The that each “pillar” is an individual construct. Some

The aim of this essay is to effectively convey what constitutes a responsible
enterprise in regards to one Sustainable Development Goal. Sustainable
development is defined According to the WCED, as “development
that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future
generations to meet their own needs.” bruntlandreport,1987. WCED, 1987:


The criterion of sustainability integrate three firmly interlinked elements: economic, environmental
and social, and once successfully combined can lead to long lasting
sustainability Sheehan, 2009. Environmental
sustainability means that we are living within the means of our natural resources.To
live in true environmental sustainability we need to ensure that we are
consuming our natural resources, such as energy fuels, materials, water and land
at a sustainable rate. In relation
to economic
sustainability, it requires that an company or nation uses its resources sensibly
and resourcefully in order for it to function in a sustainable manner to constantly
generate an operational profit. lastly is social sustainability which is the capability
of humanity, or any societal organisation, to persistently accomplish a high
level of social well being circularecology,2017. Conway and Laasch 2014 suggest that sustainable development can only be
reached if it is based on social, environmental and economic co development.

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However research
has shown that there are alternative frameworks that may be more accurate, one
of which being the egg of sustainability computingforsustainability,2017.
This framework suggests that the environment sustains all life forms. It encompasses
the social and economic spheres. Without the environment neither man society
nor his economy can exist. The environment is the set and society and the economy
are sub-sets.

There are two basic critiques
of the three pillars of sustainability. The first assumption is that each “pillar”
is an individual construct. Some writers claim that individuals are biological entities
and thus implying that human resources are also environmental resources which
means they cannot be independent.
second, is the observation that the model does not encompass a time measurement which is a key element
of the WCED 1987 definition.

There are 17
sustainable development goals which came into place at the beginning of 2016.
These are goals set out by the UN and world leaders in order to end global
challenges. The sustainable development goal that I have chosen to talk about within
my essay is goal number 5 which is gender equality un,2017. There target is
to diminish all forms of discrimination against girls and women worldwide by
the year 2030


In relation to the economic pillar of sustainability there
are many challenges related to gender equality. A large amount of literature Barro
2001, Schultz 2002, Dollar and Gatti 1999; Knowles, 2002 and Klasen 2002 insinuates
that, gender equality has a positive influence on economic development. The worldwide economy is currently losing out on
trillions of pounds. Studies suggest that women currently account for merely 37
percent of total worldwide economic output. Women would add a quarter to todays
worldwide production figures if they participated equally with that of their opposite


In terms of environmental challenges research from the Irish Aid suggests
women in rural areas often have no control over land and less access to
natural recourses in comparison to that of the opposite counterpart. It is
often the case that these same women are excluded from any type of formal
ownership of landIrishaid,2017. Due to existing inequalities and socially constructed
gender roles, women are more exposed to the impacts of environmental and natural
disasters such as floods, cyclones and drought than men. Women that live in Degraded
environments are having to walk further to collect fuel wood and water. As a
result of this their access to productive activities and education are curtailed,
they are more exposed to the danger of gender based violence since they are
having to walk into remote areas irishaid,2017.


Lastly in relation to the social pillar of sustainability. Research has
shown that the women in lower economically developed countries have a lower life
expectancy in comparison to their opposite counterpart. For example women that live in Bangladeshi
are expected to make it to 58.7 years compared to 59.2 years for men due to inequality
throughout the whole life.


Research has also shown that gender stereotypes
and gender role socialization still exist within modern day societies. An
article from the planned parent hood suggested that gender role sociolastion
takes place when the child is of a young age. Toys and games that are available
for children are unconsciously
intended to socialize them into the appropriate gender roles. Pink toys are available for girls and blue toys are
available for boys. Girls often get dolls and dresses and boys often get action
men and guns. This is because within society women are expected to be more
natureing and mortherly while men are expected to be more masculine and aggressive.


holds a very clear responsibility with regard to gender equality.

private sector could have a transformational influence on individuals’ lives as
a creator of employment and manufacturer of goods and services that underprivileged
people use. Donor organisations
are paying increasing attention to how private sector development can be leveraged
to upkeep poverty reduction and sustainable, equitable and inclusive economic
growth. Making use of social development thinking is essential to effective
private sector development work that is responsible, inclusive, and delivers
sustainable benefits to poor people.

There is strong evidence
that increasing women’s economic opportunities can help achieve positive development
outcomes. Private sector development approaches can support this by, for
instance, improving women’s access to employment and financial services Markel
2014. One company that uses CSR strategies for sustainable development is
UNIDO which is the united nations industrial development organization. UNIDO
actively builds partnerships with the private sector to promote inclusive and
sustainable industrial development. One example of this is there partnership
with Chevron. They work together in order to introduce entrepreneurship as a
subject to girls and boys in secondary schools. A national roll-out of entrepreneurship
curriculum was planned for 214 reaching 500,000 potential entrepreneurs. Another
example is the Volvo group-UNIDO project furthers skills development in advanced
commercial vehicle maintenance and helps young women and men find jobs in Ethiopia.

With responsible enterprise
being such
a complex phenomenon, there is no consensus, thus no singular definition. The various
interpretations incorporate a number of elements which include sustainability,
corporate social responsibilities (CSR and corporate citizenship. Responsible
enterprise as a whole is outlined as when corporations “operationalise their
corporate responsibilities in all of their strategies and business practices by
developing relationships with stakeholders and by working to maximise
sustainability of the natural environment.” Waddock and Rasche, 2012: 4


Similarly, the World Business Council for Sustainable
Development in its publication ‘Making
Good Business Sense’ by Lord Holme and Richard Watts, define corporate social
responsibility as “the continuing commitment by business to behave ethically and contribute to
economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their
families as well as of the local community and society at large” Worthington and
Britton, 2015.



