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The discussion on the future of capitalism has brought up the current system’s obsession with primarily serving shareholders instead of people and communities on a larger scale, while taking into account the Earth’s ecological capacity. The current pandemic and the resulting financial crisis are likely to accelerate this discussion once the acute stage is over.
Nothing in economic theory prevents clean growth, as economic growth simply means a growing number of ideas. The problem is that economic growth is linked to carbon instead of clean innovations, the market has not been able to set a sufficient price on pollution, and technology does not yet offer sufficient innovations to solve the economic crisis quickly enough.
If we want to genuinely solve the crisis of capitalism and ecological capacity, we will likely need to have a broad discussion on the things we want to value in the future. In recent decades, the discussion around economics and society has adopted the view that whatever has a price also has value. In view of the current crises, we should carefully consider the things that we as humans value and calculate the price from value, not vice versa. How would our understanding of value change if it took into account health, happiness, care, free access to information, training, open knowledge and a clean environment?
The future belongs to companies that can clarify their purpose and capabilities for value creation as the preconditions for their operation change. Companies need to consider how they can fulfil their core tasks when the preconditions for their operation change radically. Pioneering companies aim to actively influence future developments and solve problems that are central to societies. These companies are choosing a strategy of impacting the direction of change and building the future they want to see. More and more consumers are interested in doing business with sustainably operating companies. Sustainability is moving from reports and green-washing to the core of business.
Corporate activism is challenging capitalism through sustainable and responsible actions. We encourage our clients to briskly take part in ongoing societal discussions and clarify their purpose in the world of double disruption.
Change agent, senior advisor, client director
Management consulting, crisis communications, media & PR, strategic communications, corporate responsibility
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