As partners for over 15 years, Mark Feldman and Nikki Korn bring complimentary skills and experience advancing the social impact field. They are thrilled to share their chapter for corporate responsibility practitioners, “Evolution, Innovation and Best Practices in Corporate Social Impact” that was published in Springer’s Managing for Social Impact book.
This chapter summarizes the evolution of the corporate social impact field, from corporate philanthropy and volunteerism to the rise of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and to today’s Era of Innovation. Tracking this evolution, it presents examples ranging from Patagonia to Unilever’s Dove brand. In each case, a company of a different size and industry seeks to apply the power of its assets in new ways to proactively and intentionally deliver positive business and social impact.
The authors characterize the Era of Innovation as defined by exploration, innovation, and risk-taking, providing examples of how these traits will guide the next stage of corporate social impact over the next decade. They track the successful harnessing of corporate assets for social impact including products, business acumen and expertise, brand, and communications. The chapter concludes with advice for managers seeking to implement a corporate social impact strategy.