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Collaboration Among Industry, Civil Society, and Government for Sustainability: A Framework for Identifying Opportunities

Directory : Faculty : Intellectual Contributions

Intellectual Contribution by Bruce Paton

Contribution Title

Collaboration Among Industry, Civil Society, and Government for Sustainability: A Framework for Identifying Opportunities

Publication

Progress in Industrial Ecology _ An International Journal, Vol. 3, Nos. 1/2, pp.148_162.

Co-author

Year

2006

Description

Progress toward sustainability will require innovation and collaboration among business, government and civil society. But progress in recent years has been marked by trial and error, skepticism and confusion, and poor coordination across sectors.

This paper proposes a framework for identifying and understanding opportunities for collaboration. The framework was inspired by a recently published approach _ known as the "virtue matrix" (Martin, HBR 2002) _ for assessing Corporate Social Responsibility opportunities.

The framework presented in this paper distinguishes between four quadrants of opportunity for promoting corporate social responsibility. The legal foundation quadrant addresses behavior required by current law. The social foundation quadrant addresses behavior required by society's current norms and expectations. The structural frontier quadrant addresses practices that benefit society, but not necessarily the individual corporation. The strategic frontier quadrant addresses practices that may benefit society and the firm.

Each quadrant can provide opportunities for firms, NGOs, governments, and socially responsible investment funds to influence corporate behavior. But the opportunities differ in each quadrant, requiring different tactics by each sector and raising different requirements for success. This paper identifies tactics to match the requirements for success in each quadrant.

Key words: voluntary initiatives, sustainability, public-private partnerships

Complete Citation

Paton, B. (2006)

Website

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