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商业联盟——通向“向善的游说”

2016-03-02金蜜蜂Philip Monaghan 编译|李长海0

欧洲企业需要将游说重点放到如何促进可持续、包容性增长议题上。

在政府布下的迷宫中,寻求灰色影响力和维护现状的小商小贩,这是人们关于商业说客较为常见的看法。一个显著的例子就是,烟草行业在过去的半个世纪中,蓄谋抵制严苛的健康管制,人们对该行业说客的负面印象固化下来。不过在本文中,这是用来论证主旨的反例。

过去三百年来,有无数的例子可以表明,商业力量及商业领导人影响公众政策的制定,并且最终带给人类和环境以实质性的、积极的改变。例如,CSR Europe会员企业英特尔的联合创始人戈登•摩尔,他就已经建立起一个资产超过50亿美元的联盟,并在支持环境保护方面拥有良好的声誉。这包括他本人捐赠100万美元,用以支持人们捍卫美国加州政府严苛的环境立法。

Infrangilis 近期参与撰写了新书《向善的游说》(Lobbying for Good)。书中介绍说,目前已经有企业和商业协会达成一项游说方面的共识,即公共政策干预是通向更可持续的经济的要素之一。这部分群体虽然小,但规模始终在扩大。另外,书中还似乎表明,诸如世界野生动物基金会等非政府组织也已达成同样的共识。

在这里,制定一项成功的游说战略,需要选取正确的议题,给出令人信服的说辞,动用合适的资源,并且聚焦于权力层的“刀刃”上。因此,企业会选择与“志同道合”的同业者组成商业联盟,在联盟中分享见解,倾注力量,减少风险,也以共同的声音来扩展影响力。

以可持续城镇化议题为例,CSR Europe近期发起了“城市可持续生活”运动,倡议本身就设置于“企业2020”战略;联合国发出“资源节约型城市全球倡议”;“克林顿气候倡议”组织推动了“C40城市”联盟;世界经济论坛则推出了“城镇化发展倡议的未来”为主题的分论坛。

在欧洲,越来越多的企业开始意识到,当一家自我孤立的公司同“恶势力”竞争的时候,任何企业责任的力量都永远不足以支持它。对于那些商业先锋来说,在达到一定高度时,单凭自我的力量无论如何都难再前进一步。

规则的调整造就企业新的商业抱负。新规则使得玩家们可以在更公平、更可持续的基础上,展开新的竞争行动。这时候,有远见的企业就会抓住机会,重启游戏,甩开束缚,“昂首挺胸”为新的立法游说。

CSR Europe会员企业已经取得了加入其他商业联盟的益处,这些联盟以游说的形式寻求更可持续的经济。例如,嘉吉公司就同航运业先锋马士基航运公司合作,通过世界野生动物基金会与未来论坛在2010年发起的“可持续海运倡议”运动,致力于推动关于运输最低环境标准的更严苛规定。

这项合作建立在安全运输、应对“搭便车”难题的共同需求的基础上,两家公司相信规则管制的力量。“可持续海运倡议”成立的宗旨就是,保证海运行业拥有可盈利且可持续的未来,而嘉吉公司正是这场运动的极大受益者。

“向善的游说”,其逻辑是清晰的:加入联盟,将欧洲企业不仅融入卓越领导者的行列,也带到了历史的正面。

(本文于2014年8月发表在CSR Europe“企业2020”博客,Infrangilis是一家专注于绿色经济的研究机构,致力于在社会公共政策和企业责任实践中融入包容性思维,推动形成更可持续的社会。)


老于点评:

在大学里的政治学课程里,我第一次接触到了“走廊议员游说”的概念,指的是能对议员施加影响的各种利益集团的代言人在议会走廊或休息室的游说活动。当时似乎认为这种西方政治学中的游戏显得不那么光明正大。

实际上,游说是陈述自己的主张或者建议,希望被采纳或实施,本身并不特指褒贬。但现实中,向善的游说和向恶的游说都有,有从个体利益出发,也有从群体公众利益出发。对于面向可持续性的未来而言,本文所讲的“向善的游说”应该是从群体出发,在群体受益的同时,游说方也获得在新的规则下发展的新空间。

