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Sustainability thebook
Sustainability thebook
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Sustainability thebook

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  • 1. To Gabriel Griffa and MateoGoretti, for their confidence.To Carlos Lamarca and Fernandovan Peborgh, for their friendship.
  • 2. SUSTAINABILITY 2.0 Networking Enterprises andCitizens to Face World Challenges
  • 3. Visit our blog at: www.elviajedeodiseo.com/blogThis book is not the work of a single author, but the result of theexhaustive and enthusiastic research, writing and editing carried outby the entire Odiseo Team.The Odiseo Team:María Noel ÁlvarezMaría Eugenia BaliñoSantiago CraigAndresa GuareschiLívia MagalhãesAlejandra ProcupetGabriela RamosContributors:Teresa BuscagliaLuciana MalamudPhotographs:Mária AntoliniPage 26: The Children At Risk Foundation/ CARF: www.carfweb.netPage 30 and 133: Mark Achbar/ Big Picture Media CorporationPage 111: Álvaro Ibáñez/ MicrosiervosPage 193: Mariana Vázquez Drafting and editing of the original Spanish-language text of Sustainability 2.0 was completed in August 2007. This book is theCover Design: result of exhaustive research, but as in the case of all research, it canClara Lagos always be improved on and expanded. It is our aim, then, for this work to circulate among citizens, businessInterior Design: people, academics, organizations, universities and activists, so that it canMateos-Davenport design expand and grow through the collaboration of its readers.English-Language Translator/Editor: Because Sustainability 2.0 can only exist where there is interaction withDan Newland: dan.newland@gmail.com others. You can participate, adding your knowledge to the Wiki version of this book, by visiting www.sostenibilidaddospuntocero.com/wiki/©2008, Ernesto van Peborgh, Buenos Aires, Argentina ISBN XXXXXXXXXX
  • 4. A Personal Journeyinto the Future I feel like a privileged observer of the times. I think I’ve reached this privileged vantage point thanks in large measure to some decisions I made in recent years, which ended up letting me see the world from a different perspective. The year 2004 was a very special year for me. In fact, it was probably the most important one of my life. By then, I had invested 20 years in the finance business. My success rate was clear: I was so regularly churning out a 35% return on institutional investors’ money that this ratio was pretty much the mantra of my professional identity. I started my career in finance at Citibank. I left that job to step up to the post of Financial Director on the founding team of the Exxel Group. When I Ieft Exxel, it was to form a partnership and create my own investment firm called Argentine Venture Partners (AVP). Up to then, the full thrust of my work and commitment was only focused on one thing: creating economic value, with no real thought of the far-reaching social and environmental impact of what I did. But as I say, in 2004, guided only by what might be called my intuition, I decided to leave the world of high finance behind and change course. So much so that it was as if I were driving 7
  • 5. down the highway, turned on my blinker, pulled over into the Glacier National Park to hoist the country’s flag, in honorright lane, and got off at the next exit. I was a 44-year-old father of Francisco P. Moreno, the famed Argentine explorer andof three, with vast experience in private equity, a talent that scientific expert, who had done the same thing 124 years before.had flung open the doors of Harvard’s classrooms and of Wall Like Rocca, Sopeña and Fonrouge on their Patagonian journeysStreet’s posh offices to me. My career steeped me in financial before me, the whole adventure of making the same climb andsuccess. But I couldn’t help feeling a need to take a different filming the documentary broadened my horizons. I felt thatpath, to get involved in something that could bring another the torch that those extraordinary men of such sound valueskind of value to my personal life and to society. had held so high was now in my hands, and it was my job to keep its flame from waning.First Wave: The Value Revolution When the film premiered at the Museum of Latin American ArtThe first adventure on that heady new road —which, looking in Buenos Aires (MALBA), several business people expressedback, bears little comparison to my past life— was the decision a desire to promote a dialog among parents and children onto make a film. I wanted to tell the story of Agostino Rocca, issues emerging from Spirals. That made me stop and think:José Luis Fonrouge and Germán Sopeña, a businessman, a If telling the story of these three men can spark a debate onmountaineer and a journalist, whose common denominator human values, what would happen if we started telling thewas their fascination with Patagonia, that legendary and stories of other people who are changing the world?largely unexplored territory that was soon to become my own By then, I had already heard about some social entrepreneurspassion as well. and the initiatives they were heading up. I knew aboutSpirals of Stone was the result, a film documentary about the work of people like Swiss philanthropist and formeran expedition undertaken by a group of family members industrialist Stephan Schmidheiny, founder of the WBCSDand friends in homage to those three men. The trio died in (World Business Council for Sustainable Development) anda plane crash in 2001, when they were flying to Argentina’s the AVINA Foundation, who, through such enterprises, was 8
  • 6. providing support to social leaders and their organizations, children are learning Baroque music and are making theirwho were working to improve life in their communities. own instruments, thanks to the work of Rubén Darío SuárezIt was then that I made the firm commitment to get to know Arana. And I was also able to discover admirable people likeand understand those who were spearheading humanity’s Rodrigo Baggio, a young man from Rio de Janeiro who, invalue revolution. But most of all, I wanted to know what 1995, founded CDI (Committee for the Democratization ofmade them tick, what it was that inspired them to attempt Information Sciences), a group that has been responsible forto stimulate this change. setting up 376 computing schools in Brazil, Colombia, Chile,Motivated by the achievements of these people and by the Mexico, Uruguay and Japan, and that in Brazil alone has helpedwork in this same field carried out by Bill Drayton, creator 600,000 young people breach the “digital gap”.of the Ashoka organization and the figure that I took as I also met Bartolomé Silva, a Chilean social entrepreneurmy second reference point among social entrepreneurs, I who uses his World Circus (Circo del Mundo) as a platform fordirected my second documentary: Faros, señales de cambio en giving youngsters at risk a new chance. And Inés Sanguinetti,América Latina (Beacons, Signs of Change in Latin America). who invites youngsters with no material resources to learnMy aim was to spread the word regarding the work of many to dance and express themselves, motivating them with theindividuals who are making a tireless effort in the struggle echoes of applause.against poverty and inequality. Directing Beacons, which premiered at the close of the IDEAFaros gave me a chance to tour Argentina’s most marginal business colloquium in 2005, also allowed me to understand thatneighborhoods and to get to know Fabián Ferraro, founder while what prevailed in business was competition, selfishnessof a civil association called Defensores del Chaco, which uses and lack of motivation, on the “other side of the tracks”, insandlot soccer as a method of social inclusion for some 1500 the world of the so-called “excluded” members of society,children and adolescents at risk. The making of this film also there was beauty, motivation, cooperation and recognition oftook me to a jungle town in the Bolivian Amazon, where achievements, especially those reached collectively. 9
  • 7. This led me to ask myself, then, which world I wanted to hoped for, I didn’t give up, because several major personalitiesleave to my children, and to what extent it made sense to from the corporate world did indeed decide to accompany mekeep generating economic value without taking care of other, and acted as consultants, providing me with invaluable guidanceindispensable aspects of preserving life. Was it possible to in my search. I refer, among others, to Manuel Arango Arias,change the world by transforming the values that motivated businessman and environmentalist, who is chairman andMankind’s actions? My recent experiences have taught me that founder of the Mexican Foundation for Environmental Educationit is, that there are many people out there who are working for and of the Xochitla Foundation; Reese Schonfeld, co-founder anda new and better future. And little by little I began to want to first president of the CNN news chain; Julio Saguier, chairman ofjoin in this collective effort that is taking shape. the media holding company, La Nación S.A. and of the Diario La Nación Foundation; businessman Ricardo Esteves, co-chairmanSecond Wave: Sustainable Development of the Iberoamérica Forum; and researcher, former HarvardAnxious to tell the stories of social entrepreneurs to an ever- professor and author of the bestseller, Underdevelopment Is a Stateincreasing number of people, I called on media owners to of Mind, Larry Harrison.publish and broadcast the work of this silent movement that At the same time, another unstoppable wave began to carrywas growing at two or three times the rate that the private me on its crest like a surfer: awareness about sustainablesector was — in what today we are calling the “the worldwide development. Taking this second exit from my old highway, Iassociative revolution”. got to know companies like Natura Cosméticos and Patagonia,This obliged me to quickly change my perspective. I suddenly went which were born with sustainability already in their DNA andfrom the favela shantytowns of Brazil to the luxurious personal were measuring their bottom line in economic, social andmuseum of Carlos Slim, owner of Telmex and Televisa in Mexico environmental terms. I had the opportunity to talk to LuizCity and to the comfortable offices of Ricardo Salinas Pliego, owner Seabra and Guilherme Leal, Natura’s founders, and thus find,of TV Azteca. Although I wasn’t met with the enthusiasm I had finally, the kind of people I had been looking for in the private 10
  • 8. sector. And as my knowledge of sustainable business practices This conclusion arose, once again, from my own field of action:began to grow, I stopped feeling like Don Quixote jousting My collaborators and I had spent considerable time trying towith windmills and started coming to grips with the idea that figure out where and how to place Spirals of Stone and Beacons,humanity was at the threshold of a change of cultural paradigm as well as other content that we had created on the Internet. Thisthat would make history. research led us to discover YouTube when it was just getting started. And so it was that after a two-year search for a channelThird Wave: Web 2.0 through which to inform and commit individuals, organizationsThe tipping point came for me in 2006. That was the year when and businesses with regard to sustainable development,something unusual that I had already begun to observe began I concluded that the natural platform for this was the Web.to have an increasing impact on companies, people, citizens My initial enthusiasm with the Web 2.0 application was followedand governments. It was only then that I came to the certainty by a period of exhaustive research on and experimentationthat this future for which I was willing to work was a lot closer with the tools it offered. Despite my admiration for thethan I had supposed. Perhaps it had even already arrived. fabulous disruptions it was causing, I had to admit that WebAt the beginning of that year, Grupo Gerdau and Jorge Paulo 2.0 wasn’t a revolution in itself, but a mere platform for a seriesLemann invited me to speak at a forum of 200 business people of revolutions in thinking. Web 2.0 is still in an early stageon education via correspondence. “Participation” was the key and many of its applications remain confusing for the “digitalword that I pronounced that day during my presentation in immigrants” of my generation. Nevertheless, in anotherSalvador, Bahia, Brazil, in referring to the relentless advance of decade, the Net Gen —the generation of young people bornthe new communications media and particularly of the Internet, into the digital age— will have taken the reins in the world’swhich, in its role as a participative, collaborative and creative enterprises and this wave will have enveloped us all.application for communities, has revealed itself as the most Once again, I opted not to just sit by and watch these changeseffective catalyst in the transformation of the cultural paradigm. happen. I wouldn’t want to wake up tomorrow and see that 11
  • 9. everything has changed and that I’ve missed out on being part line. If one member of a team drops out, the entire team isof the transition. disqualified. The key is to put the interests of the group as a whole over and above those of the individual contestants, andProlog Epilog that sometimes means having to sacrifice food or water to revive“The only way to cross the desert is to keep walking.” This someone who has suffered dehydration, or having to cut back theadage may sound a little trite, but I learned its meaning in the pace in order to let a team member recover. And it is as movingmost extreme of practices. In another of my “past lives”, I took to receive the solidarity of the rest of the team as it is to give it.part in dozens of grueling races and marathons. The possibility of experiencing extreme perspectives —desertI participated in my first Eco-Challenge in 2001. In eight days, and mountain, individual and group interests, corporatewe raced across 350 km of pristine and desolate lands in New empires and massive shantytowns— has permitted me toZealand. We climbed mountains and navigated raging rivers. incorporate what I have learned in these years and identifyWhen you walk 22 hours a day non-stop except to grab a few some values of my own from the new paradigm: confidence,hours of sleep, you get in touch with the most intimate essence of responsibility, collaboration and transparency.human nature. You don’t feel the cold or the physical fatigue, only The trust that social entrepreneurs and their organizationsthe overwhelming need to eat, like some powerful animal reflex. place in their projects and in the community as architects ofIn 2004, my passion for challenges took me to the Atacama a change in values. The responsibility of many consumersDesert. In six days, we ran seven marathons in the most and citizens, who are ever more committed to their timesextreme environment on earth. Withstanding temperatures and to the planet. The collaboration applied by the Net Genof 40°C by day and –6°C by night, we crossed that salt desert in the Web when they collectively create new realities. Thethrough places where no human being had ever tread before. transparency revolution implemented by certain companiesThese tests seek to underscore the virtues of teamwork. That’s that have pioneered in sustainability, even before societywhy the prime rule is that everybody has to make it to the finish started to demand it. 12
  • 10. This is, in a nutshell, the story of the personal journey I began i tain my perspective, on one side I see the business world within 2004, the year that I learned to know the desert, the year my its economic power that draws strength from bottom-linefather died, and the year I began to have a new outlook on life. results and growth. And on the other, I see a silent move-That year too, I had another son, an event that moved me to ment, but one that is growing at a dizzying rate, a movementreassess the world I was building for him, and for my other that, incredibly enough, has remained beyond the radar ofthree children, and their children. In response, I found an un- the media, governments and businesses alike. Its leaders areprecedented motivation spreading the word about sustainable entrepreneurs that are concerned about life and about us, thedevelopment. In the Net Gen, there is hope. And in Web 2.0, members of the human species, the inhabitants of this single,there is a space from which to start building enterprises, social global village. These are people who, with responsibility andorganizations and citizens’ groups, based on this motivation confidence as their powerful motivations, are attempting toand on this hope. change the world and build a better future. In both of theseOver time, my vision began to capture the interest of journal- sectors, among companies and social entrepreneurs, thereists and communicators, who, motivated by their own personal are young members of the Net Gen, with the multiple toolsjourneys, expressed their almost natural empathy. And despite of Web 2.0, the natural platform from which to transmit thetheir having been brought up in related but still diverse disci- sustainability paradigm.plines —like psychology, history, philosophy and advertising— We are living in the best and in the worst of times.they came together to form the inter-disciplinary team that is The road to a better future promises to be a long and windingnow known as Odiseo, a group that has promoted research to one. But it also promises to be full of surprising discoveries,affirm my hypotheses and of which this book is a mere sketch. some of which we will try to share with you in the chapters youAs a result of the road undertaken, I feel today, as I stated are about to read.at the beginning of this prolog, like a privileged observer ofthese times. Standing atop the peak that permits me to main- Ernesto van Peborgh 13
  • 11. ACTIVISM AL_GORE AMAZON AN_INCONVENIENT_TRUTH ANITA_RODDICK AUTHENTICITY BILL_DRAYTONBIODIVERSITY CITIZENS CIVIL_SOCIETY CONSUMER CONSUMPTION DIVERSITY ECO-EFFICIENCY ECOLOGYEDUCATION ENTERPRISE ETHICS ETHOS EXCLUSION FORESTATION GLOBAL_WARMING GRAMEEN_PHONEGREENWASHING HUMAN_RIGHTS INCLUSION INTERFACE JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGE LONG_TERM NETWORKSNGO LUIZ_SEABRA MARKETS NATURA NEW_PARADIGM NIKE NO_LOGO ODED_GRAJEW PARTICIPATION PATAGONIAPAUL_HAWKEN POVERTY RAY_ANDERSON RECYCLE RESOURCES RESPONSIBILITY RESPONSIBLE_CONSUMPTIONREUSE SOCIETY STAKEHOLDERS STARBUCKS STEPHAN_SCHMIDHEINY SUSTAINABILITY SUSTAINABLE_DEVELOPMENT TOYOTA TRANSPARENCY TRIPLE_BOTTOM_LINE VALUES VIRTUAL WAL-MART WATER WOMENYVON_CHOUINARD ACTIVISM AL_GORE AMAZON AN_INCONVENIENT_TRUTH ANITA_RODDICK AUTHENTICITYBILL_DRAYTON BIODIVERSITY CITIZENS CIVIL_SOCIETY CONSUMER CONSUMPTION DIVERSITY ECO-EFFICIENCYECOLOGY EDUCATION ENTERPRISE ETHICS ETHOS EXCLUSION FORESTATION GLOBAL_WARMING GRAMEEN_PHONEGREENWASHING HUMAN_RIGHTS INCLUSION INTERFACE JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGE LONG_TERM NETWORKSNGO LUIZ_SEABRA MARKETS NATURA NEW_PARADIGM NIKE NO_LOGO ODED_GRAJEW PARTICIPATION PATAGONIAPAUL_HAWKEN POVERTY RAY_ANDERSON RECYCLE RESOURCES RESPONSIBILITY RESPONSIBLE_CONSUMPTIONREUSE SOCIETY STAKEHOLDERS STARBUCKS STEPHAN_SCHMIDHEINY SUSTAINABILITY SUSTAINABLE_DEVELOPMENTTOYOTA TRANSPARENCY TRIPLE_BOTTOM_LINE VALUES VIRTUAL WAL-MART WATER WOMEN YVON_CHOUINARDACTIVISM AL_GORE AMAZON AN_INCONVENIENT_TRUTH ANITA_RODDICK AUTHENTICITY BILL_DRAYTONBIODIVERSITY CITIZENS CIVIL_SOCIETY CONSUMER CONSUMPTION DIVERSITY ECO-EFFICIENCY ECOLOGYEDUCATION ENTERPRISE ETHICS ETHOS EXCLUSION FORESTATION GLOBAL_WARMING GRAMEEN_PHONEGREENWASHING HUMAN_RIGHTS INCLUSION INTERFACE JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGE LONG_TERM NET-WORKS NGO LUIZ_SEABRA MARKETS NATURA NEW_PARADIGM NIKE NO_LOGO ODED_GRAJEW PARTICIPATIONPATAGONIA PAUL_HAWKEN POVERTY RAY_ANDERSON RECYCLE RESOURCES RESPONSIBILITY RESPONSIBLE_
  • 12. Sustainable Development
  • 13. A New Paradigm Chapter 1At the end of 2006, the world premiere of An Inconvenient Meanwhile the number of civil action organizations wasTruth established the issue of worldwide climate change as a growing — and continues to grow at an ever-faster rate — duereality —and not just as the obsession or paranoia of a few to the ineffectiveness of government in the face of issues thatscientists and activists— by showcasing the fight waged by call for urgent solutions: poverty, environmental protection,former US Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize-winner Al defense of human rights and the preservation of democracy.Gore against global warming. It appears that the tipping point —the moment at whichThat same year, Wal-Mart announced its commitment to something unique and unusual changes the habitual, accordingsustainability. It began a plan by which, within a three- the definition by Malcolm Gladwell — is growing nearer allyear period, some of its lines would only offer products the time. And that Mankind is converging on a new paradigm.manufactured employing sustainable practices. Today, 60,000 A veritable “ethos” or starting point. And with it will come thecompanies are modifying their production processes in order sustainable development that urges us not to try to live beyondto satisfy this chain-store giant that welcomes 100 million our means, not to burn down our houses in order to keep warm,shoppers a week. not to saw off the branch that we’re sitting on. The proposal ofA survey run by The Synergos Institute in several countries this concept is, actually, pure common sense: the common senseshowed that 95% of all consumers believe that companies have that impels us to turn off the lights when we leave home and toan unpaid debt with their workers and their communities. not leave the tap running while we brush our teeth. 17
  • 14. Viability or Sustainability?The terms “viability” and “sustainability” came to the fore in the began to be defined more fully and as we conceive of it today.popular vernacular along with the new electronic informationmedia that became the driving force behind widespread Until the beginning of the 1990s, the notion of “sustainability”awareness of growing worldwide problems including had basically been applied to the environmental field. But overoverpopulation, lack of water, famine and environmental the course of that decade, its use began to extend to social,degradation. In the academic world, however, these terms had political and business issues. Little by little, such questions asalready been introduced in the book called The Limits of Growth inequality in the distribution of wealth and diversity in terms(Meadows and others, 1972), published by The Club of Rome. of ethnicity, gender, nutrition, health, access to information and security began to be incorporated into the debate.There is no clear consensus regarding the meaning of “viability” Governments, business groups and a growing number of civilor “sustainability”. Nevertheless, one of the first definitions organizations became the driving forces behind a series ofof sustainable development was provided by the Brundtland global conferences whose aim was to create a framework ofReport put out by the United Nations World Commission for governance, through which to come to grips with a new formEnvironment and Development, which was originally called of development that would bear in mind the environmental,Our Common Future (1987). Chapter 1 of that Report gives economic, social and institutional needs of both present andthe following definition: “Sustainable development seeks to meet future generations.the needs and aspirations of the present without compromising theability to meet those of the future”. The latest UN Earth Summit on Sustainable Development was held in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2002, whereBut it was not until the Rio Earth Summit (Rio de Janeiro, discussions surrounded strategies for promoting the principles1992) that Mankind adopted a global perspective with regard to of sustainability and ensuring their adoption by nationsglobal issues and that the concept of “sustainable development” worldwide and in every region of the planet. 18
  • 15. Conditions for Environmental Sustainability1 No renewable resource should be 2 No non-renewablearesource used at a faster rate than it can should be used at faster rate 3 Noapollutant shouldthatproduced at rate faster than be at which be generated. than that necessary to replace it can be recycled, neutralized or it with a sustainably renewable absorbed by the environment. resource. 19
  • 16. The Three Waves of SustainabilityAccording to John Elkington It was within the framework of the Cold War, 1961 the hippie movement and the May Revolt inTHE FIRST WAVE: France that the first ecological organizations, Amnesty International, the World such as Greenpeace, emerged. It was also Wildlife Fund (WWF) and theThe Green Revolution during this period that the first environ- Organization for Economic mentally aware companies –Patagonia and Cooperation and Development Natura– came onto the market. (OECD) are founded. 1983 1984 1986 The Berlin Wall comes down and democraticTHE SECOND WAVE: systems take a foothold in Latin America. The UN creates the Bhopal Chernobyl The Exxon Valdez oil tanker spill makesMarket Economy people start taking the ecological movement World Environment Disaster Disaster (USSR). and Development (India).Comes to the Forefront seriously. Marketing begins to adopt “green” Commission. messages on a massive scale. Globalization bursts onto the scene, and anti- 1999 2000THE THIRD WAVE: globalization with it. The Internet grows at a swift pace, bringing the birth of participativeToward Responsible media, and ad agencies begin to study on-line Battle in Seattle First World Social Forum (USA). (Porto Alegre, Brazil).Globalization advertising. Companies like Shell and Nike Publication of No Logo, by face complaints regarding their production Naomi Klein (who denounced processes and must account for their actions Nike’s use of slave labor). before society. 20
  • 17. 1962 1971 1972 1973 1975Publication of Rachel Greenpeace is born. Publication of The Limits of Growth Seveso Disaster (Italy). The UN declaresCarson’s Silent Spring. by The Club of Rome. Watergate Case (USA). International The Stockholm Conference (first Women’s Day. UN Environmental Summit). 1987 1988 1989 1992 1995 1997The Montreal Protocol John Elkington Exxon Valdez Case First Worldwide UN Earth Shell Scandal (petroleum The Kyoto Protocolis signed. launches his (following the Alaska Summit (Rio de Janeiro, spills in Nigeria). is signed.The Brundtland Report Green Consumer oil spill). Brazil). The Ethos Institute (Brazil) NIKE Scandal.is published. Guide. Fall of the Berlin Wall The World Business Council is created. The “Triple Bottom (unification of for Sustainable Development Line” concept is Germany). (WBCSD) is founded. published. 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007World Sustainable Third World Social Tsunami (Indian Hurricane Katrina (in the Muhummad Yunus Al Gore receives theDevelopment Summit Forum (Porto Ocean). states of Florida, Louisiana receives the Nobel Nobel Peace Prize(Johannesburg, South Alegre, Brazil). and Mississippi and in the Peace Prize for the for his contributionAfrica). Bahamas). founding of the to halting global Grameen Bank. warming. 21
  • 18. “Sustainable development is a dynamic process which enables all people to realize their potential and to improve their quality of life in ways which simultaneously protect and enhance the Earth’sIn Search of the life-support systems”.Perfect Definition Forum for the Future - OAS es on and when the light bulb go “Sustainability comes everything is are all involved, that you start to see that we ”.The ideas of most people regarding the meaning of the word ur actions affect others interconnected, that yo Paul Hawken“sustainability” are simple and on target: “Sustainability refersto human survival and the avoidance of ecological disaster.”Be that as it may, the language of sustainability becomes clear- “Sustainable development is a process of change in which theer and more effective when we focus on what is unsustainable exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, theinstead of on the positive definition. orientation of technological development, and institutionalFarmers and ecologists, for example, would surely be in agree- change are all in harmony and enhance both current andment that soil erosion due to human activity is unsustainable,even if they were to disagree about how to make soil use sus- future potential to meet human needs and aspirations”.tainable. World Commission on Environment and Development – UNHere are a few diverse, though not contradictory, defini-tions regarding sustainable development and sustainabilityin general: “In essence sustainable development is about five key principles: quality of life; fairness and equity; participation and partnership; care for our environment and respect for ecological constraints”. Forum for the Future’s Sustainable Wealth London Project “Understanding is 50% of the solution. Every time we are about to make a decision, we should think of the “It requires education people around us and ask ourselves if that decision , more efficient use of of democracy, as we resources, more open is going to cause a problem for any of those people. If ll as society’s particip forms It also requires econo ation in decision-mak mic growth, focused ing. that’s the case, change it or don’t do it”. opportunities”. on generating more equal Bill Drayton, Founder of Ashoka Stephan Schmidhein y 22
  • 19. The New ParadigmThe many nuances of the definitions show that many concepts itself is at the center of everything and Man forms part of this,are currently being articulated around sustainable development. as one of its intelligent manifestations.Intellectuals that are pushing a new intercultural philosophy A change of cosmovision also implies a change of focus, inbased on an awareness of diversity and interdependency, order to face the problems that 21st century society is suffering.theorists who are for a systemic focus on science, social This has emerged as an inescapable fact following the failureleaders that promote the creation of subsistence communities of States —self-proclaimed as the source of all of the basicand economies, ecological militants and business people necessities of their citizens— to provide solutions to such vitalwith a long-term view oriented toward responsible resource questions as scarcity of resources, environmental pollution,management, all rally today around this new paradigm, that health care, poverty and lack of quality of life, among many more.is the incarnation of the need to integrate human beings intotheir environment once more. And so the old Welfare State went out with the 20th century, indeed leaving in its wake very serious conflicts in a varietyIn the end, it is about producing a change in the cosmovision: of fields, which, in order to find a solution, require the jointfrom the anthropocentric vision that Mankind began to build interaction of a broad spectrum of interests. As a result, thein the Modern Era —centered exclusively on human and new sustainability paradigm has been enriched by a focusindividual interests and conceiving of the Earth as nothing that underscores the value of association, interaction andmore than a raw materials warehouse that is at Man’s disposal networking, above and beyond simple exchanges among— to a biocentric cosmovision, which conceives of Nature as individuals, sectors or corporations, which function as closeda combination of interdependent organisms and in which life special interest groups. 23
  • 20. The Direction and Sense of Change Modern There is no real consensus at present with regard to the ANTHROPOCENTRISM direction that the advance of change toward the new Focus: Man paradigm is taking. In his book, Blessed Unrest, ecologist Earth: Raw Materials Warehouse Paul Hawken analyzes this “largest movement on earth Link: (…) that has gone largely ignored by politicians and the media” and that, according to him, is being organized, like Nature, “from the bottom up”. Hawken says that “in everyIRRE SPONSI BLE C ONS UMPT I ON city, town and culture, it is emerging to be an extraordinary and creative expression of people’s needs worldwide.” For his part, John Elkington, author of Cannibals with Forks, points out that the driving force behind sustainable Post-Modern development is a qualitative transformation the affects both supply and demand. Ray C. Anderson, Chairman and CEO BIOCENTRISM of Interface, Inc., a pioneer in the trend toward sustainable Focus: Life development, in that same vein goes on to say: “When the Earth: Inter-dependent Organisms marketplace, the people, show their appreciation for these Link: qualities and vote with their pocketbooks for early adopters, the people will be leading. The ‘good guys’ will win in the marketplace and the polling booth and the rest of the SU STA I NA BI LI T Y politicians and business leaders will have to follow”. Regardless of agreement or not about what drives the change toward sustainability and the directions the movement is 24
