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We investigate the relationship of corporate social responsibility (CSR) (often assumed to reflect corporate voluntarism) and government (often assumed to reflect coercion). We distinguish two broad perspectives on the CSR and government relationship: the dichotomous (i.e., government and CSR are / should be independent of one another) and the related (i.e., government and CSR are / should be interconnected). Using typologies of CSR public policy and of CSR and the law, we present an integrated framework for corporate discretion for engagement with public policy for CSR. We make four related contributions. First, we explain the dichotomous and the related perspectives with reference to their various assumptions and analyses. Second, we demonstrate that public policy for CSR and corporate discretion coexist and interact. Specifically, we show, third, that public policy for CSR can inform and stimulate corporate discretion and, fourth, that corporations have discretion for CSR, particularly as to how corporations engage with such policy.
To contain the spread of COVID-19, experts emphasize the importance of wearing masks. Unfortunately, this practice may put black people at elevated risk for being seen as potential threats by some Americans. In this study, we evaluate whether and how different types of masks affect perceptions of black and white male models. We find that non-black respondents perceive a black male model as more threatening and less trustworthy when he is wearing a bandana or a cloth mask than when he is not wearing his face covering—especially those respondents who score above average in racial resentment, a common measure of racial bias. When he is wearing a surgical mask, however, they do not perceive him as more threatening or less trustworthy. Further, it is not that non-black respondents find bandana and cloth masks problematic in general. In fact, the white model in our study is perceived more positively when he is wearing all types of face coverings. Although mandated mask wearing is an ostensibly race-neutral policy, our findings demonstrate the potential implications are not.
Supply management is a long-standing agricultural policy in Canada that applies to dairy, poultry and eggs. To date, there exists no academic research on the correlates or dynamics of public support for supply management. We use data collected from the Digital Democracy Project's study of the 2019 Canadian election, including results from a between-subjects framing experiment, to show that support for supply management is most opposed by economic conservatives. However, we find support to be highly malleable by framing: it increases when respondents are primed to think of the policy as a way of protecting farmers and decreases when they are primed to think of its costs to consumers. Contrary to expectations, framing effects are not stronger when messages are ideologically congenial or among those with high levels of policy knowledge. If anything, effects are stronger among those with lower levels of knowledge.
Although corporate social responsibility (CSR) has gone “mainstream,” the relationship between CSR and corporate political activities (CPA) has received little scholarly attention. This is problematic because firms potentially have a more sizable impact through their lobbying activities for socially and environmentally beneficial (or unbeneficial) public policies than through their own operations. This paper investigates if, and how, UN Global Compact signatory firms differ in their policy preferences on key EU proposals compared to other interest groups. To capture state-of-the-art data on firms’ policy preferences, I draw from the INTEREURO database, which includes firms’ lobbying positions on forty-three directives and twenty-seven regulations covering 112 public policy issues in the European Union. Statistical results show that Global Compact signatory firms significantly lobby for stricter regulation than non-signatory firms and industry associations, however, their positions are still lower than nonbusiness groups. These results are similar across various public policy issues and suggest that the regulatory preferences of firms’ participating in soft law CSR initiatives are more aligned with stakeholders' interests. This paper contributes to public policy literature exploring the relationship between hard and soft law as well as literature studying the political representation of divergent interest.
Does the partisanship of officeholders affect environmental outcomes? The popular perception is that Republicans are bad for the environment, but complicating factors like federalism may limit this outcome. Using a dataset that tracks toxic releases over 20 years, we examine how partisan control of executive and legislative branches at both state and federal levels affect environmental policy. Moving beyond the passage of policies or environmental program spending allows us to fully understand the impact of Republicans on the environment. In addition, we take into account structural complications that may shape the relationship between Republican control and environmental outcomes. We find that the conventional wisdom that Republicans are bad for the environment has some validity, but it is dependent on what offices Republican elected officials occupy. More specifically, Republicans significantly affect toxic chemical releases when occupying governorships and controlling Congress. Our conclusions provide further insight into understanding how partisanship affects environmental outcomes, including how partisanship composition across the federal system matters.
