Business, Power and Sustainability in a World of Global Value Chains

Stefano Ponte

Description

Essential reading on sustainability governance in the twenty-first century

The interaction of sustainability governance and global value chains has crucial implications the world over. When it comes to sustainability the last decade has witnessed the birth of hybrid forms of governance where business, civil society and public actors interact at different levels, leading to a focus on concepts of legitimacy within multi-stakeholder initiatives (MSIs).

Based in over 15 years of theoretical engagement and field research, Business, Power and Sustainability draws from both labour-intensive value chains, such as in the agro-food sector (coffee, wine, fish, biofuels, palm oil), and from capital-intensive value chains such as in shipping and aviation, to discuss how sustainability governance can be best designed, managed and institutionalized in today’s world of global value chains (GVCs). Examining current theoretical and analytical efforts aimed at including sustainability issues in GVC governance theory, it expands on recent work examining GVC upgrading by introducing the concept of environmental upgrading; and through new conceptions of orchestration, it provides suggestions for how governments and international organizations can best facilitate the achievement of sustainability goals.

Essential reading on the governance of sustainability in the twenty-first century.

Author Bio

Stefano Ponte is a professor of international political economy at Copenhagen Business School and Director at the Centre for Business and Development Studies. His previous books include New Actors and Alliances in Development (2014); Brand Aid: Shopping Well to Save the World (2011) and The Coffee Paradox (Zed 2005).

Table of Contents

  • Introduction: Business, Sustainability and the Global Economy
  • 1. What We Know About Sustainability Governance
  • 2. Power in Global Value Chains
  • 3. Sustainability, Power and Governance in the Wine, Coffee and Biofuels Global Value Chains
  • 4. Value Creation and Capture through Economic and Environmental Upgrading
  • 5. Orchestrating Sustainability
  • Conclusion: ‘Just Sustainabilities’ in a World of Global Value Chains

Reviews

'A profoundly important book that will be required reading not only for today’s practitioners and students, but for the next generation as well.'
Benjamin Cashore, Professor of Environmental Governance & Political Science at Yale University

'This book is a well-researched, systematically analysed and neatly presented examination of how large firms have captured environmental sustainability to control the world through global value chains. It is a chilling but compulsive reading. It is highly recommended for researchers and students especially those in production sites - the global south.'
Christine Noe, Department of Geography, University of Dar es Salaam 

‘A great book that all students of Global Value Chains and transnational sustainability governance should buy and read. Ponte is an expert and innovator in both fields of study, and successfully synthesizes insights from both literatures to build a provocative and compelling argument about ongoing and impending transformations in the global economy.’
Luc Fransen, Associate Professor of International Relations, University of Amsterdam.

‘Ponte shows not only how sustainability management is a key feature of contemporary capitalism, but also why pursuing "just sustainabilities’ is so imperative. I strongly recommend the book.'
Professor Peter Newell, University of Sussex, author of Globalization and the Environment and Global Green Politics.

‘Since the 1980s, the main question has been how to leverage foreign direct investment and GVC engagement for economic development. Now, with the habitability of the planet in question, this book shifts the lens toward sustainability. Very timely!’
Timothy J. Sturgeon, Ph.D. Senior Researcher, MIT Industrial Performance Center (IPC)

Details

Publication Date: 15 August 2019
272 pages

Product ISBNs: Paperback: 9781786992574
Hardback: 9781786992581
eBook ePub: 9781786992604
eBook PDF: 9781786992598
eBook Kindle: 9781786992611

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