Articles & blogs on research updates

Category: research updates

The Promise and Limits of Carbon Pricing

“Critics and endorsers alike concede that ‘optimal’ carbon pricing schemes which are cost-efficient and environmentally effective in theory may be politically unfeasible in practice. But a ‘clash of paradigms’ persists regarding what this means in practical political terms. Windows of opportunity to pass comprehensive climate legislation are few and far between. Should governments double down on carbon pricing or diversify their policy portfolios? How big a difference does a carbon price make for the climate?”

Money Buys Even More Happiness than It Used to

“While the old adage says that money can’t buy happiness, several studies have determined that the more your income increases, the happier you are, up until US$75,000 a year. […] But in a new analysis of more than 40,000 U.S. adults aged 30 and over, my colleague and I found an even deeper relationship between money and happiness. […] Today, money and happiness are more strongly related than they were in the past. It seems money buys more happiness than it used to. How did this happen?”

Corporate Activism Is More than a Marketing Gimmick

“While some see companies’ support for Black Lives Matter as a calculated marketing ploy, I argue that companies’ support for Black Lives Matter is an example of corporate activism – in other words, a sincere engagement with the policymaking process. Setting aside the question of whether corporate activism is good or bad for democracy, and whether it is sometimes clumsy or even offensive, it is a genuine attempt to influence policy outcomes.”

Big Pharma Wants to Pocket the Profits From a COVID Treatment You Already Paid For

“Our data suggests that Gilead’s considerable accomplishment in securing authorization for use of remdesivir in treating COVID-19 represents only the culminating step in a cumulative process of innovation that involved the collective action of public, as well as private, enterprise. While Gilead will likely invest several billion dollars in bringing remdesivir to market, our data suggests that the public sector, in aggregate, has already invested much more. Patent law and the USPTO recognize the role played by Gilead in the discovery and development of remdesivir. There is, however, no mechanism for similarly recognizing the decades of foundational, basic research that made this discovery possible.”

Socially Responsible Investing Can Be Like Searching for Fool’s Gold

“ESG proponents argue that when companies place importance on reducing their carbon footprint, emphasizing workplace management or improving board diversity, they are doing good business that will generate greater long-term financial returns for their investors. […] Many academic and industry studies have looked into this, however, and there is no conclusive evidence that ESG investing leads to superior returns for investors.”

A Greener Economy: How We Make Sustainability Central to Business

“what role can individuals within businesses play in actually achieving a more profound change? How can just one person help turn what has been a traumatic period in human history, into one that future generations will benefit from, and create a more sustainable world? We studied 44 heads of sustainability at companies around the world, exploring what they did to build sustainability into their organisation.”

Why Ford, Chanel and Other Companies Pitch in During a Crisis – Without the Government Ordering Them To

“In all, hundreds of companies across the globe have committed money, supplies and know-how to help with the COVID-19 response, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s corporate aid tracker. Why are these companies being so generous? As scholars of corporate social responsibility, we believe altruism certainly plays a role for many of them, but it’s not the only motivator. Research on company behavior points to two others: bolstering reputation and avoiding regulation.”

What a Sustainable Circular Economy Would Look Like

“The idea of a circular economy is simple: to make better use of resources, close loops of resource flows by fully recovering materials instead of wasting them, and prevent waste and pollution by better design of products and materials and keeping them in use for longer. Sounds great, but how might it work? Our research programme supported the implementation of a circular economy in the UK and we discovered that three broad types exist.”


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