This paper investigates the views on competition theory and policy of the American institutional economists during the first half of the 20th century. These perspectives contrasted with those of contemporary neoclassical and later mainstream economic approaches. We identify three distinct dimensions to an institutionalist perspective on competition. First, institutionalist approaches focused on describing industry details, so as to bring theory into closer contact with reality. Second, institutionalists emphasized that while competition was sometimes beneficial, it could also be disruptive. Third, institutionalists had a broad view of the objectives of competition policy that extended beyond effects on consumer welfare. Consequently, institutionalists advocated for a wide range of policies to enhance competition, including industrial self-regulation, broad stakeholder representation within corporations, and direct governmental regulations. Their experimental attitude implied that policy would always be evolving, and antitrust enforcement might be only one stage in the development toward a regime of industrial regulation.
Despite widespread recognition that behavioral public policy (BPP) needs to move beyond nudging if the field is to achieve more significant impact, problem-solving approaches remain optimized to achieve tactical success and are evaluated by short-term metrics with the assumption of stable systems. As a result, current methodologies may contribute to the development of solutions that appear well formed but become ‘brittle’ in the face of more complex contexts if they fail to consider important contextual cues, broader system forces, and emergent conditions, which can take three distinct forms: contextual, systemic, and anticipatory brittleness. The Covid-19 pandemic and vaccination rollout present an opportunity to identify and correct interventional brittleness with a new methodological approach – strategic BPP (SBPP) – that can inform the creation of more resilient solutions by embracing more diverse forms of evidence and applied foresight, designing interventions within ecosystems, and iteratively developing solutions. To advance the case for adopting a SBPP and ‘roughly right’ modes of inquiry, we use the Covid-19 vaccination rollout to define a new methodological roadmap, while also acknowledging that taking a more strategic approach may challenge current BPP norms.
Miami Beach was the nation’s premier winter resort between the 1930s and the 1950s. The city attracted a diverse crowd of visitors, some interested in a peaceful respite from the frigid north, others drawn by the drinking, dancing, and musical entertainment offered by its many bars and nightclubs. As part of an elaborate effort to sustain the city’s lively symbiotic urban leisure-services economy, the Miami Beach City Council addressed three types of market failures: chaotic competition, interproducer conflicts, and monopolistic business practices. This article demonstrates how these practices expressed a coherent vernacular philosophy of regulated capitalism arising from the city’s identity as a collective economic enterprise.
Previous chapters have focused primarily on factual issues bearing on theories of constitutional interpretation. This chapter turns toward perceptions as it explores how both elite and popular opinion influence the justices’ perspectives on interpretive issues. These perception issues fall generally into the Court’s need for what Richard Fallon has called “sociological legitimacy,” along with the individual justices’ views of their “fidelity to role,” as described by Lawrence Lessig. The specific issues addressed are aspects of what are sometimes considered “conventional wisdom,” and they turn out not to be true. The first is the notion that any interpretive approach based on the Framers’ understandings is so far out of step with the contemporary thinking in the international community of judges and scholars that it represents little more than a peculiarly American form of “ancestor worship,” and the second is the belief that calling on the Framers’ understandings is principally a tool for advancing conservative social and political views.
A new argument about interpretation appeared in the twentieth century: the idea that Supreme Court justices should make their own judgments about the best national policy, and then write their opinions in language that gives the impression that the decision represents an interpretation of the Constitution. This chapter argues that decision science says that the Supreme Court justices are not well-suited for making good policy decisions, and that, if they do so, they should be transparent in their reasoning. For thousands of years, the public and its elected representatives have looked to the courts to provide answers to difficult and important issues involving interpretation, something for which judges are well-trained and well-placed to do. When that traditional process metamorphizes into pure political policymaking, the justices need to defend it as such, and not put at risk the Court’s essential role as the authoritative interpreter of legal texts.
To assess the strategies, practices and arguments used by the industry to lobby legislators against sugary drinks taxation in Brazil.
We performed a content analysis of arguments put forward by sugary drink and sugar industries against sugary drinks taxation, using the framework developed by the International Network for Food and Obesity/Non-Communicable Diseases Research, Monitoring and Action Support to assess corporate political activity of the food industry.
Two public hearings held in 2017 and 2018 in the Brazilian Legislature.
