CSR Blogs

World on the Edge by the Numbers – Shining a Light on Energy Efficiency

Our inefficient, carbon-based energy economy threatens to irreversibly disrupt the Earth’s climate. Averting dangerous climate change and the resultant crop-shrinking heat waves, more-destructive storms, accelerated sea level rise, and waves of climate refugees means cutting carbon emissions 80 percent by 2020.

The first key component of the Earth Policy Institute’s...

It's all about the people, right?

The latest report from ecoAmerica is titled "up start with people." The report states that the environmental community has not been successful at wining the hearts and minds because they have focusedmostly on government regulation and intervention. The non-profit sees more success being had by those in the movement who are focused on social solutions that are built around people.

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The Good News About Coal

by Lester R. Brown

During the years when governments and the media were focused on preparations for the 2009 Copenhagen climate negotiations, a powerful climate movement was emerging in the United States: the movement opposing the construction of new coal-fired power plants. 

Environmental groups, both national and local, are opposing coal plants because they are the primary driver of climate change. Emissions from coal plants are also...

People, Planet, Profit — Putting People First

So, what does putting people first really mean? 

Many companies have mission statements hanging on the wall espousing values that put people first, but if you ask the staff, those values often are not manifesting in the company culture.

Too often, CSR focuses on the important issue of environmental sustainability (planet) before people sustainability. Or, making more profit as an excuse for compromising care for people – their most valuable resource. Care for people does not require providing benefits that a company cannot afford. ...

World on the Edge by the Numbers – Growing Goat Herds Signal Global Grassland Decline

After the earth was created, soil formed slowly over geological time from the weathering of rocks. It began to support early plant life, which protected and enriched it until it became the topsoil that sustains the diversity of plants and animals we know today. Now the world’s ever-growing herds of cattle, sheep, and goats are converting vast stretches of grassland to desert. 

One indicator that helps us assess grassland health is changes in the goat population relative to those of sheep and cattle...

Ditching Grandma: Reexamining the Era of Economic Irresponsibility

Good-b CEO Monika Mitchell is the co-author of the upcoming book: Conversations with Wall Street: The Inside Story on the Financial Armageddon That Was and How to Prevent the Next One.

So here we are again, in economic LaLa land, waiting for the life raft that will save us from ourselves. The financial news this week is bittersweet for both Wall Street and Main Street. We are told the economy is getting “better,” yet the reality experienced on both sides of the Street reveals the truth.

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The Impact of Cause Integration

When I founded a company called Causecast in 2008 out of a shared warehouse space in Santa Monica, it operated from three fundamental beliefs:

There was a dark hole where the technology should exist to make nonprofits more successful.

The rising wave of cause marketing would require technology and expertise to truly connect the ‘cause’ with the ‘marketing.’

Capitalism, if...

Bakery chain’s nonprofit cafés let patrons pay what they can

The virtual ink had barely dried on our story about Café Gratitude and its pay-what-you-can menu item when we came across a similar initiative, this time on a larger scale. Bakery chain ...

Business, CSR And Nonprofit Leaders: What They're Reading This Summer - Part II

Part I featured books with pirates, philosophers, and innovative solutions for a better world. Here are more summer reading ideas from leaders in nonprofits, social impact investing, business, and corporate social responsibility.

Sal Giambanco...

Business, CSR And Nonprofit Leaders: What They're Reading This Summer

Every several months, I crowdsource book recommendations from my friends and colleagues and share them here with my readers. The book selections are quite eclectic. Here are a few, and I'll post more recommendations in Part II tomorrow. Happy reading!

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Three Often Ignored Factors in CSR – Are you doing all Three?

Corporate Social Responsibility begins with self-responsibility. If not, social responsibility can’t sustain. When we aren’t self-responsible, we drain personal energy needed to power our social mission. We punch a hole in our energy bucket, limiting our effectiveness. Social responsibility is not an entity that survives with people feeding it only when they have energy to do so. It is an expression of who we are, individually and collectively. There is a consciousness shift going on, and part of the shift is realizing that the end cannot justify the means. We have to be the change we want...

Geothermal Power Heating Up Worldwide

In 1904, Italy’s Prince Piero Ginori Conti became the first person to use thermal energy from within the earth to turn on the lights—five of them, to be precise. Now, more than a century after his experiment, 24 countries are using geothermal power. The 10,900 megawatts of capacity installed worldwide generate enough renewable electricity to meet the needs of more than 6 million U.S. homes. Geothermal power has grown at just 3 percent annually over the last decade, but the pace is set to pick up substantially, with close to 9,000 megawatts of new...

Help KFC Earn Its Cause Marketing Wings

Megan Strand of InCouraged.com joined me in writing this post today!

