The 2014 LEAD Symposium held late last year by UN Global Compact and PRME, challenged participants to sketch a vision of The Future Corporation, identifying key characteristics of what the sustainable corporation could and should look like in the future. They looked to provide a beacon for the transition of the global business community that is already underway, fuelled by deeper integration of sustainability into strategies and operations.
Students at leading business schools around the world were invited to contribute their thoughts in writing, as to what the Future Corporation will look like, to be shared with UN Global Compact LEAD companies during the event. Here is a selection of their thoughts.
- “Smart manufacturing is revolutionising drastically and plays a key role in almost every sector of the industry including information, technology, or human ingenuity.” – Daryna Kosse, Audencia Nantes School of Management, France
- “To start a collaborative relationship with governments and other organisations and creating activities, products, policies and services designed with the vision of a healthier market, being profitable while creating a much more fair business environment for everyone.” – Maria Santamaria Hernandez, Audencia Nantes School of Management, France
- “Businesses will pay serious attention to environmental impact analysis before the inception of any business operation.” – Shashank Bhat, Audencia Nantes School of Management, France
- “Transparent, non-financial reporting will be fundamental where firms not only highlight accomplishments but also disclose negative information.” – Jessie Recchia, Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland
- “Companies certainly have an influence on the world around us, but it may be current business students that have to alter the business model and include a comprehensive corporate responsibility strategy.” – Samuel Vadera, University of Guelph, Canada
- “The Future Corporation will revolve around a co-creation platform where employees will be involved in the organisational process as well as product development and customers will be able to easily access company information in order to make informed decisions. It will be focused on developing the BOP [Base of the Pyramid] market.” – Andrea Speer & Andrew Bontempo, University of Guelph, Canada
- “Future Corporations should open up their line of communication with each other, sharing ideas to improve the overall efficiency of the industry and allow growth in research and development.” – Michael Alford, Kelly Labbett, Sharon Lee, Katerhine-Ann Mair, Emily Quinn, and Connor Trendov, University of Guelph, Canada
- “In the future we will see more corporations overtaking the GDP of small and medium countries as well as a realisation of just how much power they have.” – Andrew Via, University of Guelph, Canada
- A future corporation will “create products that are fully recyclable throughout their life span, produce less waste, are carbon neutral and use resources more efficiently. All aspects of the supply chain will be transparent. Customers will be able to pay as their needs grow, to customise their products, and prices will reflect the true price of a product in terms of environmental impact.” – Milan Mladenovic, University of Guelph, Canada
- “The Future Corporation is dynamic. It is aware of critical changes and potential risks that might impact the business and the community and anticipates them by being creative and experimenting with new ways to do business while creating social value.” – Ana Amira Castenada Abreu, Nottingham University Business School, United Kingdom
- “By working with local SME’s worldwide The Future Corporation will be helping to empower local community. Training people within the local community to work with new skill sets and tools will help them create long-term business success on their own with relatively little external help.” – Camilla Norlem Carlsund Samsing, Nottingham University Business School, United Kingdom
- “The Future Corporation will lend its expertise not only to refining its core business model, making it simultaneously more sustainable and more competitive, but also to development-focused partnerships where that specific expertise can be utilised.” – Isla Farley, Nottingham University Business School, United Kingdom
- “Corporate sustainability must hold a strong language and rhetoric across the board so the Future Corporation can replicate this into written documents, policy and reports, unifying companies across the globe into talking the same language.” – Nicholas Andreson-Pearce, Nottingham University Business School, United Kingdom
- “The Future Corporation will not be a follower, but a bold trendsetter. Innovation and creativity will be encouraged and supported, and highly valued in the future employees. There will be spaces designed for stimulating of creative ideas and headquarter buildings will be designed in a way that reflects transparency and cooperation.” – Liva Lejniece, Pforzheim University, Germany
- “Human capital will become the most important capital stock, even surpassing financial stock.” – Patricia Valdes and Edurne Inigo, Deusto Business School, Spain
- “Being transparent is essential as a business. This leads to increase in profit and performance as it encourages employees to get involved in the process of making a product.” – Fahad Albalooshi, University of Dubai, United Arab Emirates
To read the full texts submitted by these students visit here.