This category is about corporate social responsibility (CSR), a form of corporate self-regulation integrated into a business model. The goal of CSR is to embrace responsibility for the company’s actions and encourage a positive impact through its activities on the environment, consumers, employees, communities, stakeholders and all other members of the public sphere.

utilities

Top 5 Triple Bottom Line US Utilities

With the launch of a first-of-its-kind High Performance Sustainability Index for publicly listed US utilities, Target Rock Advisors has identified and ranked the top 5 and 15 US utilities across the three pillars of sustainable, Triple Bottom Line business practices and operations: environment, economy and society. Sure to spur interest among investors, Target Rock found that their shares, as a group, have outperformed the DJIA and S&P 500 over the past ten years.

TrendWatch 2012: The Rise of the Global Middle Class

A generation ago the economies in Latin America, Africa, India and China were stagnant and left billions in poverty and provided few opportunities for the vast majority of their citizens to build a better life. Fast forward to this decade, and the global financial landscape has drastically changed.

Primus Green Energy makes gasoline from wood pellets

Primus Green Energy Pitches Home Grown Gasoline

A U.S. biofuel company called Primus Green Energy has come up with a biofuel processing system that offers the gasoline version of the distributed energy trend. Rather than pushing for the construction of large, centrally located biofuel plants, the company is focusing on a relatively modest scale, in which its facilities would draw feedstock from … Continued

secrets

10 Trends in Corporate Disclosure

We believe several trends are driving corporate transparency and disclosure towards a tipping point where disclosure will be normal and opaque behavior will be aberrant.

employee

Engage Your Employees, Educate Your Frontline, Increase Your Profits

By Hunter Lovins Claudia Capitini, the aptly named Sustainability Maven at Eco-Products, had a problem. She knew, as smart companies do, that sustainability is the path to greater prosperity and profitability. Twenty six separate studies from such consultancies as those wild eyed-environmentalists at Goldman Sachs show that the companies that are the leaders in environment … Continued

bike businesses

Bicycle Benefits Program Rewards Pedal-Powered Customers

My three-year old daughter is one of the newest participants in Bicycle Benefits, a national program that rewards people for biking to participating businesses. Bikers pay $5 for a sticker that adheres to their helmet, which they present at participating businesses for a discount that is determined by each business. My daughter can now save 5 … Continued

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Under Pressure, Apple Agrees to an External Audit of its Supply Chain

Two online petitions with 250,000 signatures and dozens of demonstrators in front of Apple stores brought the company to announce that it asked the Fair Labor Association (FLA) to conduct special voluntary audits of Apple’s suppliers, including Foxconn factories in China.

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For the Love of Chocolate: Rainforest Alliance’s Sustainable Cocoa Program

As a nod to Valentine’s and the associated obsession with chocolate, Rainforest Alliance hosted a webinar on February 13, 2012: “Greening the Cocoa Industry.” Eric Servat, Senior Manager of the Rainforest Alliance cocoa program, described current developments in the cocoa industry and the Alliance’s efforts to expand sustainable cocoa production. The cocoa industry is large, … Continued

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Has The Nature Conservancy Gone Too Far with the SI Swimsuit Campaign?

The Nature Conservancy may have just raised a few eyebrows, some in dismay, others from a more voyeuristic perspective at their recent decision to partner with the Sports Illustrated magazine and luxury retailer Gilt, in a new fundraising campaign. A special sales event coinciding with the launch of this year’s SI swimsuit issue, will feature swimsuits, photographs, surfboards and tickets (starting at $1000) to launch parties where the highly exposed models will be in attendance. Proceeds from the sale will go to the Nature Conservancy who will use them to protect the very beaches on which the pictures were taken.

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UN Global Compact Expels Thousands of Companies

The UN Global Compact expelled 3,123 companies since 2005 for failure to communicate progress on their efforts to implement the Compact’s 10 sustainability principles.

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Toxins Responsible for that ‘New Car Smell’

Ann Arbor-based Ecology Center released its fourth consumer guide to toxic chemicals in cars. Over 200 of the most popular models last year were tested for chemicals present in the dashboard, armrests, seats etc. These chemicals are responsible to the “new car smell” and are linked to many health concerns. Toxic chemicals inside vehicles are … Continued

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The Trouble with Unreasonable Crowdfunding

Here at the Unreasonable Institute, we believe in militant transparency. It’s a value coined by our founder, Daniel Epstein, and it means being honest about the good, the bad, and the ugly. This blog post involves all three.