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CSR & Sustainability News

Voices of Influence: Original and Guest Blog Posts from Around the World

These blogs provide insight into the latest issues, challenges, advances and debate around CSR and sustainability. Original and guest blog posts highlight differing perspectives and context.

3BL Blog

The Century of Women

Last week, I was invited to speak at a United Nations NGO conference on the role that women play in the changing world order. The CONGO Committee of Spirituality, Values, and Global Concerns and its working group “Values and Business” presented an inspiring two-day conference. (GoodB will report on the events and speakers next week.) The first day of the conference was devoted to The Divine Feminine, Rapprochement, and the Culture of Peace...

Climate Corps Alumni Discuss Internship Struggles & Triumphs: Citing the Business Case for Sustainability Isn't Enough

Today was day two of training for the 26 of the 51 fellows selected by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) for the 2010 class of Climate Corps, a unique internship program that connects business schools students with companies who want to initiate the discussion of sustainability internally, with an emphasis on energy efficiency. The highlight of today's agenda was a panel of Climate Corps alumni who discussed their experience as well as gave practical and relevant tips to the new class of interns.

As they addressed several aspects from their individual internships—at a bunch of...

Sustainability Pledge: Walk The Talk

With a foot in both the academic and business worlds currently – I find myself intrigued that a lot of colleges/universities are taking such a lead in committing their facilities and community to new journeys in sustainability, while corporations are lagging way behind.   Some companies may be ramping up  marketing efforts, for certain, but what about the basics of first engaging the humans in their businesses with sustainability on a more personal level?   It goes beyond the recycling bin in the corner and the automatic lights in the restrooms.

Let’s learn from the many institutions of higher learning that have sustainability pledges, as they are all quite similar.  Harvard’s – which comes up first in a Google search, is a nice example.

Nothing too bold or scary here.  However, by putting such a list in front of your nose and occasionally glancing at it, you will – much more likely – stop and think a bit.  You may even start to change your own behavior.  Checklists are powerful stuff: Do you take the stairs as often as possible?  Do you unplug computers and turn off lights?  Do you walk, bike or take the subway more often than getting into a car or bus?

My question: Where are all the corporate sustainability pledges?

Consultants Talk Green: We Are Rather Friedmanite About This

Every year Vault conducts employee surveys to rank firms and companies by industry according to various standards including diversity, prestige, work/life culture, salary, etc. Last year, we added a short section on green, i.e., energy conservation, recycling, environmental friendliness and workplace safety, in the survey, hoping to get a glimpse into what companies were doing toward becoming ecologically friendly. We're currently in the middle of our 2010 Top Consulting Firms Survey.

These differ distinctly from the law community in not only their...

How to Leverage Your Advisory Board (Because Their Name Isn’t All They Can Offer)

You have your board.  Now what?

I wrote before about when and how to assemble your advisory board.  If you already have an advisory board though, what can you realistically expect from the people who comprise it and how do you best leverage their skills and commitment?

The first part–what you can realistically expect from your advisors–should be agreed on before they commit. I spoke with one enterprenenur who realized in hindsight the criticality of setting...

Remembering C.K. Prahalad

“What is needed is a better approach to help the poor, an approach that involves partnering with them to innovate and achieve sustainable win-win scenarios where the poor are actively engaged and, at the same time, the companies providing products and services to them are profitable.”


                 C.K. Prahalad – From The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profits


Let’s Help Panera Bread Take Corporate Social Responsibility to a New Level

I was surprised to read about Panera Bread’s new cafe in St. Louis dubbed the St. Louis Bread Company Cares Cafe. The concept is simple yet groundbreaking… take whatever you want to eat or drink and instead of paying a cashier, drop whatever you can afford into a donation box. And if you don’t have any money, you can donate your time. Crazy concept, I know.

According to a great article in USA Today, Ron Shaich, who stepped down as Panera’s CEO last...

CSR & the Job Hunt: Just A Different Measure of Success

Last week I discussed how new graduating classes are prioritizing corporate responsibility in their job search. Citing an inter-generational study I am conducting with recent graduates focusing on sustainability in their job search, here's what I wrote:

"These graduates, who represent a diversity of professional experience and industries—and ages--unanimously admit that a company's commitment to CSR is a top priority for them. If you're thinking they'


Is Corporate Citizenship Measuring Up: The Latest Data

How Will Wall Street's Shortcomings Redefine The MBA Curriculum?

In November last year, MBA candidates at three business schools across the country decided to initiate oaths of ethical conduct for all graduating students. While the oaths were student-sponsored, these almost-socialistic self-administrations rang hollow amidst a recession. As I wrote at the time, it spoke of an identity crisis for business schools, which were beginning to look inwards at their curriculum for reasons behind the failed leadership on Wall Street.