  • 21. taking, the majority of voices worldwide agree as to the urgent growth ad infinitum, which implies unlimited consumptionneed to do something about Man’s relationship with Nature of resources and the absence of social equality. They believe,and to the need be successful in this effort, bearing in mind however, in sustainability, and promote it, as anyone can seethe magnitude and seriousness of the risks involved. And in by consulting their communications channels on the Web:spite of the multiple definitions, variations and meanings that Indymedia, Nodo 50 and Rebelión.org, among others.simultaneously coexist, there can be no doubt that sustainabilityhas gained almost universal acceptance as a good thing. (Fewpeople indeed could find a defense for non-sustainability).There are those, however, who disagree as to whetherdevelopment can be considered a possible road to sustainability.Among these are members of the alterglobalist or anti-globalization movements, a school of thought made up ofecological groups, pro-native movements, leftist intellectualsand union leaders throughout the world, who share theirrejection of capitalism, the neo-liberal model, multinationalcompanies and the IMF.Gathered at the World Social Forum and congregating aroundsuch renowned ideologues as Noam Chomsky, LeonardoBoff, Jaime Petras and the newspaper Le Monde Diplomatique,these groups deny the effectiveness of development in theachievement of a more sustainable and fair world order, sincethey consider that it is based on the presumption of economic 25
  • 22. Dimensions and Issuesof Sustainable DevelopmentScience, ecology, civil society, business...each groupor individual promoter of sustainable developmentstimulates construction of the new paradigm fromthe field of action in which it/he/she operates. Thisgives rise to the different dimensions of sustainabledevelopment, with each of these being characterizedby a variety of issues or areas of debate: Environmental Social Pollution Health and quality of life Climate change Education Natural disasters Equality Biodiversity Human rights Waste Equal access to opportunities 26
  • 23. Economic InstitutionalScience, technology and society Agents/institutionsBusiness and trade Governance and transparencyEnergy Participation and democracyEfficient resource use Globalization /alterglobalismSustainability indicators International cooperation 27
  • 24. Agents of ChangeWithin the framework of the new paradigm, which cases in which NGOs have demonstrated their influence:underscores the value of association and cooperation, the work • In 2000, Amnesty International reported the deaths ofof civil organizations —NGOs among them— has made a civilians and grave human rights violations committed byconsiderable impact. Emerging from the urban middle class, guards in production areas managed by Talisman Energy Inc.which burgeoned with the economic expansion of the 1960s, in Sudan. Following two years of protests, several pensionthese began to operate in the 1980s and acquired a stellar role funds withdrew their participation in the oil company, whichin the 1990s, substituting for a State that was reduced to its was obliged to initiate its withdrawal from the country.minimum expression and incapable of providing answers to • After five years of reports regarding child slave labor in theproblems relating to health, education, poverty, human rights, harvesting of cacao in the Ivory Coast —children as young asenvironmental pollution, promotion of women’s development 10 were forced to work 12-hour shifts, were poorly fed andand consumer rights, among other issues. were locked up at night— in 2005, Equal Exchange and otherIn society, the action of many NGOs involves divulging NGOs managed to get Hershey, M&M, Nestlé and other majorinformation and generating awareness. In their role as a chocolate manufacturers involved in the issue. They ended upforum for citizen interaction combined with lodging demands exercising responsible care practices and agreed to certify theirthat governments and companies prevent, correct or mitigate products as being “child slave labor-free”.unsustainable conducts, the actions of these organizations • The Canadian mining firm Meridian Gold in 2002 announcedtranscend geographic and socio-economic boundaries. And plans for open-sky gold-mining operations in the Andes rangewith the coming of the communications revolution —especially near Esquel, Chubut Province, Argentina. There were fearsthe Internet— they have become so influential that it is often that the acid drainage from the thousands of tons of rock thatenough for an NGO to threaten involvement in an issue for would have to be moved and the use of thousands of liters ofgovernment officials or business people to reconsider their cyanide to process the ore would have a pernicious effect onplanned actions. The following are details of a few well-known the ageless and pristine Alerces National Park. An NGO called 28
  • 25. Movimiento de Vecinos Autoconvocados por el No a la Mina (Self- • Social Sector s Hopkins Convened Movement of Neighbors against the Mine), managed untries by the John Studies carried out in 22 co r Project revealed that NGOs rep- to get the issue into the domestic and international media and rofit Secto luded Comparative Nonp -earning labor force in countries inc to organize a referendum in which 80% of the population of the wage employment in resent 5% d 1995, at between 1990 an growth rate for the expressed its rejection of the mining project. As a consequence in the study and th es faster than the tim w work of such widespread repudiation, the government of Chubut that sector grew 2.5 Civil society organizations apply ne economy as a whole. with style in accordance s Province was forced to slap a prohibition on open-sky mineral d a management anges ha methodologies an rowths of these ch ore mining and on the use of cyanide in mining processes. e of the outg sector their mission. On organized, private, non-profit l been th e emergence of an s, worldwide, economic, socia world-clas that has become a• The Power of the Intern and po litical force. et Just as printing beca • Networked Organizations me at underlies the Protestant ideas —pro a fundamental tool for the disseminatio d cooperation th vo Roman Catholic Churc king the greatest revolution suffered by n of The value of association an n rise to networks of h in its 2000 years of the nizations has give e is today supporting existence— the Intern ac tion of these orga ns. These in turn network with on e, take advantage of ins the capacity of civil so ciety to interconnect, et humanita rian institutio r in the bu ilding of an activ tant access to a wide grow, plement each othe munity, that is recognized financing and comm range of information another and com m unities, and to create , g international co n’t wait NGOs have given bir th —also through the collectively. self-administratin cle for information and that does at are of as a source and vehi s th that have paralyzed Internet— to campaig take up the issue comp thanks to the Web, the anies that were not operating correctly. ns ditional media to around for the tra ther, takes action. volume of data regard And bers, but raporations is so huge ing the actions of co interest to its mem that, according to an r- l distancesinto ever more soph aly isticated use of marke sts, it will soon develop omic and cultura raphic, socio-econ raction within the sector t intelligence. So it is that geog inte vor of synergetic ty. are spanned in fa ther the different sectors of socie ge and of bridging to 29
  • 26. Civil Society versus BusinessWithin the first few pages of her book, No Logo: Taking Aim atBrand Bullies, Canadian journalist Naomi Klein —a renownedfigure in the anti-globalization movement— states: “Thisbook is hinged on a simple hypothesis: that as more peoplediscover the brand-name secrets of the global logo web, theiroutrage will fuel the next big political movement, a vast waveof opposition squarely targeting transnational corporations,particularly those with very high name-brand recognition.”In recent years, the world has witnessed business scandalsand citizen boycotts that have swiftly taken shape throughthe communications media. Their shockwaves have reachedthe employees of the companies involved, who began to bringpressure for changes toward more sustainable productionprocesses. In order to come to grips with these demands,some firms decided to partially modify their processes, whileadopting corporate social responsibility policies, with the aim According to political scientist Rajni Kothari, “sustainableof “cleaning up” their images and repositioning themselves on development demands, above all, an ethical change. It is not athe market as “environmentally friendly” by adopting a “green” matter of a technological fix or a new way of making financialoutward appearance (greenwashing). But when these policies investments. It is a change oriented toward valuing Nature forare not the result of the values that the company actually what it is and not simply as a source of resources and to fuelmaintains, their positive impact is nil. the motor of economic development”. 30
  • 27. OLD PARADIGM NEW PARADIGM ETHICAL CHANGE DISPENSABILITY OF OTHERS RESPECT FOR DIVERSITY Focus: Man / Sector Focus: Life / Cultures Link: Exchange Link: Interaction Instrument: Individual Project Instrument: Common Strategies Objective: CONSUMPTION Objective: SUSTAINABILITY OLD VALUES NEW VALUESIt is Professor Kothari’s belief that the ecological crisis that the world is suffering is due to the fact that we have consideredNature’s diversity dispensable. And by transferring the lack of respect for Nature to Man, we had virtually declared a major portionof the human race dispensable as well, generating one of the fiercest socio-economic crises in history. Thus, in order to halt thiscrisis, we need an ethical change based on the premise that all life is indispensable. 31
  • 28. 1 Companies start to notice that their customers and the markets are checking out their commitment to economic, social and environmental sustainability. ture is transformed: It is Little by little, corporate cul 2 no longer just a question incorporating ethical issues of making money, but also and social values. of 3 Feeling themselves suddenly in the to assume the fact that even though public eye, companies have they try and control news of their actions, these actions beco me public knowledge anyway. This is the reason why they start ope rating transparently. 4 The companies become aware of the importance of designing new techniques and processes that reduce the economic, social and environmental impact of their products. s among themselves, 5 Companies form strategic alliance or between themselves and org anizations from other itionally considered sectors, even some that were trad enemies. 6 Gradually, the way of conceiving corp frames changes and a need emerges and to plan on a long-term basis. orate time to think more 7 The TBL (Triple Bottom Line) Agenda is incorporated into the companies’ strategic management (to control the economic, social and environmental impact of processes and products).
  • 29. The Sustainable Company Chapter 2These points summarize the Seven Revolutions that could lead and to process re-designing with a view to the long term.companies to Sustainability as set forth by consultant John At the same time, and by the hand of the World BusinessElkington in his book, Cannibals with Forks (1997). In it, he also Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), new conceptsdefined the concept that he coined as Triple Bottom Line (TBL), that were applicable to business sustainability began to takepointed to as the differentiating attribute of companies that shape. These concepts stressed the need for companies to notwere categorically committed to sustainability: e.g., companies only seek eco-efficiency, but also to properly think about (orwhose management systems take into account the impact of re-think) their relationship with society and the environment,their processes and products on the economy, society and the by incorporating practices encompassed within the concept ofenvironment. Subsequently, sustainable companies began to be corporate social responsibility (CSR).defined as those that were capable of reformulating their strategies Defined by the WBCSD as“the decision of a company to contributeby including three complementary parameters: economic growth, to sustainable development by working with its employees, theircreation of social value and environmental conservation. families and the local community, as well as with society as a whole,So it was that in the last five years of the 20th century, this to improve the quality of life”, it placed the company in a keynew paradigm began to repeat itself throughout the productive position within the architecture of the new paradigm. Withinsector: Businesses began to talk for the first time ever about the neo-liberal model, which at the time was enjoying broadincorporating such concepts as the creation of economic, social acceptance in much of the world, change toward sustainabilityand environmental value for their “stakeholders” (workers, required the action of companies, considered, as they were, toshareholders, customers, civil and government organizations) be the main driving force behind economic growth. 33
  • 30. Business in the 21st Century With the dawning of the new millennium, an ever-growing number of business people joined the debate and began to re-1. Market Pressure think the place that their companies were occupying and the role they played in society and on Planet Earth. In this way, the concept of what constituted a sustainable company continued to2. New Values develop and be enriched, especially in ethical and social terms. Inwardly, a new corporate culture emerged, one that recognized3. Transparency the people that made up the company and the know-how that they generated (e.g., its human capital) as its main asset, since the competitiveness of the company depended on their capacity4. Technology for action and innovation. Outwardly, companies started to recognize themselves as integral parts of the communities5. Partnerships where they operated and, as such, as jointly responsible for both the welfare and the problems of these societies, as well6. Long-Term Vision as being participants in the definition of their values. Out of this emerged the incorporation of the environmental variable into corporate strategy, along with the creation of economic7. TBL and social value — or in other words, the Triple Bottom Line mentioned earlier. Information technologies and the development of the InternetThe 7 Revolutíons toward Sustainability, facilitated both internal changes in companies and theiraccording to John Elkington communications with society. The Web provided a means 34
  • 31. of boosting the impact on consumers of the change toward willing to change one of their habitual brand preferences ifsustainability. In many cases, consumers preferred to pay they were to read a negative comment about it on the Internet,a little more for “clean” products, that is to say, ones that, adding that 41% of those surveyed had already done so . Asbesides providing the manufacturers with a profit, were made power brokers, the new electronic media are currently growingin accordance with standards that protected the environment by leaps and bounds. According to recent statements byand created social value. geopolitical expert Ignacio Ramonet, Chairman and Editor ofIn this way, brands associated with sustainability began to Le Monde Diplomatique, the Internet and bloggers are bent ongain prestige, which in turn began to bolster the value of becoming the “fifth power”: the citizen’s counterweight againstthese companies’ shares. Similarly, investor interest in these the dominion of major media groups over the news.firms increased, since sustainability had become an almost Internet is also a channel for the campaigns of NGOs likeindispensable attribute in convincing those who sought to ATTAC, Clean Clothes Campaign, Free Burma, Friends of theexpand their capital by investing in a productive enterprise. Earth and No Sweat!, which exercise the kind of supervisionBut it was on the Web too that, with equal swiftness, voices at which governments have shown themselves to still bewere raised up against the new paradigm, especially through inefficient. Through this and other media, they demand thatcampaigns and protests organized by some earlier-mentioned the private sector be held accountable for the social, economicNGOs, as well as through blogs which, now in their tenth and environmental impact of its activities.year, number more than 70 million and encompass some 4.2 Many times the results of these campaigns are highly successfulmillion active bloggers. and achieve changes in the behavior of the productive sector.Regarding the influence of growing consumer cyber-activism, Proof of this is the business organization called PETA (PeopleZed Digital, a firm specializing in marketing on the Internet, for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), which managed to geta few months back published a study in which it claimed that the world’s two leading soft-drink makers, PepsiCo and The44.1% of all bloggers in Spain had shown themselves to be Coca Cola Company (TCCC), to sign a written commitment 35
  • 32. not to use animals in the testing of their products. And thenthere is the alliance between Coca Cola and WWF International(World Wildlife Fund International), by which the companypledged investment of 20 million dollars in a program aimedat three freshwater conservation objectives: 1) reduction of theamount of water used to make their beverages; 2) recyclingof the water used in their manufacturing processes, and 3)replenishing of water in the communities and in Nature in thevicinity of its bottling plants. In a survey, 44.1% of Spain’s bloggers said they were willing to change their product preferences based on negative comments on the Internet. 36
  • 33. Greenwashing or Real Change?The term “greenwash” stems from the word “whitewash” (which means to gloss over or cover upsomething) and is used pejoratively to describe certain marketing actions that some companies makeuse of in seeking to somehow compensate for other actions that have “soiled” their brand image, dueto the negative impact of these actions on the environment.A number of environmentalist organizations have concentrated their efforts on exposing and denouncing“greenwashers”, to the point of actually creating rankings, such as America’s Ten Worst Greenwashers,which, in 2002, was led by the makers of Kraft’s Post Selects cereals for promoting their product as“natural” when they were, in fact, packaging “laboratory” cereals.Actions like those of the companies included in this ranking are easily qualified as “greenwashing”.Others are not so easy.Wal-Mart, the world’s largest corporation, with revenues of 315 billion dollars and more than 11 billion inprofits for 2006, is frequently accused of non-sustainable conduct. In reaction to this, the chain recentlylaunched a line of organic clothing and, in the process, became the world’s largest buyer of organiccotton. Simultaneously, Wal-Mart kicked off its Sustainability 360 plan, which projects annualinvestments of 500 million dollars with the aim of achieving a level of sustainable products equal to20% of all products offered by its stores in just three years’ time. Whether this is a real change of valuesor another case of “greenwashing”, the fact that 100 million people a week are being invited to consumeresponsible products, and more than 60,000 suppliers to manufacture them, makes the impact of do-ing business in this way clearly predictable on a worldwide scale.
  • 34. New Playing RulesWithin this context, characterized by a market with consumers sustainable development; and Petrobras, now rated on the Dowthat not only have voice and vote, but also their own Jones Sustainability Index, the most highly used parametercommunications media —which they use to demand that today in the classification of responsible companies, from ancompanies change to more sustainable policies— the 100 economic, social and environmental standpoint.New Global Challengers have flourished. This is a group of a Running counter to this, the “conversion” or “re-conversion”hundred companies from developing countries, identified in a of companies “born and raised” according to the old paradigmstudy by a Boston consulting group, which, besides providing is not always easy. The change implies much more thanjobs to more than 4.6 million people and generating profits of adopting a new set of values that substantially alter a company’smore than 715 billion dollars a year, have managed to stand culture and its way of doing business. It starts with assumingout as leaders of the sustainable business movement. Major the fact that the world has changed radically and that, as thefirms among them include: Cemex (Mexico), renowned for consulting group SustainAbility recently stated, there are newits work with neglected markets and its firm commitment to playing rules that companies have to apply in order to achievethe communities where its plants operate; Natura (Brazil), sustainability without losing their competitive edge in the newa cosmetics company whose trademark is strongly linked to global scenarios. 38
  • 35. 1. Plan for the unexpected.Flexibility in the value chain, in technological platforms and in labor policiesconstitutes the new efficiency factor.2. Find the True South.Don’t underestimate the importance of the emerging economies.There are regions where development is raging today at a dizzying pace.3. Don’t wait for “the Big Guys” to take the initiative.Today even the most powerful companies are exposed to scandal and crisis.What is decisive is the capacity to create sustainable value.4. Contribute to strengthening the Earth’s immune system.Bring intelligence and creativity to the search for solutions toenvironmental and social crises.5.Think in terms of opportunities and innovation.Change the focus of environmental and social issues: Consider themmajor opportunities instead of risks.6. Surpass yourself day after day.The challenges are huge and demand a radical change of attitude.Leaders must go out in search of new allies, models and solutions.7. Be political.You have to get involved and take positions in conflicts.The 7 Rules of the Sustainability Game, according to John Elkington
  • 36. Sustainability Standards Economic IndicatorsThe sustainable company is now a fact of life and it looks likeit is here to stay. But how do you go about rating a company’slevel of sustainability? Consultants and managers today applyeconomic, social and environmental indicators that respond tothe Triple Bottom Line (TBL) concept. These are specific, usuallyquantitative indices that evaluate the impact of each businessmove, for the purpose of establishing its level of sustainability.Although the list and number of the indicators are variable,many are included in the majority of business platforms.Usually, these companies will adopt a platform of indicators andthen gradually improve it in accordance with the circumstances Productivity Ratio.they must deal with. A good example of this kind of flexibility is Wage and Benefit Level.provided by the multinational, Hewlett-Packard (HP), which,after being investigated in 2006 for secretly spying on its Product Value/Environmentalexecutives to try and discover whether any of them had leaked Impact Ratio (eco-efficiency).information to the press, adopted privacy policies as one of theratios in its Annual Sustainability Report . Investment in Research, Development and Innovation. Total taxes or contributions to the Public Administration. 40
  • 37. Social Indicators Environmental IndicatorsSafety and Hygiene in the Workplace. Use of Renewable Energy Resources.No Gender, Ethnic or Age Discrimination. Use of Recyclable Materials.Level of Training among Human Capital. No Water, Air or Soil Pollution.Satisfaction and Turnover Ratio. Auditing of Processes Applied byImpact on Social Development in the Local Suppliers and Transporters.Community. Respect for Biodiversity.Capacity to Influence Stakeholders in the Obedience of Environmental Laws.Adoption of Like Values. 41
  • 38. Sustainability Report and Business AssociationsSocial Balance Sheet Based on ValuesThe sustainability report is a tool through which companies The communications revolution and new technologies,disclose and measure the economic, social and environmental coupled with constant public complaints being voiced byimpact of processes implemented over the course of a citizens and NGOs alike, alerted companies to the urgentparticular year or other period of time. Promoted by the GRI need to get organized and to form associations, in order to(Global Reporting Initiative), it reports profits, investment and face a variety of problems of the new millennium.other information on the company’s economic and financial Below are examples of three successful efforts to createsituation. Its aim is to detail the brand value or soundness business associations based on sustainability values.of the company, by explaining the level of risk minimizationachieved thanks to social, political or legal actions, and it mayinclude —although this is not a priority— aspects linked tosocial responsibility.The social balance sheet, on the other hand, is a goodwillcommunication tool that focuses more on social issues The World Business Council for Sustainable Developmentand contains data which are certified by only a handful of (WBCSD) is a coalition of 180 international companiesorganizations in the entire world. that are united in their commitment to sustainable development, based on the three pillars of economic growth, ecological balance and social progress. Founded at the Rio de Janeiro worldwide Earth Summit in 1992, today its members represent 35 countries and 20 strategic areas of business. The mission of the WBCSD is to provide business leadership as a catalyst for change toward sustainable development. 42
  • 39. Business Case StudiesThe Ethos Institute of Companies and Social Appendices 1, 2 and 3 of this book include case studies of com-Responsibility is a Non-Government Organization panies that have begun the change toward sustainability, withcreated in Brazil in 1998, whose mission is to mobilize, detailed information about each of them.sensitize and help companies manage their businessesin a more socially responsible way, with the ultimate Appendix 1: Pioneer companies Starbucksgoal being to contribute to the building of a more The Whole Foods Marketsustainable and just society. The Institute’s more than Patagonia1,000 members have combined annual billings equal Naturato 33% of the Brazilian GDP and they provide about Ben & Jerry’sone million jobs. Appendix 2: Companies that Changed Toyota General Electric DuPont Home DepotBusiness for Social Responsibility (BSR) is an Interface Nikeinternational not for profit business organization with Wal-Martheadquarters in San Francisco and offices in Europeand China. It offers consulting services to 250 partner Appendix 3: Sustainable companiescompanies and to another 1,000 businesses around Nauthe world. Its mission is to contribute to the creation Grameen Telecom Guayakíof a fairer and more sustainable world, by working American Appareltogether with companies to promote more responsible Seventh Generationpractices, as well as innovation and cooperation. Sambazon 43
  • 40. The Ones that Made History Chapter 3Benchmarks, Inspirers and PioneersELKINGTON, The Father among his classmates to donate to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). And in 1978 he had already joined two colleagues“As we move into the third millennium, we are embarking —one of them Max Nicholson, co-founder of the WWF — inon a global cultural revolution. Business, much more than creating a firm called Environmental Data Services.governments or NGOs, will be in the driving seat.” John Elkington Dubbed by BusinessWeek magazine as “the dean of CSR (Cor- porate Social Responsibility)” for three decades, John Elking-The “Father of Sustainable Development”: such is the role ton is the author and co-author of 40 papers and 17 booksthat the specialized media attribute to John Elkington, the that have sold millions of copies around the world. MostBritish sociologist and social psychologist born in 1949, who noteworthy among them, due to their status as “requiredco-founded the first independent consulting firm devoted to reading”, are The Green Consumer Guide (1988) and Canni-sustainability. Its name: SustainAbility. bals with Forks (1997).This firm —which Elkington himself presided over from 1995 The Green Consumer Guide is a catalog of sustainableto 2005— has offices in London, Zurich, Washington D.C. and products that includes information for consumers regardingSan Francisco, and counts such big names as Ford, Microsoft, the manufacturers and stores that offer them. In this book,Nike, Shell and Unilever (as well as other major multinationals Elkington states that: “Every day, whether we are shopping forworldwide) among its clients. simple necessities or for luxury items, for fish fingers or furBut Elkington’s link to sustainability dates back to his childhood. coats, we are making choices that affect the environmentalHe was only 11 years old when he collected contributions quality of the world we live in.” 45
  • 41. It was in Cannibals with Forks that the author introduced the issues, imaginative, innovative and entrepreneurial, that’srevolutionary concept of the Triple Bottom Line (TBL). This what we’ve got to ignite —or re-ignite where we’ve lost it.”refers to minimum levels of conduct surrounding three key John Elkington published his latest book, The Power ofconcerns —profitability, planet and people— and to the pos- Unreasonable People: How Entrepreneurs Create Markets andsibility of introducing sustainable capitalism. Elkington says Change the World, in 2008, this time with co-author Pamelathat “in a world where the natural order of things is for corpo- Hartigan.rations to devour competing corporations...one emerging formof ‘cannibalism with a fork’ —sustainable capitalism— wouldcertainly constitute real progress.” He further explains that thefork represents the TBL of sustainability and its three prongs,economic prosperity, environmental quality and social justice.Despite the fact that he orients his arguments more towardthe environmental issue than toward economic and social con-cerns, the author makes it clear that uniting these three dimen-sions in a political agenda constitutes the main challenge tobusiness in the 21st century.On his website at www.johnelkington.com, he states that weare at the beginning of a new era, in which entrepreneurs are atthe head of sustainable development and that this makes themtrue agents of social transformation. He adds: “So I think, notjust young people, but the youthful way of thinking about these 46
  • 42. SCHMIDHEINY, The Visionary — some of them mortal. This was toward the end of the 1970s. Schmidheiny was sure“Today there are 2.8 billion people —nearly half of Mankind— that his father and predecessor at the head of the Group hadthat live on less than 2 dollars a day. been unaware of the noxious effects of asbestos when heIt is these people that we must include in a true and radical decided to make use of it in the manufacturing of fiber-cement.development process.” Far from hiding his head in the sand, however, Schmidheiny Stephan Schmidheiny ordered an investigation to establish whether or not the claims were valid and once it was established that they indeed were,The creation of social value is one of the goals most hard- he accepted responsibility in the damage suits against thesought by Stephan Schmidheiny, the Swiss philanthropist and company and pushed the firm to develop new technology thatformer industrialist who is as well known for his commitment did not make use of asbestos in its processes.to sustainable development as for his business successes. Meanwhile, his success as a businessman was on the rise. TheBorn in St. Gallen in 1947, he holds a law degree and is a young Schmidheiny showed avid interest in environmentalmember of a veritable industrial dynasty in the construction issues and attended conferences on the subject. First he wentmaterials industry. to Stockholm, where he audited a major conference as anShortly after assuming management of his family’s holding unregistered participant. But at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992,company, he had to face a conflict directly involving Eternit, the he established himself as a natural leader by convening othermanufacturer of fiber-cement blocks enriched with asbestos, business people who actively participated in the event for theand one of the most important companies in the Group. The first time in history: Within the framework of the Summit,conflict stemmed from claims by former employees of the he founded the World Business Council for Sustainablecompany’s plants to the effect that after inhaling the asbestos Development (WBCSD), which produced a groundbreakingfibers, they had developed a wide variety of respiratory illnesses report called Changing Course, in which the term eco-efficiency 47
