Bookmark and Share

Blog

By Eric Nitzberg
Posted on: May 16, 2016
Over a year ago, I decided to find out what it takes to lead a successful company that has a strong social or environmental purpose baked into its business activities.Interest in this area has surged in recent years, and many organizations are embracing the pursuit of impactful change. But understanding the full picture of a company’s impact is difficult for many reasons: company comparisons are challenging across industries, there’s no universal definition of “impact,” and negative effects (like a coal company’s carbon footprint) is less often a focus for corporate sustainability reports.... read more
By Claudia Viek
Posted on: May 7, 2016
For National Small Business Week, l’d like to draw attention to the potential of business ownership to address the wealth gap in all of our communities. Most of the attention of the inequality gap has been on the disappearing middle, but there’s a racial component to the problem as well. Wealth owned by white households is more than 10 times that of Latinos and 13 times that of African Americans. Janet Yellen, Chair of the Federal Reserve, has said that business ownership is one of the four pillars of wealth creation.We know what works to grow small businesses. In California, $2 million in... read more
By Zach Bernstein
Posted on: May 3, 2016
The closer we get to the November elections, the less likely it appears that Congress will take major action on any issue. Especially for the crucial issue of climate change, which requires that we put a ceiling on global temperatures now, this is bad news.Better news is that several states, those "laboratories of democracy," as U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis put it, are doing their job. They're considering moving forward on a major piece of climate policy—passing a carbon tax. A few states in particular are showing signs of progress:In Massachusetts, two bills are currently before... read more
By Pat Heffernan
Posted on: April 4, 2016
March marks Women’s History Month again, but I am not celebrating. Stories and images of courageous women of the past are everywhere. These women deserve recognition — they fought hard to advance equal rights and access for the majority of the U.S. population who happen to have been born female. Yet in 2016, I find it increasingly difficult to talk about celebrating for one month a year when there are so few signs of positive progress to improve the lives of women. How can we better harness attention, social change innovations, and sustainable economy principles to advance gender equality?... read more
Citizens United
By Penniman and Potter
Posted on: March 31, 2016
Campaign finance is arguably the breakout issue of this election year. Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton both rail constantly against Citizens United, the Supreme Court decision that opened up election spending to corporations and super PACs. On the GOP side, candidates' super PACs have garnered as much news media scrutiny as the candidates themselves.This might seem like music to the ears of those who worry about how money dominates politics. But Citizens United is only the harmony, not the melody of that tune. The much greater threat to America's hallowed... read more
By Manisha Paralikar
Posted on: March 16, 2016
Are you an idealist?  Do you believe in sustainability?  Has idealism led corporations to embed sustainability throughout their operations? Wait, is that last part even a reality?Some might question whether it has, or if it can even be. Others – including me, and probably you – work in your business every day toward that goal in the face of obstacles, hypocrisy, and as Christine Bader notes in The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist, even our own contradictions.  Using Bader’s decade-long experience promoting human rights standards within BP as a backdrop, Evolution is a fast-paced, fun book... read more
By Warren Taylor
Posted on: March 10, 2016
Food labeling is the ground on which the battle for the future of America’s food system is being fought. Consumers increasingly want to know more about how their food is produced and processed. They support labeling foods with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) - to the tune of 89 percent, according to polling from last year. They want to know where it comes from, and what goes into it. This market trend is undeniable.Despite this trend toward more organic and non-GMO food, the industrial agriculture lobby group Coalition for Safe and Affordable Food is advocating a national food labeling... read more
By Leif Elgethun
Posted on: February 29, 2016
As the Clean Power Plan moves forward, and states begin to discuss how they’ll develop their plans to meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) goals for reducing carbon emissions, it’s worth asking: What’s the discussion been like in certain states?Here in Idaho, the state has engaged the Governor’s Office of Energy Resources (OER) to lead efforts to understand how the Clean Power Plan will affect Idaho businesses and citizens. The OER has worked to outline state concerns to the EPA; primarily, the state does not believe the federal government has jurisdiction to require the state to... read more
By Claudia Viek
Posted on: February 8, 2016
Let's face it: investing in women-owned businesses translates into wealth creation. Even if the wealth that’s created is modest, it means more sustainable household income and healthier communities.Last year in another ASBC blog “Boosting Women-Owned Businesses Will Boost the Economy”, I wrote that small business ownership is a key strategy for creating wealth and helping women close the wealth gap.“Households with a woman microbusiness owner earn an average of $13,000 more than households with only wage earners. That can make the difference that allows a family to sending their kids to... read more
By John O'Neill
Posted on: January 26, 2016
Just before Christmas, Congress passed dozens of tax-law changes that affect businesses large and small, and since many apply retroactively, their impact is immediate.Some of the changes will advance a sustainable economy, by supporting the use and production of renewable energy for instance. Others will inhibit it, for example, by enabling U.S. companies to shift income offshore. All will drive up the deficit because few, if any, are paid for.The changes add certainty to the tax code because Congress made permanent more than 20 temporary tax breaks (the so-called tax extenders). These... read more

Pages