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  1. 1. Environmental NGOs and Businesses: Friends of Foes? Green alliances as a path to sustainable development Nina Kruglikova Student Summit for Sustainability Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada 13 May 2008
  2. 2. Outline <ul><li>Historical Perspective </li></ul><ul><li>Drivers for Change </li></ul><ul><li>Challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Typology of Green Alliances </li></ul><ul><li>Case studies (e.g. Greenfreeze) </li></ul><ul><li>Different Approaches in US and Europe </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul>
  3. 3. Historical Perspective <ul><li>1960s and1970s: </li></ul><ul><li>ENGOs – boycotts and protests </li></ul><ul><li>Businesses – no response </li></ul><ul><li>1980s: </li></ul><ul><li>ENGOs – public environmental pressure </li></ul><ul><li>Businesses – environmental policies, annual reports, </li></ul><ul><li>auditing, eco-labelling </li></ul><ul><li>1990s: </li></ul><ul><li>ENGOs -shift from problem-focused to </li></ul><ul><li>solution-oriented advocacy </li></ul><ul><li>Businesses - search for less confrontational relations with </li></ul><ul><li>ENGOs </li></ul>
  4. 4. Drivers for Change: companies’ perspectives <ul><li>NGO credibility with public on issues </li></ul><ul><li>Desire to head off negative public confrontation </li></ul><ul><li>Desire to engage stakeholders </li></ul><ul><li>Greater efficiency in resource allocation </li></ul><ul><li>Competitive advantage of companies with reputation for environmental responsibility </li></ul>
  5. 5. Drivers for Change: ENGOs’ perspectives <ul><li>Disenchantment with government as provider of solutions </li></ul><ul><li>Credibility of business with government </li></ul><ul><li>Need for more resources (funding, technical expertise) </li></ul><ul><li>Growing interest in markets </li></ul><ul><li>Source: Sustainability 1996 </li></ul>
  6. 6. What can ENGOs give businesses? <ul><li>help businesses track developments n regulations </li></ul><ul><li>Spot their environmental vulnerabilities before they become fatal flaws </li></ul><ul><li>Save money on R&D by providing solutions </li></ul><ul><li>Inspire consumer confidence and credibility </li></ul><ul><li>Endorse products </li></ul>
  7. 7. Challenges : Hard-Liners in ENGO community <ul><li>‘ Window-dressing’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Potential minefield’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Painting the deck-chairs on the Titanic a lighter shade of green’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Shifting the battle for the environment from the courtroom to the boardroom’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Abandoning boats for suits’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Buy-sell of indulgencies’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ greenwash’ </li></ul>
  8. 8. Typology of Green Alliances <ul><li>Licensing </li></ul><ul><li>Corporate sponsorship </li></ul><ul><li>Product endorsement </li></ul><ul><li>Task force </li></ul><ul><li>Green systems alliance </li></ul><ul><li>Green public policy alliance </li></ul><ul><li>Source: Hartman and Stafford (1997) </li></ul>
  9. 9. Case Studies <ul><li>WWF and Unilever: Marine Stewardship Council </li></ul><ul><li>US Environmental Defence and McDonald’s/General Motors </li></ul><ul><li>Alliance for Environmental Innovation and S.C. Johnson&Son, Inc. </li></ul><ul><li>GREENFREEZE - Greenpeace and Foron (1991) </li></ul><ul><li>‘ The other cold war’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ The story of the little East German David vs </li></ul><ul><li>the big West German industry Goliath’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ The German EPA’s prestigious Blue Angel Eco-label’ </li></ul>
  10. 10. ENGOs-Business Partnerships <ul><li>US: </li></ul><ul><li>more cooperative </li></ul><ul><li>‘ corporate citizenship’ </li></ul><ul><li>Three Miles Island Nuclear Accident and Exxon Valdez Oil Spill </li></ul><ul><li>Europe: </li></ul><ul><li>less cooperative </li></ul><ul><li>‘ corporate social responsibility’ </li></ul><ul><li>Brent Spar and Nigerian Ogoni </li></ul><ul><li>UK - pioneer </li></ul>
  11. 11. Reasons for this Difference <ul><li>Different level of reliance on the authorities </li></ul><ul><li>US: no strong role of central government, DIY approach </li></ul><ul><li>Europe: strong belief in ‘finger pointing’ power of governm. </li></ul><ul><li>Different level of public support </li></ul><ul><li>US: 1/3 of Americans attempt to avoid boycotted brands </li></ul><ul><li>Europe: ½ of Europeans attempt to avoid boycotted brands </li></ul><ul><li>Different level of philanthropy </li></ul><ul><li>US: long-established tradition of charitable donations </li></ul><ul><li>Europe: ‘sponsorship scam’ approach? </li></ul><ul><li>Different level of trust of businesses and NGOs </li></ul><ul><li>US: 4 most trusted brands are corporations </li></ul><ul><li>Europe: 4 most trusted brands are NGOs </li></ul>
  12. 12. Source: The Fourth Edelman Survey on Trust and Credibility. (2003)
  13. 13. Source: The Fourth Edelman Survey on Trust and Credibility. (2003)
  14. 14. Conclusions <ul><li>ENGOs are increasingly exercising their stakes in corporate affairs, whereas businesses are staking their claim in the ENGO sector </li></ul><ul><li>Win-win solutions: each partner should have smth to give to and gain from </li></ul><ul><li>Need to educate businesses what NGOs can offer </li></ul><ul><li>Need to help ENGOs sell their agendas and capabilities – not themselves – to businesses </li></ul><ul><li>Reasonable balance between carrot-led approach of cooperation and stick-driven approach of confrontation </li></ul>
  15. 15. On our way to sustainable development.... <ul><li>...businesses are not only </li></ul><ul><li>part of the problem </li></ul><ul><li>but also </li></ul><ul><li>part of the solution! </li></ul>
  16. 16. Contact <ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Thanks for your attention! </li></ul><ul><li>Questions? </li></ul><ul><li>Comments? </li></ul>