  • 43. was mentioned for the first time as an essential element in the Furthermore, he figures that his role, like that of othersuccessful development of companies in a world limited by business people, is decisive in the development process thatdwindling resources. Mankind requires, and explains: “When I entered the businessSince then, through the management of his businesses, world, my intention was to create economic wealth. But at theSchmidheiny has gradually evolved into what he himself has same time, I managed to create value for society, especiallydefined as a “committed stakeholder”, while developing new for those who were neediest, and to safeguard the options offorms of philanthropy. It was with this philosophy in mind future generations in the best way possible. I don’t see thesethat he established the AVINA Foundation in 1994. The objectives as incompatible or exclusive.”organization originally provided support to Latin Americansocial entrepreneurs so that they could move forward with theirsustainable development-related projects. Currently, AVINA isdevoted to creating networks and alliances among social andbusiness leaders. It was based on these same premises thathe created the VIVA Trust in 2003, an organization to whichhe donated all of his shares in his business conglomerate,GrupoNueva, with the aim of guaranteeing economic supportto AVINA and other foundations committed to sustainabledevelopment in Latin America.Schmidheiny defines sustainable development as “not livingbeyond our means; not burning down our house to keep warmor sawing off the limb we’re sitting on; living on the interestand not on the capital”. 48
  • 44. DRAYTON, The Prophet for the Advancement of Colored People), an organization for“This is the most radical structural change I’ve ever seen. the defense of minority rights in the United States.Once millions of people enjoy the freedom to generate a change At Harvard University, where he graduated in 1970, he foundedevery time they see a problem, who is going to stop them? If a the Ashoka Table, a forum for dialog between students andperson is frustrated, there will be hundreds of others looking at that leaders in government and industry. While studying Lawproblem in that community and looking for a solution. One of at Yale, he created the Yale Legislative Services, an initiativethem is going to find it”. to allow university students to collaborate with American Bill Drayton lawmakers in developing legislation. By the time he graduated, he had managed to involve a third of the students at Yale LawBill Drayton is credited with coining the term “social in this project. Drayton worked for ten years as a consultantentrepreneur” to describe individuals who combine the for McKinsey and Company. Under the Jimmy Carterpragmatic methods of the business entrepreneur with the Administration (1977-1981) he was Assistant Administrator forgoals of the social reformer. Whether he is the author of the the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). He also workedterm or not, no one can question the major role in the field of for a short time on the White House staff.sustainability of the founder and chairman of Ashoka, a not It was in 1980 that he launched Ashoka, an organization thatfor profit association devoted to providing financial support to he started up with initial capital of 50,000 dollars and that nowentrepreneurs around the world. finances thousands of social entrepreneurs worldwide. In 2007,Born in New York in 1943, Drayton was already heading up a the organization had funds of over 30 million dollars, havingseries of social initiatives in his youth. While attending secondary financed more than 1,600 enterprises in 60 countries. “Withinschool, he founded the Asia Society and turned it into one of five years,” says this true fanatic of the transforming powerthe most powerful student associations ever known. At about of entrepreneurs on the road to the sustainability paradigm,that same time, he joined the NAACP (National Association “more than 50 percent of the Ashoka Fellows changed national 49
  • 45. policy in their respective countries. And nearly 90 percent saw RODDICK, The Provocateurindependent organizations copying their innovations.” “For me, campaigning and good businessBill Drayton maintains a frugal lifestyle and, for many years, he is also about putting forward solutions, not just opposing destructivecarried out his work for Ashoka ad honorem. Besides chairing practices or human rights abuses.”Ashoka, Drayton is also currently active on the Board of Get Anita RoddickAmerica Working!, a not for profit organization whose aimis to create new jobs by generating structural changes in US She once said her favorite quote was the one by Dorothy Sayers:economic policy. He also cooperates with Youth Venture , “Time and trouble will tame an advanced young woman, butan association that seeks to create entrepreneurial awareness an advanced old woman is uncontrollable by any earthly force.”among youth, while imbuing young people with confidence in Be that as it may, at age almost 65, Anita Roddick was stilltheir capacity to lead social change. defining herself as “the new girl on the block”. Born in Littlehampton, England, the founder of The Body Shop first studied to be a teacher and then decided to see the world, before she met Scotsman Gordon Roddick, who in 1970 was to become her husband and the father of her daughters. In 1976, Gordon began a journey across the Americas on horseback, and in order to keep the wolf from the door, Anita decided to open a little cosmetics boutique. “I had no training or experience,” she once said, “and my only business acumen was Gordon’s advice to take sales of 300 pounds a week.” But it wasn’t just economic need that fostered the emergence of The 50
  • 46. Body Shop: “It upset me to find out that a large part of the price Amazonian natives gathered in the rain forest. Although theof cosmetics went into packaging that was as sophisticated as subsequent trade relations turned out not to be as simple asit was unnecessary. I was also upset by false advertising that she had expected, they have lasted until the present day andpromised miracle remedies and had pictures of 16-year-old have led to the development of medications based on junglegirls promoting anti-aging products for women in their 50s ”. plant species.Anita’s personal experiences served as an inspiration for The Body Shop similarly promoted campaigns in favor of faircompany values that became brand assets and included the trade with the Third World, like the one developed with therejection of animal testing, the use of natural ingredients, Chepang indigenous people of India for its Ayurvedic line, orrecycling of containers and protection of the environment. Six in Nicaragua with that country’s sesame seed oil producers.months after opening her first shop, she opened a second one.And when Gordon got back from his travels, he also joined Striking out at costly marketing strategies, Anita Roddickthe firm and promoted its worldwide expansion. By 1984, the maintained that “our growth has always depended on ourcompany had branches throughout Europe and was being reputation and word of mouth, not mass advertising.”quoted on the Stock Exchange, turning the Roddicks into According to analysts, this way of thinking had a real impact,multi-millionaires. since achieving what she did through reputation alone wouldThe couple used their success to promote sustainable devel- have required investment of 96 million dollars a year usingopment and initiated a campaign whose slogan was: “what’s traditional marketing strategies.good for the community and the world, is good for business.” In 2000, Anita published her autobiography entitled BusinessWithin this framework, The Body Shop developed its Green as Unusual, and in 2001, a collection of essays called TakePharmacy project in cooperation with native communities in it Personally, in which she analyzed the myths regardingthe Amazon. Believing that it was necessary to help these tribes globalization and the role of the World Trade Organizationpreserve their culture, Anita began to market the seeds that the (WTO). That same year, she launched her personal website 51
  • 47. ANDERSON, The Revolutionaryat www.anitaroddick.com. Later she created her owncommunications company, Anita Roddick Publications, which “Global warming is coming like a runaway freight train.in 2003 published its first two titles: Brave Hearts, Rebel Spirits: Time is against us, given Humankind’s tendency to deny andA Spiritual Activist’s Handbook and A Revolution in Kindness. cling to the opiate of the status quo. Biodiversity is plummeting.In March 2006, L’Oreal bought The Body Shop for 652.3 Our human footprint is growing and the planet’s carrying capacitymillion pounds sterling, a fact that stirred a certain amount is shrinking, consumed by our unsustainable appetite for stuff.”of controversy, since the acquiring firm had been accused Ray C. Andersonof animal testing for its products. Anita Roddick died inSeptember of 2007, just two years after retiring from business It wasn’t until he was 60 years old that Ray C. Anderson began toand donating her fortune to “just causes”. see the world in a different light. The West Point, Georgia-born industrial engineer, founder and Chairman of Interface Inc., a leading carpet manufacturer headquartered in Atlanta, places the exact moment of that change in August of 1994. It was as he was preparing a speech regarding his vision on the environment for a group of business people from around the world. For some time, his clients had already been questioning him about what his firm was doing for the planet and the only thing the founder could think to say was: “We comply with the law.” As he was putting together his presentation, however, he suddenly realized that he didn’t really have any vision regarding the environment. And then a book appeared on his desk that was to radically change his way of doing business: 52
  • 48. Paul Hawken’s The Ecology of Commerce, a work that Andersonhimself has referred to as an “epiphany” and “a spear in mychest that remains to this day”, and the catalyst that broughthim to the decision to devote his life to sustainability.With this goal in mind, the businessman held a meeting withthe directors and executives of his company and announcedthe firm’s new mission: to turn Interface into the world’s firstsustainable industrial company. The change implied a constanteffort to reduce the impact of the carpet-maker’s activitieson the environment. It also meant being willing not to takeanything out of the earth that couldn’t be renewed. This was atrue challenge for an industry that depended almost entirely onpetroleum for its livelihood.The first step was to start research and development work inorder to find new production methods. The second was tointroduce ways of generating “green energy” such as solarpanels and wind and biomass energy. The third was to trydifferent types of recycled materials and experiment with newraw materials for the firm’s products. The final step was toreduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions. 53
  • 49. In 1999, Anderson published his book entitled Mid-Course GRAJEW, The BenchmarkCorrection. Toward a Sustainable Enterprise: The InterfaceModel. The book recounts the process from his discovery “We are all consumers and, as such, our wishes to support thoseof sustainability to his declaration of activism for the products or services that come from companies working withcause, and explains his company’s framework for doing the criteria of social responsibility can be made heard. Since thebusiness. In its pages, the businessman dares to confess: “I immediate goal of corporations is profit, we must ensure that theam a plunderer of the earth and a thief today, a legal thief. companies with the highest profits are those that take into accountThe perverse tax laws, by failing to correct the errant market the future of the new generations.”and force it to internalize those externalities such as the costs Oded Grajewof global warming and pollution, are my accomplices incrime. I am part of the endemic process that is going on at a One of Oded Grajew’s most recent victories was having gotfrighteningly accelerating rate worldwide to rob our children the steelmakers of the states of Maranhao and Pará to sign aand their children, and theirs, and theirs, of their futures”. commitment to abolish slave labor in their production chain. No mean achievement for the world, or for this electronicsAnderson’s philosophy and actions have turned Interface into engineer born in Tel-Aviv, who later became a naturalizedone of the companies that is most highly recognized for its Brazilian citizen, a man who began his business career as acommitment to the business movement toward sustainability toy manufacturer and who didn’t rest until he had become aand its founder is considered one of the world’s leading “green benchmark figure in the world of corporate responsibility.businessmen”. Grajew says that from the very outset of his career, he was alwaysToday, Anderson travels the world spreading the Interface ex- concerned about what was happening to the Earth. In 1987, heample far and wide and promoting the benefits of sustainabil- founded Pensamento Nacional das Bases Empresariais (Nationality. In 2006 alone, he gave more than 115 conferences. Thought for Business Bases), an organization initiated with 54
  • 50. the aim of changing the mindset of Brazilian business people.In 1990, he created the Abrinq Foundation (originally linkedto the Brazilian Association of Abrinq Toy Manufacturers), anNGO that works with UNICEF to improve the living conditionsof children in Latin America. The institution has 2,500 membercompanies and its main fight is for the elimination of childexploitation. But Grajew’s reputation as a referential figure inthe field of corporate social responsibility came with the creationin 1998 of the Ethos Institute, a not for profit association whosepurpose is to promote an awareness of social responsibilityin the private sector. This organization, which Oded Grajewhas presided over since its founding, today has more than 887corporate members —small, medium-size and large companiesfrom all economic sectors and regions of the country— whosejoint revenues total more than 110 billion dollars (about 30%of Brazil’s Gross Domestic Product) and which jointly employmore than 1.5 million workers. Additionally, the Ethos Instituteis a founding member of EMPRESA, a network of organizationsthroughout the Americas that seek to promote CSR .In 2000, after several failed attempts to get the topic of CSR ontothe agenda of the World Economic Fund that each year brings to-gether the world’s most prominent business people and bankers 55
  • 51. CHOUINARD, The Explorerfor a meeting in Davos, Switzerland, Grajew decided to organizethe World Social Forum (WSF). With the support of such re- “In many companies, the tail (finance) wags the dog (corporatenowned social proponents as Francisco Whitaker (a member of decisions). We strive to balance the funding of environmentalBrazil’s Conference of Bishops) and Bernard Cassen (Editor-in- activities with the desire to continue in business for the nextChief of Le Monde Diplomatique), the WSF burst onto the scene hundred years.”in January 2001 with its first meeting in Porto Alegre. Since Yvon Chouinardthen, it has established itself as a meeting of worldwide impor-tance and is held each year in a different city, with thousands of An enthusiastic mountain-climber, outstanding surfer,individuals and social organizations taking part. fisherman and kayaker: that’s how Yvon Chouinard, whoThe “people power” concept is the basis for Grajew’s strategy became a businessman as the sort of natural outcome of theseto attain change among business people: “If you take adequate fond interests, defines himself. Born in Maine, USA, in 1938,measures, you are really going to benefit, but if you don’t, you Yvon was already considered one of the best climbers in thecould end up in serious trouble”. Here, two basic principles Americas by the time he was in his early twenties.come into play: the desire to do the right thing and fear of the It was in 1957 that he decided to manufacture his own linecompany’s developing a bad name among consumers. of climbing equipment, as a means of financing his trips andToward the end of 2006, Oded Grajew acted as an advisor to saving money. The first product that he launched on the marketBrazilian President Luiz Inácio ‘Lula’ da Silva, becoming a was steel climbing stakes. The success of his sales led him todriving force behind a series of social programs —like the so- found his own firm called Chouinard Equipment for Alpinistscalled “Zero Hunger” Plan— while promoting dialog between (CEA). At the end of the 1960s, together with his climbing andthe government and business. He is currently at the head of business partner, Tom Frost, he redesigned the basic toolsthe Ethos Institute, developing a powerful campaign to elimi- (crampons and ice axes) for climbing sheer ice.nate slave labor in companies throughout Latin America.CH- However, in 1970 Chouinard discovered that the stakes his 56
  • 52. company was making were causing significant damage to the going up the stairs two steps at a time. We needed to be sur-crevasses of Yosemite. In order to prevent this, he introduced tools rounded by friends who could dress whatever way they wanted,made of aluminum and created a style of mountaineering called even barefoot. We needed to have flex time to surf the waves“clean climbing”, a concept that revolutionized rock climbing. A when they were good, or ski the powder after a big snowstorm,year later, he married Malinda Pennoyer, an art student at the or stay home and take care of a sick child”.University of Fresno, and in 1972 , he founded Patagonia Inc.,a company devoted to the designing and manufacturing ofoutdoor clothing and accessories and considered to be a pioneerin socially responsible policies, defense of the environment andthe creation of a sustainable enterprise model.In 2005, Chouinard wrote a book entitled Let My People GoSurfing, a sort of autobiography in which, besides recountinghis personal life, he also told the story of Patagonia, the com-pany’s philosophy and founding principles, and formulated aninsightful reflection regarding the future of the Earth and thecurrent system for doing business. In the pages of this book,Chouinard also explains that one of the fundamental conceptswith which he wished to imbue his company was that workand pleasure go together: “There was one thing that I did notwant to change,” he writes. “Work had to be enjoyable on adaily basis. We all had to come to work on the balls of our feet, 57
  • 53. Particularly noteworthy among Patagonia Inc.’s values is prod- SEABRA, The Philosopheruct quality, which in the firm’s view means durability, mini-mal use of natural resources —including materials, energy “We are convinced that the spirit of the times, what is loomingand transport— multi-functionality, non-obsolescence and the large on the horizon, are companies with that more human,kind of beauty that comes from a thing’s being fully adapted to more integrated side and that more holistic way of seeing theirits purpose, since bowing to fashion trends does not fit into the relations and functions in society. Such companies will shine andcompany’s set of values. be admired and, at the same time —let’s not forget this— will beA prime concept in the company is transparency in dealing giving their shareholders greater earnings.”with its employees and in its position within its business Luiz Seabracommunity, comprising its personnel, the members of societywhere the firm operates, its suppliers and its clients. So in order When he was 16 years old, Antonio Luiz Da Cunha Seabrato mitigate any of the negative effects the company’s activities stumbled onto an idea that turned into a revelation: “Man ismight have on the environment, its shareholders donate 1% of part of everything and everything is part of Man.” From thethe firm’s gross revenues or 10% of its profits —whichever is very first time that he heard this principle, first expressed bythe larger sum— to ecological activism. the ancient neo-Platonic philosopher Plotinus, that notion of “being part of everything” never left him.In Let My People Go Surfing, Chouinard is extremely critical of Luiz Seabra is the founder of Natura, the largest cosmetics-business, the US government system and consumer society and maker in Brazil. Having earned a degree in Economicconcludes that: “Now, more than ever, we need to encourage Sciences, he got his first job in cosmetics back in the 1960s,civil democracy by speaking out, joining up, volunteering or when he worked as the administrator of a small laboratory insupporting these groups financially, so as to still have a voice Sao Paulo. He spent three years learning the secrets of thein democracy”. trade and, in 1969, decided to start his own company, Natura, 58
  • 54. which first opened as a tiny shop with an initial investmentof 9,000 dollars. The store offered beauty advice and productrecommendations, a fact that quickly contributed to the creationof direct and personalized relations with the clientele. Based onthis experience, Seabra decided in 1974 to adopt a direct sales Being at peace with our bodies and with our time changes oursystem, and this became one of the keys to his success. hearts and our consciences”. It is Seabra’s view that, in the future, the key to success for anyEn 1991, Natura started structuring its marketing campaign business will be its capacity to generate an image of credibility onaround the concept of transparency. Its slogan was “Truth the market and among consumers. Convinced as he is that thein Cosmetics”. When the firm launched its campaign for its world is going through a major change in which sustainabilityChronos anti-aging cream in 1992, it didn’t make use of models, is a concept that is gaining greater acceptance every day amongbut brought in real clients over the age of 30. Guillermo Leal, business people, the creator of Natura maintains: “It is such aPresident of Natura, said at the time: “We have a commitment fragmented world that economic benefits are dissociated fromto our clients and we’re not going to lie by telling them that if fundamental values. But we do not agree with that separation.they buy our products they’ll look like Claudia Schiffer”. We are living in a new era that is just dawning, in which theSeabra explains that Natura’s mission is to get people to human being is, to an ever greater degree, what makes sense offeel better about themselves and, by extension, to make the things. Although we coexist with technology, which frequentlyworld a better place to live. “For Natura Cosmeticos,” he says, bewilders us, we are discovering that the human factor is“sustainable development comes as second nature. It’s just what gives life. The human factor is the only thing that canlike a person thinking of their skin. Cosmetics enable people transform the planet into a better place. This type of vision isto become more intimate with their own bodies. And once not the exclusive privilege of Natura. It is, in all reality, our waythat’s happened, people no longer have any desire to make war. of seeing the world”. 59
  • 55. AMAZON BLOGS CELL_PHONES CITIZEN_JOURNALISM CLUETRAIN COLLABORATION COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY CONNECTIVITY CONVERSATION CREATIVITY DEL.ICIO.US DIALOG DIGG DIGITALDYNAMISM E-COMMERCE ENTERPRISE ENTERTAINMENT FACEBOOK FLASHMOBS FLICKR FOLKSONOMYFREE_SOFTWARE GOOGLE HYPERLINKS IDENTITY IM LANGUAGE LINUX MEDIA MYSPACE DIGITAL_NATIVESNET_GEN NETWORKS ORKUT P2P PARTICIPATION PERSONALIZATION PROSUMERS RESOURCES RSS SETH_GODIN SOCIETY SOCIAL_NETWORKS STAKEHOLDERS TAG TECHNOLOGY TIM_O’REILLY TOOLS TRANSPARENCYUS USER USER_GENERATED_CONTENT VIDEOS VIRAL_MARKETING VIRTUAL WEB_2.0 WIKI WIKIPEDIA WIREDYOUTUBE AMAZON BLOGS CELL_PHONES CITIZEN_JOURNALISM CLUETRAIN COLLABORATION COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY CONNECTIVITY CONVERSATION CREATIVITY DEL.ICIO.US DIALOG DIGG DIGITALDYNAMISM E-COMMERCE ENTERPRISE ENTERTAINMENT FACEBOOK FLASHMOBS FLICKR FOLKSONOMYFREE_SOFTWARE GOOGLE HYPERLINKS IDENTITY IM LANGUAGE LINUX MEDIA MYSPACE DIGITAL_NATIVESNET_GEN NETWORKS ORKUT P2P PARTICIPATION PERSONALIZATION PROSUMERS RESOURCES RSS SETH_GODIN SOCIETY SOCIAL_NETWORKS STAKEHOLDERS TAG TECHNOLOGY TIM_O’REILLY TOOLS TRANSPARENCYUS USER USER_GENERATED_CONTENT VIDEOS VIRAL_MARKETING VIRTUAL WEB_2.0 WIKI WIKIPEDIA WIREDYOUTUBE AMAZON BLOGS CELL_PHONES CITIZEN_JOURNALISM CLUETRAIN COLLABORATION COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY CONNECTIVITY CONVERSATION CREATIVITY DEL.ICIO.US DIALOG DIGG DIGITALDYNAMISM E-COMMERCE ENTERPRISE ENTERTAINMENT FACEBOOK FLASHMOBS FLICKR FOLKSONOMYFREE_SOFTWARE GOOGLE HYPERLINKS IDENTITY IM LANGUAGE LINUX MEDIA MYSPACE DIGITAL_NATIVESNET_GEN NETWORKS ORKUT P2P PARTICIPATION PERSONALIZATION PROSUMERS RESOURCES RSS SETH_GODINSOCIETY SOCIAL_NETWORKS STAKEHOLDERS TAG TECHNOLOGY TIM_O’REILLY TOOLS TRANSPARENCY US USERUSER_GENERATED_CONTENT VIDEOS VIRAL_MARKETING VIRTUAL WEB_2.0 WIKI WIKIPEDIA WIRED YOUTUBEINTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY CONNECTIVITY CONVERSATION CREATIVITY DEL.ICIO.US DIALOG DIGG DIGITAL
  • 56. The Participative Media and Web 2.0
  • 57. The Conversation Age Chapter 4Digg is a news site that appeared in 2004 with the promise or comments containing the code and will deal with whateverto provide its users with complete editorial control over its the consequences might be.” Sites like Digg reveal the existencecontent. In 2007, its community demonstrated the strength of a new generation of participative individuals that take pos-with which it had adopted that power. Somebody uploaded an session of information rather than passively receiving it. Theyarticle that revealed the code for copying protected DVDs. seize it, share it, recommend it and cooperate in the creation of contents. This is a new generation of individuals that make theSince the publishing of this content failed to respect the tools of Web 2.0 their own.anti-piracy laws of several countries, Digg’s managers de-cided to remove it from the site. But the site’s users quickly This and other signals indicate that global society is in the earlybegan to upload the code again and vote on it, until the con- stages of what might be referred to as a communications me-troversial information was contained in multiple entries on dia revolution that is as important as the one that Gutenberg’sthe main page. The news spread like wildfire through the printing press fostered in 1448: the birth of the participativeblogosphere, reaching YouTube and such major print me- media.dia as the New York Times and El País. Finally, Digg’s Execu-tive Director, Kevin Rose, surrendered and wrote: “You’ve The era of the mass media, established in the 20th century,made it clear. You’d rather see Digg go down fighting than is in the throes of a terminal crisis. Well-known and dazzlingbow down to a bigger company. technological advances are producing crucial changes in the way in which people connect with information andWe hear you, and effective immediately we won’t delete stories communications. 63
  • 58. Web 2.0: A Seriesof DisruptionsWhen Doc Searls, Rick Levine, Chris Locke and David If the authors of The Cluetrain Manifesto were somewhat aheadWeinberger published their 95 theses in a book called The of their time, history swiftly proved them right. At the endCluetrain Manifesto, back in 1999, there was no need for them of the ‘90s there were thousands of portals on the Internetto nail it on the door of Wittenberg Cathedral as Martin Luther that employed the same mechanisms as traditional media:had done with his 95 when he initiated a sweeping cultural unidirectional messages for mass audiences. That is, untilreform in 1517. the dot com bubble burst in 2001, marking a turning point in the history of the Web. Many concluded that the scope of theImmersed in the Web 1.0 paradigm —big static sites that Internet had been overestimated. The fact is that thousandswere attempting to capture mass audiences— this Manifesto of portals disappeared and all that survived were the sites,identified the trends that would lead to a participative Web and software and proposals that conformed to what analyst Timtold how these changes would affect the markets, consumers and O’Reilly, in 2004, would refer to as the Web 2.0.companies. “Markets are conversations,” stated these authors, Web 2.0 implies understanding the Web as a dynamic platformconsidered to be veritable gurus in the cyber-information field. that is constantly changing and evolving. It allows people to use applications that are in a network, not on their computerThey said that the motivation for ever-increasing numbers of desktops. It also permits them to connect from differentpeople to adopt the Internet on a massive scale was the need support mechanisms, such as cell phones, and not just fromto get together with one another. First, then, they needed to their PCs. It promotes intuitive relations between individualsconverse, and the tools that made this possible didn’t take long and information and the appearance of content created byto arrive on the scene and to be perfected. users and social networks. 64
  • 59. Be that as it may, Web 2.0 is not a revolution in itself, but a • Facebook, a network of university students and other socialplatform for a series of disruptions. networks brought together people in communities surrounding common interests.• Wikipedia, the on-line encyclopedia written by its users, • Blogs, born as a simple publishing medium, also gave birthsurpassed Encyclopaedia Britannica in quantity and quality to conversations without filters.of articles and gave substance to the concept of collective • YouTube, a site on which to upload and share videos, achievedintelligence. a larger audience than the CNN news network. Web 1.0 Web 2.0 Static Publication Syndication of Contents Mass Messages Personalized Content Passive and Isolated Audience Participative and Interconnected Users News Sites Blogs and Civil Journalism Unidirectional Message Conversations Centralized Networks Distributed Networks PC Supported Multiple Supports 65
  • 60. A Manifesto for a New Day12 of the 95 Theses in the Renowned Cluetrain Manifesto 1. Markets are conversations. 4. There are no secrets. ows The networked market kn about more than companies do their own products. good 2. The Internet is en abling And whether the news is conversations amon ne. g human beings or bad, they tell everyo that were simply not possible in the era of mass media. 5. In just a few more years, the current homogenized “voice” of business—the sound of mission ersations are statements and brochures—will see 3. These networked conv as contrived and artificial as the lan m forms of enabling powerful new of the 18th century French court. guage knowledge social organization and exchange to emerge. 6. Companies need to lighten up and take themselves less seriously. They need to get a sense of humor.
  • 61. r does se of humo 7. G etting a sen e jokes on the 10. We are immune utting somnot mean p ather, it req uires to advertising.corporate web site. R le humility, Just forget it. big values, a litt uine , and a gen s traight talk w. point of vie 8. To speak with a hu man voice, companies m ust share the concerns of their communities. make 11. Don’t worry, you can still not money. That is, as long as it’s . 9. There are two conversations the only thing on your mind going on. One inside the company. One with the market. 12. We are waking up and linking to each other. We are watching. But we are not waiting.
