What Happens When Big Business Media Reports on CSR

The WSJ has published a downbeat assessment of CSR. The article cited a study showing that CEOs exiting Fortune 500 companies were 84% more likely to be fired if they invested strongly in good corporate citizenry yet recorded below par financial results than CEOs at poor performing companies that spent less on “do-good” initiatives. This decidedly defensive claim was offset by an upbeat article in the Financial Times. It notes that a survey of 500 pension funds, foundations, endowments, and sovereign wealth funds found that two-thirds of big investors believe sustainable investing will grow in significance by 2022. Further, studies show a “remarkable correlation” between responsible investing and outperforming results. Who to believe? The wise CSR/sustainability professional will collate carefully from such “mainstream” sources to ensure an accurate reading of the pluses and minuses of CSR—and stay tuned to this space, which curates the CSR news.

John Howell, Editorial Director

ReportAlert: Marine Stewardship Council releases 20th Annual Report.

News & Blogs

A populist uprising has taken hold in the US over AIG’s payout of $218 million in bonuses despite losing more money in the last quarter than any other company in history and being supported by an insane $170 billion in government bailout money.

A recent blog posted the value of seeing the global recession as an opportunity for 'creative destruction'. I agree- but let us be careful not to 'destroy Creation'!

Recently, Dane and I have been having a spirited "argument" about climate change and how to combat it. I put argument in quotes, because I suspect we agree much more than we disagree.

Listening to the news lately, it seems that the bulk of questions for federal reserve chairmen, finance directors, economists, and politicians have shifted from questions like "how bad is it?" to "is it over yet?"

That's what the woman sitting behind me said when the lights went up on Valentino: The Last Emperor, a new documentary on the legendary fashion designer. As her comment indicates, the film's not so subtle subtext is the conflict between a creative artist and the financiers who eventually drove him out of the design house that still bears his name.

You've probably heard this phrase before: 'For the first time in human history, we know what to do; we just lack the political will to do it.' The pundit might be referring to eradicating extreme poverty, or addressing climate change.

Often, that position has a lot of truth in it. We know we need to reduce our carbon emissions in rich countries. We know that ensuring that every village had clean drinking water would dramatically reduce infant mortality. We know a lot.

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I thought I'd spend a little time today talking about how to green our holidays. Holidays can be a wonderful time to spend with friends and family, but they can also often be filled with unsustainable practices. So, here are a few tips to make your St. Patrick's (and other holidays) greener.