The Leadership Imperative for Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility

Document Type



Drucker School of Management (CGU)

Publication Date



Leadership Studies


The world is at a tipping point. We are simultaneously on the edge of unprecedented wealth creation and catastrophic implosion, as a result of many geopolitical forces. On the one hand, the financial crisis precipitated mainly by events in the United States, and the ripple effects throughout Europe and the rest of the world are slowly coming under control.

Yet, at the same time, much of the world is restive. Sub-Saharan Africa, particularly Nigeria, Niger, Cameron and Chad, are in de facto war with extremists intent on returning the region to the Stone Age. The same is true in Syria and the region around it, as we see various groups struggle for complete domination. In Eurasia, Russia has invaded, or threatened to invade multiple of its neighbors (e.g., Estonia, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine). The Taliban is resurging, threatening peace and tranquility in but another beleaguered region.

Oil, of course, is central to economic development, yet many are striving to develop more sustainable sources of energy. As we witnessed climbing oil prices the investment in so-called green energy seemed more promising. In 2014, however, oil prices plummeted and so too did the power of oil rich nations like Russia.

China's rise to economic and geopolitical power continues to ascend. Here again, however, is an area of environmental concern. Air pollution in the major urban areas of China is severe, bringing into question the sustainability of their current economic engine. These and other trends have forced us all to look into the mirror to face the imperative for sustainability and corporate social responsibility.

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© 2015 Elsevier Inc