  • 62. What is important about these changes is not what is tangible has made it possible to share information in another way. This– the Web 2.0 architecture – but the role of this technology as was how sites like Flickr and del.icio.us were born. Based onthe facilitator in generating a series of cultural changes. “folksonomy” instead of taxonomy (the art of classification), they additionally permit “social bookmarking” – a personalizedAt the end of 2006, for its traditional Person of the system of flagging content that can be shared among users.Year Award, TIME Magazine chose The Internet User.In other words, “us”.The blog, for example, is a publication tool that permits dailyupdates, syndication, readers’ comments and links to other WE MEDIAsites. The result of these different forms of interaction is the COMMUNITY Tags BUSINESS 2.0so-called “blogosphere”, currently made up of 70 million blogs NETGEN(and counting) that generate a constant on-line conversation WEB 2.0regarding a wide variety of topics. FOLKSONOMY BLOGOSPHEREAnother technological innovation that has had an enormous MESSAGEimpact is RSS (Really Simple Syndication), which allows readers COMMUNICATION PARTICIPATIONto subscribe to pages and notifies them when these pages CHATchange. But that’s not all. Thanks to a system of permalinks, COOPERATIONeach entrance to a blog has its own permanent link, a detail INTERNET PLANETthat becomes fundamental in making “conversation” between CAREblogs possible. Web 2.0 is not merely more dynamic. It’s alive! RESOURCES SUSTAINABLEThe introduction of a content classification method based on RELATIONStags or key words chosen by the user is another innovation that AFFINITIES 68
  • 63. Onward toward Web 3.0 The Architecture of Conversation (BusinessWeek, April 2007) MessageRegarding the Web 2.0 trends, specialists and detractors alikeagree that the groundwork for Web 3.0 has already been laid.The accent in this transition would be away from the “Me ExperienceMedia” (blogs and personal pages) toward a true conversation,a deep-reaching We Media.In ancient times, a rich oral culture developed. In those days, Conversationmen gathered and talked. Experience made sense when sharedwith others.The use of new technologies and the cultural changes that Communitiesthey are generating make the word “communication” start Relationsto respond more and more to the etymology of its Latin root,communicare, which means “to share and to make common”.At some point between the Middle Ages and the Modern Era,the word communication began to be used more in the senseof “transmitting” than “sharing”. This meaning began gainingground until, in the 20th century, newspapers, radio andtelevision generalized this definition. People grew accustomedto passively receiving messages. An example of this passivity is Affinitiesthe image of an entire family sitting in front of the televisionset. Just the opposite of what Web 2.0 proposes. 69
  • 64. The Evolution of Traditional Media to Participative Media Advances in information technology have accompanied our 1971 Mobile Telephony changing habits. The mobile telephone was invented in 1971, but 1976 Apple Computer most homes still only had one telephone. In the 1980s, 1980 CNN CNN began to air news 24 hours a day and MTV invented a new 1981 MTV language for adolescents. The PC arrived on the scene 1982 IBM PC and the fantasy of having a computer in every home started 1992 Linux to become a reality. 1994 Yahoo 1995 Amazon.com In 1994, Yahoo became the icon of Internet access for Hotmail.com millions of people. There began the era of e-mail, e-commerce Craiglist and the chat. Major companies replicated the experiences Wikis of the mass communications media on the Web, creating static 1996 ICQ sites for large, passive audiences. 1998 GoogleStart session 1999 The Cluetrain Manifesto 2003 Ohmy News Del.icio.us The Cluetrain Manifesto was published in 1999. Nike + When the dot com bubble burst in 2001, it marked the advance 2004 Vblog: Rocket Boom of user-generated content and participative media. Firefox A new era had begun: the era of Web 2.0. 2005 Flickr (bombs over London) YouTube Skype
  • 65. Napster: first P2P software BlackBerry2000 Microsoft employees begin blogging2001 iPod Wikipedia2002 Blogger Lastfm RSS2006 Google buys YouTube News Corp buys MySpace Second Life Evolution of Dove: viral marketing Virtual Campaign for Chevy Tahoe2007 Digg Users Revolt Facebook opens its Platform Twitter
  • 66. The Network Generation Chapter 5Erica is 16, an only child, who lives in Sao Paulo, Brazil. most intimate friends, she constantly exchanges cell phoneShe has a Mac in her room, a broadband connection and text messages. Julián is 17 and lives with his parents and threean iPod that’s well stocked with music. Like her teen-aged brothers in a working class neighborhood in Buenos Airesfriends, Erica never knew the world without Internet. For Province, Argentina. As soon as he finished high school, heher, information obtained from the mass media has a value began working as a messenger in a telecommunications firm.equivalent to amateur or alternative media. She listens to a Since his passion is music, with his first pay, he went intosong by Britney Spears followed by one by a British Indie Mercado Libre (an e-commerce site) and bought himself angroup without any prejudice whatsoever. She puts in very few mp3 player so he can listen to his favorite groups while hehours in front of the TV set, but never misses an episode of travels from place to place. On the weekends, he rehearsesLost, her favorite television series. She also watches Japanese with a rock band, in which he is a percussionist. He and hisAnime, which she downloads using BitTorrent (a technology buddies in the band opened a space in MySpace in which tofor sharing files). Much of the music on her iPod she bought upload some of their songs and another one in Fotolog, wherethrough iTunes, but her friends also copied it. She only listens they post pictures of their shows and announce the dates ofto the radio when she’s riding in the car with her parents and their upcoming gigs.she never reads print newspapers. Every afternoon, before returning home from work, he spendsErica spends the greatest part of her free time connected, an hour at a cyber-café, where he can chat, visit his friends’chatting with her friends. Many of them can be found in personal pages, post comments, watch funny videos on YouOrkut, a social network where she has posted her profile and Tube and read the day’s news. On the train ride home, hewhere her acquaintances leave her their comments. With her exchanges text messages with his girlfriend on his cell phone. 73
  • 67. Getting to Know the Net GenErica and Julián belong to the Net Gen, a generation of sending e-mail and why too they find the morning newspapernetworked individuals who learn, think, buy, believe and —the one actually printed on paper— an anachronism.relate in ways that are different from those of their parents. A study carried out in the United States in 2006 revealed thatWhile the previous generation grew up reading newspapers, adolescents there spend 72 hours a week using electroniclistening to radio and watching television, they sit in front of media – including the Internet, cell phones and videogames.their computers, interacting and participating. The same study shows that 68% make use of social networksWith the tools that Web 2.0 has placed at their disposal, they in order to connect with their friends.create and give shape to new worlds. These tools are not neutral,however. Thanks to them, the youth of this generation have A Change of Habitsunprecedented power over the communications media at theirfingertips. What remains to be seen is whether they will use this TV Internetpower to defend their right to exchange a code that facilitatesintellectual piracy —as in the case of Digg— or if they will make Media Controlled Provides Greaterthe media their own in order to improve the society they live in. by the Adult World Control to YouthAccording to the definition set down by Don Tapscott, whoprovided the first detailed report on them in his book, Growing Passive Observers Interactiveup Digital, the young people of the Net Gen were born between and Participative Users1977 and 1996 and have entered or are about to enter the jobmarket. They are fast and can handle several tasks at a time: Mass Sales Messages Google AdSensefor example, watching TV, downloading music on the Internetand doing their homework. They live in real time. That’s why Technology Implies Hierarchy Technology Getsthey chat or send each other IMs (instant messages) instead of Distributed: Free Software 74
  • 68. “These millions of children are combining demographic on-line role-playing —as in World of Warcraft — is a favorite muscle and digital mastery to become pastime with the Net Gen. Here, participation generates an a force for social transformation”. internal system, among players, of reputation and parallel Don Tapscott communities. Contrary to what happened with videogames (like Pac-Man) in the generation before, the participants do notImmersed in a logic of sharing and interaction, the Net Gen become isolated, but must establish relationships with otheryouth eliminate any mediators that might stand between them individuals.and the information. In fact, they were the first ones to adopt These traits have led to talk of a coming generation of so-and contribute to the creation of Wikipedia, the world’s largest called Co-Prosumers —consumers and producers rolled intoencyclopedia, and also to adopt P2P (peer to peer) software, that one— since the Net Gen tries to personalize everything. Whenpermits the exchange of files between computers via the Net. they don’t like something, they change it. And this may meanThese young people’s unexpected use of the Internet forced anything from an open software code to the stamp on a t-shirtISPs (Internet Service Providers) to modify their structures: that can be purchased on an e-commerce site. In point of fact,The youngsters wanted to upload as fast as they downloaded. the Web is already hosting sites that invite users to send in their own t-shirt designs and those most voted for are produced andThey were, in other words, as interested in publishing content sold through the same platform.on the Web as they were in downloading it. A well-documentedexample of this creativity is found in Second Life, a virtual Meanwhile, they are also experimenting with new ways ofworld created totally by its users, in which 65% of its 3.6 million taking real action in the world. Take, for example, the flashmob:inhabitants are between the ages of 18 and 35. A flashmob is a group of people that agree by digital means toVirtual worlds express the playful nature of the Net Gen. For meet in a certain public place and do something apparentlythis generation, almost everything must be entertaining. Mass innocent, like having a pillow fight. 75
  • 69. 76
  • 70. A Neo-Renaissance?Theorists use many names to define the same thing: The Y with their families, their friends, their neighbors, theirGeneration (the one after the X Generation), Millennials, MyPod university classmates.Generation (a reference to MySpace and iPod), and the earlier Facebook, the network created in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg,mentioned Generation C (Gen C ), defined by the American a 23-year-old entrepreneur, to link up Harvard students, is anPress Association’s Media Center as “creating, producing example of the strength of on-line communities. By February ofand participating in news in a connected, informed society.” 2007, this community had 25 million members (it is no longer just for university students) and was expanding its businessThe Net Gen seeks to express itself through photos, texts, model.videos and music. And it has its own motivations for this. Themedia and technological firms, meanwhile, are giving theseyoung people the tools they need, pushing the democratization Controlof creativity. The BBC, for example, gives free on-line courses Contenton how to film documentaries. Apple’s IMovie was one of the C Connectedfirst easy-to-use film-editing software tools. The latest advance Collaborativeis Jumpcut, a simple software tool that uses the Web as itsplatform and enables users to create videos with photos and Communityupload them from other sites, like Flickr or Facebook. Communication CreativityBut the term Gen C also has other meanings. Tomi T. Ahonen Credibilityand Alan Moore, co-authors of the book Communities Dominate ConsensusBrands, define the motivation for forming communities as Celebritybeing another key Net Gen trait. They want to be connected: 77
  • 71. Shared SecretsOn the Internet, the Net Gen shares everything with strangers certain information that older people consider private. And their—their performance in school, professional progress, political opinions about and experiences in the companies where theyopinions, their desires, the items they consume and their fears. work form part of that information.They also publish their personal photos and tell the stories of their The pre-Internet world was full of secrets. Information was highlylives in blogs and photologs— a fact that tends to scare adults. valued because it was scarce. As Chris Anderson – publisher ofIt’s that the members of this new generation value their personal Wired and author of The Long Tail – suggests, the secret appearsidentity over their personal privacy. During the greater part of to be dead. The proliferation of cell phones with cameras, e-mailsthe history of Mankind, privacy was a “luxury” to which only the that can be easily forwarded and digital documents that are readyelite of society had access. People lived in villages, where it was and waiting to be copied, are a sign that any attempt to keep adifficult to keep secrets, since, generally speaking, everybody secret is going to fail.knew everybody else. In the 20th century, the concentration of It’s not worth trying.The digital natives appreciate authenticity.populations in major urban areas provided the possibility of Accustomed as they are to finding hoaxes on the Internet, theygreater intimacy – and anonymity. Thanks to our level of comfort have quickly learned to distinguish between truth and falsehood.and technology, we can now spend weeks on end in our houses They have a nose for detecting spam or hidden sales messageswith no need even to relate to our neighbors. Despite this fact, the and they firmly reject them. Many viral marketing campaignsneed of human beings to interact with others has remained part have failed for this very reason. Another key trait is the knowledgeof the very make-up of people. The community spirit, the desire that the youth of this generation have regarding topics aboutto be recognized by others, prevails, whether a person lives in a which their parents are completely ignorant.city of 10 million people or in a small rural community. From According to Tapscott, in Finland, 5,000 students signed upthis point of view, it comes as no surprise that, with the adoption to teach their teachers how to use computers. This is just oneof Web 2.0 tools, human beings have “come out” once more. The example of the bottom-up logic that the Network Generation isNet Gen values transparency. It believes that it is okay to share ready and willing to apply in other areas, like the job world. 78
  • 72. Other Ways of Being a Net Gener 10 Truths Inside GoogleAccording to human resource researchers, these young peoplewho have grown up “opening windows” (in MS Windows or 1. Focus on the user. The rest willLinux) don’t want to be closed up in office cubicles. They are come on its own.curious, have high self-esteem, are enterprising and aren’t 2. Do one thing really well.afraid to press for change in the business cultures where theywork. Their entry into the work force is producing a corporate 3. Fast is better than slow.change that Harvard business professor, Andrew McAfee,recently defined as Business 2.0. 4. Network democracy works.Google, the eighth most admired company in the United States,according to Forbes magazine, has already reacted to these 5. You don’t need to be at your deskdemands. It has 13,000 employees, most of them under the age in order to receive or give an answer.of 23, whom it permits to decide on their own work schedule 6. You can make money withoutand workplace (home or office), and whom it allows to spend causing harm.20% of their work day doing something that really excitesthem. Google Earth and Orkut were results of this initiative. 7. There’s more information out there.The Mozilla Foundation, creator of Firefox, the browser devel-oped on the basis of free software that snatched 15% of the 8. The need for information goesmarket from Microsoft, drew its inspiration from Net Gen mo- beyond all limits.tivations and put a new form of production into practice. Some 9. You can be serious without30% of the people that work for the foundation are not employ- wearing a suit.ees but contributors who don’t receive a single cent for theircontributions. As with the entire community that takes part 10. Good simply isn’t good enough. 79
  • 73. in the free software movement, their motivation isn’t money College and University Presidents Climate Commitment, anbut the possibility of learning, being in contact with people of agreement aimed at eliminating pollutant gas emissions from theother cultures and creating a more useful software for others. country’s educational institutions. At about the same time, MTVPaul Saffo, the sociological guru who tracks the impact of launched a space called MTV Switch, containing informationtechnology on society, says,“(…)In a society that shows every- on climate change oriented toward young people between thething in public, what becomes most valuable is the secret.” ages of 15 and 25. The site proposes small changes in consumerThis demonstrates that there is no consensus on what we can habits, with the aim of reducing the carbon footprint of eachexpect from the Net Gen. individual on the earth.According to the BBC, 2 billion people in the world today are In 2006, Chilean students made use of text messages, MSNunder the age of 18. Within that vast group, there are adolescents and other Internet tools to muster their peers in a strike. Oncethat use their blogs to provide strategies to help others hide their they had paralyzed activities in every school in the country, theyanorexia or bulimia, or to swap stories about their experiences managed to get the government of President Michelle Bacheletwith drugs. And many suffer from a more silent addiction: They to initiate changes in the country’s education policy.are addicted to being connected. Said María Jesús Sanhueza, one of the Chilean student leaders,Be that as it may, most of them share genuine concern about “Our strike call is historic because it isn’t born of a politicalthe future of Mankind and the environment, and there is a party. It was born on the Internet and it is democratic, becausegrowing awareness among them regarding global warming. there are cyber-cafés everywhere. The weapon is the Net and inProof of these trends is that in June 2007, leaders from 284 col- there, the good ol’ boy politicians don’t get what’s happening.leges and universities in the United States launched the American They just use it to look at naked chicks.” 80
  • 74. A Few ConclusionsThe Net Gen…• Wants freedom of choice• Interacts• Is open• Is participative• Likes to personalize• Creates• Joins together in communities• Seeks entertainment in many of its activities• Values speed and seeks innovation• Teaches its elders to use new technology, in a bottom-up logic.
  • 75. Networked People: Chapter 6Making a CommunityMake SenseHow many friends does a person have? How many professional six people. However, in the 21st century, the tools of Web 2.0contacts does one attain in a lifetime? Do we live in a small allow these degrees of separation to be narrowed still further.world? How does one generate a circle of friends? In order For example, if a user publishes his/her profile in LinkedIn,to try and respond to some of these questions, American a social network for professionals on the Internet, he/she canpsychologist Stanley Milgram carried out a unique experiment link up immediately with a Harvard professor, send a messagein 1967: He selected a target addressee at random and then and have an answer in a matter of hours. Presuming that eachchose different people in different states who didn’t know individual knows —considering workmates, family members,this person and who had to try to get a letter to that random and MSN and e-mail contacts— about a hundred people, it isaddressee. The instructions were that they had to send the enough for one member of the circle to link up with anotherletter in question to a person that they knew and considered one in order for the chain to project to infinity. One of thethat this person might have a greater possibility of knowing first people to realize the potential of virtual communities wasthe target addressee. The person receiving the letter must communications mogul Rupert Murdoch, who, in July 2005,do the same thing, and so on until the letter reached its final acquired MySpace for 580 million dollars. This most highlytarget destination. To the surprise of many, the letters reached used of all portals by adolescents to make friends, listen tothe target after circulating through an average chain of only music, upload photos and videos and organize social outingsfive or six people. This permitted Milgram to maintain what was the outgrowth of a new business model that Murdochwas to become known as the “Theory of the Six Degrees of was smart enough to see in time. By 2007, MySpace had 180Separation,” which, simply stated, holds that every one of the million registered users with 230,000 signing up daily. Theirearth’s inhabitants is connected by a distance of no more than motivation: getting together with others on the Internet. 83
  • 76. The Power of the NetworksIn May 2007, Forbes magazine published a special issue on “The mass public. Friendster was one of the pioneers on the USPower of the Networks”. But what were they referring to? What market, although, within a very short time, MySpace wouldare the much talked-about social networks within the Internet? knock it out of the ranking.In its report on adolescents and social networking sites, PewInternet & Life Project defined them as any “online placewhere a user can create a profile and build a personal networkthat connects him or her to other users”. Nevertheless, thescope of the “networking” or “social networking” concept is,indeed, much broader. For decades, this phenomenon hasbeen under study in the fields of social science, economy andbiology, in an attempt to elucidate how news is disseminated,how an epidemic spreads or how a certain product becomes afashion trend.One of the pioneering experiments in the development ofvirtual communities was The Well. It emerged in the 1980samong the first users of the major network that is the Internet.Although, in time, its platform varied, it remained a closedcommunity in which outstanding thinkers participated, andit will go down in history as the first attempt to generate aconversation of relevance using the tools of the Web . 2002But it wasn’t until 2002 that sites began to appear that promotedthe possibility of creating “an on line circle of friends” for the 84
  • 77. From the Real to the VirtualSome virtual communities do nothing more than replicate on get to know one of these innovative public figures.the Web situations that have been taking place for decades in “The new architecture of social networks is redefining the world wethe real world. An example of this trend is HomeExchange, a live in,” writes Spain’s David de Ugarte in his book El poder desite with a community of 16,000 people around the world who las redes (The Power of the Networks).are willing to exchange houses with each other. According to a study on participation on the Internet carried outThe idea emerged from a network of school teachers in Europe, by the Forrester consulting fi rm, 51% of adolescents betweenwho, back in the 1950s, lent their houses to each other so as to the ages of 12 and 17 participate in virtual social networks. Thehave free lodging whenever they took trips across the continent. percentage rises to 70% among young people between the agesEd Kushins took this idea and created a site on the Internet of 18 and 21 (coinciding with college entry age). It maintains awith the same name as the original network. The community 57% level in people between the ages of 22 and 26.multiplied and today has members in 110 countries, although For the Net Gen, these social networks are the most naturalthe philosophy remains the same now as then: trust and respect of places to hold conversations and communicate with theirfor one another. peers. MIs (instant chat messages) and messages left on theirThere is a place on the Internet where you can talk to Al Gore personal pages, which they check daily, have displaced e-mail,about global warming, with Jane Goodall about biodiversity which today, for them, is a tool used almost exclusively toand with Chris Anderson, the publisher of Wired, about new communicate with the adult world.business models. That place is called TED, an organizationthat was founded in 1984 with the aim of annually bringing Nevertheless, the number of adults participating in thesetogether people who have created technological, scientifi c networks has also grown in recent years: According toor philosophical innovations. The arrival on the scene of the previously mentioned Forrester study, the so-calledWeb 2.0 tools has allowed TED to go global. It is no longer Generation X (whose ages range between 37 and 40) have anecessary to travel to California to take in a conference or 29% participation. 85
  • 78. MySpace, The Community Everyone Is Talking AboutPersonal profiles, networks of friends, photos, videos, music...all of this has been offered to MySpace users since 2003.One of the most interesting traits of this portal is that it allows musical groups to upload their songs on the Web freeof charge. Thanks to this practice, a number of bands have managed to get noticed and find success.The down side? The company owns the rights for everything it publishes, even after the user removes the material andquits the site. The British group, Arctic Monkeys, for example, almost lost the rights to its tunes, precisely because ithad been launched to stardom from MySpace.Craigslist: Simple, Useful and with a Life of its OwnThis simple idea, of austere design, is one of the reasons for the ostensible decline in print newspaper classified ad-vertising. Created in 1995 by Craig Newmark, Craigslist was born with the mission of providing the San Franciscocommunity with a free space in which to advertise, and it has more than amply accomplished that mission: Today, youuse the list to offer or find anything from the service of a plumber to a roommate.As for Craig Newmark, he has been invited to lecture on his business model in universities all over the world. What ismost surprising about Craigslist is that, despite the fact that the site has 5 million regular users and racks up arounda billion page-hits per week, Newmark doesn’t advertise. “The community isn’t interested,” he says. Revenues comefrom paid job offerings and certain paying real estate advertisers. The rest is all completely free of charge. 86
  • 79. Working Communitiesand Talking CommunitiesAtina Chile is a virtual community that promotes citizen action. Consumers also have communities of their own, where theyAccording to its creator, Chilean politician Fernando Flores, monitor the ethical behavior of companies, as in the case ofvirtual communities can be classified as “talking communities” Do the Right Thing, or where they provide comments onand “working communities”. the traits and features of certain products or services. Trip Advisor, for example, is a community of travelers that shareIn the first group, users enter to talk and make contacts (like advice and globetrotting experiences. Created in 2000, some 5in MySpace), while in the second group, besides holding million opinions can now be found on the site regarding cities,conversations, users aspire to generate changes in the real world. hotels, restaurants and excursions.Atina Chile is an example of a “working community”. Itsmembers form a network of 38,000 citizens committed to theenvironment, education and the transparency of democraticprocesses. They have given workshops to teach students inChilean schools how to use Wikipedia, carried out actionsaimed at promoting the use of bicycles and promoted digitalliteracy programs in certain areas of the country. What theyactually promote, in the end, is a new form of politics: politics 2.0.But it is not only the ways of policy-making that change withthe advancement of these community tools. Wikipedia, forexample, is perhaps the best known “working community”in the world. By means of member interaction, the “Wiki”community pursues a clear objective: the creation of a complete,pluralistic, free-access encyclopedia. 87
  • 80. The Potential of Social NetworksAccording to a study carried out by Communispace, analyzing The analysts also point out that the most successful social net-the participation of 26,539 people in 66 on-line communities, works are those that reinforce previously existing communities86% of the individuals who enroll in communities of 300 to – for example, those that make up a company and its com-500 members make comments, start conversations, swap ideas munity of stakeholders. According to Tom Evslin, it’s not aand photos, and take part in other activities as well. matter of “groups forming a network” but of “groups makingAccording to the analysts, the high rate of participation in use of the network tool”.groups of this size tends to show that small communitiesachieve a higher level of social commitment among theirmembers, which goes to show that size (number of users)isn’t always what matters when it comes to evaluating on-linecommunities. This same report indicates that communitiesthat are brand-sponsored generate greater commitmentamong their members: Brand-sponsored sites manage to get71% of the people that visit them to register, while those thataren’t under a trademark only manage to attain a 55% sign-upsuccess rate.These observations coincide with those that John Fisher madein a 2007 We Media conference, regarding his discovery thatthe trend was toward leaving mass sites like MySpace, in orderto join others in generating communities built around specificinterests. What appears to be taking priority is transparencyand privacy and the balance between these two values. 88
  • 81. Centralized Network Decentralized Network Distributive NetworkGraph conceived by Paul Baran to demonstrate the possibilities of a computer network. In all three cases, the same numberof nodes exist, but the difference is how they are linked up. David de Ugarte takes up this diagram once more in showing thecultural changes that modifications in network architecture produce.
  • 82. The Future of the CommunitiesThe constant appearance on the market of innovative tools site, inserting applications from third-party companies. Thismakes it possible to predict that, in the near future, there will be signifies much more than simple personalization: It impliesa new architecture that will constitute a definitive incentive to accepting, for example, elimination by users of Marketplaceparticipate in on-line communities. And virtual environments (Facebook’s internal purchase/sale service) so as to replace itlike Second Life also make it possible to imagine a near future with an Amazon application.in which virtual conversation and interaction will be greatlyenriched experiences. Facebook’s opening is marking a trend that analysts say will become dominant: the transition from a Web 2.0 exchangeAt the beginning of 2007, Facebook – a site similar to MySpace, and interaction mode to a Web 3.0 characterized by sharedwhich, as mentioned earlier on, was founded as a gathering construction and creation.place for North American students – decided to open up itscommunity’s platform. Although, by all appearances, the move could be economicallyFacebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced: “Right now, damaging to the company, Facebook is betting, to the contrary,social networks are closed platforms, and, today, we’re going that this change will generate 150 million dollars in profits forto end that.” What did this change imply? the firm in the first year alone. All of the cases presented here only go to show that givingFounded in 2004, by 2007 Facebook was registering more up the “I” to give way to “Us” and leaving aside rigidity tendthan 25 million active users, with a growth rate of 3% a week. to generate a new shared identity and a new business modelTaking this latest step was tantamount to deciding to no longer in which the flow of information and interaction multiplybe a simple virtual community, but rather, to transform itself and the opportunities, at times, spring from the mostinto a platform of the platform that allows users to modify the unexpected places. 90
  • 83. What’s Happening? Who’s Participating? (US users only) Source: Forrester Research Youngsters Younger Older Adolescents Young Adults Generation Y Generation X Boomers Boomers Seniors 12 to 17 18 to 21 22 to 26 27 to 40 41 to 50 51 to 61 62+ Creators: Are publishing web pages and blogs, and uploading videos on sites like YouTube. Critics: Are writing commentary in blogs, classifying content and writing summaries. Compilers: Are using Really Simple Syndication (RSS), tagging information and organizing content. Participants: Are using social networking sites. Viewers: Are reading blogs, watching videos and listening to podcasts. Inactive Users: Are connected but do not form part of the social media. 91
  • 84. From Traditional Advertising Chapter 7to ConversationAt the 2007 Cannes Festival, Evolution, the viral video created methods. “We are immune to advertising. Just forget it,” saysby the Ogilvy Toronto ad agency for Dove, received one of the one of the proclamations of The Cluetrain Manifesto.world’s most coveted advertising prizes. The 90-second, low-budget short shows all of the tricks used in advertising to turn Seth Godin, the renowned author of such books as All Marketersa normal girl into the perfect face of a cosmetics commercial. It Are Liars (2005), maintains that we are living in a world whereis estimated that 4 million people have seen the ad at YouTube advertising is undergoing a transition from “interruptionand other Internet sites where videos are shared. marketing” to “two-way marketing”, in which the end goal of brand communication is no longer to “convince” the customer,The new habits of interaction with communications media that but to build relationships.arrived with Web 2.0 had an immediate impact on advertising.It appears that those who have already adopted tools that That’s why marketing is seeking a way to hold a conversationpermit them to participate, express themselves and share with an interlocutor who is no longer seen as a customer, but asknowledge are ever less vulnerable to traditional marketing a stakeholder, and it is important to learn to listen to him/her. 93
  • 85. The First to Arrive on the Scene:Good Moves and MistakesThe experience of Microsoft in exploring these new forms It wasn’t long before Mike Torres, who is in charge of the soft-of corporate communication is one of the most complete ware for MSN Spaces, a Microsoft development, began to useexamples of how a trademark that was hated by the world search engines to monitor the blogosphere, so as to rapidly de-computing community was able to start building relations. tect any negative commentary and answer it. “A lot of timesWhen Microsoft employee Joshua Allen started publishing when you do that, there’s a ‘Sorry - I didn’t know you were lis-his personal blog in 2000, Bill Gates’ company’s image was tening’ reply”, Torres said. “What happens is that if they knowat its lowest ebb, accused as the company was of wiping out you‘re in the conversation, people get respectful. They may stillall competition and generating computer industry monopolies. criticize you, but they don’t lie”.“We were afraid to get put there and just talk with people (...)”He just started posting because “I wanted to say that I am a Thanks to these new communications channels, MicrosoftMicrosoft person and you can talk with me”, Allen told Shel managed to:Israel and Robert Scoble, authors of Naked Conversations, the • Humanize the company, since people began to get to know itbook that tells how blogs are changing how companies talk to through its employees.their customers . Allen was the first of Microsoft’s employees • Create an impact on the morale of its contributors.to publish a blog. Currently, 1,500 of the company’s employees • Attract new talent.are doing so. • Place the accent on its identity in its relationships.These trends were underscored when the company createdChannel 9, the first corporate video blog, in which employees Transparency and authenticity form part of the new rulestell their audience —from their cubicles— who they are, talk of Web 2.0. The Vichy brand of cosmetics was one of theabout their families and about the subjects that most excite trademarks that put their foot in it because they failed tothem. understand the code of ethics of the new media. An advertising 94
  • 86. I’m a great lover He’s a MARKETINGagency recommended that they create a blog with an invented great lovercharacter playing its writer: namely, Claire, a pretty girl withthe looks of a model, who took part in the firm’s latest anti-age product. Within a matter of hours, the blogosphere hadreacted negatively to the attempted deception. The companywas forced to make a public apology and pull the blog. PUBLIC RELATIONSBut they managed to reverse the situation. Vichy later launched I’m a great lovera new blog called Journal de ma peau (Diary of My Skin) with I’m a great loverthe aim of listening to the company’s clients, a space in which I’m a great loverreal company employees and renowned women blog writerscontracted to contribute with complete editorial freedom, writeall of the entries. The French press has praised the initiative,and so have the company’s clients. I understand that you’re a great ADVERTISING lover These sketches show some of the differences between the advertising tools developed in the 20th century and current trends. BRANDING 95
  • 87. Interruption Marketing Two-Way MarketingOne-Way Message Two-Way MessagePassive Client Interactive ClientTop-down Direction Horizontal and Circular Direction
  • 88. The DirectionAdvertising is TakingThese early attempts bear witness to the efforts being made and • Peer to Peer (P2P): Those who spread the words are thethe need to get the attention of the Net Gen. Because while it is consumers themselves, who transmit the message to theirtrue that most young people still watch television, their habits friends and acquaintances.have changed and certain sales methods are now obsolete. • Entertainment and Relevance: In most cases, the message is not a direct sales pitch, but rather, a topic of conversationA report drafted in 2007 by Ipsos France among European or a source of amusement linked to a brand identity. In otheryouth suggests that while they continued to receive information cases, the relevance of the product in itself incites consumersabout many products via traditional advertising media, they to recommend it, making them, simultaneously, consumerstended to put more trust in the recommendations of their and marketers.peers and admitted that their decisions were influenced by“word of mouth”. According to a study carried out by the McKinsey consulting group, shared opinion regarding a product, brand or service“Word of mouth”, P2P and “viral marketing” are some of the accounts for two-thirds of all economic activity in the Unitednames given to these non-traditional forms of advertising, all States. And this is reaffirmed if we take into account a studyof them experiences that tend to be supported by some sort carried out in the last half of 2006 by Create with Contextof on line platform and that comply with at least one of the and Yahoo, which revealed that 40% of all consumers in thefollowing requirements: United States regularly publicize brands and products that• Virulence: The message is disseminated among different they purchase without receiving any kind of payment in return.people in the manner of a virus, so that it is not necessary to And which is the medium that is most often used to spread“trap” the consumer’s interest with a commercial spot on a TV both positive and negative opinions about these products?program. Why, the Internet, of course. 97
  • 89. Successful CampaignsThe previously mentioned viral campaign by Dove was right Blake Ross, who today is only 20 years old, was still in highon target, because it showed knowledge of how to take advan- school when he created the blog that, in 2005, was generatingtage of the tools of Web 2.0. The video was easily uploadable 200,000 downloads a day. The case of Firefox is living proofto YouTube, publishable in a blog or forwardable to friends. that “word of mouth” works best among those who really ap-In other words, it was easy to share, something that is of key preciate a product.importance to the Net Gen. But additionally, the trademarkcreated a parallel site (www.campaignforrealbeauty.ca) thatincluded a variety of channels for participation, where userscould fill out short surveys, personalize cards to send to ac-quaintances and gain access to other videos and resources.Another major factor was the relevance of the message: itsdiscussion of the meaning of real beauty was coherent withDove’s traditional campaigns. The brand thus generated a top-ic of conversation that allowed people to take possession of themessage. For its part, Firefox, the Internet browser created un-der the premises of free software, was launched in 2004 fromthe blog called www.spreadfirefox.com and in just 99 days,it was downloaded by 25 million people. Its users were suchfans that they raised 250,000 dollars to pay for the brand’s firsttraditional ad, a double-page spread in the Sunday edition ofthe New York Times, listing the names of all of the program-mers who had contributed free of charge to its development. 98
  • 90. Learning to Speak a New Language: Some DefinitionsWord of mouth (WOM): Wikipedia defines this as recommending a product, service or show ina person to person and informal way. Current communications tools like e-mail, chat, blogs,virtual communities and forums tend to imbue this old form of recommendation with new andvigorous potential. Advertising professionals are analyzing how best to control and measure theimpact of WOM within the context of Web 2.0.Peer-to-Peer (P2P): This is a reference to a computer network set up among peers, with no clientsand no fixed servers. Rather, it is made up of a series of network nodes . In 1999, Napster, thefirst software to share music files between computers, made use of this model.Beyond the development of similar types of software, P2P is, in the end, a philosophy, adoptedmainly by the Net Gen. In modern marketing language, P2P is about the attitude of the new con-sumer, who is willing to share his/her opinion regarding the products they use with their peers,and to be influenced by purchasing.
