One of CAS’s areas of teaching at UCL is in the relatively new area of ‘Social Licence to Operate’.  CAS’s MSc module Social Licensing (SERAG018)  is essentially about community engagement for the extractives industry, covering a range of aspects on how industry and their stakeholders actually do/can/should interact – from the theory about what a Social Licence to Operate (SLO) is, what drives this and why it matters,  through to legal and cultural aspects of heritage, understanding social(and political) networks, and aspects of communications such as grievance and crisis management. A constant focus throughout the course is on how businesses might be able to better structure themselves and their functions, based on research from the academic literature, as well as practical advice from practitioners who we get in as guest lecturers.

Each year as part of this course CAS has gotten his students to undertake some original research  into the rates of adoption and use of social media by mining and oil and gas companies in Australia, some of which has already been published as a conference paper at an international conference on Social Responsibility in mining (with another paper also accepted and in preparation for the 2018 APPEA conference). Embedding this sort of research experience into the teaching curriculum is something that we try to do a lot of at UCL – as part of our Connected Curriculum approach.  A new (FREE to download!) book on the Connected Curriculum has just been produced by UCL Press, which includes a case study outlining Craig’s experiences with the student social media surveys in his Social Licensing module.