Madeline Ravich

Madeline Ravich

Posts by This Writer

9 years 3 months ago

I can’t count the number of CSR conferences at which having a speaker from Walmart’s sustainability group is treated as a coup.  To be fair, there is no question that the company has been innovative and progressive in its CSR, or at least in its environmental sustainability initiatives.  Its approaches to reducing its footprint can fairly be characterized as bold, innovative, and cutting edge.

But looking back at the CSR rankings discussed in this blog, only the...


9 years 3 months ago

This week, the EPA announced its plans to “transition” its Climate Leaders program, through which “participating companies commit to reduce their impact on the global environment by completing a corporate-wide inventory of their greenhouse gas emissions based on a quality management system, setting aggressive reduction goals, and annually reporting their progress to EPA.” Apparently, the EPA feels that there are now a sufficient number of alternatives for companies interested in achieving the goals that Climate Leaders had previously helped them...


9 years 3 months ago

Today a CSR press release in CSRWire caught my eye:

OAKLAND, Calif., Sep. 29 /CSRwire/ - The Clorox Company today (CLX) launched a new corporate logo, marking the most dramatic change in its visual identity since 1957. Using an updated version of the company’s iconic diamond mark, a brighter blue color and new accents of green, the logo better reflects the corporate brand today as it heads toward its centennial anniversary in 2013.

The press release continued:

"Our new logo better...


9 years 3 months ago

Last Friday, Ethicsblogger asked an interesting question about criteria for assessing governance in CSR reports:

Do you know of a corporate ethics / csr ranking that gives attention to governance and lists specific criteria in that area? Thx

Rather than jump the gun, I offered to give it some thought and respond in a post early the following week, which is now.

Before I offer an answer, I should say that I like this question a lot.  Just last week, I had commented on the lack of transparency found in most CSR rankings...


9 years 4 months ago

Over the past week, I have seen a few blog posts about Hershey’s first CSR report, which is hot off the presses.  Not surprisingly, the viewpoints represented in these posts vary.  For example, my Justmeans co-blogger Akhila Vijayaraghavan glows with praise, concluding her post by saying “With so many things going for them, the first CSR report sure is a sweet beginning for the Hershey company.” But Elaine Cohen, who regularly critiques CSR reports, takes a different...


9 years 4 months ago

This morning I read an AP piece in the Huffington Post about compensation at the pension fund CALPERS and thought it worthy of a special post on what I consider to be one of the murkier corners of CSR.  Basically, the article described CALPERS officers walking away with bonuses despite the fund losing money this year.  While balanced to a point, it would be more than possible to walk away from reading the AP article thinking that CALPERS was doing something egregious.  As is often the case, however, the issue is less cut-and-dry than it may seem based on how the article was...


9 years 4 months ago

I have started to perceive an inherent hypocrisy in CSR rankings surrounding the question of transparency.  It’s been bugging me, so I thought I’d write a blog post on the subject and see if it provokes any reaction from my readers.

Here’s the conflict as I see it.  The very groups demanding transparency from the companies they are evaluating fall victim to the belief that they must guard the details of their methodologies to preserve...


9 years 4 months ago

After writing my recent posts about changes in CSR rankings, I thought it would be interesting to publish a case study looking at Becton Dickinson, a long-time CSR darling which recently experienced some negative publicity surrounding its ethical practices.  BD earns consistent acknowledgement in many of the CSR rankings I have discussed in this blog over the past year, which is particularly notable for a company with a...


9 years 4 months ago

In response to my recent post on CSR Rankings, Justmeans member JustJim asked the following:

Since this is the first time this list has been made public (according to CSR Wire). is there analysis explaining major drops or gains for listed companies? It would helpful to understand the driving factors behind moving up or down the list.

This is an excellent question and one deserving of comment from both CRD Analytics (the...


9 years 4 months ago

A new season, a new CSR ranking.  The other day, Justmeans released its Global 1000, a list produced in conjunction with the relatively new ESG ratings firm CRD Analytics.  As with the various CSR rankings we have explored in this blog in the past, the list contains many of the usual suspects.  So what distinguishes this selection from those made by CRO, Ethisphere, Corporate Knights, legacy KLD and legacy...


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