  • 91. The Do’s and Don’ts These are some general recommendations by WOMMA , an association of advertising professionals who are seeking toof Word of Mouth Marketing establish standards for new forms of communication.DDO! Don’t! ith tools like “tell a friend”, forums, 1. Invest resources in keeping brand campaign back. strategies secret. to talk about, like Dove did: publish a 2. Pay somebody for word of mouth recommendationsmessage that can be shared, commented on and that generates without admitting it publicly.conversation. 3. Create false identities to promote a product, the way3. Form communities and connect people. Create product user Vichy did in its first experience in the blogosphere.groups and fan clubs. Support the groups that form aroundproducts and services. 4. Publish comments solely as a means of manipulating the relevance of a product or blog.4. Work with influential communities. Identify opinion-formersand provide them with information about brand actions. Blog- 5. Carry out acts of vandalism to promote products/services.writers are more sought-after all the time in this role. 6. Send out SPAM.5. Follow conversations in the virtual and real worlds betweenproduct followers, detractors and neutral parties. Listen andrespond.6. Take up transparent conversations. Create blogs and other Seth Godin resumes the new playing rules like this:tools to exchange information and openly take part in other “The biggest mistake marketers make when they see theblogs and conversations. power of the consumer network is that they try to con- trol it, own it or manipulate it. This always fails because7. Co-create. Include consumers in marketing and creativeactions. Let them see what’s going on in the company or with a the network doesn’t care about you and can’t be bought.product, so that they have access to first-hand information. The smartest marketers aim to inspire, not to control.” 100
  • 92. The Future of Corporate Sites Peer to Peer conversations and Word of Mouth Social Networks Tags Rating sites Consumer-made Videos Podcasts Blogs User forumsAnother thesis of The Cluetrain Manifesto that took no time at all in manifesting itself is the one that predicted that the languageof 20th century business would seem as contrived and artificial as the language of the 18th century French court. Within thisnew scenario, the static corporate sites created in the ‘90s have entered an identity and functionality crisis. Confronted with aWeb 2.0 in which spontaneous opinions regarding products multiply, brand sites offering pro-corporate content have becomeprogressively less than credible.All indications are that the future of corporate sites will be a mutation toward becoming a source of information andcontents created not only by the company but by its stakeholders, which will include both positive and negative commentsregarding the firm’s products. 101
  • 93. Collective Intelligence Chapter 8In its July 2007 edition, National Geographic Magazine According to James Surowiecki, author of The Wisdompublished a cover story on “the intelligence of swarms” . On of Crowds, any human group that patterns itself on theobserving the activities of ant colonies, beehives and schools intelligence of the ants will grow ever more effective.of fish, the biologists involved concluded that there is a type ofintelligence that is the product of the collective activity of large Conditions for this happening include the following:groups. It is the intelligence that explains why an ant alone is • A diverse multitude. In this way, each individual contributesless than smart, whereas an ant colony is capable of finding different pieces of information.the shortest route to its source of food, of assigning roles and • It must be decentralized: Nobody must be in charge.of defending their territory. This concept, which biologists call • There must be some means of gathering opinions in order“collective intelligence”, refers to a certain self-regulated social to be able to arrive at a collective verdict.structure capable of demonstrating intelligent behavior of its • Individuals must be independent, in order for them toown that renders it more efficient than its members are as properly evaluate information.individuals. 103
  • 94. The Power of CooperationThe activists in Seattle in 1998 and the mobs in Paris in 2006 most reliable ones in first place. Thanks to this system, Googleused cell phones to quickly let each other know where the police is today considered the market leader in browsers.were. Like a school of fish in the ocean, they could scatter inthe face of danger and regroup a few hours later. Although the Wikipedia – which, as mentioned earlier, is a free, on-linedifference between animals and human beings is that human encyclopedia, written and edited by volunteers – is anotheractivists make the decision to act of their own free will. example of collective intelligence turned into action. Hundreds of thousands of people in different places around the worldBut what has this got to do with Web 2.0, the Net Gen and contribute to its creation in one of the greatest collections ofon-line communities? In 2005, Web 2.0 guru Tim O’Reilly human knowledge ever achieved.observed that: “The central principle behind the success of thegiants born in the Web 1.0 era who have survived to lead the For its part, Linux, the computer operative system that representsWeb 2.0 era appears to be this, that they have embraced the Microsoft Windows’ only competition, was created under freepower of the web to harness collective intelligence”. software standards: that is to say, using an open code voluntarily improved by thousands of programmers and users.A paradigmatic example of this is Google. Its search enginesorder results in accordance with the number of links between Thomas C. Malone, of the Center for Collective Intelligence atpages. The system understands the links as user votes and in MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), explains that,that way ranks not only the most popular pages but also the as discovered in the case of swarms, collective intelligence is 104
  • 95. nothing new. But the new information technologies that link The July 2007computers all over the world are permitting an unprecedented edition of Nationaldeepening of this phenomenon. Geographic compared certainMark Klein, of that same Center, is team leader for a project human activitiesaimed at taking advantage of the intelligence of hundreds of with thosepeople worldwide in order to find solutions for global warming. of swarms.Although, as MIT’s Malone points out, collective intelligenceisn’t some magic process, nor can it be applied in all fields.The hypothesis that seduces enthusiasts is that large groups ofpeople are more intelligent than a reduced elite. That remainsto be seen. In principle, however, collective intelligence appearsto function with a high degree of effectiveness in predictivemodels: It’s like in the horse races, where it is presumedthat large groups of people, providing their best estimate fora probable outcome, will generate, on average, more exactresponses than those offered by individuals. 105
  • 96. Wikis: From Tool to ActionWard Cunningham will go down in history as the creator of e-mails saying things like: “Oh my God, they write, you’ve got athe software that permits collective intelligence to be turned major security flaw!”.into action: the wiki. He borrowed the word from the Hawaiian Since its creation, Wikipedia has become a vast collectionlanguage and it means “fast” and also “What I know is…” of human knowledge, while generating widespread debateIn 1995, Cunningham created the first version of this simple among teachers, academics and journalists alike. But abovesoftware code, which made it possible to generate a web page all, it is the most complete manifestation of what interactionthat could be modified by the members of a working team. What among people can accomplish when bolstered by the InternetCunningham couldn’t predict was that the tool that he dreamed and some simple tools.up for collaboration among members of small groups would beused on an open and mass worldwide scale. Wikipedia receives more hits than Hotmail, The New YorkBack in 2000, Jimmy Wales, a former financial operator, was Times and The Wall Street Journal put together, despite thetrying to create the first free encyclopedia on the Internet. fact that it has only one full-time employee, backed by 285,866Together, he and Larry Sanger created Nupedia , and called contributors who have provided material more than ten timeson a group of academics to voluntarily write articles for it. each. A study carried out by the scientific journal, Nature, inBut after two years, the specialists had only come up with 24 2005, revealed that Wikipedia had 4 errors to every three foundentries. So at the end of 2001, when he first heard about wikis, in the traditional Encyclopaedia Britannica. Well, true, but theWales made the bold decision to create Wikipedia. One month difference is that the Wikipedia errors have long since beenlater, the virtual encyclopedia already contained a thousand corrected, while Britannica’s had to wait a few years until thearticles. By 2005, it had 500,000 entries, and in 2007, it had next issue came out. The key to the success of this collectivenearly 5 million in 14 languages. initiative responds to a phenomenon of these times: a newIn an interview with Time Magazine, Wales confessed to being incentives logic, what writer Lev Grosman defined in an articletickled by warnings from well-intentioned people who send him for Time Magazine as “intellectual altruism”. 106
  • 97. Free Software: Innovation beyond Closed Doors Tools that release the full potential of collective intelligence stimulate the generation of new forms of organization. Companies, academic institutions and research groups can evolve, if they wish to, toward a 2.0-type organization, where innovation is from the gates outward and not limited to the elite that creates it. The free software movement demonstrates the scope of this trend. Linux, the free operative system created in 1992 by Linus Torvalds, when he was only 21 years old, progressively improved with the help of thousands of amateur and professional programmers. Currently, it is being used by literally millions of people and businesses. This is just one example of a movement that inspires and unites a global community of individuals who are willing to donate their time to learning and creating better software resources. SourceForge.net is a site that coordinates free software work. Around mid-2007, there were 15,000 such projects in production. It was also under this model that Mozilla Firefox and Apache were born – software codes that became everyday tools for individual users on the Internet.107
  • 98. Organizing the Chaos“Tagging” is a labeling process used to classify on-linecontent . A “tag” is a key word assigned by the user to anygiven item (photo, article, video, a blog posting, etc.), whichpermits each user to classify things according to their meaningfor that individual.Each item tends to be associated with several tags at the sametime. For example, a song sung by Brazil’s Adriana Calcanhottoon YouTube might be simultaneously tagged as “love”, “mpb”and “tenderness”. An Internet posting about tagging might betagged with words like “web 2.0”, “tags” and “collective intel-ligence” because these might be the best terms to describe thecontent, depending on the criterion applied by the author. If taxonomy is the science of classification, folksonomy is clas-The prime use of tagging is personal in nature: It serves as sification in the 2.0 era, resulting from the interaction and in-a means of finding content once more within the erratic pro- telligence of the masses.cess of surfing the Web. But David Weinberger, a Harvard re- Thomas Vander Wal, founder of the Information Architecturesearcher and author of the book, Everything Is Miscellaneous: Institute, coined this new word in 2004. The term is defi nedThe Power of the New Digital Disorder, points out that tags also by the following traits:have a social dimension to them. The tags that one chooses on a) Folksonomy is free classification, as chosen by the user.sites like Flickr and del.icio.us, also facilitate better organiza- b) Its aim is to be able to find information at a later time.tion of information for other users. This is a process of social c) It is developed within a free environment, which permitsclassification of information that is known as “folksonomy”. mutual sharing and construction of new categories. 108
  • 99. An image of the most popular tags on Flickr. The 2.0 sites incorporate a tag “cloud”, which consists of placing the tags most employed by users side by side in alphabetical order and placing the most popular ones of all in larger print. 109
  • 100. The Future of CollectiveIntelligenceScientists from a wide variety of disciplines are currently activity could do for research into new drugs, cures for disease,studying just how to orient collective intelligence toward the or alternative energy sources and atmospheric disaster control.solution of Mankind’s major problems. And there are many “Could the collective intelligence of the life sciences communitytoo, who are thinking about and predicting the evolution of be harnessed to enable a more coordinated and comprehensivethe Web. Surowiecki and the swarm intelligence theorists, attack on the intractable diseases that have so far stymied thefor example, imagine its potential as a form of knowledge industry?” asked Don Tapscott, author of Wikinomics.aggregation. But collective intelligence may also be thought For Tapscott, research carried out within the scope of theof in terms of something that goes beyond the simple sum of so-called Human Genome Project (HGP) represented acooperative contributions. “before and after” regarding the topic . In the mid-90s, whenThe aim of Web 2.0, which is considered a step in the evolution laboratories everywhere were caught up in the feverish raceof the Internet, is to establish conversations. Fed by this dialog, to patent DNA gene sequences, one group of pharmaceuticalcollective intelligence is oriented toward generating a new companies made the historic decision to open itself up toconsensus and a new way of managing human knowledge. cooperation. Today, thanks to this fact, there is a major openIn the words of French biologist Joel de Rosnay: “Interaction, databank containing gene sequences decoded by hundreds ofat first glance, isn’t interesting in itself. What is interesting teams of scientists.is the use of interaction for collective creation, what I call But this was not always the case. In the mid-80s, public and‘intercreativity’. In it, one is no longer connected to the Internet, private organizations alike were privatizing human genebut rather, connected through the Internet: It is the brains that sequences hand over fist, so that just a few short years later,are behind it and it is this mutual creativity that can – or not – 20% of the human genome was private property, including thebe expressed”. genes related to hepatitis C and diabetes. In 1995, the MerckIf we think about what Linux did for the software industry, it Gene Index, an alliance among private companies, governmentis only natural to ask ourselves what open and collaborative agents and civil organizations, announced the creation of the 110
  • 101. first public databank. Very soon, other pharmaceutical firms, to volunteer at school, or mow the church lawn, or help in alike Big Pharma, did the same. As Tapscott points out, beyond political campaign”.philanthropic motives, the companies finally figured out that From this standpoint, collective intelligence, which caters tothe business lay in selling the drugs, not the raw materials – these needs and seeks responses through responsible actions,e.g., the DNA sequences. constitutes a daily challenge.Be that as it may, scientists still warn that: “Crowds tend to bewise only if individual members act responsibly and make theirown decisions. A group won’t be smart if its members imitateone another, slavishly follow fads, or wait for someone to tellthem what to do. When a group is being intelligent, whetherit’s made up of ants or attorneys, it relies on its members to dotheir own part. For those of us who sometimes wonder if it’sreally worth recycling that extra bottle to lighten our impact onthe planet, the bottom line is that our actions matter, even if wedon’t see how,” as Peter Miller wrote in National Geographic.The world is a complex place. Bees, Linux programmers andWikipedia editors appear to at least provide us with a guideafter which to model our actions. As biologist Thomas Seeleypoints out: “A honeybee never sees the big picture any morethan you or I do. None of us knows what society as a wholeneeds, but we look around and say, oh, they need someone 111
  • 102. We, The Media Chapter 9Argentine blogger Julián Gallo once compared the challenges Phenomena like the drop in newspaper sales and the arrivalcurrently facing the communications media with the one stat- of DVR technologies that allow people to watch TV withouted by former Coca-Cola Director Roberto Goizueta, when he having to sit through the commercial breaks are just oneasked: “What’s our market share of the [customer’s] stomach? part of the story. This chapter identifies the new languages,Not Coca-Cola’s share of the U.S. cola market or the world contents and habits that are catching audience attention tosoft-drink market, but of all the fluids everyone in the world an ever greater degree. It also tells about actions taken by thedrinks on a given day.” traditional media to ward off the crises that these advancements are causing them.Seen from this standpoint, PepsiCo wasn’t the only competi-tion. The competition was tea, juice, beer, even water.Continu-ing along this same line of logic, the traditional media considertheir competition to be rival newspapers, radios or TV chan-nels, without taking into account what Gallo calls “the audi-ence’s stomach”. In other words, what percentage of the timepeople have available in which to be entertained and informeddo they devote to the traditional media, and how much to thenew constellation of languages, topics, information communi-ties and creative formats found on the Internet? 113
  • 103. Citizen JournalistsIn 2003, Ohmy News was the first example of something new That same year, the British newspaper, The Guardian, called onthat is gaining strength: citizen journalism. Since that year, its readers to send in photos taken with their cell phones of UKthis daily news medium founded in South Korea by retired election scenes. The Blair Watch Project compiled amateurs’traditional-media newsman Oh Yeon Ho has been receiving 2 images of the then-Prime Minister and of the polls, which weremillion hits per day. It is the most influential news site in that then published in an account that the newspaper opened withcountry, even though it doesn’t have an editorial department, Flickr.editors, war correspondents or prestigious columnists – just33,000 citizen reporters that contribute their articles to it. Shortly afterward, CNN inaugurated its CNN Exchange sectionThe daily has also inaugurated a rating system for the most for the nascent citizen journalism. “Send us your story. Sharehighly read stories on its front page, thus leaving it to the your ideas. Make your mark,” the news network proposes.readers to edit and decide the importance of each news item. People of all ages are also producing their own news throughFurthermore, in something akin to leaving a tip in a bar or blogs or sites like Crónicas Móviles , where videos recordedcafé, Ohmy News readers are provided with a way to leave with cell phones register the day’s events in the cities wheresmall donations when they particularly like something that they live – from protest marches by environmental activists tothey’ve read, and this device has actually led to an article’s historic snow storms.culling as much as 30,000 dollars in a single day. But this on-line newspaper isn’t an isolated case. Although not everyone is willing to become a citizen journalist, what is happening is a veritable new school of aesthetics for theseIn 2005, the testimonial value of photos taken of the terrorist times. The democratization of publishing tools is modifyingattack on the London Underground by ordinary people using the way in which stories get told, the way we are informed andtheir cell phone cameras clearly outdistanced that of the the way we are entertained. And it is only just now that someimages taken by professional news photographers. of the signs of this are appearing on the horizon. 114
  • 104. 115
  • 105. From Passive Reader toInteractive UserIn referring to their publics, newspapers and magazines have York Times now has My Times, a section in which readers doalways used the term “readers”. But this term has become their own editing of the prestigious daily and can choose to seesomewhat hazy in the Web 2.0 era, when many readers are only the sections that interest them, or to give priority to theirbecoming the subjects of radical changes in habit. favorite columnists. This is a move by the paper to respondPerhaps the most interesting innovation is the use of RSS’s – to active readers who prefer to personalize their daily newslike Bloglines and Newsvine – that offer a way to give some reading.kind of order to the chaotic information on the Web. What In April 2007, Wired magazine came out with its firstmakes RSS technology important? Within the dynamic Web personalized cover: It invited its readers to publish their photoscontext, RSS’s let users know when a page has been updated in the publication’s website,Wired.com, and the first 5,000 toand thus allow them to get their information sources into do so were sent a copy of the magazine with their picture andorder in accordance with their own criteria. Within this new their location on Google Maps on its cover.information model, it is the “reader” who ranks the news byorder of importance, be it in a major newspaper or in a friend’s The traditional model for the media was top down and insideblog. out. Based on that logic, CNN transmits worldwide news 24As Paul Saffo, Director of the California-based Institute for hours a day from its headquarters in Atlanta.the Future, points out: “People no longer passively ‘consume’media (and thus advertising, [their] main revenue source)”. Nowadays, that model is complemented by a parallel one, generated by a variety of transmitters, creators and editors. TheIt is because of this that traditional media have had to adapt boundary line between audiences and communicators is, then,to these trends. For instance, in its on-line edition, The New becoming fuzzy. 116
  • 106. Blogger® We’re all writersDigg® We’re all editorsFlickr® We’re all photographersYouTube® We’re all film-makers User-Created Ads In 2006, the Chevy Tahoe ad campaign tossed the marketing rule book out the window. The company decided to cede control over advertising for the pickup truck brand by allowing 30,000 people to do their own home-grown Tahoe ads. Not all of the resulting commercial spots detailed the most positive features of the product and some people even published videos linking trucks to global warming or citing sex myths regarding people who buy big cars. But Chevy kept all of the ad spots on line, even the negative ones, and the campaign was a real success: In the first four weeks alone, the site specially created for this purpose received 630,000 hits and had a major impact on the traditional communications media. 117
  • 107. The Magic Words: User-Generated Content Since the appearance of citizen journalism and other new forms of expression, analysts have been predicting the coming Evolution of User- of User-Generated Content. According to the 2006 Report emerging from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 35% Generated Content of all users in the United States had created on-line content. This included everything from writing a blog, publishing a home video on the Internet, voting for content, creating They Lead a tag or recommending a product, to actually designing They Moderate Influential People Influyentes services in this field. They Collaborate The pathway leading to the creation of Internet contents may They Create/Produce be described in four levels: They Write Publishers/Editors Editores 1. CONSUMERS. Read and look at contents, then they vote on They Share them, rank them and tag them. 2. PARTICIPANTS. Set up social networks with friends and colleagues, actively follow information and subscribe to content.They Weave Work-Related and 3. EDITORS. Write, film or take photos and later publish these Social Networks Participants ticipantes They Interact materials in different spaces on the Web. 4. INFLUENTIAL FIGURES. After taking part in all of these activities, they become content moderators or leaders. A blogger They Comment/Vote with a large number of readers is an example of this type of person. They Tag Consumers es In 2005, Al Gore and Joel Hyatt created Current Tv , a cable They Read/View television channel that encourages its viewers to contribute
  • 108. Say Cheeeeeese!their videos. When this channel first aired – a few months Until a few years ago, photography was a hobby for somebefore YouTube – the media industry had no idea that common and a profession for others. Normal everyday people limitedfolks might have the talent to create entertaining videos, or that their shutterbug activities to taking snapshots of happy familythey might have the gumption to do so. But today, that channel moments: birthdays, vacations, weddings and births. With theis a real success, as is its on-line community. arrival on the scene of digital cameras, taking pictures became,In 2006, the Google Internet giant acquired YouTube for for some, an almost daily practice.1.65 billion dollars. This is a site whose only economic value Flickr, one of the most popular sites today, got that way thanksis millions of ‘home-grown’ videos, published on the Net by to a gallery of 5.5 million photos, of which 80% were madeordinary, everyday people. This event clearly marked the rise public on the decision of site users.to a pedestal of User-Generated Content. But YouTube is just Additionally, Flickr incorporated the earlier mentioned taggingone of the places on the Internet where people watch videos system that allows users to find photos on a variety of subjects,(video on demand). According to the May 2007 Video Meatriz taken by others using simple means. Contributors can alsoReport put out by comScore, 75 % of all US Internet users be located on a map, a fact that allows people who were onfor a given month saw an average of 158 minutes of on-line vacation in the same place to share post card-type images.videos, lasting an average of 90 seconds each. The big questionis, what did those videos show. The answer came when mediamega-corporations asked that their videos be removed fromYouTube. It was only then that it became clear that out of the6,725 most popular videos on the site, only 621 (9%) weremade up of professional content protected by copyrights. Inother words, the share of professional content in YouTube isnegligible in comparison with the site’s free, amateur content. 119
  • 109. Why Participate?Toward a New Incentive LogicIn 1943, psychologist Abraham Maslow ranked human moti- them more deeply with the places where they live.vations in the form that was to become known as Maslow’s • Sense-making and understanding. This involves the Web asPyramid. At the base he placed basic needs like food, shelter, a forum for discussion and making sense of the world amonghealth and safety, and at the very tip of the figure, self-esteem peers.and self-actualization. It was his theory that human beings de- • To inform and be informed.velop new motivations upon satisfying their basic needs. • To create.In her book, Community Building on the Web: Secret Strategies • To entertain and be entertained. There are many types offor Successful Online Communities (Peachpit Press, 2000), Amy entertainment in Web 2.0. Paul Saffo concludes, in the articleJo Kim used Maslow’s Pyramid to identify the objectives and we quoted earlier, that: “In the end, much of what passes forneeds behind participation on the Internet. communications actually has a high entertainment component. The most powerful hybrid of communications and entertain-According to Shayne Bowman and Chris Willis, authors of We ment is ‘particitainment’: entertaining communications thatMedia (2003), the motivations behind audience participation connect us with some larger purpose or enterprise.”are the following: And finally, there is Juan Freire, biologist and author of Nómada• To gain status or build a reputation within a given community. Blogs , who talks about “the long tail of talent”, placed inThis motivation is directly linked to Web 2.0. evidence by the Pew Internet & American Life Project Report• To create connections with others who have similar interests, published in 2006: 54% of all bloggers surveyed had neveronline and off. To build relations and strengthen others published anything before, yet a total of 12 million Americansthat already exist in the physical world, forming part of a (8% of all Internet users) maintain blogs. Of all those surveyed,phenomenon that sociologists define as “glocalization”: the 52% said that their motivation was “to creatively expressability of the Internet to expand users’ social worlds by putting themselves.” All indications are that within the new incentivesthem in touch with people in far-off places, but also connecting logic, creativity has been democratized. 120
  • 110. Line Needs Off Line (Maslow) On Line System Access. Capacity toPhysiological and Basic Food, Clothing, Health maintain identity while partici-Human Needs pating in on-line communities. Protection against crime, Protection against hackers andSecurity personal attacks. The ability war, attack. The need to live to maintain diverse levels of in a just society. privacy. The need to act within anSocial environment with clear rules. Giving and receiving love. Belonging to a community and The need to belong to a group. its subgroups.Self-esteem Contributing to the community Respect for oneself. The need to achieve the respect of others and being recognized for these contributions. and to contribute to society.Self-actualization Personal development. The need to be outstanding in the Occupying a role in the com- activities that one takes part in. munity, developing new abilities and finding new opportunities. 121
  • 111. A poster illustrating the digital world marketed today by eboy (www.hello.eboy.com/eboy/shop).