读过这篇文章后,让我重新理解了很多问题,比如在一些国际合作项目中,专门面向企业社会责任及可持续发展问题的内容越来越多;领先的企业针对自己专长领域的宏观性论坛和研讨越来越多;还有企业积极推动行业提升标准的积极性越来越高……这些其实都是“向善的游说”的表现,希望自己的价值观、能力和达到的标准,能够在更广、更高的层面上得到认同,而这种认同正是规则改变的基础。可想而知,规则改变了,主导规则的企业将会发挥标杆和引领作用,积聚了未来发展空间。

中国企业在规则上的“游说”意识和能力都还不足。在每次WTO对贸易政策审议之时,中方都希望能够得到企业的参与,然而,提出建议和主张的企业寥寥无几。中国企业在全球影响越来越大,需要主导相应规则的建设。“游说”不应只是单一企业的行动,还应是价值观相通、能力相当的企业合作,以及和相关组织协调的行动。对此,中国企业、行业组织和政府应该给予充分的重视。

在“向善的游说”方面,2011年发起的“金蜜蜂2020社会责任倡议”,就是其中的一例。“共同愿景”本身就是企业和组织具有相通的价值观,“跨界合作”则是助推倡议下的议题朝向可持续性方向发展。

 

以下是英文原文

How business advocacy can accelerate the delivery of a sustainable economy

Companies in Europe need to target their advocacy efforts on promoting sustainable and inclusive growth.

common perception of business lobbyists is one of peddlers of dark influence and maintainers of the status quo within the labyrinth of government. The tobacco sector’s half-century conspiracy to resist health regulation is just one example of why such a negative perception is, in part, warranted. There is another side to the story however.

Spanning 300 years, there are examples of business and business leaders engaging with public policy and making a substantive, positive difference to people and the planet. In the 19th century it was Lever, Cadbury, Lever, Owen and Rowntree. In the 21st century it is Alliance Boots, Intel, Unilever, Woolworths and a host of others. For instance, Gordon Moore, co-founder of CSR Europe member Intel has established a Foundation with more than $5 billion of assets and has a strong record of supporting environmental conservation. This includes Moore backing the campaign to successfully defend California’s progressive environmental legislation with a $1 million donation.

Lobbying for Good, co-authored by Infrangilis, suggests that there is a small and growing group of companies and business associations that have come to the conclusion that public policy intervention is an essential component of the transition to a more sustainable economy. Moreover, it appears most NGOs such as WWF have reached the same conclusion.

Constructing a winning advocacy strategy here requires selecting the right issue, building a compelling narrative, mobilising appropriate resources, and targeting the key levers of power. It is no surprise, therefore, that companies often choose to join forces with like-minded peers through a coalition: to share insights, to pool assets, to reduce risks, and to achieve influence through a collective voice.

Take the issue of sustainable urbanisation: CSR Europe recently launched the Sustainable Living in Cities campaign through its Enterprise 2020 strategy; the United Nations convenes the Global Initiative for Resource Efficient Cities; the Clinton Climate Initiative operations C40 Cities; and the World Economic Forum runs the Future of Urban Development Initiative.

Increasingly companies in Europe are coming to understand that the business case for corporate responsibility will never be strong enough to support an isolated company in its competition against the unscrupulous. The progressive vanguard reaches a point where it can advance no further without rendering itself uncompetitive.

New rules enable new behaviors with players competing on a fairer, more sustainable footing. Far-sighted businesses understand this and are rebooting the game, throwing off cultural inhibitions and sticking their head above the parapet to advocate progressive legislative change.

CSR Europe members already enjoy the benefits of other coalitions which seek to advocate for a more sustainable economy. For example, CSR Europe member Cargill is a player in working with sector peers such as Maersk Line for stronger enforcement of minimum environmental standards (e.g. sulphur oxides emissions) through the Sustainable Shipping Initiative campaign established by WWF and Forum for the Future in 2010.

This is on the basis that regulatory intervention is needed to secure lasting change and tackle the problem of free-riders. The SSI aims to ensure that the industry has both a profitable and sustainable future, and Cargill is one ringleader in this great campaign.

The logic of Lobbying for Good is clear: getting on board puts European enterprise not only in the company of some fantastic business leaders but on the right side of history.

(责任编辑:小黑)

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