The C2K Blog
Published: 12/20/2011A Bloomberg article describing the challenges of supply chain management and monitoring made the rounds last week. The story involving Victoria's Secret, the women's undergarment manufacturer, and Fair Trade, the organization entrusted by Victoria's Secret to oversee the harvesting and production of organic cotton in Burkina Faso illustrated the extent of rigor companies need to maintain to ensure their products are compliant with the policies they have in place, the guarantees they pass along to their customers.
The article also shone a light on the egregious child labour practices that continue to occur long after commitments by governments to end such practices are made through international treaties and conventions.
Chris MacDonald, Ethics educator and consultant who blogs about business ethics, governance and CSR as well as being among the 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics 3 years running, posted a response to the Bloomberg article with the following heading: Child labour is always bad, but it's not always wrong.
The following, minus some introductory remarks and a couple of tiny edits for the purposes of this stand-alone post, is the response I posted to Chris's blog afterwards.
Published: 12/4/2011A year ago, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon called upon Unilever CEO Paul Polman to collaborate with the UN Global Compact in the formation of a Task Force to review past private sector UN partnerships and to recommend a model which would support the rapid development of solution-based responses to help solve some of the world's toughest problems. With the global expansion of the private sector, many of the challenges it faces are the same as those preoccupying the UN. It only made sense for the two to collaborate. The UN advantage comes from its longstanding in-country presence through multiple UN organizations, enabling it to identify the overarching challenges of a country or group of countries and what needs to be
Published: 8/23/2011What if we were to shift the discussion about CSR and disaster response from one of reaction to one of pro-action? I suppose your perspective of CSR in the context of disaster response depends on whether you are entrenched in the humanitarian sector or in the corporate sector. For those representing the humanitarian sector as first line responders or as fundraisers, there is the belief that if you have the resources you really ought to give. There is a moral imperative to do so, regardless of where the disaster strikes, acknowledging the interdependence of humanity, its strengths as well as its weaknesses. The truth is that corporations, on average, give a very small per cent of net profits to disaster response.
Published: 8/19/2011Booz and company have dubbed them the Third Billion, referring to the number of women from around the world who will be economically active by 2020. My own daughter will be among them. First and Second Billion positions have been secured already by China and India. And it’s safe to assume that growth in these two economies have helped to accelerate the emergence of the Third Billion. Investments and priority setting to improve survival and development outcomes for girls in developing country settings have also contributed to the growing number of women who will soon be economically active.
Published: 8/17/2011Demonstration Video of the Company2Keep social media platform promoting corporate social responsibility.
Published: 7/31/2011The weigh in. CSR, CR, Shared Values. I have lost track of the number of times I have rallied; a dozen times perhaps on my own blog and as many more when you include the comments I have left on the blogs of others.
James Epstein-Reeves and Scott James have contributed to the lively debate on the Forbes blog this past week.
I have always maintained that the ‘S’ matters; and not because I associate the ‘S’ with philanthropy and doing ‘S’ocial good, although these aspects of corporate business are important. The reason for my strong attachment to the 'S' is because of the importance of acknowledging the social impact or the social consequences of business decisions: how people are impacted - the company’s employees, the people in the community as well as the people throughout the supply chain. And while this should matter with or without the 'S', keeping the 'S' serves as an internal and external reminder that it does matter.
Published: 7/23/2011A friend of mine opened up a really great discussion the other day. She recently completed some mindfulness training and is now convinced that she is living mindlessly; living by rote, as she calls it. She has decided that she needs to get uncomfortable..., to give life a bit of a rub to help her wake up. She has decided she wants to drive some change in her life.
Seems that it's the BIG change she's after. She has decided to leave her job of the past eight years in a senior management position with an NGO and to move into the for-profit world. Immensely talented, I am convinced that she'll not have any difficulty finding the right employer. An energetic, team leader able to realize the organization's vision WITH the team, the corporate world only stands to benefit from all that this woman has to offer.
Published: 7/11/2011For many of us, our first encounter with government occurs shortly after birth, before we even leave the care of the Health Professional. This introduction to the government's civil registration system makes us matter. For others, millions of others, it's as if they matter not; for their births are allowed to go unregistered by their own governments.
Published: 6/24/2011There’s nothing quite like a provocative post! Grab your attention. Steady. Keep it there.
Following the recent adoption of the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights by the UN Human Rights Council there has been a flurry of blog-writing activity. This has been swell!
But I’m a bit worried by the tone of a few entries I read which went on to describe the UN’s enforcement role. Not. It won’t happen.
The UN is a standard-setting body. Setting standards is where the UN gets its street-creds. Standard-setting. Yes. And always by consensus. Consensus takes time to build. So, any of the adjectives synonymous with speed are quite out of place at the UN. It’s the antithesis of speed which has attracted some of the UN’s toughest critics. Others seem less satisfied with the principle of one party one vote. At the UN, a vote by the government of Swaziland is treated the same as a vote by the government of the US. The UN IS the sum of its parts and is not independent of its member states.
Published: 6/19/2011International Days of Observance cross our sight lines regularly. The UN has designated just over 100 such days or weeks throughout the year, reminding us of some of the world's most serious challenges and neglected issues.
Some designated days are heralded in with much aplomb, having galvanized the world's attention. Others, for no apparent reason, don't create much of a stir and slip right on by.
World Day Against Child Labour
June 12 marked World Day Against Child Labour and from where I stood the day passed without incident. Sure, organizations like UNICEF and the ILO set about their missions to remind us of the scope, magnitude and nuances surrounding the issue. But I find it curious why this particular June 12 didn't drive more conversation to springboard to the spotlight some of the important efforts occurring to advance the elimination of the most harmful forms of child exploitation, the promotion of children's rights and nascent best practices.
Some of these designated days are heralded in with much aplomb, while others slip right on by.
June 12 marked World Day Against Child Labor and from where I stood the day squeaked by. Sure, organizations like UNICEF and the ILO set about their missions to ensure that we not forget about the scope and magnitude of the issue. But I find it curious why this particular June 12 didn't drive more conversation to springboard to the spotlight some of the important efforts occurring to advance the elimination of the most harmful forms of child exploitation, the promotion of children's rights and best practices.
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