CSR Blogs

Kiva's Earth Day Announcement: Green Loans!

This morning, on the occasion of Earth Day, I received some very exciting news! One of my favorite nonprofits, Kiva, a micro-lending website that enables anyone in the world to lend $25 to entrepreneurs and students, now has a new product offering - green loans! Kiva’s new web page states:

Help people live sustainably around the world. Green loans promote clean and renewable sources of energy by funding organic...

Let No Man Say It Cannot Be Done

By Lester R. Brown

We need an economy for the twenty-first century, one that is in sync with the earth and its natural support systems, not one that is destroying them. The fossil fuel-based, automobile-centered, throwaway economy that evolved in western industrial societies is no longer a viable model—not for the countries that...

Three Cheap Tools to Measure Blogs and Social Media

One of the big questions I often get asked by nonprofit campaigners is “how do I know if our blog and social media are succeeding and resonating with people?” Great question. The very first thing that nonprofits should do is setup a tracking system to measure their blogs and social media. Since most nonprofits are on a budget, there are three budget friendly products that are worth checking out. Before we dive into specifics, it’s important to recognize that no one product will measure everything you need and they are not 100% accurate. That said...

Women Matter 2010: Increasing Shareholder Value

In order to improve your company's financial performance, provide a way forward for women to advance to senior positions. In its new studyWomen Matter 2010, McKinsey & Company established the link between...

Conflict Minerals- The “Perfect Storm” of CSR, Sustainability, Politics and Supply Chain Management- Part 1

Last week, it was widely reported that both Intel Corporations and Apple Computers had pulled the plug on sourcing of precious minerals typically used in the manufacturing of its high-tech products from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).  These basic building blocks of our cell phones, computers and other consumer electronics are widely known as “conflict minerals”, mainly because of the large spread connection the “artisanal” and industrial mines that produce the materials and the flow...

Just Say Uncle: Sociopaths & Finance

It is really all in the way you think about it. Is it murder or justice? Debt or equity? Budget deficit or moral deficit?

As we struggle with the do’s, dont’s and maybes of the continuing financial reform debate, pearls of wisdom come from the strangest places. Last week’s press conference with John Travolta, John Gotti Jr. might be assumed an unusual source to derive insight. Yet Gotti Jr.’s words as he sat next to a botoxed Lindsay Lohan and Sister Victoria were profound.

“Some

...

Coca-Cola Promoting Recyclable, Reusable Display Racks

With winning shelf space at supermarkets and convenient stores a hyper-competitive challenge for consumer packaged goods companies, one way to get a product into a store is to provide a temporary store display.  We have all seen them--they tout a new product line, promote a contest, or showcase an athlete who is endorsing the product.

continue reading at GoGreenPost

Leon Kaye writes extensively for...

From Counting Beans to Crowdsourcing Dollars: An Interview with CauseVox’s Rob Wu

I first met Rob Wu, the co-founder of CauseVox, last year in New York when we were both StartingBloc fellows.  It didn’t take long for me to see that this unassuming professional beancounter & management consultant from Texas was actually a budding social entrepreneur sitting on a great idea, just waiting for the most opportune time to bring it to life. That time came shortly after when Rob left his well paying job at Deloitte to dedicate himself to his venture full-time. It’s been...

This Saturday, "Record Store Day" Celebrates Music, Community and Buying Local

Few will argue that digital media is fast, cheap and convenient. Since the rise of the iPod, music lovers have been able to carry an entire audio library in their pockets. We can buy a brand new album the very instant it becomes available, or preview millions of songs from the comfort of our homes. A band's whole discography can be downloaded in less time than it takes to listen to their first single.

But there's something missing from the iTunes Store, and this Saturday, you just might find it etched in a black vinyl disc for sale...

A Work-Life Balance Standard: Helping Employers Distinguish Themselves

Human resources specialists (and corporate social human resources specialists, as Elaine Cohen prefers), take note!  Earlier this month, the ...

Cause Marketing, Selfishness Drive Consumer Giving

New research out of the University of Michigan confirms what I always knew was true: I was right to name my cause marketing blog Selfish Giving. After giving college students the choice between donating through a cause marketing promotion or...

Time to Rethink Japan's Energy Future

Nearly four weeks after a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami devastated northeastern Japan, emergency personnel are still struggling to stabilize the disabled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Beyond the immediate need to minimize further radioactive leakage and protect public health, the government is beginning to reconsider its long-term plans for nuclear power expansion. International media coverage has typically assumed that Japan must expand its electricity generation from coal, oil, and natural gas if nuclear is...

