Building a Green Brand in China

For the last few years, as awareness around sustainability has grown in China, an opportunity to build green brands has developed. To understand more about the challenges of building a green brand, and the opportunities to engage consumers, we spoke with Jeni Saeyang about her work at Eco & More's to build a green product, engage consumers, and the challenges she has faced along the way.…

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BASF Moves Students From Inspiration to Action

  Last week, As part of BASF’s 150th anniversary program in Shanghai, BASF hosted a 24 hour sustainable transportation creatathon involving teams from 7 of Shanghai's universities. With the goal of the event to inspire the teams to create APP-based solution that would help urban residents make better transport decisions. With China’s struggle with smog, energy security, and traffic…

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Good Brands Still Trump Good Companies With Consumers

I just scanned through the GlobeScan paper RE:Thinking Consumption, and I came across the chart above It is a chart that struck me because it is supposed to show "How do consumers rate the environmental and social leadership of companies within their respective sectors" Yet, Interface (one of the recognized leaders) still comes after Shell ,and a host of others that are far from being consider…

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Social Innovation as a Sustainable Business Model

Last week, we held the second in the Beyond Business As Usual events, Social Innovation as a Sustainable Business Model. Hosted by HK Polytech University, roughly 220 people showed up to learn about what social innovation was and how it is rolling out through organizations large and small. For my part, I focused on the fact that as "Business as Usual" moves from a model where profit maximizatio…

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The Problem With Endless Supplies of Resources is That They Don’t Really Exist

The other day, while making my way home I caught a glimpse of Toray's desalination advertisement. It was one of those moments that at first I was not sure what I was looking, or the greater meaning, until the very end where the advert cuts out with the ocean in the background and makes reference to it being an "endless resource". A message supported by on their website where they say the ocean…

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CSR and Social Media in China

One of the more popular topics in China these days is the impact of social media. It's popular (in my eyes) for two reasons. The first is that firms in China see the potential in the platform as a way to reach consumers, and develop loyalty. The other is the fact that social media has proven very powerful as a catalyst in civil society engagement. For firms, it is the combination of these tw…

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Empowering I.T. Departments to Create Responsible Systems

The morning while havinga  coffee with the CSR manager of a large retailer, he mentioned the fact that on a semi-frequent basis he would find himself going around the office shutting off computers.  After working hours. That while his firm, in his opinion, had done a good job of developing and communicating a framework for sustainabilty, there were still some (large) gaps. One of them being th…

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Walmart Drives CSR and Sustainability Into Their Core

One of the things about corporate responsibility and sustainability initiatives is that the best programs are those that are part of the core operations of the firm, align to the greater goals, and do not require a constant champion.  It is simply embedded into the economics and actions of the firm, and while the firm certainly benefits, the overall benefits are far wider. The Walmart Direct Fa…

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China’s Eco-Cities Need to Do More than Win Awards

Last month while being interviewed for the New York Times piece China's City of the Future Rises on a Wasteland, I was asked about the importance of China's eco-city planning... What should be the goal of an eco-city and why are they important to China? To me, this was perhaps one of the more important and interesting questions I have been asked on the topic, a topic I have been interviewed pr…

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Understanding the Systems We Aim to Fix

With the conversations around systems and sustainability still largely a moving a target that bounces between emotional polar bears and destructive weather systems, I honestly cannot think of a better time for a focus on understanding the systems that exist in our economy, the impact of our economy on our environmental systems, and taking steps towards applying an economic value to those external…

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