Chapter 4

Sustainability, Corporations, Capital Markets, and the Global Economy

In this chapter, we further investigate the concept of the multiple bottom lines (MBL) of economic, governance, social, ethical, and environmental (EGSEE) sustainability performance and their measurement, reporting, and assurance. A sustainable business is one that takes a long-term view, considering the impact of its operations and long-term strategy on the environment, community, society, and economy. The single objective of improving the organization's profit has been replaced with the concept of improving the widely known triple bottom line of measuring sustainable performance in terms of making profit while considering the impact on the planet and its inhabitants, thus in turn making the organization more economically sustainable for the long run.

Global Economy and Financial Crisis

Recent financial crises and resulting global economic meltdowns were caused by a variety of factors, including lack of adequate focus on transparent long-term sustainable performance, ineffective corporate governance, and troubled financial institutions. The responding government bailouts in the United States, the United Kingdom, and other countries have cost trillions of taxpayer dollars without effectively energizing and stimulating capital markets or the economy, or promoting sustainable business performance.

In the context of this book and our topic, two general approaches are suggested to ...

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