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Book: The Greening of Business in Developing Countries: Rhetoric, Reality and Prospects

11 Jul 2002



How accurate are the claims of large corporations that they are now environmentally responsible? By projecting a greener image and entering into partnerships, big business is trying to shed its reputation as a destroyer of the environment and an enemy of environmentalists. Does this picture of corporate environmental responsibility and co-operation correspond with reality? Is the greening of business extending to developing countries, and if so, what are its implications for sustainable development?

This new publication from Zed Books and UNRISD examines these questions by drawing on examples and case studies from Brazil, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Malaysia, Mexico, Pakistan, Singapore and South Africa. It identifies areas of progress, the limits to corporate environmental responsibility, and the types of pressures, market forces, incentives and institutions that are prompting companies to reform their policies and practices.

This pioneering set of studies provides a rich seam of analysis and data on the environmental performance of big business in developing countries. It also assesses the scope for promoting corporate environmentalism in the South and the effectiveness of different types of regulation involving government, international agencies, civil society organizations, citizens and consumers.

Contents
Introduction: Towards Corporate Environmental Responsibility?, Peter Utting
Part I: The Environmental Record of the Private Sector: Large Corporations and Domestic Firms
The Greening of Business in Mexico, David Barkin
Environmental Management as an Indicator of Business Responsibility in Central America, Lawrence Pratt and Emily D. Fintel
Bioprospecting in Costa Rica: Facing New Dimensions of Social and Environmental Responsibility, Silvia Rodríguez and Maria Antonieta Camacho
The Environmental and Social Effects of Corporate Environmentalism in the Brazilian Pulp Industry, Ricardo Carrere
Corporate Environmental Responsibility in Singapore and Malaysia: The Potential and Limits of Voluntary Initiatives, Martin Perry and Sanjeev Singh
Part II: Promoting Corporate Environmental Responsibility: Mechanisms and Strategies
Disturbing Development: Conflicts between Corporate Environmentalism, the International Economic Order and Sustainability, Richard Welford
Environmental Regulation of Transnational Corporations: Needs and Prospects, Michael Hansen
Promoting Corporate Environmental Responsibility: What Role for "Self-regulatory" and "Co-regulatory" Policy Instruments in South Africa?, Jonathan Hanks
New Partnerships for Sustainable Development: The Changing Nature of Business-NGO Relations, David F. Murphy and Jem Bendell
Towards Civil Regulation: NGOs and the Politics of Corporate Environmentalism, Jem Bendell and David F. Murphy
Corporate Environmentalism in the South: Assessing the Limits and Prospects, Peter Utting

Peter Utting is a Project Leader and Researcher at UNRISD.

The Greening of Business in Developing Countries is co-published with Zed Books. Paperback, ISBN 1-84277-089-6, 2002, US$27.50; Hardback, ISBN 1 84277 088 8, 2002, US$69.95

Order from: Zed Books 7 Cynthia Street, London N1 9JF, United Kingdom, Tel +44 (0)20 7837 4014; Fax +44 (0)20 7833 3960.