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Corporate social opportunity – Taking ethical risks to market
Contributed by David Grayson and Adrian Hodges   
Growing numbers of companies are seeing opportunities in meeting social and environmental needs, but business as a whole is not moving fast enough, say David Grayson and Adrian Hodges

Global revolutions in technology, markets, demographics and values are giving companies a whole new set of issues that they have to manage urgently.

These issues include the environment, human rights, diversity, health, work-life balance and the community. Historically, these have been regarded as “soft issues”, but they have become “hard” for business: hard to ignore, hard to manage, and very hard for the businesses that get them wrong.

We first marked this trend in our book Everybody’s Business: Managing Risks and Opportunities in Today’s Global Society, in 2001. Three years later, in Corporate Social Opportunity, we further developed our argument that, handled correctly, these issues need not just be about minimising risk, but could become a source of new marketplace insight and a stimulus to innovation. We always saw corporate social opportunity as being a corporate mindset, as well as developments in products and services. UK fruit smoothies maker Innocent Drinks, which has made its commitment to sustainability integral to its brand identity and values, and retailer Marks & Spencer’s Plan A commitment are good examples of what corporate thinking for sustainability can achieve.

Read the full article: Corporate social opportunity – Taking ethical risks to market

Volunteer Internship, Sri Lanka
Written by Samanthi Gunawardena   

Sigirya, Sri Lanka, Unpaid

The activities are quite diverse ranging from conservation biology, participatory eco-cultural development, eco-cultural tourism, community development, environmental conservation (includes wildlife conservation and management) etc and provide research experience and exposure in the areas of Archaeology, Anthropology, botany, zoology, ethnology, sociology, environment studies, development studies, ethno archaeology and speleology and many other related fields.
Searching for a new world order in Davos
Contributed by Independent Online, South Africa   

Davos, Switzerland - The spectacular rise of China and India coupled with a decline in US influence has prompted heated debate in Davos this year over possible scenarios for a new world order.

While the United States remains the undisputed military superpower, experts participating in the annual gathering of the world's political and business elite have highlighted its waning ability to set the global agenda on its own.

And with the UN Security Council struggling to provide a consensus on just about any major issue, the question of what nation, group of nations or international institution could command a leading role on the future world stage was floated to a widely varying response.

The only real point of agreement was that the current fluidity in the balance of world power carries a serious threat of instability and conflict, as well as concerns over how to build an effective international response to extreme abuses of power such as acts of genocide or ethnic cleansing.

"We don't live in a multi-polar world, we live in a non-polar world," said John Chipman, director general of the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies.

Read the full article: Searching for a new world order in Davos

UN chief moving `at full speed' on food crisis
Contributed by Associated Press   
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Monday he is moving "at full speed" pushing efforts to tackle the world food crisis.

Ban said he will hold the first meeting of his recently formed United Nations task force on food next Monday.

He also said he is sending invitations to all world leaders to join him at a high-level meeting to work out a strategy for addressing food shortages and soaring prices. The conference, organized by the U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization, will be June 3-5 in Rome.

"This crisis did not come out of the blue," Ban told reporters. "It grew out of more than a decade of neglect and ineffective development policies. We need a new start."

While there have been "promising steps" in recent days to deal with emergency food needs, the entire U.N. system needs to lead and act together "to boost agricultural development, particularly in Africa and other regions most affected," he said.

The secretary-general said he is urging government leaders not to adopt measures that distort international trade in food and push up prices. He also called for immediate action to get seeds and fertilizer to small farmers.

Ban was asked about criticism from President Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal, who urged the U.N. on Sunday to dismantle the FAO, calling it an ineffective money-eater that he blamed for most of the current food crisis.

While expressing sympathy for the frustrations of Wade and other African leaders, Ban defended the FAO, saying the agency has led international efforts since 1945 to promote agricultural productivity and humanitarian assistance to people affected by food shortages.

Read the full article: UN chief says he is moving `at full speed' on food crisis

Discuss and seek advice in the forum
Contributed by The Editors   
The forum is the ideal place to post question! All you need is a login ID and you can start posting. If you have any ideas for other topics don't hesitate to let us know! Visit the forum now.
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