When CSR Should Be Risky Business

Aligning business purpose and social purpose is a cornerstone for better CSR. Examples of this include pharmaceutical companies investing in health care organizations that align with their therapeutic products, financial institutions supporting financial literacy, and electrical utilities providing free electricity to low income people.

This isn’t rocket science – it just makes good business sense and feels like the right thing to do. Aligned programs that are integrated at an operational level and well communicated internally and externally are...

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished? Madonna and You

Celebrity names make headlines when their charities are being investigated. It doesn't matter whether or not the celebrity has a full heart and means well. And once a charity or donor is questioned, the doubt lingers long after, even if no wrongdoing is ultimately found. Madonna is the latest case where allegations, as yet unproven, have been made with respect to her charities.

...

Can the United States Feed China?*

In 1994, I wrote an article in World Watch magazine entitled “Who Will Feed China?” that was later expanded into a book of the same title. When the article was published in late August, the press conference generated only moderate coverage. But when it was reprinted that weekend on the front of the Washington Post’s Outlook section with the title “How China Could Starve the World,” it unleashed a political firestorm in Beijing.

The response began with a press conference at the Ministry of Agriculture on Monday...

Social Media and Corporate Responsibility

Getinvolved.ca is a fantastic initiative focused on connecting individuals and organizations to make change possible. They’re the folks behind Power of the Hour, a national campaign to encourage Canadians to stand up and count the power of volunteer time. They’ve also done a whole series of interesting videos, called Digital U, about various aspects of social media....

Can You Run a Sustainable Company with Unpaid Interns?

As spring approaches, and intern hiring season kicks into high gear, there’s a debate raging in companies throughout the U.S. To pay or not to pay – that is the question.

Unpaid internships – for college credit  – are a longstanding tradition in this country. But somewhere, somehow, the college credits disappeared from many internship agreements, and cold hard cash never took its place.

Businesses desperately trying to grow in these tough times have found a ready and willing crop of students and recent college grads, begging...

Board Matching the Silicon Valley Way

What a thrill to see headlines about Palindrome Advisors, a year-old nonprofit that matches business executives with nonprofit boards, mentors social entrepreneurs, and holds “salons” for board members to discuss nonprofit challenges and opportunities. Engaging corporate professionals on nonprofit boards through a thoughtful and purposeful matching process, and training and coaching them for successful service is the most...

How Many Students Does It Take to Save the World: Ask CGI University 2011

Waste-picking is a way of life for millions of children who live in extreme poverty. Living in landfill communities, they and their families spend their days scavenging dump sites for recyclable materials in order to earn $2/day. Determined to understand their needs and interests, and explore solutions and nonprofit partnerships, Ryan Integlia and ...

Helping Japan in the Best Way Possible

Just over a year ago, in the aftermath of the worst natural disaster ever to befall Haiti, I wrote about the generous and inspirational commitments that individuals, organizations and corporations were making in response. I also wrote about the very best way to helpin times of disaster, based on lessons long learned by government, NGOs and others in the disaster response and relief community.

Now, in the aftermath of...

The Counterintelligence of Sustainability

One of the things that so intrigues me about sustainability is the way it forces a hard look in the opposite direction for just about every business topic.  For instance, you’d think “green marketing” would demand an overt or visible approach, but green or sustainable marketing seems to be most effective when it uses a transparent approach.  Or, you’d think that to build your organization’s sustainability leadership you’d go about it in the traditional way – creating executive level...

Greener chemicals from Genomatica

You’ve got oil in your bedroom closet. Well, not exactly oil, but products that made from petrochemicals like Spandex. Spandex can be found in swimsuits, socks, intimate apparel, sportswear, ski pants and biking gear, among other things.

Christophe Shilling, an entrepreneur with a PhD in bioengineering, aims to change that–with the help of renewable crops and genetically modified bugs. He’s the founder and CEO of a company...

Nonprofits: How to Avoid Problem Board Members in the First Place

In a recent post, I advised nonprofit boards why and how to rid themselves of problem board members. Even better, there are ways to limit the likelihood of bringing problem board members on in the first place. You can also establish good board practices to cycle board members off at a dynamic pace; this mitigates the damage of problem board members, while also allowing you...

Cultivating a Community of Practice

Two years ago today, I launched the Canadian CSR and SD Practitioners Network on LinkedIn.

At the time, I saw a need for a network to connect individual corporate responsibility and sustainability practitioners in Canada.  There were already several Canadian (and, of course, international) organizations bringing together businesses and corporations around these issues, but, for the most part, these were...

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