In the current economic climate, organised anti-consumerist activity is increasing and we are seeing visible signs of discontent in our communities. Whilst current social movements like Occupy have made it clear they are unhappy with the current state of affairs, a clear vision for an alternative order has not yet been put forward.
So what can businesses do in response? Corporate Social Responsibility is one answer. However, as no consistency is guaranteed in the way it is manifested, its impact is much less than it could be. As we are living in an age of internet enabled tranparency (wherein it is difficult for businesses to hide negative impacts and easy for consumers empowered with online tools to organise protests), perhaps the time for real change has come.
The slides below were prepared and delivered as part of a lecture at Greenwich University’s Business School and attempt to scope out the anti-consumerist agenda and business responses in the age of radical transparency. In my view, business considerations must go beyond PR tactics to be fully embedded into core business purpose and practices. In this season of over-consumption, I’m pleased that this presentation has been featured on the homepage of Slideshare.net today.
Happy Christimas everyone.