Corporate Social Responsibility in the 21st Century

Corporate Social Responsibility in the 21st Century

Debates, Models and Practices Across Government, Law and Business

Bryan Horrigan

Professor Bryan Horrigan spans subjects as diverse and topical as global corporate responsibility and governance debates, practical guidelines for responsible businesses and their professional advisers, governmental roles in corporate social responsibility, corporations and human rights, and the new era of ‘enlightened shareholder value’. He also highlights an emerging transnational and comparative body of law, regulation, and practice on corporate social responsibility. Illustrated throughout with meaningful controversies and examples, the book also highlights the major recent global developments in corporate social responsibility already this century, focusing especially on Europe, the UK, North America, and Australasia, and charting its future regulatory and research directions worldwide.

Chapter 10: Advancing the 21st Century Corporate Social Responsibility Agenda

Bryan Horrigan

Subjects: business and management, management and sustainability, environment, environmental management, law - academic, corporate law and governance, human rights, politics and public policy, human rights

Extract

A GRAND GLOBAL CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY PROJECT The defining challenge of the twenty-first century will be to face the reality that humanity shares a common fate on a crowded planet. That common fate will require new forms of global cooperation, a fundamental point of blinding simplicity that many world leaders have yet to understand or embrace . . . There are no solutions to the problems of poverty, population, and environment without the active engagement of the private sector, and especially the large multinational companies. Yet the main objective of such companies is to earn profits rather than to meet social needs. The two are definitely not incompatible, but they are not the same. It will take hard work to bring together the leaders of business, government, and nongovernmental organizations to ensure that private-sector incentives and societal needs are harmonized [so] that the selforganizing forces of a market economy [are] guided by overarching principles of social justice and environmental stewardship . . . – Professor Jeffrey Sachs, Director of Columbia University’s Earth Institute, and author of The End of Poverty and Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet 1 21st Century Geopolitical Convergence Towards Corporate Social Responsibility CSR is now everybody’s business, whether you are for it, against it or ambivalent about it. All citizens of the world have a stake in global CSR that goes beyond being passive objects of stakeholder consultation, marginal participants in corporate governance, bystanders in corporate law and disempowered victims of corporate irresponsibility. A grand CSR project is...

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