geneva

Giuseppe CONTI, Conti Advanced Business Learning (CABL)

Martin EPPLER, Professor, University of St Gallen

Christian HILDEBRAND, Professor, University of St Gallen

Marc LAPERROUZA, Professor, University of Lausanne

Marcello MORTILLARO, Swiss Center for Affective Science, University of Geneva

Achim SCHMITT, Professor Associé, Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne

Maria SCHMITT, Leadership Development & Executive Coach, World Economic Forum

Judith SCHREMPF-STIRLING, Associate Professor, University of Geneva

John ZIMMER, Professional Speaker, Presentation Skills Trainer & Coach

Contribution to the SDGs

Goal 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

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