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Corporate Responsibility

Analysis

Profiting from the needy

By Samir Nazareth

drinking water

Samir Nazareth questions cause-related marketing which extends a corporation’s markets – for water purification sachets or sanitary napkins -- in the guise of providing essential services to the poor

In Bhopal, Unilever and Population Services International (PSI) are sensitising citizens to the importance of clean drinking water and providing them with purifier sachets. This joint initiative is being undertaken through their NGO Waterworks which, according to the company website, is “a not-for-profit programme that will provide safe clean drinking water to communities in need around the world”.

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Features

Days of rage signal the onset of change

By Mari Marcel Thekaekara

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With thousands worldwide joining the Occupy Wall Street protests against corporate greed and irresponsibility, this is no longer a movement confined to leftists and ageing hippies. Is this the tipping point when the discourse will change, asks Mari Marcel Thekaekara

The Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protests which began on September 17 have spread beyond the wildest dreams of both the organisers, as well as the critics, those prophets of doom -- editors included -- who sought to dismiss and disparage the OWS as the usual loony left ravings and aging hippie nostalgia.

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News

Indian businesses not yet responsive to AIDS threat: study

A study based on the responses of over 10,000 executives in 117 countries, including about 100 in India, says just 7% of Indian companies expect HIV/AIDS to have any serious impact on their operations.

Indian businesses have failed to assess and respond proactively to the threat of HIV/AIDS in the workforce, even as concern over the growing incidence of the disease is rising within the corporate sector, according to a new report.

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Books & Reports

Win-win: Why companies should invest in development

Five years on, a company that shows no respect for the environment and social justice may have no access to international markets. A new report from SustainAbility cites evidence from developing countries, including India, to prove that sustainability IS profitable, even in emerging markets. The greatest benefits to a company are from cost-saving and productivity, revenue growth and market access

Developing Value: The Business Case for Sustainability in Emerging Markets overturns conventional wisdom by showing that it does pay for businesses in emerging markets to pursue a wider role on environmental and social issues.

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Changemakers

25% of Sharayu's workforce is disabled

By Huned Contractor

Subhash ChuttarAt Sharayu Precision, Subhash Chuttar employs over 36 mentally and physically challenged men and women who work at jobs ranging from riveting, drilling and greasing to polishing and packing. Chuttar has just won the Helen Keller Award instituted by the National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People

When Subhash Chuttar, managing partner at Sharayu Precision in Pune, looks for new workers to handle the assembly, chipping and cutting on the shop floor, the first place he visits is a school for the mentally challenged.

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Backgrounders

Corporate Social Responsibility : Background & Perspective

By John Samuel, Anil Saari

We live in an age in which companies equivalent in wealth to countries call the shots and control much of the earth's resources. Because corporates intervene in so many areas of social life, they must be responsible towards society and the environment. In India as in the rest of the world there is a growing realisation that capital markets and corporations are, after all, created by society and must therefore serve it, not merely profit from it. And that consumers and citizens' campaigns can make all the difference