Free MHCi publications on the Web:

1. See our regular Monthly Features that contain up-to-date analysis on CSR (2000-present)

2. CSR and International Development (2008, tadalafil Routledge, sovaldi sale paperback revised) corporate_social_responsibility_and_international_development_critical_perspectives_on_international_business

also see: Rise and Rise of CSR in OGEL Oil and Gas Magazine  and in Triple Bottom Line Magazine and Who Cares Wins .

3. CSR and International Development - some specific examples (presented for Politeia, Milan, April, 2008)

4. Light hearted Interview at Manchester University The Carrot Trousered Philanthropist (Oct 2007)

5. Corporate Social Responsibility: An Issues Paper (ILO, 2004)...a top ten SSRN paper in terms of downloads see: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=908181 and available from ILO

6. Corporate Sustainability in the Internal Operations of Corporations (Corporate Environmental Strategy, UK, Vol.9, No.2, 2002)

7. Corporate Social Responsibility Around the World http://www.stthom.edu/Public/getFile.asp?isDownload=1&File_Content_ID=497 (Journal of Online Ethics, Vol. 2, No.2, Oct., 1997)

8. Read a light-hearted interview with Michael Hopkins (July 2003): Sharing The Burdens Of A Global Market (from Hendon Times, London)

9a. Labour Standards and Corporate Social Responsibility: The Need for a Planetary Bargain (2002), by Michael Hopkins and Ivor Hopkins http://www.adb.org/Documents/Events/2002/Core_Labor_Standards/hopkins_paper.pdf

9b. The business case for CSR: where are we? (2003) http://www.inderscience.com/offer.php?id=3261

10. Measurement of corporate social responsibility (2005) http://www.inderscience.com/offer.php?id=6549

11. Corporate social responsibility: Is it worth it? (2002) http://www.ethicalcorp.com/content.asp?ContentID=269

12. Corporate social responsibility, poverty and terror (2001) http://www.ethicalcorp.com/content.asp?ContentID=12

13. This paper, written with Abby Ghobadian and David Gallear, explores the similarities and differences between Total Quality Management (TQM) and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Moreover, the paper considers the implications of these similarities and differences for the future development of TQM and CSR see: TQM and CSR nexus (2007)

14. Qatar conference CSR and Development PowerPoint (2006)

15. CSR - What is it all about? (2006)

16. When one thinks of poverty alleviation, the private sector often ... (2001) http://www.devstud.org.uk/publications/papers/conf01/conf01hopkins.doc

17. Georgetown University Interview  with Michael Hopkins on the Role of Corporate Social Responsibility vis-à-vis Development February 7, 2007.

18. CSR: Is there a business case? Dec 2003 This ACCA members booklet, written by Prof Michael Hopkins and Roger Cowe and, looks at the growth of CSR and the CSR as a business case theory.

20. Labour market treatise (2000) http://www.unige.ch/cyberdocuments/theses2000/HopkinsM/these.html

21. Has the Greening of CSR Gone too Far? Regular articles by Michael Hopkins with Impactus - Leading Portuguese CSR magazine (2004 - 2010)

22. Open Democracy Articles (2006 - 2007) http://www.opendemocracy.net/author/Michael_Hopkins.jsp

23. full_report_turning_black_gold_into_human_gold: Report to the Government of Azerbaijan (UNDP, 2007) - for summary report please write to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

24. Human Resources and CSR: csr_and_human_resource_management_june_2006

25. How could Strategic CSR have helped Dubai World and then Dubai from collapsing? (Dec 2009)

26. Strategies for Poverty Reduction: With special reference to Sub-Saharan Africa by Michael Hopkins and William Bartsch (Book for Regional Bureau for Africa, UNDP, New York, November, 1997)

27. Extract from first chapters of The Planetary Bargain: CSR Matters (Earthscan/Routledge, London/Oxford, 2002)

The politics of responsible business

The British government's decision to halt an investigation of corporate bribery over an arms-sales deal with Saudi Arabia highlights the need for effective international regulation of business practices, explains Michael Hopkins.

Sustainable development: from words to policy

The notion of sustainability has entered the development lexicon. Michael Hopkins asks why it took so long and how the idea has been transformed in its encounter with reality.

Paths to development: the UN vs. private business

The successive reform proposals designed to refocus the United Nations and sharpen its development efforts are being overtaken by the private sector's upgrade of its own work in this area, says Michael Hopkins.

Book Review:

The Planetary Bargain: Corporate Social Responsibility Matters (A greatly revised and updated version re-released by Routledge in 2010)

Don't ask what your country can do for you, ask what your company can do for your country - (with apologies to JFK's inaugural speech, Jan., 1961)

The Planetary Bargain is a ground-breaking book (Earthscan, 2003) that focuses on corporate social responsibility, how this is good for business and how this can be measured. It is based upon Michael Hopkins' experiences gleaned from work in his company MHC International Ltd.

