Our Stakeholder Capitalism Grand Challenge Final Report, written by Executive Director Greg Brown and Chief Economist Gerald Cohen, has been published in the Spring 2023 issue of the Journal of Applied Corporate Finance.
Throughout 2022, the Kenan Institute at UNC-Chapel Hill explored how ESG factors enter into and play a role in the decisions of corporate managers and investors. We have framed this analysis within the broader notion of “stakeholder capitalism,” a model in which business decisions reflect explicit consideration of their expected impact on a broader set of corporate stakeholders.
Companies face increasing pressure from different stakeholders to address various environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. In their efforts to engage with these issues, they might pursue symbolic or substantive actions, either pre-emptively (proactive actions) or in response to specific targeted threats (reactive actions). Yet we know relatively little about how different stakeholders react to this repertoire of corporate actions and importantly, whether they are aligned in their reaction. We ask this question in the context of gender inequality, an issue that has become salient due to heightened societal attention thanks to the #MeToo movement.
CEO pay is the latest point of contention in the political fight over ESG, but the arguments have become oversimplified. When we think about good corporate governance, what does the evidence say about CEO pay? The results may surprise you.
Students from UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, in partnership with UNC's Program for Public Discourse, will gather to address the opportunities and risks of an environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG)-centered approach to financial decision-making.
Our 2023 Frontiers of Business Conference will convene top researchers, corporate executives and policy leaders working around the globe to navigate the balance of corporate value and values. Join us as our experts share objective, evidence-based solutions for implementing stakeholder capitalism and ESG frameworks more broadly.
For our 2022 grand challenge, the Kenan Institute made the ambitious commitment to explore stakeholder capitalism and ESG investing – complex topics that have required the engagement of our global network of experts to unpack.
Executive Director Greg Brown offers a simple model for prioritizing ESG issues at smaller PE-backed companies, given that the trade-offs between benefits and costs of implementation are more likely to limit the scope of their policies.
A daunting tangle of problems defines the global energy space as 2022 winds down. On the one hand, the war in the Ukraine combined with curtailed Russian oil/gas supplies into Europe has reminded many that unfriendly energy suppliers can also deliver inflation and hardship to their customers. On another side, efforts to increase oil/gas supplies both in Europe and globally, face stout resistance to anything that might further entrench hydrocarbons into national economies. Inflation is prompting monetary policies to tighten even as fiscal indiscipline continues via historically high government deficit spending. Concerns over climate change remain an article of faith among leaders of many countries. Other voices decry the folly of calls to suppress oil/gas production when greener alternatives are not ready to replace them. Electorates seem both confused and restless. The risk that they vote in leaders less insistent on decarbonizing economies is palpable.
Can investing in polluting industries be a tool for fostering sustainability? Yes, according to research by Kenan Institute Distinguished Fellow Jacquelyn Pless, and it may be more effective than divesting.