Representatives from two prominent industry associations – one representing Big Soda and the other representing the main sugar, ethanol and bioelectricity producers.
The ‘Information and messaging’ and ‘Policy substitution’ strategies were identified. Five practices were identified in the ‘Information and messaging’ strategy (four described in the original framework and an additional practice, ‘Stress the environmental importance of the industry’). Mechanisms not included in the original framework identified were ‘Stress the reduction of CO2 emissions promoted by the industry’; ‘Question the effectiveness of regulation’; ‘Suggest public-private partnerships’; ‘Shift the blame away from the product’ and ‘Question sugary drinks taxation as a public health recommendation’. No new practices or mechanisms to the original framework emerged in the ‘Policy substitution’ strategy.
The strategies and practices are used collectively and complement each other. Arguments herein identified are in line with those reported in other countries under different contexts and using different methodologies. Future research should address whether and under what conditions lobbying from this industry sector is effective in the Brazilian Legislature.
This article employs a “policy cycle” framework to explore Bill C-51, legislation which contains Canada’s latest amendments to the “rape shield.” Through an in-depth evaluation of earlier rape shield reforms, as well as a content analysis of the legislative proceedings of Bill C-51, this paper reveals that, while the impetus for introducing rape shield legislation is to protect the equality and privacy rights of sexual assault complainants, the legislative process of these “policy cycles” focuses disproportionately on remedying due process concerns and less on the problems that arise in judicial implementation of the provisions. We situate this finding within the larger trend towards the “judicialization of politics,” and trace some of the institutional and structural obstacles that impede Parliamentarians from more effectively legislating to improve sexual assault trials for complainants.
The chapter reflects on reasons economists have departed from welfarism when considering practical problems. Economists generally accept that using ethical values other than individual utility requires departing from neutrality but, if confronted with political contexts involving issues such as distribution, the environment or discrimination, they find it hard not to take an ethical position. Merit or public goods cannot be reduced to the satisfaction of individual utilities insofar as they are meaningful only in a social context. The individualism imposed by welfarism is also debatable when facing the interdependencies that exist between real-world individuals. Lastly, while welfare economics aims to avoid paternalism, reliance on preferences alone can be problematic. The paternalism implied by going beyond welfarism raises issues regarding democratic values such as agency and public reasoning that suggests that, instead of merely substituting non-welfarism for welfarism, there is a need for public debate on moral values. We conclude that economics, when inspired by theory and involved in practices with political consequences, should become more of a moral science.
The Introduction explains the concepts of welfarism and non-welfarism, relating it to the way economistss have typically approached the problem of welfare. Drawing on the chapters in the volume, it explores ways in which economists have departed from welfarism when tackling practical problems and discussing public policy.
With over 1·3 million Anganwadi centres (AWC) (meaning ‘courtyard shelter’), the Indian government runs a nationwide intervention providing nutrition supplement to pregnant mothers to improve the health of their children. Using two successive rounds of the nationally representative cross-sectional National Family Health Survey data (collected during 2005–2006 and 2015–2016) of India, we assessed whether nutrition supplements given to pregnant mothers through AWC were associated with select child health indicators – extremely low birth weight (ELBW), very low birth weight (VLBW), low birth weight (LBW) and neonatal mortality (death during day 0–27) stratified by death during day 0–1, day 2–6 and day 7–27. A total of 148 019 children and 205 593 children were eligible for analysing birth weight and neonatal mortality, respectively. OR with 95% CI, estimated from multivariate logistic regression models, suggest that receipt of nutrition supplements was associated with decreased risk of VLBW (OR: 0·73, 95% CI 0·63, 0·83, P < 0·001), LBW (OR: 0·92, 95% CI 0·88, 0·96, P < 0·001), but not ELBW (OR: 0·80, 95% CI 0·56, 1·15, P = 0·226). Women who always received nutrition supplements during their pregnancy saw lower risk of death of their neonates (OR: 0·67, 95% CI 0·61, 0·73, P < 0·001), including death on day 0–1 (OR: 0·66, 95% CI 0·58, 0·74, P < 0·001), day 2–6 (OR: 0·69, 95% CI 0·58, 0·82, P < 0·001) and day 7–27 (OR: 0·68, 95% CI 0·53, 0·87, P = 0·002). Therefore, nutritional supplementation to pregnant mothers appears to be helpful in deterring various stages of neonatal mortality, VLBW and LBW, though it might not be effective in mitigating ELBW. Findings were discussed considering possible limitations of the study.
