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Business studies and values

Teachers need to encourage and model and students explore the values set out in The New Zealand Curriculum and Ngā Uara, Ngā Waiaro (values and attitudes) set out in Te Marautanga o Aotearoa.

In business studies, students need opportunities to discuss the often complex relationship between values and business, and to consider a variety of perspectives on business values/ethics.

For example, this perspective could provide the basis for serious discussion:

“As I see it, business decision-making often impacts heavily on people who are not normally thought of as stakeholders. Is maximising shareholder value the only thing that matters? Can a businessperson treat these “other stakeholders” with respect – and maintain their own integrity – when the bottom line is always calling?”

The suggestions that follow show how students can learn about values in business studies contexts.


In business studies, students can attain excellence by persevering in the face of challenge or adversity and by striving for continuing improvement.

Innovation, inquiry, and curiosity

In business studies, students develop these qualities by seeking and testing knowledge in practical business situations.


In business studies, students learn about diversity, for example, through co-operative learning activities.


In business studies, students develop an understanding of equity through understanding the views of stakeholders and responding to their needs.

Community and participation

In business studies, students learn community and participation by active involvement in their communities.

Ecological sustainability

In business studies, students learn about sustainability by applying the concept in experiential learning (for example, by running their own business).


In business studies, students come to understand the importance of dealing fairly with others in business contexts.


In business studies, students learn to respect themselves and others through self-reflection.

Last updated July 11, 2012