Last Friday, Joe appropriately ranted that Kentucky Fried Chicken’s latest “cause marketing” promotion (we cringe to even call it that)...

How Green Is Your Boardroom?

No, I don't mean green as in money. I mean green as in environment. At Kimberly-Clark, sustainability is not only discussed in the C-suite; it's also on the board of directors' agenda. At the Corporate Eco Forum (CEF) annual meeting held...

How to keep your CSR / Sustainability budget

If you are a CSR / Sustainability professional you will most likely face the challenge of making most of the budget you have available for the year. Especially in bad economic times, budgets are likely to be cut and keeping your budget for your CSR / Sustainability projects and practices is not always as straight forward as it might seem.

Here are some tips I would like to give you from when I was in charge of the CSR / Sustainability budget working as the CSR Manager for a multinational.

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The Ethically Gray Territory of Botswana Diamonds

Last April, Survival International called for a boycott of Botswana diamonds, targeting  De Beers’ stores.  Yet, De Beer’s efforts in Botswana have been widely admired.   In fact, for those in the jewelry sector, Botswana diamonds have been viewed as an excellent example of beneficiation.  As an...

Cause marketing for Venus & Mars

Late last year, the annual Barkley cause survey made a big discovery - men do have a heart. We talked to male consumers all over the USA and found out that men are impacted by cause marketing in nearly the same numbers as women. We also found out that only 3 out of 10 chief marketing officers were contemplating targeting men with a cause program. Sounds like some fertile ground for the right brand and nonprofit doesn't it?

At the Cause Marketing Forum in Chicago last week, I had the opportunity to meet with two small groups of fellow cause marketers to discuss cause and men. We had...

When the Nile Runs Dry*

A new scramble for Africa is under way. As global food prices rise and exporters reduce shipments of commodities, countries that rely on imported grain are panicking. Affluent countries like Saudi Arabia, South Korea, China and India have descended on fertile plains across the African continent, acquiring huge tracts of land to produce wheat, rice and corn for consumption back home.
 
Some of these land acquisitions are enormous. South Korea, which imports 70 percent of its grain, has acquired 1.7 million acres in Sudan to grow wheat—an area twice the size of Rhode Island
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The Dirty Little Secret About Joining A Nonprofit Board

There are many reasons that people join nonprofit boards. The primary motivation is to do something good for the world. But this post is about the reason that isn't discussed in polite company: "I want to join a board in order to develop business relationships."

Okay, here's the deal: If you just want to make business contacts, there are way easier ways to network than to commit to multiple hours of board and committee meetings,...

7 Tweeps I’m Now Following Thanks to the CMF Conference

Last week’s Cause Marketing Forum Conference had many benefits. But one of the best for me is that I have a bunch of new cause marketing tweeps to follow on Twitter. Here are six you’re going to love.

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Corporate Philanthropy Summit: "Citizen Philanthropy" Wins Big With DonorsChoose.org

How do you turn $790,000 into $2,014,000 via citizen philanthropy in order to benefit students in need?Charles Best, the innovative Founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org found a way. First, DonorsChoose qualified as the winner of ...

Why Play Matters More than Ever

Ever feel overwhelmed by the sheer volume of media messages, e-mails, texts and tweets coming at you everyday, yet cut off from what gives you a deeper sense of purpose in life? Join the crowd. 

A recent Digital Lifestyle Information Survey from online content company Magnify.net reveals that most people, 64.2 percent, say the information streaming toward them has increased by more than 50 percent during the past year alone. A staggering 72.7 percent of...

Emergence Of Fair Trade Jewelry

Jewelry, perhaps more than any other object we own, has tremendous emotional, symbolic and talismanic value.  For this reason alone, fair trade really should be behind any jewelry purchase.  It makes no sense whatsoever that a wedding ring, which represents our most noble sentiments and commitments, may feature a blood diamond mounted on gold that caused twenty tons of toxic mine tailings poisoning some watershed in Peru.

Yet such a ring is being produced and possibly sold in your local jewelry...

10 best green marketing ebooks!

We're back again with our weekly ten recommendations on green ebooks!

This week I prepared a list that is inspired by the Joel Makower's excellent article Green Marketing Is Over. Let’s Move On and the heated debate that followed it. So this week I present you with my 10 recommendations on green marketing books that are available in an electronic version.

This...

I Am a Social Intrapreneur

When you’re looking for CSR work, there’s a very clear mantra that everyone repeats, day in and day out. It goes something like this:

“Real CSR jobs are few and far between. If you want to do CSR, go get a functional job within a big company and innovate from the inside out.”

In social change circles, this mantra could also be called social intrapreneurship. Unlike social entrepreneurship, where you’re starting something completely new and distinct, social intrapreneurship is all about finding ways to innovate within the...

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