"I am with the Organization for International Investment, an association representing the largest foreign investors in the United States (i.e Nestle, Unilever, ABB, Sony, Toyota, etc.). Some of the representatives from our companies have read your book and found it very insightful. I was wondering if you might be traveling to the Washington, DC area anytime soon and if so, if you would be willing to speak at a roundtable forum on CSR?" [Nancy McLernon, Deputy Director, Organization for International Investment]

"I have enjoyed and been very interested to read the Planetary Bargain. It is very informative and also a good read - which is quite something in this area. I will be reviewing it internally and for membership publication." [Stephanie Draper, Corporate Social Responsibility, The Industrial Society, UK]

"This interesting book takes a broad approach to examining corporate social responsibility in both its conceptual framework and the practical case studies it considers", (International Labour Review, Vol.138, 1999, No.4)

"Companero! You will not believe this but I read your Planetary Bargain book. You probable also do not believe me if I tell you I liked it a lot. In fact, I got so excited about it that I decided to sit down and write you this message! This is a very important area of work, where the ILO could do more (for reasons you mentioned), and I am happy to see that someone who I have known since he got out of his diapers, has produced an excellent text covering all the main issues." (Dr. Peter Peek, Deputy Head of Programmes, ILO, Geneva, 2000)

"I found the idea of a Planetary Bargain highly appealing, and I can see some indications that the MNCs are moving in the way that you suggest. I particularly liked your suggested memo from the CEO. It was a most stimulating read and I look forward to the opportunity to discuss some of these points with you in more detail in the future."
(Kay Sexton, Head, AccountAbility, UK)

I finished reading your book over the holidays and continue to be impressed how you were able to bring together so much information on the subject. (George Starcher, Secretary-General, European Baha'i Business Forum, France)

Summary of book

As unemployment remains stubbornly high in the richest nations of the world, and large transnational corporations continually "downsize" many are wondering where it will all end? The social protection gained for people in Europe over the fifty years since the end of world war II appears to be in jeopardy. And the richest nation in the world, the US, struggles to keep its more meagre than those of Europe social protection provisions in the face of a hostile congress. Much of this downsizing and reduction in social costs forms part of the conventional wisdom for developing countries too, at least as propagated through the structural adjustment lending and conditionality of the Bretton Woods organizations.

Will it all end with the world's production going to the lowest common denominator i.e. the country with the lowest social costs, the most paltry wages, the poorest working conditions, and those with the lowest pensions for the old? The trend seems to be heading this way. Yet this is in no-one's interest. Poor consumers in developing countries would very much like higher living standards and the sorts of social protection accorded to workers in Germany (say). Trans-national corporations need customers for their goods, something not helped by the rising unemployment associated with downsizing or impoverishment in developing countries.

To reverse these negative tendencies, the book's main thesis is that there is a need for a worldwide compact, or planetary bargain, between the private and public sector. In this bargain, the public sector will help private organisms to operate with clear ground- rules and the private sector will pay more attention to longer term social development issues than ever before. What such a bargain could include, why it is necessary and who should be involved are the themes that run throughout the book.

A planetary bargain will mean more socially responsible enterprises (SREs). In time, it will not be possible to conduct business without being socially responsible. This is inevitable, so, contrary to conventional wisdom, the book does not propose a new set of rules for businesses to adhere to, as, for instance, is argued by those pushing for more corporate social accountability or social audits. The book argues that new rules or corporate laws in this area are unnecessary because corporations will see for themselves, and many have seen this already, the need to behave more responsibly in the social area. One of the reasons is that new sets of rules make it even more difficult for corporations to operate and, in turn, will encourage further hopping from one advantageous country to another.

Can the private sector do more other than just be good at business? It is the underlying thesis of the book that being a socially responsible enterprise is not only good for business; it is actually better for business in terms of long-term profits and stability.

The field of corporate social responsibility and corporate strategic management, of which this book forms a part, has a burgeoning literature in published form in books, articles, newsprint and increasingly on the Internet. Where possible the Internet web pages as well as suggestions for others that provide useful reference points are given.

There have been few attempts at quantification of what is meant by corporate social responsibility in the literature, and what does exist, mainly through the social screens of ethical investment companies, is largely subjective. This book captures MHCInternational's efforts at determining a conceptual framework for indicators of corporate social responsibility and then examines how they were applied in both the UK and Switzerland.

In the book, the elements of an economic theory of socially responsible enterprises is given that shows that social responsibility not only has strong philanthropic undertones, but, as important if not more so, it has sound economic reasons too. By this, is meant that it is increasingly in the economic interest of businesses, and consequently of societies, to engage in socially responsible activities. If it is not in the fabric of companies today then these companies, more than likely, will not exist tomorrow. This is why the book advocates the need for a planetary bargain.

The main work in the area of corporate social responsibility has been in the US and, more recently, the UK. The book draws most of its examples from these two countries. Many other countries in both the First and the Third Worlds are starting to take the concepts, ideas and practices seriously, too. Some of these experiences are covered in two of the chapters of the book. Thus, the book focuses on what is meant by the social responsibility of enterprises, how it can be encouraged and how this will feed through to their own increased well-being and profitability. It will also cover how social responsibility can be defined and measured by precise indicators and how these can be applied in practice. What sort of planetary bargain could help increase corporate profitability while not resorting to the bargain basement is the central theme. Gradually, the United Nations, the World Bank, ILO, UNCTAD, UNESCO and the WTO, as well as the private networks of enterprises such as the Social Venture Network (SVN), EBEN (European Business Ethical Network), the Prince of Wales Business Forum and the Caux Principles are coming to grips with the global issue but, as yet, have not seen this as a global voluntary planetary bargain. It is our hope that the book will contribute to this process and that beggar-thy-neighbour polices, of countries and enterprises, will be a thing of the past, as the peoples of the world move toward a global agreement with the private sector. The next millennium will have to be the age of corporate social responsibility.

To place an order for the book, click here and for Michael's second CSR book click here.

 Book Review

Corporate Social Responsibility and International Development. Is Business the Solution? By Michael Hopkins. Pp. 243+xvii. (Earthscan, London, 2007.) £19.00, ISBN 978-1-84407-610-9, paperback.