By John Elkington
Teflon or Velcro?
Sitting in a corporate boardroom recently, I discussed the difference between Teflon and Velcro companies with a CEO and some of his senior executives. The difference? Teflon companies attract challenges about their ethical, social or environmental impacts, but tend to emerge unscathed and untarnished. Apple was like that for a while, Google too.
With Velcro companies, however, there are more challenges and much of the dirt sticks. The CEO I was talking ...
By Dwayne Baraka
Part of the DōShorts series
All of the big reporting frameworks are doubling down on materiality. Rightly so. It's time to prove that materiality is a worthwhile activity, or lose it from our vocabulary. GRI's G4 has much more stringent materiality requirements to show how companies arrive at their most important sustainability issues than under the G3. It's also core to the IIRC's Integrated Reporting framework. And although it uses a totally different definition of materi...
By Alice Korngold
Part of the A Better World, Inc. series
A number of leading companies are beginning to realize they can profit by finding solutions to the world’s most daunting economic, social and environmental challenges. These multinational corporations have the resources, global footprint and profit motivation to be more successful in solving major global problems than national governments, the international community or even the NGO sector.
My research for A Better World, Inc....
By Paul Batistelli
As the world turns its focus toward renewable power and increased efficiency, the tech scene has exploded with energy innovations. These high-tech tools are making major headway to help consumers and businesses conserve energy and reduce their carbon footprints. Check out some of the top energy tech trends that are transforming the way we think about power.
Tech Trend One: Carpet Fibers
It may seem strange that the material that covers the floors of billions of homes cou...
By John Perkins
The corporatocracy is striking out against our personal freedoms and squandering the trust we have placed in our leaders with our votes and our dollars. That their decisions aren’t made with the good of all of us in mind is evidenced by the abuse of government agencies such as the NSA and corporations like Google, whose hand seems to reach into everything from our personal email to our health records.
These large organizations and their lobbyists are writing our laws, ...
By Ron Schultz
When I was invited to speak at the World CSR Congress gathering in February in Mumbai, India, as well as receive the Social Innovation Leadership award, I was eager to join the conversation. With over 70 countries represented, the notion of being able to access both the global pulse of CSR and further my agenda around social innovation was very attractive.
I was not disappointed on either front. The conversation was rich and textured and the cultural context within which it w...
By Susan Camberis
Having spent over a decade in Human Resources, with a growing interest in sustainability, the questions I have increasingly found myself asking are:
What is HR’s role in sustainability?
How can HR have a greater impact in creating and driving a sustainable culture?
How can the HR function better equip itself to lead change in this important area?
While HR still maintains the responsibility for hiring, firing, compensation, administering ben...
By Francesca Rheannon
On February 26th, a forum on “Fossil-Free NYC,” co-sponsored by the Responsible Endowments Alliance, GreenFaith and the NYC Grassroots Alliance, kicked off a campaign to get the city’s five municipal pension funds to divest any holdings in the top 200 publicly-held companies that own most of the fossil fuel reserves still in the ground.
Included in the top 10 are ExxonMobil, BP, Gazprom, Chevron and Royal Dutch Shell. Number one on th...
By Emily Roberts, INDIGENOUS
Is a leader in the sustainability industry the same as any other entrepreneur? Or does the heart and sacrifice required to run a company like CSRwire member INDIGENOUS organic + fair trade fashion make for an entirely different dynamic?
INC. Magazine’s Trep Life series shadowed INDIGENOUS co-founders Matt Reynolds and Scott Leonard for a day, capturing the day-to-day grind at a company that literally helped write the definition of fair trade fashion. Excer...
By Elizabeth Dove and Heather Shapter
Children are one-third of the world’s population and ALL of our future.
They are also among the most marginalized and vulnerable members of society.
It's easy for businesses in the industrialized West to overlook children's rights when creating business plans for the developing world. After all, young children do not work where they come from. But the situation is much more complex for developing nations, where when companies have taken a stand a...
By Aaron Hurst, CEO, Imperative
When you don’t have a lot of cash to attract the best talent, you might as well try the temptation of purpose.
Forget how clichéd that sounds and you have Etsy, which has actually been able to compete with cash-rich companies like Google and Facebook for talent based on that premise. As Matt Stinchcomb, Etsy’s VP of Values and Impact, told me, they don’t have “gobs” of money like other companies but they’re rich in c...
By Alice Korngold
This is the first post in the A Better World, Inc. series.
I contend that fundamental to the role of the board in maximizing shareholder value is ensuring that the company is helping solve the world’s most challenging problems. Not because global problem solving is “nice,” but because it is the most profitable path forward for any multinational corporation competing in today’s global marketplace.
Business Risks and Opportunities
The greatest busin...
By John Perlin
Truman Calls for Solar Energy
President Truman’s 1952 blue-ribbon committee, the Paley Commission, predicted in its published report Resources for the Future that America and its allies would be short of fossil fuels by 1975 and its replacement by solar energy “could make an immense contribution to the welfare of the free world.”
The report urged the development of nuclear as well, suggesting a 50-50 split in funding to develop the two alternative energy so...