Contemporary issues in organisations

This module will help you become a knowledge leader within your organisation by demonstrating that you’re ahead of current organisational and business challenges. By defining contemporary organisational challenges, as influenced by technological change, internationalisation, complexity and ethics, you’ll develop key skills of planning and communication within and across organisations. You’ll become more adept at leading transition to green ways of working; acting strategically in a multinational business environment; and taking smart decisions that will enhance performance. The module also gives you the opportunity to design a game concept that will enhance your strategic and communication skills.

Vocational relevance

The module is designed for professionals from a wide range of contexts and backgrounds who need and want to differentiate themselves as cutting edge, contemporary practitioners.


Module code


  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
Study level
Across the UK, there are two parallel frameworks for higher education qualifications, the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications in England, Northern Ireland and Wales (FHEQ) and the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF). These define a hierarchy of levels and describe the achievement expected at each level. The information provided shows how OU postgraduate modules correspond to these frameworks.
OU Postgraduate
Study method
Distance learning
Module cost
See Module registration
Entry requirements

Find out more about entry requirements.

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What you will study

Situating contemporary practice within the key themes of technological change, internationalisation, complexity and ethics, you'll engage with three key issues across three units:

Unit 1: Issues in decision making
This unit aims to:

  • tackle issues in decision-making by decision-makers as individual people, teams and organisations through the lens of decision analysis and support, which is informed by theories and approaches from the rational choice and behavioural paradigms and aims to lead to justifiable decisions
  • introduce lessons from behavioural ethics for decision-makers and organisations
  • provide tools for approaching complex decisions that involve multiple (sometimes conflicting or not easily reconcilable) objectives and multiple stakeholders.

Unit 2: Multinational dynamics in new frontier markets
This unit looks at key issues that Advanced Market Multinational Enterprises (AMNEs) contend with when they enter new frontier markets. You'll learn about:

  • key factors like choice of location and timing and mode of market entry to derive specific relevancy for the novel and often volatile dynamics of these markets
  • the intense competition from Emerging Market Multinational Enterprises (EMNEs) that feel more at home in host markets
  • nonmarket issues that AMNEs require in order to successfully operate in new frontiers, in addition to core market considerations
  • how AMNEs might contribute to sustainable development in their host markets and how they can consequently contribute to global efforts to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Unit 3: Managing transition to a green economy
This unit considers the role of organisations in contributing to and solving climate change through transitioning to green practices. This challenge is framed around a transition to a green economy, where it is assumed that organisations and their managers can provide global leadership, offering hope and practical solutions to the ultimate complex problem of climate change. You'll learn about:

  • the role of organisations and management in creating and solving climate change
  • the various key drivers of green transition, drawing on the latest research evidence
  • communicating effectively within organisations and beyond to manage green transition
  • key strategic approaches for managing green transition
  • the economic and political environments that shape possibilities for green transition.

The module comprises 22 study weeks and you'll be required to study around 7 hours per week. In addition to the three units, an introductory week will immerse you in the module’s key themes, assessment and learning approach.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

Your learning will take place within a tutor-facilitated group of approximately 20 students. Your tutor is responsible for providing individual tuition, professional advice and support, mentoring, assessment and regular feedback on your performance throughout the module.


The assessment details can be found in the facts box above.

You must use the online eTMA system to submit your tutor-marked assignments (TMAs).

Course work includes

1 Tutor-marked assignment (TMA)
End-of-module assessment
No residential school

Future availability

Contemporary issues in organisations starts once a year, in November. This page describes the module that will start in November 2023. We expect it to start for the last time in November 2028.


As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the academic regulations which are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website.

    Entry requirements

    If you're taking this module as part of a qualification, such as the MBA, it is recommended you will have completed the compulsory modules prior to starting this module.  

    Alternatively, as it is possible to study this module on a standalone basis, you will need to ensure that you have the knowledge and experience to study at postgraduate level. Please note that if you wish to study towards a qualification at a later date you must meet the entry requirements for that qualification.

    You will also need an appropriate facility in English language, sufficient to be able to work effectively at postgraduate level; generally this means capability equivalent to an International English Language Test System (IELTS) score of 6.5. To assess your English language skills in relation to your proposed studies you can visit the IELTS website. If you are unsure whether your skill level in English is adequate you may find it helpful to look at our Skills for OU Study site.

    If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please speak to an adviser.


    Start End England fee Register
    04 Nov 2023 Apr 2024 £1680.00

    Registration closes 12/10/23 (places subject to availability)

    This module is expected to start for the last time in November 2028.

    Future availability

    Contemporary issues in organisations starts once a year, in November. This page describes the module that will start in November 2023. We expect it to start for the last time in November 2028.

    Additional costs

    Study costs

    There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as set books, a computer and internet access.

    Ways to pay for this module

    We know there’s a lot to think about when choosing to study, not least how much it’s going to cost and how you can pay.

    That’s why we keep our fees as low as possible and offer a range of flexible payment and funding options, including a postgraduate loan, if you study this module as part of an eligible qualification. To find out more, see Fees and funding.

    Study materials

    What's included

    As well as the individual tuition provision you will have access to regular opportunities for engagement with other students, university library access, an extensive variety of specially-written resources, all online and designed exclusively for this module, a learning game designed for the module, audio-visual material, case-studies to help you develop your management thinking abilities.

    Computing requirements

    You’ll need broadband internet access and a desktop or laptop computer with an up-to-date version of Windows (10 or 11), or macOS (11 'Big Sur' or higher).

    Any additional software will be provided or is generally freely available.

    To join in spoken conversations in tutorials, we recommend a wired headset (headphones/earphones with a built-in microphone).

    Our module websites comply with web standards, and any modern browser is suitable for most activities.

    Our OU Study mobile app will operate on all current, supported versions of Android and iOS. It’s not available on Kindle.

    It’s also possible to access some module materials on a mobile phone, tablet device or Chromebook. However, as you may be asked to install additional software or use certain applications, you’ll also require a desktop or laptop as described above.

    If you have a disability

    Elements of this module are delivered online and include the use of real-time online discussions and an interactive whiteboard space, so time spent using a computer and the internet will be extensive. If you use assistive technology or have a hearing or speech impairment and have concerns about accessing this type of virtual environment and materials, contact The Open University to discuss it further before registering.

    Written transcripts of any audio components and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of printed material are available. Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader. Alternative formats of the study materials may be available in the future.

    If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Visit our Disability support website to find more about what we offer.