3 min read
Dec 2019

EoM in British Academy’s Principles for Purposeful Business Report


Published December 2019

With a new decade just around the corner, The British Academy has published a report about the future of the corporation. Aimed at business leaders, shareholders, policymakers, employees, customers and society at large, it urges companies to respond to the climate crisis by putting purpose before profits.

The report’s academic lead is Professor Colin Mayer, who co-founded the Economics of Mutuality Lab with Catalyst, Mars’ internal think-tank, at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford. Contributions are also made by Judith Stroehle, a researcher from the same Lab. Their partnership with the Economics of Mutuality and Mars has informed the report, which is set to have a significant impact on the business world.

Selected highlights have been reproduced below.

Initiatives such as the Mars ‘Economics of Mutuality’ approach or innovative ownership models like that of Divine Chocolate (owned by a co-operative of cocoa farmers), or the Supplier Sustainability Assessment developed by Philips to identify issues and provide corrective support, all illustrate different approaches to partnership between businesses or between business and non-governmental organisations that help to enable both the business and its suppliers to deliver their purposes…

…Mars Inc. employs a concept that they describe as ‘the Economics of Mutuality’ of partnering with other organisations to address issues in their supply chains around the world. This involves mapping their ecosystems, establishing ‘pain points’ in them, identifying partner organisations, such as other companies, non-governmental organisations, local and national governments, to work with them in addressing these pain points, determining metrics around human, social and natural factors to measure an intervention, and establishing an appropriate accounting framework to evaluate its financial performance.

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