Ethical Corporation’s regular review of new reading

Investment Opportunities for a Low-Carbon World

By Will Oulton (ed) (2nd edition)

Paperback: 394 pages, £49.50

ISBN: 09572311-0-8

Publisher: Environmental Finance

Published: March 2013

This recent classic on environmental finance has been reworked to include extensive updates. Readers will find eight entirely new chapters, covering issues such as sustainable timber, climate bonds and carbon trading. A welcome revision for market analysts and students alike.

The Future: six drivers of global change

By Al Gore

Hardcover: 592 pages, £25

ISBN: 0753540487

Publisher: WH Allen

Published: January 2013

One-time presidential candidate and now proxy global statesman, Al Gore identifies six themes that promise to drive global change. The list ranges from work and communications to biotech and climate change. Each is examined intrinsically for the good they can bring – and the bad they might just be harbouring.

Playing to Win: how strategy really works

By A Lafley and Roger Martin

Paperback: 272 pages, £17.99

ISBN: 978-1422187395

Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press

Published: February 2013

This compelling book by form P&G CEO Lafley and Rotman School of Management’s Martin spells out why corporate plans and vision statements don’t cut it as strategy. The science of strategy, they argue, comes down to choice: choose where to play, on what playing field and in which way in order to win.

The Sustainable Business Workbook: waste elimination

By Jonathan Scott and Walter Stahel (2nd edition)

Paperback: 224 pages, £19.95   

ISBN: 1906093839   

Publisher: Greenleaf Publishing

Published: January 2013  

First published in 2010, this comprehensive textbook has proved a hit with teachers and students, as well as practitioners. The authors spell out how to build long-term success by optimising resources and maximising purchases and investments, while eliminating waste, unemployment, short-term thinking and environmental degradation.

Business Behaving Well: social responsibility, from learning to doing 

By Ron Elsdon (ed)

Hardcover: 240 pages, £19.15

ISBN: 1612342948

Publisher: Potomac Books

Published: January 2013

This practical-orientated book provides readers with a check-list against which to measure their organisation’s integration of social responsibility. Packed with helpful action steps and cautionary advice, a worthwhile introduction to the subject.

The Upcycle: beyond sustainability – designing for abundance 

By William McDonough and Michael Braungart

Paperback: 256 pages, £17.56

ISBN:  0865477483

Publisher: North Point Press

Published: April 2013

The fact that McDonough and Braungart persuaded Bill Clinton to write the foreword to this book shows how influential their cradle-to-cradle theory has become. Drawing on the last decade’s experience of applying the theory inside companies, the authors spell out a new vision for beneficial designs of products, buildings and business practices. Ambitious and potentially groundbreaking.

Fair Trade, Sustainability and Social Change 

By Ian Hudson, Mark Hudson and Mara Fridell

Hardcover: 232 pages, £55

ISBN-10: 1137269847

Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan

Published: March 2013

Integrating insights from economic and sociological research, this book sets out to show how fair trade is illuminating to consumers the structural imbalances in global trade. A fresh look at how fair trade is producing social change, plus a frank assessment of the problems that the movement now faces.

Gross Domestic Problem: the politics behind the world’s most powerful number

By Lorenzo Fioramonti

Paperback: 208 pages, £12.99

ISBN: 1780322728 

Publisher: Zed Books

Published: January 2013

Questions are increasingly being raised about the central role of gross domestic product, GDP, as the focal goal of public policy. This book offers a powerful critique of the consequences of putting economic growth at the centre of the social project, while pointing to “degrowth” alternatives.

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