Institute for Business in the Global Context

Where the World of Business Meets the World

Month: December 2017

Fletcher Faculty Features: Jette Steen Knudsen – “Visible Hands: Government Regulation and International Business Responsibility”

From time to time we like to feature the recent work of a number of our esteemed business faculty here at The Fletcher School. The series continues with Jette Steen Knudsen, Professor of Policy & International Business and Shelby Cullom Davis Chair in Sustainability at The Fletcher School.


The latest work from Professor of Policy & International Business and Shelby Cullom Davis Chair in Sustainability, Jette Steen Knudsen, examines the changing relationship between the regulator environment across the globe and the corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives of multinational corporations. Learn more:

https://target.scene7.com/is/image/Target/53000053?wid=520&hei=520&fmt=pjpegVisible Hands:  Government Regulation and International Business Responsibility
by Jette Steen Knudsen & Jeremy Moon

A growing number of states are regulating the corporate social responsibility (CSR) of domestic multinational corporations relating to overseas subsidiaries and suppliers. In this book, Jette Steen Knudsen and Jeremy Moon offer a new framework for analysing government–CSR relations: direct and indirect policies for CSR. Arguing that existing research on CSR regulation fails to address the growing role of the state in shaping the international practices of multinational corporations, the authors provide insight into the CSR issues that are addressed by government policies. Drawing on case studies, they analyse three key examples of CSR: non-financial reporting, ethical trade and tax transparency in extractive industries. In doing so, they propose a new research agenda of government and CSR that is relevant to scholars and graduate students in CSR, sustainability, political economy and economic sociology, as well as policymakers and consultants in international development and trade.

Learn more about this exciting new work from Prof. Knudsen

There’s a Gender Gap in Internet Usage. Closing It Would Open Up Opportunities for Everyone

We have all heard about a gap when it comes to participation of women in the tech industry. Facebook, Google, and Apple have 17%, 19% and 23% women in their technology staffs, respectively. Multiple surveys, such as the “The Elephant in the Valley,” have documented systematic discrimination against women. And there’s a continuous barrage of news stories regarding the challenges that women face across a raft of iconic Silicon Valley firms. No more than a quarter of U.S. computing and mathematical jobs are held by women, consistent with the data that around 26% of the STEM workforce in developed countries is female. In developing countries, those differences are even greater.

But the gender gap problem doesn’t stop there. There’s also a shortage of women using some of the industry’s products. The International Telecommunications Union reports that the proportion of women using the internet is 12% lower than the proportion of men; this gender gap widens to 32.9% in the least developed countries. And even when a woman gets on a phone or is online, she might face additional hostility. A World Wide Web Foundation report says “women around the world report being bombarded by a culture of misogyny online, including aggressive, often sexualized hate speech, direct threats of violence, harassment, and revenge porn involving use of personal/private information for defamation.”

What this speaks to is an opportunity for the tech industry — both to address internal diversity issues and to address how companies think about the products they create around the world.

Read the full piece from Dean Chakravorti in Harvard Business Review