  • 112. Toward the We Media The We Media is:Trend research tends to show advancement toward a new medialanguage – a language that is fresher, more spontaneous, less • Cooperationfiltered. • Collective IntelligenceBut all of this is just the tip of the iceberg in a process ofchange that promises to make history: the transition from • Participationmass media born in the 20th century to the We Media of thenew millennium. This is a new scenario in which the tools • Personalizationhave been democratized and each person can make his or hervoice heard, participating in conversations on a one-to-one • A New Incentives Logicbasis with a newspaper editor, the CEO of a major company ora political opinion-leader. • New Emerging Business ModelsEvery day, new 2.0 applications are turning up that provide • The Ability to Swap Rolespeople with opportunities to express and empower themselvesas citizens and consumers. • Spontaneity and CreativityAnd so the power of the media is becoming a tool fordemocratization. • New Formats • Conversations • Community 123
  • 113. ACTIVISM BILL_DRAYTON COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE CONSUMER CONSUMPTION CYBER-ACTIVISM DIALOGECOLOGY ENTERPRISE_2.0 FAIR_TRADE GOOGLE HYPER-HUMANISM JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGEKNOWLEDGE_MANAGEMENT NET_GEN NETWORKS PARTICIPATION PAUL_HAWKEN RESPONSIBILITYRESPONSIBLE_CONSUMPTION SOCIAL_NETWORKS SOCIETY STAKEHOLDERS SUSTAINABILITY SUSTAINABLE_DEVELOPMENT TECHNOLOGY TIPPING_POINT TOOLS TRANSPARENCY VALUES VIRTUAL WEB_2.0 ACTIVISMBILL_DRAYTON COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE CONSUMER CONSUMPTION CYBER-ACTIVISM DIALOG ECOLOGYENTERPRISE_2.0 FAIR_TRADE GOOGLE HYPER-HUMANISM JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGE KNOWLEDGE_MANAGEMENT NET_GEN NETWORKS PARTICIPATION PAUL_HAWKEN RESPONSIBILITY RESPONSIBLE_CONSUMPTION SOCIAL_NETWORKS SOCIETY STAKEHOLDERS SUSTAINABILITY SUSTAINABLE_DEVELOPMENT TECHNOLOGY TIPPING_POINT TOOLS TRANSPARENCY VALUES VIRTUAL WEB_2.0ACTIVISM BILL_DRAYTON COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE CONSUMER CONSUMPTION CYBER-ACTIVISM DIALOGECOLOGY ENTERPRISE_ 2.0 FAIR_TRADE GOOGLE HYPER-HUMANISM JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGEKNOWLEDGE_MANAGEMENT NET_GEN NETWORKS PARTICIPATION PAUL_HAWKEN RESPONSIBILITYRESPONSIBLE_CONSUMPTION SOCIAL_NETWORKS SOCIETY STAKEHOLDERS SUSTAINABILITY SUSTAINABLE_DEVELOPMENT TECHNOLOGY TIPPING_POINT TOOLS TRANSPARENCY VALUES VIRTUAL WEB_2.0 ACTIVISMBILL_DRAYTON COLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE CONSUMER CONSUMPTION CYBER-ACTIVISM DIALOG ECOLOGYENTERPRISE_2.0 FAIR_TRADE GOOGLE HYPER-HUMANISM JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGE KNOWLEDGE_MANAGEMENT NET_GEN NETWORKS PARTICIPATION PAUL_HAWKEN RESPONSIBILITY RESPONSIBLE_CONSUMPTION SOCIAL_NETWORKS SOCIETY STAKEHOLDERS SUSTAINABILITY SUSTAINABLE_DEVELOPMENTTECHNOLOGY TIPPING_POINT TOOLS TRANSPARENCY VALUES VIRTUAL WEB_2.0 ACTIVISM BILL_DRAYTONCOLLECTIVE_INTELLIGENCE CONSUMER CONSUMPTION CYBER-ACTIVISM DIALOG ECOLOGY TRANSPARENCYENTERPRISE_2.0 FAIR_TRADE GOOGLE HYPER-HUMANISM JOHN_ELKINGTON KNOWLEDGE KNOWL
  • 114. The Value Revolution
  • 115. Consumer Power Chapter 10In his book, Blessed Unrest, writer and environmental advocate It is within this movement – which, although it may appearPaul Hawken explains how what he calls “the largest movement ambitious, has already been influential in bringing downin history” came into being. This is how the author refers to governments, businesses and social leaders – that the consumerthe emergence of organizations that defend the rights of living organizations are enrolled, working to ensure that purchasingbeings – human, animal and vegetable – and, subsequently, decisions are backed up by an ethical and responsible attitude.the environment. And he attributes very particular traits to And it is here too that we find the producers’ associations thatthat movement, which he derives from comparing social and are advocating fair trade.biological behaviors. In both cases – as well as in the cases of all the rest of theHawken theorizes that this movement is similar to “a organizations that Hawken analyzes – the impact of theircollection of small pieces, loosely joined, [that] forms, gathers, campaigns and their institutional growth are closely andand dissipates quickly”. It is joined by ideas, not by ideologies, fundamentally allied with the participative communicationsand it commits citizens to seeking solutions for certain needs. media, and very especially with Web 2.0, the tools of whichIt expresses the collective need to democratize public policies have provided access to a source of power that multiplies by theby changing the direction of decision-making, which, up to the day and extends far beyond geographic, sectorial and culturalpresent day, is imposed “from the top down”. boundaries. 127
  • 116. Toward ResponsibleConsumptionEgged on by an economic and social system that places the true revolution of consumers who have become an unstoppablematerial at the top of the value scale, for several decades now, force for change to be reckoned with has come with the advancea certain sector of humanity has devoted its energy to non-stop of the Internet.consuming. The figures, in this sense, speak for themselves: The aim of responsible consumer organizations is to promotein the 20th century, the world’s 20 richest countries consumed critical awareness in society with regard to not only the system,more natural resources than Mankind had utilized in all the but also to the social and economic impact of the products theyrest of its history. And by 2002, 15% of the world’s population acquire. With this purpose in mind, they promote a reductionwas responsible for 56% of all of the world’s consumption. in consumption levels and changes in habits, mainly connectedAt the same time, and practically parallel to the spread of the with how people buy and with the level of importance thatconsumerist model, a social movement was taking shape society gives to material goods. They urge their peers to questionthat was built on opposite values and that promoted a kind of themselves prior to each and every purchasing decision, to askconsumption based on a commitment to social development themselves under what social and environmental conditionsand environmental care: namely, ethical or responsible the things they are buying have been manufactured. They urgeconsumerism. The origins of this movement date back to 1962 people to justify their choices on the basis of two main criteria:and the publication of a book called Silent Spring, written by the history of the product and the conduct – ethical, social andNorth American biologist Rachel Carson, who, herself, was to environmental – of the company that makes it.die of cancer due to industrial pollution, and who was the first Therefore, the responsible consumer is one that chooses what he/to question the notion of corporate domination and authority. she buys not only on the basis of personal taste and convenience,It was Carson who first said that many of the companies that but also with a view to the common good. So it is that responsibleclaimed to “create value” were, instead, creating “products that consumption implies a change in the general scale of values anddestroy values”. Be that as it may, all indications are that the in the priorities imposed by a dominant model. 128
  • 117. When it Comes to BuyingIn the view of Greenpeace, responsible consumersare ones who:• Regulate their consumption on the basis ofhuman values.• Make aware purchasing decisions, asking themselveswhere the products they acquire come from and wherethey will end up.• Know about self-gratification but also about self-limitation.• Seek not only to satisfy their own needs, but also to show solidarity toward producers.• Try for their consumption to contribute to preserving natural resourcesso that future generations can also enjoy them.• Are aware that buying is a political act with a human significance . The concept of responsible consumption encompasses three dimensions: ethics, because each purchasing decision is based on values; ecology, be- cause the final decision must be in line with the three R’s (reduce, reuse and recycle), and solidarity, because it also implies evaluating the labor condi- tions under which the product was manufactured, as well as the impact of making it on society.
  • 118. On-Line EthicalConsumer CommunitiesDay by day, the number of consumer organizations operating organisation.org/ethical-company-organisation.htmon the Web is growing at a truly surprising rate. The same Operating out of its headquarters in the United Kingdom, thisis true of the numerous sites and blogs offering information organization provides information on hundreds of companieson sustainable products and companies from every region and brands to help consumers choose wisely the productson earth. Through their websites, responsible consumer they buy and know where to acquire them. Each product orcommunities provide detailed information on companies and company is evaluated on the basis of 15 ethical indicatorsproducts, and promote a variety of educational, informative surrounding the social and environmental conditions underand participative campaigns aimed at getting consumers, which the products are manufactured.business people and government officials alike to pledge their • Consumo Responsable - www.consumoresponsable.com/responsibility to the consumer movement. portada.htm The chief mission of this Spanish organization is to createAmong the best known of these organizations are the critical awareness regarding the neo-liberal consumptionfollowing: system and to raise the level of consumer and governmental• Co-op America - www.coopamerica.org interest in the promotion and practice of more ethical, fair andFounded in the United States in 1982, the aim of this not for solidarity-conscious consumerism.profit association is to mobilize consumers and economic agents There are also a number of websites devoted entirely toin pursuit of a more socially and environmentally fair society. recommending sustainable products and to making known theBy 2007, the organization had more than 65,000 individual places where this type of items can be acquired, such as: www.members and 2,500 associated companies. Consumers can find responsibleconsumer.net and www.newamericandream.org,information on the sustainability performances of hundreds of two initiatives born of the blockbuster Green Consumer Guide,companies worldwide on the association’s website. published by John Elkington in 1988, which today has a space• Ethical Company Organisation (ECO) - www.ethical-company- of its own on the Internet: www.greenconsumerguide.com. 130
  • 119. Clean Clothes...Clean Businesses!On July 17, 2007, after several years of effort, Spain’s Campaña RopaLimpia (Clean Clothes Campaign - CCC) managed to get the sha-reholders of Inditex – an industrial group that is a worldwide lea-der in the manufacturing and distribution of clothing and owner ofbrand names like Zara and Massimo Dutti – to approve a new codeof conduct that includes such fair trade principles as guaranteeingworkers a proper wage.The Clean Clothes Campaign was an outgrowth of a demonstrationorganized in front of major department stores in The Netherlandsin 1989, to denounce worker exploitation in sweatshops in the Philippine Islands, where this same trademark was ma-nufacturing its clothing. The protest initiative sparked broad-ranging repercussions worldwide and gathered strengthuntil it became an international crusade dubbed the Clean Clothes Campaign. Today the CCC exists in 11 countriesacross Europe through coalitions of NGOs and labor unions that work independently in each country to improvelabor conditions in the textile industry. They focus on gathering signatures for petitions, organizing demonstrationsand generating communications media campaigns, as a means of mobilizing consumers and getting them to usetheir power to demand that companies employ fair trade practices. 131
  • 120. The Fair Trade MovementThe origin of fair trade dates back to the 1950s, when a group not alone, since hundreds of free trade-oriented organizationsof importers and certain retailers in the Northern Hemisphere exist today. Among the best known are: the Internationaldecided to create a non-profit association with small producers Federation for Alternative Trade (IFAT) , the Network ofin the South to help them fight against low prices and European Worldshops (NEWS) , and the European Fair Trademiddlemen that hindered their access to world markets. Association (EFTA) . The free trade movement operates fundamentally onThe fair trade concept grew in popularity at the end of the three fronts: commercialization (the organization of trade1990s and new organizations began to emerge throughout cooperatives and trade networks among producer countries inEurope and the United States. The Fairtrade Labeling the developing world), dissemination and pressure (the draftingOrganizations International (FLO) was born in 1997, as a of legislative initiatives and public awareness campaigns), andvehicle for consolidating and arranging these initiatives in a responsible consumption (educating consumers about howmore workable order, while redefining Free Trade Guarantee products marketed are manufactured).standards. In 2002, the FLO launched its International FairtradeSince then, this movement’s aim has been to achieve greater Certification Mark, with the aim of generating more widespreadequity in international trade through dialog, transparency consensus and so as to stimulate the adhesion of businessand respect, guaranteeing equitable relations between major people everywhere to fair trade practices. So far, a score ofdeveloped markets and low-income producers. But the FLO is organizations have adopted the seal. 132
  • 121. The Fair Trade SealThe Fair Trade Seal guarantees that producers have received reasonable com-pensation and that workers have received fair pay; that working conditionshave not violated human rights or labor laws; that producers do no employforced or child labor; that there is labor union freedom and that there is nodiscrimination; that community investments (education, health, housing) aremade, and that producers have been selected and treated with care, so as toachieve high quality results.Fair trade certification is currently applied to a broad spectrum of productsincluding coffee, rice, tea, fresh and dried fruits, vegetables, cacao, cotton,honey, sugar, wine, herbs and spices, among others. 133
  • 122. The New Consumer Over the course of the 1990s, in line with the growth of the participative media and the responsible consumer and free trade movements, a new type of customer began to emerge, the most distinctive trait of whom was an awareness of the impact of his/her actions on the environment and society. A minority within the world population began to gather at the front doors of companies and say, “Enough! Down with pollution, down with destruction, down with slave labor, child exploitation, pauper’s wages, unfair rules and productive models that are non-sustainable in the long term.” Satellites, camcorders, blogs, Web 2.0 and cell phones all served to facilitate communications among these different groups and to the chagrined surprise of companies, different forms of interaction came into play and consumers grabbed control like never before, organizing themselves into a variety of movements.134
  • 123. Participation and Complaint Sites• www.www.dotherightthing.comRyan Mickle and Rod Ebrahimi founded this site in 2006, as a forum for the publication of news and user com-ments regarding a variety of brands and companies. Taking these comments into account, the site sorts firmsinto a ranking that includes five social performance ratings: 1- Great Company, 2- Good Company, 3- Not soGood, 4- Less than Good Company, and 5- Worst Company.• www.climatecounts.orgThis is a not for profit organization that seeks to bring consumers and companies together in the struggleagainst climate change. It was founded by Stonyfield Farm Inc., a leading organic yoghurt-maker, in cooperationwith Clean Air-Cool Planet, a not for profit association that carries out research on and promotes solutions forglobal warming. By the end of 2007, the Climate Counts site was providing users with profiles of 56 companiesworldwide and information on their actions with regard to the changing climate.• www.knowmore.org/default.phpThis is a not for profit association created by Bernard Dolan and Sage Francis, whose mission is to make a criticaland impartial examination of all aspects of companies on the market. Their goal is to create the world’s largestfree, reliable and independent database, carrying information to allow consumers to gain a deeper knowledge ofthe history, values and actions of every company and, on the basis of this knowledge, to make more aware andpositive decisions as to the purchases they make. The site has a wiki format and all content is provided by users.Points given in rating the companies, however, are only granted by site moderators, although these ratings canbe refuted by Web-surfers. 135
  • 124. Green MarketingGetting the attention of this brand new and growing market development. In other words, in order for the consumer to besegment, known to many as the “green consumer”, is one of able to believe in the company’s good intentions, the companythe main challenges facing the communications departments itself must first believe in its own good intentions.of concerned companies today. In searching and developing A report called “A Greenprint for Companies”, made public inthe resources and tools to attract this coveted group, business 2007 by Enterprise IG, a communications agency that formshas generated, little by little, a new type of marketing: “green part of the WPP Group, proposes four key requirements that allmarketing”. companies must comply with if they want their sustainabilityWhenever green marketing is mentioned, people tend to policies and their business dealings to meet with success:associate it only with ecology. But in point of fact, this concept 1. Ensure that “sustainable” policies and action plans are at thealso includes other aspects related to companies’ production heart of the company’s business. Those who move soonest willconditions, their social impact in the communities where they gain the greatest competitive advantage.operate and their values. 2. Find compelling ways to promote these aspects of the wayOne of the main problems that green marketing must confront the company operates as a business. This should become anis consumer skepticism. Not infrequently – and sometimes with increasingly important part of the company’s marketing andjust cause – consumers tend to be suspicious of the intentions promotional strategy.of and announcements made by companies, seeing their 3. Be rigorous about ensuring that what the company claims isstrategies as having the ulterior motive of “greenwashing” true. No greenwash! Those who aren’t will be found out, and ittheir images. will be worse for their business than if they had done nothingSpecialists say that if a company wants to avoid being accused at all.of greenwashing and wishes to make its green marketing truly 4. Know that sustainability is about finding solutions thateffective, it is of vital importance that every area of the firm are both environmentally and economically sound and alsoadopt a philosophy and an active attitude in favor of sustainable about the rediscovery of the social contribution businesses can 136
  • 125. make . These requirements could be summarized as meaningthat companies should be coherent, ethical and transparent.Because they are not only facing consumers who are nowimmune to traditional advertising, but also consumers who arewell informed and ever more discerning and responsible.What is unquestionable is the fact that, whether based onconviction or on simple business strategy, more companiesevery day are deciding to implement this new type of marketing.Campaigns like General Electric’s Ecomagination , Philips’sGreen Logo , and General Motors’s Live green, go yellow , arejust a few examples of this trend.In 2006, Judy Hu, worldwide Executive Director of Advertisingand Branding at General Electric told Brandweek Magazine:“Green is green, as in the color of money (…) It is about abusiness opportunity, and we believe we can increase ourrevenue behind these Ecomagination products and services”. According to the Ethical Consumers Report 2006, responsible consumer sales generated greater earnings in the UK in 2005 than cigarette and alcohol sales did. The study also shows that over the last six years, Britain’s green industry has tripled and continues to grow at a rate of over 10% a year. 137
  • 126. Welcome to Chapter 11Enterprise 2.0In the North American spring of 2006, Harvard Business collaboration and simplifies the exchange of informationSchool Professor Andrew McAfee published an article called among those working in a given company and with networksEnterprise 2.0: The Dawn of Emergent Collaboration in the Sloan formed by suppliers, clients and other stakeholders.Management Review . In it, he defined the “Enterprise 2.0 ”paradigm that would soon pass from the academic world As McAfee points out, these Web 2.0 tools are producing ato public knowledge, being quickly disseminated in the radical change within corporations, since they tend to channelblogosphere. collective intelligence and have an impact on innovation, productivity and flexibility in doing business.According to McAfee’s definition, Enterprise 2.0 is theimplementation of the attributes and characteristics of Web The main objective of a 2.0 business is to generate spa-2.0 in business. It represents a new way of working within ces in which people can realize their personal projects oncorporations, by which new technologies and business a collective basis: a distributive network that encouragespractices permit workers to surpass the limits imposed by the new relations without being bound by centralized decision-communications tools offered by the earlier model. Within this making and in which those on the periphery are just as im-new paradigm, there lies an enormous competitive edge for portant as those in the middle.companies that make use of social software, which facilitates 139
  • 127. S.L.A.T.E.S.McAfee supplements and, at the same time, explains his definition by means of the acronym SLATES,which describes the functionalities that define an enterprise within the context of Web 2.0:SearchPeople seek and find what they need for their job activity by searching the contents of corporateIntranets. Finding what you are looking for is a key feature of this new kind of enterprise.LinksThe way to search is from one resource to another – from one link to another.AuthoringEveryone can produce and generate traffic surrounding these contents, as long as what they comeup with is useful to others.TagThe experience of those using the information systems is enriched through tagging. It is notmachines, but users, who tag the contents in accordance with their own criteria.ExtensionsThe recommendation system is a road to advancement in searching. If one member of a communityfinds value in a content and this content, in turn, recommends the reading or searching of another,it is probable that users will also be interested in the latter, since networks are one of the ways inwhich knowledge is organized.SignalsRSS technologies send signals to indicate that the contents that are of interest to the user have beenmodified. 140
  • 128. Communications:Old and New TechnologiesDespite the fact that any user can create and generate new contents communicated to be generated on a shared basiscontents, e-mail and MSN don’t permit the information that (collective creations) within the same working environment.circulates to be seen by all members of the team. By nature, Web 2.0, meanwhile, proposes a new meaning for community,these applications, which McAfee calls “channels”, do not in which everything is known and shared immediately,permit information management nor do they guarantee transparently and effectively.universal access.Intranets and Extranets, for their part, are internal Enterprise 2.0, then, emerges as a response to the rigiditycommunications spaces, with providers, clients and other of current collaboration platforms. Be that as it may, notstakeholders , and are generally administrated by a small everything is about technology. What is important is to usegroup that decides which information to publish and to whom technological tools to generate an internal, receptive andto divulge it. McAfee calls these spaces “platforms”. participative culture within the company, one that permitsThe channels and platforms do not allow all of the members free and voluntary development of collective intelligence. Theof the team to gain access to the information (accessibility). trick, in other words, is to turn working environments intoNor do they make it possible for the information to circulate comfortable and efficient places that provide for the circulationtransparently (visibility). Similarly, they do not permit the of ideas and proper knowledge management. COMMUNICATIONS 1.0 COMMUNICATIONS 2.0 Channels and Platforms Accessibility, Visibility, Collective Creation e-Mail, MSN Social Software, Twitter De-Centralized Networks Distributive Networks 141
  • 129. From Enterprise 1.0to Enterprise 2.0Despite its coinciding with both current times and times but also a change of course in the way communications andto come, Enterprise 2.0 is still far from consolidating itself business are done. In the words of Marshall McLuhan, one ofas the dominant paradigm for corporate communications the world’s greatest communications theorists: “The medium,technology management. It still has to deal with a 1.0 culture or process, of our time… is reshaping and restructuring patternsthat precedes it and that remains entrenched in its rigid style of social interdependence and every aspect of our personaland its stultifying bureaucracy. life...Everything is changing: you, your family, your education,The differences between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 – explained in your neighborhood, your job, your government, your relationearlier chapters – do not only represent technological changes, to ‘the others’. And they’re changing dramatically”. Enterprise 1.0 Enterprise 2.0 Vertical Hierarchies Horizontal Organization Bureaucracy Agility Scant Flexibility High Flexibility Protection of Knowledge Transparency Technologies managed by User-Managed Technologies technical departments: Users have no control Executive Level Down Operative Level Up Structured Information Systems Emergent Information Systems Centralized Distributive 142
  • 130. Evolving from Web 2.0to Enterprise 2.0Transferring the concepts of Web 2.0 to business implies becomes nothing more than the means to do it.proposing the enterprise as a platform and assuming “Markets are conversations,” says the first thesis of Thecollaboration as an end in itself and as a necessary condition Cluetrain Manifesto, and in its tenth thesis, it adds: “As afor such a business to operate. The aim, then, must be result, markets are getting smarter, more informed, morepromoting rendezvous points and establishing networks in organized. Participation in a networked market changes peoplewhich the top priority is cooperation and sharing, as well as fundamentally”.agile information management based on the interaction of Enterprise 2.0 promises, then, to be a flexible venue, aindependent individuals. collaborative platform that is both transparent and simple. ItWithin this new format of enterprises built to satisfy the will be a meeting place in which relations can be establishedneed for interaction among people, those who begrudge from the bottom up.information, contacts, data, etc., are considered “poorer”than others, while those who best display their “know-how”are the most attractive members of the net. This is becausein Enterprise 2.0 value is linked to quality and quantity ofconnections among members, above and beyond any relationsthat the organization itself has.So it is that, within the context of the globalized world, thosewho enter the ranks of Enterprise 2.0 must be capable ofhandling the tools that allow them to expand their contacts.Although at first glance this may appear complicated,the equation is really quite simple: If the members of anorganization feel the need to communicate, the technology 143
  • 131. How to be a 2.0 EnterpriseThere are certain changes that are indispensable when it comes to thinking and actingunder the tenets of this new paradigm and advancing toward the 2.0 model.• Effective Mass Participation Models: OpennessIn a multi-connected world, there is no longer any sense in “safeguarding and hiding” knowledge.You have to open up to the community, become transparent and visible to everyone, while adoptingthe language of sharing, in order to become part of a worldwide network full of potential partners andconsumers.• Friendly and Simple Technology: SimplicityCommunications technologies and social software act as triggers in the generation of ideas andinteraction. That is why it is important for their use to be accessible and for them not to require any greatlevel of expertise or preparation. Furthermore, the tools and how they function should be the same forall levels of hierarchy, so as to promote a participative model that is horizontal and less bureaucratic.• A Dignified Framework for Relations among Members: BondsIn order to build an enterprise based on shared knowledge and dialog, power must no longer beuni-directional and relations among its members must be free-flowing. That is because Enterprise 2.0signifies, above all, taking an ethical stance and its potential depends on people as individuals.• Valuing Knowledge and Participation: DynamismJob promotion models based only on seniority or on other rigid formalities must be consideredobsolete. Explicit recognition must be reserved for those who demonstrate their motivation for learningand participation. Everyone in the organization must be provided with the chance to present proposalsand be furnished with the material opportunities to bring those that prove positive to fruition.To this end, technology must function solely as a facilitating medium. 144
  • 132. Technology for All IBM donated enormous quantities of software codes and set up teams to collaborate in the development of the Apache server and the Linux operating system, both of which are free, open-source tools. Not having to develop its own operating system allowed the company to chalk up savings of a billion dollars a year. Sun Microsystems in 2006 announced the disclosure of the codes for its famous Java platform. Director of Technology Tim Bray explained the move in the book, Wikinomics, saying: “Just as it’s true that a rising tide lifts all boats, we genuinely believe that radical sharing is a win-win for everyone. Expanding mar- kets create new opportunities”. Mozilla Corp is a firm that puts Enterprise 2.0 principles into practice: For every paid staff member, it has hundreds of unpaid contributors connected via the Internet, whose only incentive is to be able to include the experience in their resumes. The cor- poration’s Chairman, Mitchell Baker, revealed in his blog that somewhere between 30% and 40% of Firefox 2 was created by people who were not on the firm’s staff . In this same blog, the company posts ads seeking new contributors, and the page has a section in which the company shares information about corpo- rate management with the community as a whole.145
  • 133. Transparency andthe Dell HellDon Tapscott investigates changes introduced through the 3- Sharingcomputing revolution. As of 2007, he had published 11 books, 4- Acting Globallyinvestigated 200 companies and interviewed 9,000 people A clear example along these lines is the computer companyaround the world, with the aim of understanding and then Dell, which, thanks to a decision to open up and changeexplaining the workings of this new form of economy – which to the 2.0 model, managed to literally walk out of hell.he dubs “Wikinomics”– and the Enterprise 2.0 phenomenon. Jeff Jarvis, the number 70 blogger in terms of popularity outTapscott’s theories point to a relentless movement toward of 70 million blogs that are out there on the Web, had a seriestransparency, as a result of growing demand from those with of problems with a Dell computer back in 2005, and since thean interest in business and in swift technological change, company’s technical service division failed to provide him withparticularly as deployed via the Internet, aimed at making it the solutions he needed, he published a posting in his blogeasier for organizations to disclose information and harder for under the title “Dell Hell”, in which he told the story of histhem to keep secrets. frustrating experience with the firm. Following publicationTapscott says that greater transparency will generate greater of this posting from hell, Dell’s sales suffered a noticeablecorporate accountability and, thus, better corporate behavior. reduction, and the company naturally rushed to solve Jarvis’sTherefore, he suggests, rather than resisting this trend, problem, swapping his defective computer for a brand newcompanies should be adopting transparency and re-thinking one in record time. But the wake-up call that the “Dell Hell”their values. Tapscott metaphorically says it all when he quips: fiasco signified for the company made Dell, from that point“If you’re going to be naked, you’d better be buff.” on, start to pay strict attention to the social and participativeThe author sums up what Wikinomics is all about in four media, actively monitoring blogs, contacting clients when theypoints: reported problems of any kind, and taking into account both1- Being Open. the positive and negative opinions of bloggers and participants2- Peering in on-line forums. 146
  • 134. As a result of this experience, Dell also launched IdeaStorm,a site to which users can send their ideas regarding how toimprove the company’s products and services and vote for thebest ideas presented. The firm’s Chairman, Michael Dell, is thecreator of this space, the aim of which is to cooperate with Dellclients by giving them a voice in the direction the company willtake in the future. By opening up, Dell not only managed towalk out of hell, but also to change its image, by starting todevelop a line of products that responds directly to concreteconsumer demands. 147
  • 135. Google: 2.0 + SustainabilityGoogle currently tops Fortune Magazine’s list of the Accountability, transparency, a good working environmentbest companies to work for in the United States . The and proper wages, among other considerations, are justdistinction is the result not only of staff pay levels, but also some of the traits shared by Enterprise 2.0 and the firms thatof additional benefits offered to employees and the great operate under Triple Bottom Line (TBL) logic, which seeks toworking environment generated by its flexible structure. create environmental, social and economic value. Therefore,Google’s organization demonstrates the essential traits Enterprise 2.0 must necessarily take the road of sustainabilityof Enterprise 2.0, and as such, a growing commitment to and sustainable enterprises must orient their operationsenvironmental care. toward the 2.0 model.In June 2007, Google Inc. presented its “strategy for helpingbuild a clean energy future ”. The plan foresees eliminationof all carbon dioxide emissions from the company in 2008,increased energy savings and promotion of innovativeenvironmental measures.Google is also promoting a series of projects linked tosustainable development, such as the creation of electricalhybrid automobiles, the purchasing of bicycles for its workers,the granting of a 5,000-dollar bonus for any employee whobuys a alternative-energy car and the use of bio-diesel busesto transport the more than 1,500 people who daily go towork at the firm’s offices in Mountain View, California. 149