The governance of emerging technologies does not follow a single governance paradigm because of complex interactions between government, industry, and civil actors. In this Element, we will argue that for emerging technologies, governance is a 'convergent paradigm'. We introduce governance issues associated with emerging technologies generally before turning to the specifics of nanotechnology. We then approach governance theory and practice by considering different perspectives on governance by their different orientations with respect to object and process. Finally, we construct a matrix of object and process oriented governance activities observed in the case of nanotechnology in the United States.
What causes some people to stand in solidarity with those from other races, religions, or nationalities, even when that solidarity does not seem to benefit the individual or their group? Seeing Us in Them examines outgroup empathy as a powerful predisposition in politics that pushes individuals to see past social divisions and work together in complex, multicultural societies. It also reveals racial/ethnic intergroup differences in this predisposition, rooted in early patterns of socialization and collective memory. Outgroup empathy explains why African Americans vehemently oppose the border wall and profiling of Arabs, why Latinos are welcoming of Syrian refugees and support humanitarian assistance, why some white Americans march in support of Black Lives Matter through a pandemic, and even why many British citizens oppose Brexit. Outgroup empathy is not naïve; rather it is a rational and necessary force that helps build trust and maintain stable democratic norms of compromise and reciprocity.
To evaluate if the inclusion of nutritional warnings in food ordering websites can discourage consumers from purchasing foods with excessive content of nutrients associated with non-communicable diseases (NCD).
Participants were randomly assigned to one of the two experimental conditions: control (n 225) or nutritional warnings (n 222). Nutritional warnings corresponded to separate black octagonal signs containing the word ‘Excess’ followed by the corresponding nutrient: total fat, saturated fat, sugars and sodium. Participants were asked to purchase a lunch for themselves using a simulated food ordering website.
Online study in Uruguay.
Convenience sample of 447 Uruguayan participants, recruited using social media.
In the control condition, 76 % of the participants selected a dish or a beverage with excessive content of at least one nutrient in the simulated food ordering website. When nutritional warnings were included, this percentage significantly decreased to 62 % (P = 0·002). In addition, nutritional warnings caused a significant reduction in the percentage of participants who selected dishes with excessive content of total fat: 50 % v. 62 % (P = 0·012).
Results from the present work provide preliminary evidence that the inclusion of nutritional warnings in food ordering websites could discourage consumers from selecting dishes and beverages with excessive content of nutrients associated with NCD.
Local Content and Sustainable Development in Global Energy Markets analyses the topical and contentious issue of the critical intersections between local content requirements (LCRs) and the implementation of sustainable development treaties in global energy markets including Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, South America, Australasia and the Middle East While LCRs generally aim to boost domestic value creation and economic growth, inappropriately designed LCRs could produce negative social, human rights and environmental outcomes, and a misalignment of a country's fiscal policies and global sustainable development goals. These unintended outcomes may ultimately serve as disincentive to foreign participation in a country's energy market. This book outlines the guiding principles of a sustainable and rights-based approach – focusing on transparency, accountability, gender justice and other human rights issues – to the design, application and implementation of LCRs in global energy markets to avoid misalignments.
Do state politicians reward school districts that vote in favor of the party in power more than school districts that vote in favor of the opposing party? With large shares of money at the state level to transfer to local governments and the ability to target core voters, it would seem likely that politicians would take advantage of the ability to distribute education funds. However, in understanding how states distribute education funds, little emphasis is given to partisan influences, particularly the congruence between local school districts and the state level. To test this, I collected data at the precinct level within each state and, using mapping software, spatially joined precinct boundaries to school district boundaries. Once this relationship was established, I aggregated precinct-level information to school districts to understand the partisan voting patterns within each school district for elections from 2000 to 2010. This article finds evidence that funding formulas are susceptible to political influence and that parties are able to influence the geographic distribution of education funds to core voters.