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Conference Explores Corporate Responsibility in A Global Economy

R. Edward Freeman of the University of Virginia delivers a keynote "Towards a Theory of Responsible Capitalism," during the ICR conference.

What is a corporation’s role in society? What constitutes responsible capitalism? And how can corporate responsibility be defined and measured? These were among the questions explored during a recent Institute for Corporate Responsibility conference at the GW School of Business.

The Sept. 9-10 event, “Corporate Responsibility in a Global Economy: Industries, Issues and Nation States,” drew participants from the business community, academia and organizations such as the United States Institute for Peace.

GW School of Business Dean Doug Guthrie told the audience that corporations have highly advantaged positions in society, and with that position comes responsibility to society.

“It is incumbent upon us to engage students in a conversation about just how big a responsibility it is,” Guthrie said.

R. Edward Freeman, a professor at the University of Virginia’s Darden School, urged attendees to find new ways of thinking and speaking about corporate responsibility. He told participants that responsibility, sustainability and ethics should be as important to corporations as profits.

“Responsible capitalism is about creating more freedom and more possibilities for ourselves and our fellow human beings,” he said.

Other featured speakers included Tim Fort, Jennifer Griffin, Vanessa Perry and George Solomon of the GW School of Business; David Logan, co-chair of Corporate Citizenship, UK; and John Mahon of the University of Maine.

This is the fifth in a series of workshops from the Institute for Corporate Responsibility on how businesses define, defend, embed and integrate their responsibilities to co-create value.

Posted by gwsb on September 10, 2010 | Filed under: GWSB News.

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