  • 136. Enterprise 2.0, Net Genand Collective Intelligence • In 2006, some 120,000 people worldwide joined a project called Boeing World Design Team , an Internet forum that encouraged participation during the company’s development of its new Boeing 787 aircraft. The activities included conversations with the Boeing design team and extensive discussions regarding the preferences of the participants with regard to air travel and passenger planes. In the words of the company, “a group of flyers and aviation enthusiasts from across the world eager to share in the excitement of creating the passenger-friendly airplane of the future”. Those who built the technical excellence of the 787 know no national boundaries. • While Pepsi and Coca-Cola are still keeping their soft drink formulas under lock and key, other companies decided to make theirs public. The wikiHow.com site, for instance, makes available a recipe for OpenCola , an open-source beverage that invites users to modify its ingredients in order to create a new and better product. 150
  • 137. More and more, companies are opening up their innovation departments to a worldwide community, which activelyresponds. More specifically, they are opening up to a digital generation accustomed to dialog and collaboration, peoplewho are willing to form part of a virtual talent network. • The LEGO firm, with its LEGO Factory , allows children and adults alike to design models (downloading free, easy-to-use software) and participate in competitions for a variety of prizes. Last year, the prize was 5% of the rights on each model sold through the site.• Novartis is a pharmaceuticals firm that applies Wiki economy principles exactlyas defined by Tapscott. After investing millions of dollars researching the causeof type 2 genetic diabetes, the company published all of its knowledge on thesubject on the Internet. In making this decision, Novartis hopes that the worldwidescientific community will cooperate in accelerating the research process throughparticipative investigation. 151
  • 138. When the World Chapter 12Began to UnderstandIn 1992, a group of scientific professionals known as the Union is required, if vast human misery is to be avoided and our globalof Concerned Scientists (UCS) published a manifesto calling home on this planet is not to be irretrievably mutilated”, theyattention to the state of the planet Earth. More than 1,700 of the said, in terms that were as grave as they were pressing.finest minds from around the world — including 104 NobelPrize-winners — signed the document. Its text warned: “If This warning by the scientists wasn’t heeded. And it wasn’tnot checked, many of our current practices put at serious risk the first.the future that we wish for human society and the plant and As mentioned in earlier chapters of this book, already two decadesanimal kingdoms, and may so alter the living world that it will before the scientists’ manifesto, the report called The Limits ofbe unable to sustain life in the manner that we know”. Growth (Meadows and others, 1972) had warned of the earth’s incapacity to respond to the predicted pace of consumption. InThe manifesto urged governments, businesses and the world 1987, the Brundtland Report , put out by the United Nationspopulation to initiate a radical and urgent change in how the World Commission for Environment and Development,earth’s resources were managed, saying that this was the only advocated some form of sustainable development.alternative if the damage already in evidence was to be reverted.“A great change in our stewardship of the earth and the life on it Once again, Mankind failed to heed the call. 153
  • 139. Crisis in the Third MillenniumThe same year that the scientists issued their warning, certainbusiness people weighed in on the sustainability issue at theEarth Summit (Rio de Janeiro, 1992). Almost simultaneously,the communications revolution was giving birth to theparticipative media and to citizens’ organizations possessed bythe “blessed unrest” of defending the rights of all living things.Little by little, and driven by the relentless communicativepower of the Internet, humanity began to react, no longer to theearly wake-up calls, but to the inexorable turn of events.Be that as it may, the Third Millennium had to arrive beforeawareness of the global emergency would acquire universaldimensions.The Internet explosion, globalization and anti-globalization,the Social Forum and the advance of NGOs, the Indian Oceantsunami, hurricane Katrina on the southern coast of the UnitedStates, droughts and flooding, the ever-expanding statisticalgap between developing and emerging nations, any and allof these causes that came to the fore between the end of 2006and the beginning of 2007 were sufficient reason for Mankindto finally take stock of the global disaster facing the planet.One straw too many finally broke the camel’s back.And the world was suddenly tinted green. 154
  • 140. Critical Condemnationin 35 mm FilmAn Inconvenient Truth, a documentary film analyzing the issues (directed by Edward Zwick and released in 2006) — filmssurrounding global warming, premiered in October 2006. In this that took on such pressing issues as inequality, persecutionfilm, former US Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize-winner of human rights activists and the horror of child abuse.Al Gore examines the scientific evidence regarding climate All of these movies received noteworthy prizes – includingchange and arrives at the conclusion that “if the vast majority several Oscars – as well as the applause of the mass public.of the world’s scientists are right, we have just ten years to averta major catastrophe that could send our entire planet into atail-spin of epic destruction involving extreme weather, floods,droughts, epidemics and killer heat waves beyond anything wehave ever experienced.”The film had a great impact worldwide and bolstered thecredibility of accusations from a variety of quarters that hadfed other documentaries like The Corporation, a creation ofCanadian directors Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbot that cameout in 2003 and analyzed the pathological behavior of majorbusiness groups, and Bowling for Columbine (2002), a searingcritique of the US arms culture, by American film directorMichael Moore.Fictional feature films also rode the crest of this new wave. In afew short years, such premieres included The Constant Gardener(Fernando Meirelles, 2005), Babel (a 2006 picture by Mexicanfilm director Alejandro González Iñárritu) and Blood Diamond 155
  • 141. We’re All EnvironmentalistsIn the face of governments’ failure to respond to the demands of Hannah is, furthermore, a staunch activist, who has carried thecitizens and NGOs regarding the issues surrounding the climate pros and cons of the bio-diesel debate to more than 10 millionchange emergency, unlimited resource consumption and people worldwide, and generates weekly film shorts providingsituations of extreme poverty, several international celebrities information or protests on environmental issues through herdecided to head up campaigns to save the planet. own video blog, “Daryl Hannah Love Life ”.Actor Leonardo DiCaprio is one of the most active stars in the Paltrow and her husband, Chris Martin, who is the leader of thestruggle to preserve the environment. He has been running musical group, Coldplay, are also noted fair trade activists.his own foundation since 1998, is a member of the Board of Unfurling slogans like “Stop CO2” and encouraged by theGlobal Green USA and has been the producer and author of a actions of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger —who managednumber of ecological shorts and documentaries, such as Water to push through a law providing that California must reducePlanet and The 11th Hour. The actor has also opened an Internet its greenhouse gas emissions by 25% before 2020— a numberforum where visitors are invited to propose advice on caring for of celebrities are now backing the green cause. Among themthe planet, under the motto “we can all be environmentalists”. are Julia Roberts, Susan Sarandon, George Clooney, Penelope Cruz, Forest Whitaker, Nicole Kidman and Kirsten Dunst, whoCameron Díaz and Gwyneth Paltrow, for their part, lend their demonstrate their support by traveling in eco-hybrid cars.lovely faces to the Act Green organization. They also participat-ed in the institutional video put out by the Environmental Media There are those, too, who participate in campaigns like Oxfam,Association (EMA) , an organization that, since 1989, has been an organization that lends its cooperation to more than 500mobilizing the entertainment industry in an effort to promote development programs, is active in emergencies, promotes fairenvironmental education. The list of award-winning stars who trade and fosters social mobilization. Its member list includeshave lent their fame to the cause includes Pierce Brosnan, Daryl such stars as Gael García Bernal, U2’s Bono, Antonio BanderasHannah, Alanis Morissette, Edward Norton and John Travolta. and Scarlett Johansson. 156
  • 142. One of the true high points of this sort of activism was LiveEarth , a concert held in 2007 to spark worldwide awarenessregarding the dangers of global warming. The event, broadcastlive to more than 2 billion viewers around the world, took placeon seven continents and brought together more than a hundredmusicians. It was simultaneously telecast from such cities asJohannesburg, London, Sydney and Shanghai, and includedperformances by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Maná, Black EyedPeas, Snoop Dogg, Lenny Kravitz, Bon Jovi, Shakira, Roger Media that “Scan” and ReplicateWaters and Madonna, among many others. Before and afterthe different performances — emceed by Alec Baldwin, Kevin The traditional communications media couldn’t helpBacon and other committed show business personalities — a but echo this veritable “green revolution” that burstcampaign called SOS, Save Our Lives, was developed, including onto the public scene between the end of 2006 and theshort documentary films and public interest announcements beginning of 2007.on radio and TV. In April 2007, The New York Times Magazine published an 11-page article entitled “The Power of Green”, in which Thomas L. Friedman analyzed the geopolitical changes that new sustainable values were producing worldwide. Just a month later, Vanity Fair Magazine carried its second annual Green Issue7, the cover of which was specially illustrated with a photo of actor Leonardo DiCaprio posing on a frigid landscape in Iceland. 157
  • 143. The Advance of a CulturalChangeAs the UCS and a number of different reports have long since • The predominance of being over appearing to be, whichwarned, substantial environmental damage is currently being facilitates choice.done that will have an inevitable effect on present life forms. In • Authentic respect for oneself and transparency towardthe words of US evolutionary biologist Elisabet Sahtouris: “… those who surround one.We not only pollute and destroy our vital ecosystems, including • An open attitude, as evidenced in relationships that facilitatethe air we breathe and the water we drink, but we also let 25,000 community participation and a sense of belonging.children die of hunger and easily preventable disease every single • Creativity and innovation as predominant traits, both onday (that is, 175,000 a week; over 9 million every year) without the job and off.even considering this important information!”. • Access to new technologies, which contribute speed andBoth the damages caused by climate change and dwindling effectiveness, within the framework of a bottom-up logic.resources, and those resulting from the unfair distributionof wealth that hinders a dignified lifestyle for many, are the Enterprise 2.0, which has culled many of its values from theconsequences of Man’s actions. Therefore, in order to put Net Gen and channels them into the corporate environment,a stop to these damages, a new global paradigm is required. provides new responses to the rigidity of old collaborativeWhile such a paradigm involves, especially, human productive platforms and applies technological tools to generate a receptiveactivities, it clearly goes beyond these, since it further implies and participative internal culture in the company.modification of behavioral patterns that include everythingfrom consumption to leisure activities. Nevertheless, its most outstanding contribution to new valuesThe Net Gen is making an essential contribution to the values has focused mainly on the circulation of ideas and knowledgedemanded by this new paradigm, since among the members management, as these relate to the principle of collaborationof this generation, there is already a consensus regarding the and the sharing and generating of collective intelligence on afollowing premises: worldwide scale. 158
  • 144. Old paradigm values New paradigm valuesPresent FutureHuman Being LifeIrresponsible Production and Consumption Environmental, Economic and Social AccountabilityExchange InteractionCorporativism AssociationWelfare State Welfare SocietyEconomic Growth Sustainable Human DevelopmentExclusion EqualityAppearances AuthenticitySecrets TransparencyIndividualism ParticipationCompetition CollaborationOld Technologies Web 2.0Top-Down Logic Bottom-Up LogicIndividual Knowledge Collective IntelligenceLocal Scope Global Scope 159
  • 145. Epilog: The 2.0 Era Is BornHow do you put together a jigsaw puzzle when you don’t know when he goes on to suggest that, as a first step toward this,what the final design will look like? By seeking and finding the “vivid images of sustainable futures must be painted”. Eve-pieces that form the outer edges first. ryone needs to work together to create the final draft of ourIn this book, we’ve established an outer framework, laying out common future.some pieces without knowing what the final image will look This is a vision in progress. And all indications are that,like, but having an idea that the figure that starts to take shape, within the next half-decade, the world is going to be a radicallyfollowing three years of research, is that of inexorable change. different place. The trends we have described in this book areThese outer borders indicate that the sustainability tipping the troubled waters that will generate the waves of substantialpoint has arrived, that everything that was considered of vital change to come.importance 15 years ago has now, additionally, become urgent. The first of these waves is the worldwide associative revolutionAnd thus, the jigsaw pieces that are accumulating within “the largest movement in history”: the rise of millionsthe framework and that remain mixed up and seemingly of organized citizens, who, based on new developmentdisconnected, all have, nonetheless, a common denominator: technologies and new communications media, work andtheir urgency. cooperate among themselves to find solutions to the mostThere is no longer any time or resources available to humanity urgent problems facing them.to allow it to keep on indulging in irresponsible conduct with The second wave is the one that companies like Natura,regard to the planet and, indeed, to its own species. But just Patagonia, Wal Mart and Home Depot are riding, companiesas in the case of a real jigsaw puzzle, the global transforma- that have sealed a new kind of social pact with their customers,tion requires organization and planning. So says Thomas N. founded on the values of sustainable development. And this isGladwin when he states that “large-scale organizational trans- a commitment that must not be underestimated, since onceformation toward sustainability is a long-term and multi-level expressed, it places the company, its products, its strategy andchallenge, entailing a range of reinforcing roles and tasks” and its profitability under the critical eye of investors, competitors 161
  • 146. and consumers alike, who will all question and analyze every shape, a new global awareness aimed at placing the inter-move they make, thus clearing the way for a whole new ests of life and the species above those of the individual.production and consumer logic. Along with these waves, these driving forces behind new prac-Playing a decisive role in strengthening these waves on whose tices and values, a new capitalism is being born: consciouscrest ride citizens and consumers —the protagonists of that capitalism.“vivid image” of a sustainable future suggested by Gladwin— In the midst of this urgency, amid these troubled waters,are the tools of Web 2.0, which allow any person anywhere humanity is finally understanding. And as Bill Drayton says,to film, photograph or write about a business or a public “Every time we are about to make a decision, we should thinkinstitution and publish that information on the Web. of the people around us and ask ourselves if that decision isBlogs, social networks and free publication platforms like going to cause a problem for any of those people. If that’s theYouTube are transparent and collaborative and are the ones case, change it or don’t do it”.used by consumers and citizens alike to regulate the action The building of this new world is already underway. Theof companies and governments. It is here where information new generation of youngsters, the Net Gen, has entered thecirculates regarding forms of production and the social and scene. This is a generation that was born immersed in a digitalenvironmental impact of the products on which purchasing world, accustomed to taking action on reality, changing it todecisions are later made. And here too is where information respond to their own tastes and interests. It is a generationis disseminated about government action, and on the basis of that not only imagines a new model, but also knows how towhich votes will later be cast. bring it into practice. What will happen in, say, ten years, whenThe value revolution is up and running and the vehi- these youngsters are in decisive positions in enterprises andcle for its advancement and its fundamental tool is Web civil society organizations, reorganizing them under their2.0. Out of the signals issuing from enterprises and com- new logic? What will happen when, rising from their role asmon citizens via the net, a new cosmovision is taking consumers, they exert power over the markets? 162
  • 147. The questions multiply like the signals that point to a him around the fire: “In every life, there is a terrible fight, atransformation toward Sustainability 2.0. Adapting no longer fight between two wolves. One is all evil, fear, rage, envy, greed,signifies a mere corporate decision: Now, what it means to arrogance, self-pity, resentment and deceit. The other is all good,companies is their possibility for surviving in the future. happiness, serenity, humility, trust, generosity, truth, gentlenessChange, then, is no longer an option. It is a need. and compassion.”And change implies redefining corporate culture and After a long silence, one of the children asked: “But Grandpa,readapting productive processes, bearing in mind their social which of the wolves will win?”and environmental impact, while taking into account, too, their The Cherokee elder looked at the child and said: “Whichever oneeconomic results and the values imposed by the Net Gen. you feed”.In order to achieve change, organizations must retool foroperation in the world of Web 2.0, since this is the scenarioin which enterprises can interact with their consumers andstakeholders alike, in an honest, open and transparent way.Such are the pieces of the puzzle that, driven by the coming ofthe new media, are beginning to occupy the space inside theframework laid out on the table.This is a time of change for humanity.It is a time for decisions.And as always, destiny is in our hands.The native peoples of North America told a story that couldn’tbe better to summarize the magnitude of this new challenge:A Cherokee elder told his grandchildren who were gathered with 163
  • 148. Business Case Studies Appendix 1 Pioneer CompaniesWhen they first emerged, sustainable business practiceswere led by a handful of pioneer companies. They actedin the face of the social and environmental emergencyand driven by the new role of consumers. Generallyspeaking, these companies were —and still are in manycases— managed by “visionaries” or individuals whowere “ahead of their time”. These were business peoplewho were aware of what was happening before anybodyelse saw the signs of change. And even at the risk ofbeing considered eccentric, they turned deaf ears oncriticism and forged ahead to realize their vision.
  • 149. StarbucksA nice working environment and good long-term profitability Based on these principles, Starbucks promotes numerousare the values emphasized by Starbucks Coffee Company, the actions and a variety of different programs related to sustainablelargest chain of coffee shops in the world , with 7,521 self- development.owned stores and 5,647 franchises in 39 countries, 140,000 But its pioneering role is embodied in its mission to ensureemployees and annual billings in2006 of nearly 7.77 billion dollars. that those who grow and harvest the coffee it serves do their work under conditions of dignity and respect for labor laws.Founded in Seattle, Washington, in 1971, Starbucks is a For this purpose, Starbucks has formulated what it calls thepioneer enterprise in the social responsibility practices that it C.A.F.E. (Coffee and Farmer Equity) Practices, a series ofhas applied from the very start, in a rigorous set of commercial standards that involves coffee growing and processingpolicy principles based on six main standards: and compliance with which guarantees a sustainable supply1. Provide a great work environment and treat each other with of the highest quality coffee.respect and dignity. The C.A.F.E. Practices are directly related to Triple Bottom2. Embrace diversity as an essential component in the way we Line policies, since, among other rules, they include thedo business. following obligations:3. Apply the highest standards of excellence to the purchasing,roasting and fresh delivery of our coffee.4. Develop enthusiastically satisfied customers all of the time.5. Contribute positively to our communities and ourenvironment.6.Recognize that profitability is essentialto our future success.
  • 150. • To promote economic responsibility (by paying fair prices tofarmers and suppliers).• To assume social responsibility (by ensuring safe, fair andhuman working conditions and by complying with properwage and workday guidelines).• To protect the environment (by controlling waste, protectingquality, conserving water, making efficient use of energy,preserving biodiversity and reducing agrochemical substances).In order to obtain C.A.F.E. Certification, suppliers must submitto an independent audit to evaluate to what extent they complywith the requirements.In 2006, more than 50% of all of the coffee the Starbuckschain purchased (about 70,000 tons of it) came from C.A.F.E.-certified suppliers.The company’s goal is to get a greater number of suppliers eachyear to comply with these good practice standards, which hasled the firm to carry out a variety of promotional and trainingactivities in the different coffee-growing regions of the world. 167
  • 151. 168
  • 152. The Whole Foods Market“A virtuous circle entwining the food chain, human beings and panels to generate renewable energy . The company’s storesMother Earth”: That’s how The Whole Foods Market defines promote the use of cleaning products with reduced toxicityits business policy. The company is the largest chain of natural levels and returnable containers, and the firm has a reduced-and organic food shops in the United States. Founded in 1980 waste program consisting of giving customers five cents foras a little natural products store in Austin, Texas, by 2007, it every plastic bag they return. The firm also donates 5% of itshad grown into a chain of 196 stores distributed throughout earnings to philanthropic causes and provides backing to athe United States and Britain. Considered one of the world’s variety of environmentalist organizations.fastest-growing self-service stores, its earnings are expected torise to 10 billion dollars by 2010. The Whole Foods Market’s vision embodies a change of values that is totally aligned with the tenets of sustainable enterprise,Company spokespeople say that the three concepts that define since its products are oriented toward customers who valuethe firm’s policy —food chain, humanity and planet— creativity, diversity and freedom of choice and it works withare linked in a close and delicate symbiosis that makes them responsible suppliers that make use of processes and materialsinterdependent. It is for this reason that, from the outset, the that do not undermine the broad spectrum of the individualcompany has applied a careful selection process for all of the and planetary eco-system.products it sells, maintaining a strong commitment to sustain-able farming and small organic food producers. The self-service chain has also shown itself to be in the vanguard in terms of communications. It has six blogs on the Web, oneCurrently, 100% of The Whole Foods Market’s energy needs of which —The CEO’s Blog — is published and managed byare covered via the purchasing of wind power credits, and five John Mackey, company CEO, who personally responds to ques-of its stores in California and New Jersey make use of solar tions and comments from customers and the general public. 169
  • 153. PatagoniaPatagonia Inc. was founded in Ventura, California, in 1972. that made use of non-renewable raw materials with organicSince then, it has garnered worldwide recognition for its cotton: Since 1996, this is the only type of cloth used in itscorporate care policies in defense of the environment and for clothing line. But it was also the first to use a type of polyesterthe creation of a sustainable business model. made from recycled soft drink bottles in its clothing produc- tion process.Devoted to the design and production of outdoor clothing andoutfitting (mountaineering, camping, skiing, snowboarding, The company is a co-founder of an alliance called 1% For thesurfing, fishing and trekking gear), the firm markets products Planet12, whose members donate 1% of their sales to environ-through free-standing shops and on-line catalogs. Its 2006 mentalist groups worldwide. Since 1985, when this initiativesales amounted to nearly 270 million dollars. began, Patagonia has given away more than 25 million dollars to ecological organizations.Patagonia’s mission statement is: “Make the best product,cause no unnecessary harm, and use business to inspire and Furthermore, as part of its own environmental campaign, theimplement solutions to the environmental crisis.” Through company gives one dollar more per day to any employee thatits foundation, the company has demonstrated conduct that uses an alternative means of transport to get to work.is clearly aligned with this mission and has thus never been All waste products like glass, plastic and paper generated bythe target of accusations or campaigns by consumers or civil the company are recycled for reuse. The firm’s restrooms havesociety organizations. a low-consumption water system, its lighting is 100% wind- powered, and all electrical appliances are consumption-efficient.Patagonia was the first retail textile company to replace cloth Additionally, for the past several years Patagonia has been 170
  • 154. taking part in a campaign to protect marine fauna and to haltpollution of ocean waters.The company’s labor policy promotes the development of apleasant working environment. Patagonia offers its employeesextra benefits, such as eight weeks of paid maternity andpaternity leave, complete medical insurance coverage, andtwo-month exchange programs, with pay, for those who wish towork in non-profit environmentalist organizations. In addition,the company’s corporate headquarters organizes monthlymanagement and staff forums in order to provide a venue inwhich to air opinions, proposals and demands regarding thefirm’s operations. Thanks to these attributes, in 2006, Patagoniawas ranked 15th among top employers, by the Great Place toWork Institute of the United States.Patagonia disseminates information about its operations andactions through its website at www.patagonia.com and throughits advertising campaigns. It also has its own blog , wherecompany employees and customers can leave their commentsand upload items of interest. 171
  • 155. NaturaBy the dawn of the third millennium, the Natura cosmetics personal hygiene and perfumes, with a catalog of more thanfirm of Brazil was already taking shape as an emerging new 600 products, a list of 5,000 collaborators and a veritable armyparadigm model for business. As of its creation in 1969, the of 617,000 consultants distributed throughout Brazil, Argentina,company sought to create value, not only for its shareholders, Chile, Peru, Mexico and France.but also for its consultants — more than 500,000 of them According to the firm’s last published annual report, it hadthroughout the country — while protecting the environment. earnings in 2006 of over 8.3 billion dollars, up 19.9% over 2005 figures.In 1974, its owners adopted a direct sales format, creating a Like most cosmetics firms, Natura has been called into questionteam of consultants in charge of putting together their own by a variety of organizations for making use of animal testingclient portfolios and reselling the company’s products to them. for its products. As a result, as of 1997, company managementNatura’s sales strategy proved highly successful and, as of 1994, decided to reduce the use of this type of testing and since 2000,permitted it to expand to other countries. In 2000, the company the firm has been investing three million dollars a year to studymade hefty investments in infrastructure and training, which alternative methods.allowed them to build Espacio Natura, a major center forcosmetics production, logistics, research and development. Since its creation, Natura has been highly committed toThese investments also permitted the firm to launch its Ekos sustainable development, embodying a corporate accountabilityline, consisting of products including active ingredients from model in line with environmental care and social responsibility.Brazil’s bio-diversity and obtained by sustainable means. Natura says that its business management style is founded on two basic pillars:Today Natura leads the field in Latin America in cosmetics, 1. Ethical and transparent relationships with its stakeholders 172
  • 156. (collaborators, suppliers, communities, consultants, consumers, governments, shareholders and society).2.Business goals that are compatible with sustainabledevelopment.Natura has such a long history of sustainable practices that ithas long since become a model for many young companies.In the 1980s, it was the first Brazilian cosmetics company topromote the use of product refills, making use of containersthat were more environmentally friendly. Since 1995, ithas been running a program in association with the AbrinqFoundation called “Creer Para Ver” (Believe It to See It), theaim of which is to finance programs that contribute to improv-ing public school education.In 2006, the company managed to lower its water consumptionby 7% and its power consumption by 1% per unit sold. In 2008,it plans to eliminate the greenhouse gas emissions generated by Life is aits installations, so as to render the firm “carbon neutral”. Natura chain ofpublicizes its actions through its website at www.natura.net and relationships.through advertising campaigns in the major mass media. 173
  • 157. Ben & Jerry’sBen & Jerry’s is the famed ice cream maker that was the en- dollars a year for the development of minority businessesterprise of two friends that shared a certain sort of hippie and another 5 million dollars annually to be distributed inmystique: namely, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfi eld. The employee bonuses.company that they founded with a 12,000-dollar investmentin a converted service station in Burlington, Vermont, in Be that as it may, once the company had been acquired by1978, today has more than 580 franchise stores worldwide. Unilever, it began to be questioned by many consumers for selling out the ideals it had preached as of its origin.In April 2000, the German-origin multinational giant Unilever The fact is that by mid-2007, the only really concrete criticism — with interests in food, beverages, beauty and personal hy- the company had received in this sense was for layoffs amonggiene products and annual sales of 46 billion euros — bought its workers.Ben & Jerry’s and turned it into one of the group’s subsidiaries.According to the last financial report that Ben & Jerry’s pub- In 1998, Ben & Jerry’s drafted a mission statement built onlished, corresponding to the year Unilever bought it, its an- three premises:nual profits were already in excess of 237 million dollars. 1. Product Mission: To make, distribute and sell the finest quality all natural ice cream and euphoric concoctions withStarting in 1985, Cohen and Greenfield donated 7.5% of a continued commitment to incorporating wholesome,their yearly pre-tax profits to the Ben & Jerry Foundation, natural ingredients and promoting business practices thatfor distribution among worthy philanthropic causes. One respect the Earth and the Environment.of the pre-conditions for sale of the firm to Unilever was 2. Social Mission: To operate the company in a way thatthat the multinational would continue to donate the same actively recognizes the central role that business plays inpercentage of profits to charitable causes, plus 5 million society by initiating innovative ways to improve the quality 174
  • 158. of life locally, nationally and internationally.3. Economic Mission: To operate the Company on a sustainablefinancial basis of profitable growth, increasing value for itsstakeholders and expanding opportunities for developmentand career growth for its employees.Ben & Jerry’s also formulated an environmental carecommitment, implementing four programs encompassingthe use of paper and packaging made of recyclable materials,energy savings, application of sustainable farming principles,and waste reduction and recycling.The company additionally participated in the HIER initiativefor Climate-Neutral Products, developed by a consortiumof 38 Dutch NGOs, and including the WWF, Greenpeace,Friends of the Earth and the International Red Cross.Ben & Jerry’s history, mission and product information andcompany news are communicated to the public through thefirm’s website at www.benjerry.com. 175
  • 159. Appendix 2 Companies that ChangedIn these first years of the new millennium, many companieshave produced genuine transformations in their ways ofdoing business. They have understood that, within theframework of the new paradigm, reorientation of theirmission, direction and commitment is a priority, in keepingwith the demands of a human race that urgently wants andneeds to be sustainable. These firms —at times due todecisions by their CEOs, shareholders or management, atothers, as a result of reports or demands that have forcedaction to be taken— have ended up assuming the fact thatin a global world and in the era of participative media, theconsumer has the last word and it is no use trying to ignore it.
