IAJBS 23rd Annual World Forum University of Namur, Namur, Belgium

Experience level: 
Enrique López Viguria, PhD, ESADE – Universidad Ramon Llull

An examination of F. Adolfo Nicolás’s legacy for Jesuit business education

IAJBS 22nd ANNUAL WORLD FORUM - Namur, 2017 An examination of F. Adolfo Nicolás’s legacy for Jesuit business education Enrique López Viguria, PhD, ESADE – Universidad Ramon Llull Abstract Proposal – The Society of Jesus’ intellectual apostolate and university work are highly important areas of action in the pursuit of its universal mission of service of faith and the promotion of justice. The significant growth of the Society of Jesus’ network of universities and higher-education institutions over the last few decades has heightened the need to strengthen their specific nature as both “universities” and as “Jesuit” institutions. In this respect, the most recent General Congregations and Superior Generals, H. P. Kolvenbach and A. Nicolás, have repeatedly underscored the cultural, social and apostolic importance of the Society of Jesus’ university work and its close relation with the Jesuit’s missionary core. Given this context, the aim of this study is to explore the legacy left by F. Adolfo Nicolás, whose mandated ended in October 2016, for the Society of Jesus’ universities and, concretely, Jesuit business education, analyzing the main ideas (or idées-forces) of his message and the key questions which remain unanswered. Methodology – To undertake this study, I examine Father Nicolas’ primary speeches and lectures dedicated to the university realm. The aim is to use the content analysis methodology to establish a conceptual framework detailing the key dimensions of his “university thought” to then examine the major questions regarding their application and development within the Jesuit business education area. Results – This research serves to examine Father Nicolas’ thoughts regarding the Jesuit university mission, determining the driving ideas and priorities he describes for the vast network of Jesuit higher-education institutions, establishing some guidelines, standards and questions to ensure that Jesuit business education fulfills its mission. Value and originality – As Father Nicolás recently ended his mandate (October 2016), this study offers a preliminary reading of his major “university teachings” and raises key questions to reflect on and develop Jesuit business schools’ mission in today’s demanding and challenging world. Key words: Mission statement, Jesuit business schools, Jesuit business education, Legacy, University mission, Society of Jesus