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Article
Publication date: 11 October 2019

Elisa Giuliani and Federica Nieri

The purpose of this paper is to provide a short commentary on the negative consequences of contemporary global capitalism on society. Despite the economic growth experienced…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a short commentary on the negative consequences of contemporary global capitalism on society. Despite the economic growth experienced across the world over the past century, the so-called grand challenges which include, for instance, rising inequality, global warming, modern slavery and child labor, are becoming endemic phenomena also in high income countries. The authors invite further research to come up with radical ideas to fix “bad” capitalism.

Design/methodology/approach

The proliferation of negative business conducts has led international business scholars to propose new ways to address sustainability grand challenges. The articles in this special issue on which the authors were invited to comment, Holmström Lind, Kang, Ljung and Forsgren; Lashitew and van Tulder; Zagelmeyer, are contributing to this agenda. The authors contextualise these articles in the current scholarly discussion on the social role of Multinational Enterprises (MNEs).

Findings

Despite all the calls for business to be more responsible and despite the steps taken by MNEs through their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policies, this is not enough to address contemporary grand challenges with any degree of seriousness.

Originality/value

The authors invite further research to propose new attempts to fix “bad” capitalism that also involve a rethinking of the way companies reward corporate elites and redistribute their gains.

Details

critical perspectives on international business, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 December 2018

Elisa Giuliani

This paper aims to discuss the ways in which multinational enterprises (MNEs) may contribute to growing inequality.

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to discuss the ways in which multinational enterprises (MNEs) may contribute to growing inequality.

Design/methodology/approach

By showing some macroscopic evidence of business-related human rights infringements, this paper claims that the negative impacts of MNEs has been largely overlooked.

Findings

The extent to which MNEs contribute to income-based inequality through the abnormal accumulation of wealth by chief executive officers (CEOs), top managers and shareholders is known, and almost nothing is known about whether this is connected to MNEs’ track record of human rights infringements.

Originality/value

This paper suggest that there might be a connection between MNEs’ human rights infringements and the abnormal accumulation of wealth by companies’ CEOs, top managers and shareholders. It calls for more international business research investigating this link.

Details

Multinational Business Review, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1525-383X

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2023

Rob van Tulder, Isabel Álvarez and Elisa Giuliani

A cascade of crises that materialized in particular over the 2019–2022 period, increases the relevance for international business (IB) scholarship to address the following…

Abstract

A cascade of crises that materialized in particular over the 2019–2022 period, increases the relevance for international business (IB) scholarship to address the following question: whether, to what extent and under what circumstances can multinational enterprises (MNEs) rescue the sustainable development goals (SDGs) and make sure that nobody is left behind in a globalized world where the opposite seems to be the case? For many MNEs, slow progress in implementing the SDGs in a more strategic and transformational manner does not necessarily hint at a lack of interest with management, but also at a lack of solid knowledge and/or experience in how to implement general development ambitions like the SDGs. This introductory chapter defines the intellectual and managerial challenges ahead. It refers to relevant efforts already done in the IB community – with reference to IB journals that issued special editions on the topic – and explains why five angles have been chosen to cluster the contributions in this volume which are also aimed to enhance further progress in the study of MNEs and the SDGs: (1) general, (2) strategic, (3) operational, (4) contextual and (5) misbehavior.

Details

International Business and Sustainable Development Goals
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83753-505-7

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2023

Abstract

Details

International Business and Sustainable Development Goals
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83753-505-7

Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2023

Federica Nieri

How does context shape the way in which corporations contribute to or impede progress toward sustainable development goals (SDGs)? In this chapter, the author studies how the…

Abstract

How does context shape the way in which corporations contribute to or impede progress toward sustainable development goals (SDGs)? In this chapter, the author studies how the state as corporate owner and in its broader function in the institutional environment affects companies’ involvement in misbehaving practices related to human rights issues, with a focus on the banking industry. Based on a longitudinal analysis of 178 banks over the cohort 1996–2018, the results show that state-owned banks, as well as those from institutionally weak environments, are more involved in business-related misbehaving practices. Moreover, in a strong institutional environment, state-owned banks are more involved in corporate misbehavior than non-state-owned banks. These results contribute to the literature on corporate misbehavior, focusing on the state’s role in preventing or facilitating banks’ involvement in misbehaving practices. The author concludes by discussing the findings’ implications and providing suggestions for future research.

Details

International Business and Sustainable Development Goals
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83753-505-7

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 4 January 2014

Elisa Giuliani, Chiara Macchi and Davide Fiaschi

This chapter develops a novel conceptualization of corporate social irresponsibility (CSI) and identifies possible avenues for further research in the international business (IB…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter develops a novel conceptualization of corporate social irresponsibility (CSI) and identifies possible avenues for further research in the international business (IB) and related fields.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual chapter examining the existing definitions of CSI and proposing a classification of irresponsible behaviours using an international law approach.