  • 160. ToyotaA company that has made and continues to make major changes mixes with the air to produce electric current to drive an electricis Toyota Motors, one of the three largest car manufacturers motor.in the world, according to the Fortune Global 500 ranking for In 2005, the Prius was named Car of the Year in Europe by a2006 , and the eighth largest company on the face of the earth. jury of expert journalists from 22 countries. According to the publication Consumer Reports, it was also the “green” car mostFirst founded in 1933, the Japanese firm started making the often chosen in the United States in 2006, and the one preferredfirst mass produced hybrid automobile in 1997: the Toyota by such environmentally committed celebrities as LeonardoPrius, which features a mixed electric and gasoline-powered DiCaprio.system that is computer operated. When the driver is stoppedat a traffic signal or is stuck in heavy traffic, the gasoline motor The hybrid line’s success really shows in Toyota’s finances: Inshuts down automatically to save fuel and reduce pollution. April 2007, the company reported an 11.7% increase in sales, driven by record figures for hybrid vehicle sales . In May 2007When the car needs to move, the electric motor kicks in and the firm sold more than 24,000 Prius model units, a 185%the gasoline engine only starts up when the driver requires increase on the same month in 2006, placing the company atgreater acceleration. the top of the automotive industry ranking.Currently, Toyota is working on developing fuel cell automo- Toyota also provides economic support to NGOs, schools andbiles. Fuel cells are a series of membranes in which hydrogen universities, for the development of community programs. 178
  • 161. 179
  • 162. General ElectricGeneral Electric (GE) is gleaning major benefits from its documentary showing the consequences of secret experimentsinvestments in sustainability. The company recently reported and toxic nuclear waste-handling carried out by the companya 12 billion-dollar profit on sales of new products with a high for 21 years in Hanford, Washington. The picture featured in-component of ecological value and efficiency, launched in May terviews with former GE employees and townspeople and dis-2005 as part of its Ecomagination program, which promotes the cussed the birth defects and health problems that people indevelopment of alternative energy and more environmentally the area had suffered. The impact of the movie —which wonfriendly technologies. an Oscar in 1992 for Best Short Documentary Film— under- scored government-linked corruption and fraud scandals thatBut in the case of this multinational, with industrial plants in questioned GE’s participation in arms production and its de-over a hundred countries and 316,000 employees worldwide, signs for nuclear plants in different areas of the world.the change toward cleaner production processes was born to Finally, in 2001, the US Environmental Protection Agencya large extent of lawsuits and complaints regarding environ- (EPA), sanctioned GE for dumping PCB —a highly toxicmental pollution that were undermining GE’s reputation and organic compound —ordering the company to provideits finances. several areas in the Hudson River Basin with drinking water . And as of 2007, GE has been forced to pay out nearlyIn 1991, GE came under fire with the release in the United 500 million dollars in compensation to users and formerStates of film-maker Debra Chasnoff’s “Deadly Deception: employees who suffered the effects of pollution derived fromGeneral Electric, Nuclear Weapons and Our Environment”, a the asbestos used to insulate turbines built by the firm. 180
  • 163. It was in response to these issues that GE was obliged to adaptto the new rules implied by sustainability, in order to ensureits own survival. And so it was that, in 2004, the companylaunched Ecomagination, a program by which GE made fourmajor commitments for the years to come:1- To increase the amount it invests in research anddevelopment programs to find reduced pollution technologiesto 1.5 billion dollars (from 900 million in 2006).2- To increase sustainable product sales, with a view to theirreaching 20 billion dollars in 2010.3- To achieve a 1% reduction in total worldwide greenhousegas emissions by 2012 and to reduce their intensity by 30%as of 2008.4- To attain 30% improvement in energy efficiency by theend of 2012.In order to keep the public informed of its progress in complyingwith the commitments it has assumed, GE maintains awebsite devoted entirely to its sustainability program . 181
  • 164. DuPontThis is another highly publicized case of a company that faced only paid the fine, but also put up 6.25 million dollars more tomajor legal action for polluting the environment. DuPont is a finance environmental projects.US-based multinational that is recognized for its developmentof such materials as nylon, neoprene, Teflon, Lycra, Vespel, In recent decades, DuPont has demonstrated an intenseKevlar and cellophane, among others. It has operations in more commitment to environmental sustainability, by developingthan 70 countries, 60,000 employees worldwide and earnings bio-materials as alternatives to petroleum by-products and byof 27.4 billion dollars in 2006 . economically supporting more sustainable production options, like polymers manufactured on the basis of corn starch, a projectIn 2005, a group of consulting scientists for the US Environ- that is already providing the company with good results .mental Protection Agency (EPA) determined that one of thechemicals used in Teflon, perfluoroctanoic acid (PFOA or C8) Each year, DuPont earmarks about 500 million dollars forwas a cancer-causing agent. When residents in an area sur- environmental projects, and has set certain goals, amongrounding a DuPont production plant heard the results of the which are the following:scientific testing and found out that their water supply had been • To reach zero-level for injuries, occupational illnessespolluted with PFOA dumped by the company, they decided to and environmental accidents.bring suit against the firm . The company denied that there • To achieve zero-level for waste and pollutionwas any direct connection between Teflon and cancer, and to emissions.demonstrate their point, they carried out a study among their • To constantly improve production processes andemployees. The results of the study failed to provide conclusive practices.evidence that PFOA was a carcinogen. But the court decided • To accept accountability and provide a responseto fine DuPont 10.25 million dollars anyway, for having kept through the commitment of company leaders andits PFOA specifications secret for 20 years. The company not employees alike. 182
  • 165. Home DepotHome Depot, the largest sales chain for construction materials environmentalist organizations —which consider the criteriaand home improvement items in the United States, was one that the company applies entirely too broad— theseof the first companies to heed the claims of environmentalists products have expanded the list of 2,500 environmentallythat demonstrated in front of their places of business, and friendly products that the company was already offering incalled on its suppliers —especially of furniture and other items its 2,100 commercial outlets in the United States, Canada,made of wood— to employ sustainability models in their use of Mexico and China.raw materials and production processes. Within the framework of its social insertion campaign, the firm has also created The Home Depot Foundation, anIn 2006, Home Depot took this strategy a step further, sending organization through which it carries out actions aimed ata note to its suppliers of 176,000 products, inviting them to helping create a community that is more committed to caringincorporate their articles into the chain store’s Eco Options for the earth.campaign, the aim of which was to green-sticker all products Despite its apparently excellent reputation, until very recentlyon sale in its stores that presented one or more of the following this wasn’t enough to keep Home Depot from being thetraits: sustainable in terms of woodland management, energy object of accusations and lawsuits by former employeesefficient, passes clean air standards, efficient in terms of water charging racial and gender discrimination against minoritiesconservation. and women. In this case, the demand for change toward sustainability came from the shareholders, who, alarmed byIn response to the Home Depot proposal, more than 60,000 such accusations, in 2006 called on Home Depot to provideproducts —in addition to the obvious ones, like organic detailed information identifying employees by gender,gardening products or energy-saving light bulbs— swiftly ethnicity and job descriptions, so as to be able to rectify anydeveloped sustainable profiles. Although debated by certain discrimination detected. 183
  • 166. InterfaceInterface Inc. is one of the main carpet-making chains in the The deadline was finally set for 2020. Nevertheless, theworld, with daily production reaching 450,000 kg of carpeting benefits of the change, initiated in 1995, have gained strengthand synthetic materials and 2006 sales of nearly 1.08 billion throughout the company ever since. In statements to the media,dollars. Founded in 1973 in LaGrange, Georgia, USA, and Anderson has said that, at present, Interface has advanced bycurrently headquartered in Atlanta, the firm has more than 7,300 about 45% from where they were to where they want to be.employees, at 26 factories and offices, in nearly 100 countries.Founder and Chairman Ray C. Anderson has said in interviews In the company’s 2006 Sustainability Report , managementthat when he founded the company back in the ‘70s, he wasn’t says that in the last ten years, the firm managed to reduce wasteworried about the environment, but limited his action to by 70%, energy consumption by 45% and water use in its fac-complying with standards imposed by the government in order tories and offices by 80%. In that same period, it increased itsto keep out of trouble. It was only in 1994, as a consequence of renewable energy use by 16% and increased from 0.5% to 20%complaints by environmental organizations, that he decided to its use of recyclable, biodegradable materials in the composi-seriously look into the impact his company was having on the tion of its products. Sales, for their part, have gone up by 49%.environment and ordered his engineers to do a study.The alarm that the results of the study set off in him and his In 2006 , Interface kicked off its Mission Zero campaign,reading of Paul Hawken’s bestseller, The Ecology of Commerce, which foresees elimination by 2020 of any negative impact ofwere the two factors that most influenced his decision to make the company on the environment. With a view to this goal, theradical changes in how he did business. He challenged his company is promoting action on seven fronts:collaborators to set a time frame in which to turn Interface into 1-The total elimination of waste in all areas of business.a “restored company”. 2- Benign emissions to replace toxic substances from products, 184
  • 167. vehicles and installations.3- Renewable energy for the operation of 100% of the company’sfactories and installations.4- Closed circuit processes that make use of recovered andbiodegradable materials.5- Efficient transport of personnel and products so as to preventwaste and toxic emissions.6- Generation of awareness in the shareholders and creation ofa culture aimed at improving the quality of life of employees,their community and their surroundings.7- Redesigning of the company’s way of doing business andadoption of a new business model that promotes sustainabledevelopment values.Interface publishes news of its actions on its website at www.interfacesustainability.com. Its sustainability programs havesaved the company over 336 million dollars since 1995. Itsstrategy has become so successful that, in 2006, the firmcreated a consulting division to market its methods amongother companies. 185
  • 168. NikeNike is a multinational firm dealing in clothing, footwear and Nike into the eye of the storm with publication of her booksporting goods. It is the most important company of its kind in entitled No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies, in which shethe world. Founded in the United States in 1968, it currently analyzed the impact of major corporations on world society.controls 50% of the sports shoe market in that country. Based And in 2004, the Canadian film documentary The Corporation,in Beaverton, Oregon, the firm employs more than 26,000 co-directed by Jennifer Abbott, Mark Achbar and Joel Bakan,people and is present in at least 16 countries. In 2006, Nike actually showed internal Nike documents revealing thereported record billings of over 14.95 billion dollars. cost/benefit ratio of a piece of clothing manufactured in the Dominican Republic. Bottom line: an item that sold to theIn the 1990s, the Nike trademark began to be linked to labor public for 60 dollars only provided the worker that made it withexploitation. In 1993, the firm was severely criticized for the use eight cents in pay.of child labor in some of the factories that it owns or has undercontract in various countries in Asia and Latin America. The A number of NGOs (Global Exchange and Nologo.org amongaccusations became much harsher and wider-spread in 1997 them) have also lodged successive and repeated complaintswith the release of the critical film, The Big One, by director against NIKE, and even today, some, like Oxfam Australia ,Michael Moore, in which Nike figured as one of the major continue to act as watchdogs on the sports clothing industry toUS-based multinationals that were using slave labor to make make sure that it respects labor rights.their products. The huge repercussions that the film wroughtcaused Nike CEO Phil Knight to announce in 1998 that, as of The damage caused by all of this was not merely to Nike’sthat moment, the company was banning the contracting of image. When the scandal about the conditions under whichanyone under 18 years of age. its products were made first broke in 1993, Nike’s sharesThree years later, Canadian writer Naomi Klein again shoved tumbled by more than 50 % . And the firm obviously felt 186
  • 169. the impact, since it decided to take action and since 2000, ithas implemented a series of social responsibility programs.Thanks to these, it has managed to start sparking a recoveryin its share price.At present, Nike has a program in place called Innovate for aBetter World, which pursues the following basic goals:1- To improve conditions in contracted factories: Nike inspectsthese shops periodically and, based on the results, decideswhether or not to renew its contracts. Furthermore, for thefirst time ever, it has published the tools employed to auditcontractors on a website at www.nikeresponsibility.com.2- To design a better world: The company has undertakenactions aimed at eliminating PVC and the use of volatilechemicals. Additionally, it has begun to make use of organiccotton and of rubber with a lower level of toxic components.The goal is for all of its products to contain at least 5% organiccotton by 2010 — an amount that would represent 25% of theentire world production of organic cotton.3- To be climate neutral: The firm announced that by 2011, allof the factories it owns will be climate neutral.4- To free human potential through sports. 187
  • 170. Wal-MartWal-Mart Stores Inc. is the world’s largest retail corporation. After displaying products of this sort in its stores for years, inIt has 6,500 commercial establishments, nearly 2 million 2005, the company made a corporate-wide decision to acceptemployees and in 2006, its total sales came to more than 315.42 the challenge of also incorporating them into items under itsbillion dollars, producing earnings of over 11.23 billion dollars. own brand name. As a trial experience, it placed 190,000 yoga outfits made using organic cotton on sale in its stores. EveryFor years, the company has come under fire worldwide one of the outfits was sold within ten weeks. Bearing in mindfor its labor policies. On the Internet, there are numerous the positive response of its customers, the retailer decided towebpages and blogs like www.wakeupwalmart.com and www. extend the test to bath linen, bedclothes and baby clothes. Aswaltmartwatch.com, where employees and ex-employees of the a result, today Wal-Mart is the world’s largest buyer of organicchain alike take the retailer to task, usually for non-compliance cotton and is developing plans to encourage its customers towith labor laws, low pay and lack of proper medical insurance. demand more environmentally friendly products.Wal-Mart is also accused of unfair competition, due to the factthat its low prices and business policies have spelled the closure In February 2006, under the leadership of CEO Lee Scott, Wal-of small and medium-size stores in many locations where it has Mart launched its Sustainability 360 plan. This plan includesset up shop. This was the subject of a film documentary called an annual investment of approximately 500 million dollars onWal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price , released in November innovation and technology, with the aim being to achieve the2005. But running counter to this reputation, the company has following objectives:also garnered recognition for its efforts to reduce energy use, • To reduce the greenhouse gas emissions at the company’sto lower pollution and to promote the use of renewable raw establishments worldwide by 20%, within a period of nomaterials. more than seven years.Wal-Mart has also been a pioneer in marketing organic products. • To design and open more efficient stores that emit a 30% 188
  • 171. lower level of greenhouse gases within a period of no more than four years.• To reduce by 25% the company’s solid waste substances within the next three years.• To improve Wal-Mart brand product packaging within the next two years.• To increase the number of environmentally friendly products in the stock of the entire chain by 20% within a three-year period.According to monitoring carried out by the Nielsen consultingagency (BuzzMetrics Sustainability Monitor ), Wal-Mart isthe most highly mentioned company in blog commentarieswhere the word “sustainability” appears. This only goes toshow that even a company as large and highly questionedas Wal-Mart can go a long way toward turning around itsstrategy and demonstrating more responsible behaviorwithout renouncing its money-earning goals. Through theseactions, Wal-Mart is educating millions of consumers andsuppliers, while generating a substantial change throughoutits entire value chain. 189
  • 172. Appendix 3 Sustainable Companies1- Long-term vision Depending on which of the different international consulting2- Respect for the diversity of Man and Nature groups you ask — SustainAbility, Acre-Resources or ABC —3- Eco-efficiency in processes and products the defining principles of sustainability number over 50. But4- Transparency in management the ten that head this appendix are repeated on almost every5- Participation in social construction list, since, given their importance and scope, they summarize6- Cooperation with other business and civil organizations the essence of the Triple Bottom Line.7- Participation in multi-plural, multi-cultural, Since the end of the 20th century and the beginning of multi-sectorial networks the 21st, the world has witnessed the emergence of a new8- Respect for human and labor rights generation of companies, conceived and founded in perfect9- Education and learning for workers and the community harmony with the principles of sustainable enterprise.10- Inclusion, equity and equality in access They provide the best examples to explain what it means toto opportunities produce within the framework of the new paradigm.
  • 173. NauLong-term vision, respect for the diversity of Man and Nature,and participation in social construction are key values in theorganizational culture of Nau , an apparel firm founded in2005 by a small group of upper-level executives from Patagoniaand Nike that decided to quit their jobs and develop a projectof their own.Trained at companies that played a major role in changing theindustry, it was only natural for these partners to line up withthe values of the new paradigm. From the outset, they madeclear their belief that it was as important for companies to takeresponsibility for producing positive social and environmentalchanges as it was for them to turn a profit.In keeping with this philosophy, in producing the clothing alleviating environmental problems.that Nau makes, they use only renewable natural fibers and Company CEO, Chris Van Dyke, goes much further insynthetics derived from recycled plastic. And the company explaining the firm’s mission, saying that Nau challengesfocuses its strongest marketing strategy on Internet sales, not the very nature of capitalism and “represents a new formonly as a means of cutting costs as compared with traditional of activism: entrepreneurial activism”. In backing up thissales methods, but also because it implies major savings in the statement, he says that it is tied to a belief shared by all of theconsumption of energy and non-renewable resources. The founding partners of Nau: “We believed every single operationalcompany additionally donates 5% of its profits — estimated element in our business was an opportunity to turn traditionalat 11 million dollars for 2007 — to non-profit organizations business notions inside out, integrating environmental, social,engaged in programs supporting humanitarian causes or and economic factors”. 192
  • 174. Grameen TelecomRespect for human and labor rights, cooperation with other Since the program began, community telephones have beenbusiness and civil organizations, defense of inclusion and installed in 40,000 villages, allowing some 50 million peasantequity and participation in networks are the central points that farmers to be in communication with other parts of the countrybest define the project of Iqbal Quadir, a young businessman and the world. The phones are used, among other things, towho grew up in rural Bangladesh. exchange health information and product prices.Convinced that “connectivity is productivity”, Iqbal proved “The program is not only socially beneficial, but has also turnedhimself early on to be anxious to assume the new challenges that out to be profitable, and has produced increased economicthe sustainability paradigm represented for the entrepreneurs activity in Bangladesh, stimulating trade and creating newof his generation. In 1997, eagerness to demonstrate leadership sources of income,” says Quadir. He adds that: “The economicdrove him to seek a solution for the telecommunications impact is also important for the person who manages theproblem in his country, where citizens were relegated to the telephone service. Rural operators are usually women, who,waiting list for more than ten years before they could obtain thanks to their work, can contribute about another 25% to thea telephone, for which they had to pay 450 dollars, one of the income of their homes.”highest costs in the world.Combining the latest in wireless digital technology with theexperience of the Grameen Bank in granting micro-loans toimpoverished people, Quadir created Grameen Telecom andlaunched a program called Village Phone, with the aim ofproviding increased access to telecommunications for low-income populations in non-urban areas, via mobile telephoneterminals managed by rural operators — preferably women. 193
  • 175. GuayakíThe distinguishing value traits at Guayakí include eco-efficiency, management transparency, and education andlearning for workers and the community. This company,founded by Argentine Alex Pryor and Californian David Karr,grows and processes organic yerba mate (a green tea that is atraditional beverage in several Southern Cone countries) andmanufactures by-products.The project dates back to their college days at Cal Poly (CaliforniaPolytechnic State University), when mate-drinker Alex imbuedhis friend David and other schoolmates with an acquired tastefor this green herbal tea (traditionally drunk from a mate gourdthrough a metal strainer straw called a bombilla), where Alexhad gone to get his degree in nutrition sciences.On observing the degree of acceptance that the drink — aspopular in his country as it was exotic elsewhere — Alex tooka long look at three equally significant facts: the growing valuebeing assigned to the beneficial natural properties of this greenherbal tea, criticism about the destruction of the rainforeststhat are the tea’s natural habitat, and repudiation for the harshconditions in which the inhabitants of the rainforest areas live.Based on these observations, Pryor and his friend David Karrbegan to plan the start-up for an organic yerba mate-producing 194
  • 176. Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay — home to the Aché Guayakí (Gwy-uh-KEE) people and a place where the yerba mate grows. The company, which was finally launched in 1996, takes its name from this native people. In the beginning, the two partners worked from dawn to dusk every day, centralizing their operations in a trailer that Alex set up on the site of the first organic plantation. Over time, they were joined by friends and family members, giving birth to a joint enterprise involving new partners and collaborators. By 2007, Guayakí was marketing yerba in teabags and as a packaged drink, as well as selling the traditional mate gourds, bombillas and other accessories. All of the yerba used in their products is produced in a very special way: grown in the shade of the trees of the native forest, without carrying out any unnecessary land clearing, just as these plants were traditionally cultivated by native tribes.company. The idea would be for a company that cultivated the Their workers belong to the Aché Guayakí nation of Paraguay.crop on plantations where the jungle was not cleared, using Besides offering this indigenous people good jobs with decentno chemicals and, at the same time, promoting sustainable pay, the company has signed an agreement with Margarita,forestry use and the welfare of native communities living in chief of the Aché tribe, and they are now working together onthe production area. This area would be located in the sub- a reforestation project aimed at giving the community back atropical forests found in the contiguous border areas between sustainable forest habitat. 195
  • 177. American ApparelAmerican Apparel operates out of Los Angeles, where its to slave labor. And it looks like they like us...” Currently,industrial plant cuts and sews all of the natural cotton clothing American Apparel has more than 130 stores worldwide, withthat the firm makes. From the outset, the firm decided that it nearly 4,500 employees in the United States alone. In 2005,would distance itself entirely from the “sweatshop” mentality company earnings came to over 250 million dollars.of the trade. So it is that, contrary to the trend in much of thetextile industry in the United States, in which textile firms In its webpage, Charney states: “We’re not going to exploitcontract shops in foreign countries where they can get the the poor or make things here or there because it’s cheaper.cheapest possible labor, this company decided to offer its We’re going to make sure the business model is sustainable.”workers good working conditions, much better than average This is why the company has taken action to eliminate laborpay, medical benefits, paid lunches and vacation, free English exploitation, while committing to environmental care, byclasses and travel expenses. developing sustainable products and practices.Against all predictions by the traditional industry, AmericanApparel’s strategy has provided excellent results: Today it is One of the company’s main initiatives is its line of clothingconsidered one of the ten fastest-growing companies in the US made of organic cotton, which is available in all of its stores.textile industry. Between 2000 and 2004, its sales increased by The firm indicates that its long-term plan is to gradually900%, in contrast with the 40% and 76% growth registered by continue to integrate organic cotton into its production lineits closest competitors (The Gap and H&M respectively). until every American Apparel product contains a certainDov Charney, founder and, since 1997, CEO, explains the percentage of this fiber.trademark’s success as a response to market preference: “The Other areas on which the company is focusing its actionsgoal is to make clothing people like without having to resort include: waste reduction, efficient water and power use, 196
  • 178. utilization of renewable energy and research into moresustainable materials for the firm’s products and services.Under the leadership of the company’s flamboyant CEO DovCharney, American Apparel develops its ad campaigns arounda young and provocative aesthetic with a high level of socialcontent. Another hallmark of the firm’s promotional strategy isadvertisements that make use of ordinary people off the streetinstead of professional agency models. Many of its ads aremade using company employees. Even Charney himself hasappeared in several of them.American Apparel has been criticized in conservative sectorsfor frequently using images in its campaigns that showpeople in underwear or semi-nude in poses or situationswith sexual overtones.American Apparel makes use of its website at www.ameri-canapparelorganics.com to disseminate its environmentalcare actions and to detail the company’s general philosophyand campaigns. 197
  • 179. Seventh GenerationSeventh Generation is a leader in the manufacturing of Everything that Seventh Generation manufactures is madesustainable home cleaning products. Based in Burlington, using non-toxic and environmentally innocuous materials.Vermont, its activities include the design and formulation of Far from undermining its earnings, the company’s use ofits own products, as well as supplier supervision, transport, non-polluting raw materials is responsible for its exponentialmarketing and consumer education. growth: From 2001 to 2005, its profitability increased by more than 140%, while its share price value rose 300%. With a staffThe name of the company is derived from a message put out of just over 50 employees, the company’s 2005 sales came toby members of the Gayaneshakgowa Tribe during a meeting 100 million dollars.of the Confederation of Six Iroquois Nations, a meeting ofNative Americans in the United States, that stated: “In each of Seventh Generation was conceived as a sustainable enterpriseour daily deliberations, we should consider the impact of our from start to finish. It is strongly committed to community anddecisions on the next seven generations.” environmental responsibility and is oriented toward producing a positive change in society.With this vision in mind, the company has created 100%recycled paper towels, napkins and hankies; biodegradable, The company’s mission statement says: “We create householdnon-toxic and phosphate-free detergents and cleaners; garbage and personal care products that are effective and safe for thebags made of 65% to 100% recycled plastic; chlorine-free air, the surfaces, the fabrics, the pets, and the people withindiapers and 100% organic cotton tampons. your living home”. 198
  • 180. The last corporate responsibility report put out by the company(2005) indicated that Seventh Generation had attained majorimprovements both in its products and in its packagingsystems.The company communicates its actions to the public via itswebsite at www.seventhgeneration.com and through its blog,where consumers can publish their comments on the firm, itsproducts and the actions it carries out. They can also interactwith CEO Jeffrey Hollender, who periodically writes articlesand provides opinions on the site. Hollender is, additionally,the author of Naturally Clean, where he explains the advantagesof non-toxic versus traditional cleaning and the finer points ofthe products that his company makes. 199
  • 181. SambazonBased in California (USA) Sambazon Inc. is a company whose The firm was created under a sustainable business model thatmain activity is the harvesting and processing of the açai fruit, promotes, among other values, fair pay for small Braziliana drupe that grows on a specific type of palm that is native farmers who harvest the açai fruit. Some 1,500 low-incometo Brazil’s Amazonian region. This berry-like drupe is rich families, living in Brazil’s Pantanales del Varzea region inin anti-oxidants, essential fatty acids, amino acids, fiber and the Amazon Basin, live almost exclusively on the açai trade.vitamin E. It is used to make a mild pulp used in beverages, ice The indigenous people are currently organized into fourcreams, supplements and other products. cooperatives that sell the açai drupes that they harvest to Sambazon at a price in accordance with their market value inBrothers Ryan and Jeremy Black founded the company in the United States.2001, after they discovered the fruit on one of their surfingexcursions to Brazil in 1999.When the Black brothers founded Sambazon, the açai fruitwas unknown in the United States. Today, ten companiesare marketing it in different forms: Coca-Cola, PepsiCo andAnheuser-Busch are just some of the major trademarks thathave incorporated açai into their beverage flavors, while Procter& Gamble is marketing a line of shampoos and conditionersthat contain the fruit.By 2007 Sambazon had 100 employees and over 700establishments that were marketing its 26 products. Thecompany reported 2006 sales of 12 million dollars. 200
  • 182. Additionally, the company works jointly with the NGO,FASE-PA , which provides technical aid to the cooperativesand controls operations between them and Sambazon, so asto guarantee fair purchasing prices. In its açai production,Sambazon promotes sustainable agro-forestry use, whichreplaces logging and provides an economic alternative withgood income levels and opportunities for advancement tolocal farmers.Sambazon communicates its actions through ad campaignsand through its website at www.sambazon.com. It also has itsown blog, where “a healthier planet and healthier people” is theissue that tops the list of the company’s p y priority interests. 201
  • 183. Table of ContentsA Personal Journey into the Future 7Sustainable DevelopmentChapter 1: A New Paradigm 17Chapter 2: The Sustainable Company 33Chapter 3: The Ones that Made History: 45Benchmarks, Inspirers and PioneersThe Participative Media and Web 2.0Chapter 4: The Conversation Age 63Chapter 5: The Network Generation 73Chapter 6: Networked People: Making a Community Make Sense 83Chapter 7: From Traditional Advertising to Conversation 93Chapter 8: Collective Intelligence 103Chapter 9: We, The Media 113The Value RevolutionChapter 10: Consumer Power 127Chapter 11: Welcome to Enterprise 2.0 139Chapter 12: When the World Began to Understand 153Epilog: The 2.0 Era Is Born 161Business Case StudiesAppendix 1: Pioneer Companies 165Appendix 2: Companies that Changed 177Appendix 3: Sustainable Companies 191Footnotes 205Bibliography 213 203
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  • 187. AcknowledgementsErnesto van Peborgh and the Odiseo Team wish to thankGreenpeace Argentina (www.greenpeace.org.ar), Casa deOshawa (organic food store, Ciudad de la Paz 421, BuenosAires, Argentina), Fábrica de Bananas (an independentdesign store, www.fabricadebananas.com.ar ) and the 1940Restaurant (Dorrego 1940, Buenos Aires, Argentina), fortheir cooperation in providing locations for photo shoots.
  • 188. At the end of 2006, the world premiere of Al Gore’s motion picture, An InconvenientTruth, established the issue of global warming as a world reality — and not just asthe obsession of a few scientists and activists. Recent unprecedented hurricanes,flooding and other catastrophes have confirmed the picture’s premises.That same year, the Wal-Mart chain announced its commitment to sustainability,eliciting a vow from its 60,000 suppliers to adjust their production processes andconduct.These changes were preceded and accompanied by the dizzying growth of civilorganizations around the world that are working to find solutions to the most urgentproblems surrounding poverty, the environment and the defense of life in all of itsforms.It appears that Mankind is beginning to get the message and getting the messageis the first step toward giving up irresponsible behavior toward the planet and towardthe human race itself.Be that as it may, understanding the problem needs to give way to action, not merelywith regard to the global emergency, but also to the advancement of a generationthat is not simply awaiting change, but is attempting to produce it from a position ofpure pragmatism: the Net Gen, youth born into the digital age, youngsters who believein participation, cooperation and transparency as the starting points for change towarda new cultural paradigm.In this book, Ernesto van Peborgh explains how the Net Gen, with Web 2.0 as itsnatural communications tool, and social organizations, as agents of a fledgling"worldwide associative revolution", are flowing and bolstering one another aroundsustainable development values, in order to remold the behavior of companies and ofsociety as a whole. He demonstrates how Sustainability 2.0 is emerging from thisthree-way convergence and providing an historically unique opportunity — perhapsthe last one — to build a feasible future for humanity.

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