Welcome back, protest..

A sign of the times

We’ve missed you. It’s been a few years since you’ve gone on a global tour.

It’s good you are back, in many ways.

Of course, no-one sane condones violence, there’s no need for that, ever.

But demonstrations of disapproval around political mis-management and spinelessness?

Can we have some more please?

Then we might change something.

Politicians respond to demonstrations, sometimes.

Now even the Americans are demonstrating. When that happens, you know something really is wrong.

Companies too, often take note of citizen protests.

 Look at Ethical Corporation’s first cover, ten years ago.

At least some early CSR responses were based on concerns around those incidents of citizen unrest.

Back then it was the nebulous issue of ‘globalisation’ some folks were up in arms about.

These days there’s a bit more focus. Yes the big theme is still greed. But we know more about why financial disaster happens than we did, and who is responsible.

We even know more about solutions than we did ten years ago. No perfect answers, but some better ones.

Some of them are coming from the companies who helped create the system we have now, such as McKinsey. Many others are also out there.

When they say the modern methods are out of control, we really ought to listen. No-one understands the monster as well as he who helped create it.

Now we need smart, progressive companies AND citizens, to gang up on Government and help them set the frameworks for the future.

Business is going to have to get off the sidelines and become more involved in the future.

Neutrality is not a defence. We need CEOs to make their views clearer, whatever they might be.


  1. Anna

    hi, i do agree that its been a way too long wait for a good old fashion protest to try and get some change from the government. But I think that deep down the ethical conduct of the government is in question and in particular the ethical behavior of companies. Then do you think that even if the protests succeed with bringing about genuine change that the government and companies will change? Since just because laws are introduced etc. doesnt mean that the gov./ companies will change for the better.

  2. Anonymous

    I agree with you as well as with Anna that it has been to long since there was a good old fashion protest.
    But does a protest really change anything? Will the government/companies listen more just because you are seen more out in the public and media? Do they change their stands because of this or more because they cant be bothered with actually listening at first.

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