Findings

The concept of CSI has been weakly conceptualized and measured so far. We improve this by distinguishing between unethical conduct bearing no direct impact on human rights and those behaviours that do entail a human rights impact. Next, we classify human rights abuses in two categories based on whether they entail the violation of a derogable or a non-derogable human right. Finally, we make a distinction between direct and indirect irresponsible actions. These distinctions are also illustrated empirically.

Originality/value

This chapter bridges the gap between IB, management and international law research on human rights or else defined irresponsible behaviours. Our novel conceptualization of CSI can help to better address unanswered questions about factors driving CSI in IB firms.

Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2023

Verdiana Morreale and Elisa Giuliani

While multinational companies develop meta-level policies to address grand sustainability challenges and CEOs are increasingly showing their social activism, the hard work of…

Abstract

While multinational companies develop meta-level policies to address grand sustainability challenges and CEOs are increasingly showing their social activism, the hard work of concretely defending communities’ rights and the environment from business exploitation is often left to powerless individuals, known as human rights defenders (here defenders), who face severe risks for their advocacy. According to some statistics, between 2015 and 2022, defenders worldwide have been subject to over 4,000 attacks, including killings, tortures, and intimidation. In this chapter, the authors discuss the relevance of defenders to the promotion of the sustainable development goal (SDG) agenda and develop a conceptual model to predict CEOs’ reactions to defenders.

Details

International Business and Sustainable Development Goals
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83753-505-7

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 June 2013

Elisa Giuliani

This paper aims to analyze the relationship between different kinds of networking and the performance of firms in industry clusters. In particular, it studies the importance of…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyze the relationship between different kinds of networking and the performance of firms in industry clusters. In particular, it studies the importance of local embeddedness and external openness for product success in two wine clusters in Chile and Italy.

Design/methodology/approach

The analysis is based on original firm‐level data. A case‐study methodology is combined with econometric analysis.

Findings

The empirical analysis shows that local embeddedness positively influences the development of successful products, but with decreasing returns. More importantly, however, the author finds that external openness is more significant than local embeddedness for explaining firm success.

Practical implications

The paper has implications for managers not working in current “hot spots” who are keen to transform their environments into thriving economies. The author recommends that managers look beyond the local context and establish extra‐cluster linkages with relevant knowledge sources, which may vary from sector to sector. Managers should tap into local knowledge but avoid local over‐embeddedness.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the understanding of how and whether networks influence the performance of cluster firms.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 51 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2023

Paola Garrone, Lucia Piscitello, Matilde d’Amelio and Emanuela Colombo

Integration between the different components of development is a major aspiration of the 2030 agenda, but the efforts of firms that intend to contribute simultaneously to multiple…

Abstract

Integration between the different components of development is a major aspiration of the 2030 agenda, but the efforts of firms that intend to contribute simultaneously to multiple development trajectories may be hindered by trade-offs that occur between the different sustainable development goals (SDGs) and targets. At the same time, synergies may also materialize and reinforce firm’s contribution. This chapter analyzes the effects of multinational enterprises (MNEs) and other foreign investors on two different targets of SDG 7, namely access of population to modern energy systems, chiefly electricity, and the use of carbon-free and renewable energy sources in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) countries, and the authors investigate whether foreign investors experience trade-offs and synergies in their contributions. A two-equation growth model of households’ access to electricity and carbon factor is estimated by employing a panel dataset that covers 15 SSA countries and foreign direct investment (FDI) from 82 origin countries over the 2005–2011 period. The findings reveal that foreign investors are subject to a trade-off in their effects, because when they foster access to electricity they are also likely to spur carbon factor increases, and vice versa, depending on the economic development of host and home countries. Nevertheless, electrification and carbon factor reduction are shown to be linked by a system-level synergy. The results have implications for the design of MNEs attraction measures and energy policy in recipient countries.

Details

International Business and Sustainable Development Goals
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83753-505-7

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2023

Katie Andrews, Noemi Sinkovics and Rudolf R. Sinkovics

This chapter investigates the coffee value chain in Latin America. By drawing on the concept of just transitions as a “connective tissue” between the sustainable development goals…

Abstract

This chapter investigates the coffee value chain in Latin America. By drawing on the concept of just transitions as a “connective tissue” between the sustainable development goals (SDGs), the discussion zooms in on the promise of agroforestry for environmental upgrading. The chapter concludes by providing examples of trade-offs between environmental, social and economic aspects.

Details

International Business and Sustainable Development Goals
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83753-505-7

Keywords

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