1991 model suggests that corporate social responsibility is composed of 4
obligations which are made up of economic, legal, ethical and philanthropic responsibility
as shown in the diagram on the right Carrols theory indicates
that CSR is built on the foundation of profit and that all other requirements
come after. In essence, Carroll’s definition shows that corporate social responsibly
has more than one element. It brings together a range of interpretations. However,
the stages are not progressive or chronological. The diagram leads you to
presume that Carroll’s theory is based on a hierarchical structure thus meaning
that the higher up on the pyramid you get, the more important each stage is. Though
this is not the case since Carroll “stipulates that the economic and legal
domains are the most fundamental, while philanthropic responsibilities are
considered less important.” Schwartz, 2011:90.


responsible enterprise can be defined using the concept of corporate citizenship
CC. Crane and Matten 2010, believe it should be associated with the corporations
action towards governing the social, political and civil rights towards citizens
Crane and Matten, 2010 Matten et al 2003.
Corporate Citizenship has reference
towards the relationship between the individual and the state. In other terms, the
rights of the individuals are protected and preserved by the government. Also, insinuating
that companies have a set of rights and duties to the community Grisseri and Seppala,


in turn, introduces the idea that business is part of a still wider set of relationships
than those outlined above Crane & Matten 2016. Porritt 2007, Laasch
& Conaway 2015


However, taken together, these three concepts suggest


Focusing on the national level, we can see
that the UK government has attempted to encourage more responsible enterprise
with regards to Goal 5 “gender equality”. 
Legislation for gender equality is ongoing in the UK. Studies
have shown that incentives have been put in place to reduce gender inequality.     Milestones include the Married Women’s Property
Act of 1870, the Equal Pay Act of 1970 and the Sex Discrimination Act of 1975, the
Pensions Act of 1995 and the Employment Equality Sex Discrimination Regulations


Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild, Chief Executive Officer, E.L
Rothschild argued that compliance with regulations would advance gender equality by
increasing collaboration across the public and private spheres to provide women and
girls accessible career choice and advancement opportunities gov,2017.


In regards to the UK government, as a whole, the Green Money Journal 2002
research found that over £120 billion was invested in institutional and retail funds
with active social responsible policies, and sustainable development Higgs, 2002.
In essence, this shows that the government, in the last couple of decades, started
to see the requirement of responsibly investing to meet its agendas. This caused
for government to intervene. As a result, governments have adopted responsibility
of driving CSR, through laws, regulations and tax Moon, 2004.


One example of the goverments
role in gender equality can be seen within universities in the UK. The British programme, Athena SWAN Scientific Women’s Academic Network,
launched at ten universities in 2005 and has since spread to more than 140 UK institutions.
The voluntary scheme relies on universities supplying self-assessments to the Equality
Challenge Unit, a non-profit organization that judges the institutions on their
inclusiveness and equality in hiring, promoting and retaining female staff. Nature,2017


A major reason for the scheme’s rapid rise in the United Kingdom was its
link to funding. In 2011 the UK government’s chief medical officer, Sally Davies,
made holding a silver award a requirement for receiving grants from a £816-million
US$1.1-billion pot of government biomedical funding. But the scheme spread well
beyond the institutions competing for that funding. This was motivated in part by
“moral pressure” but also because some staff thought that future funding decisions
could become linked to such ratings, says Athene Donald, a physicist at the University
of Cambridge, UK. Major funders such as the UK Research Councils recommend that
institutions seek accreditation, but have not made it a requirement. Nature,2017


Evaluations of the British programme have been positive. In a 2016 survey
of UK academics, almost 90% of respondents who were aware of Athena SWAN felt that
the scheme’s initiatives had a positive impact on the work environment. Some institutions
saw particular success. Between the University of Liverpool receiving a bronze award
in 2013 and a silver in 2016, the proportion of women promoted to professor posts
increased from 28% to 50%. Other participating universities have made similar gains.


However, studies of the
UK suggest that Since 2010, the UK government’s austerity policies,
including welfare cuts, have impacted massively on women and gender equality. According to research by the House of
Commons library, 86% of funding cuts have come out of
women’s pockets as a result of tax and benefit changes, such as a cap on housing benefit. That means the
cuts since 2010 will have cost women a total of £79bn, compared to £13bn for men


The UK has made significant progress in many areas of women’s equality, as evidenced by the increase in women’s economic activity, and their academic achievements. Law and policy on women’s equality
in the UK are regarded as a beacon of good practice internationally, and independent bodies are in place to monitor and enforce compliance with the law as well as to offer guidance and support. Measuring and monitoring of progress towards the equality and empowerment of women and girls are done well, by a range of stakeholders from government to academia, business and civil society.


Consequently, governments also need to…

The UK has made significant progress in many areas of women’s equality, as evidenced by the increase in women’s economic activity, and their academic achievements. Law and policy on women’s equality
in the UK are regarded as a beacon of good practice internationally, and independent bodies are in place to monitor and enforce compliance with the law as well as to offer guidance and support. Measuring and monitoring of progress towards the equality and empowerment of women and girls are done well, by a range of stakeholders from government to academia, business and civil society.

In conclusion, there are
many different explanations as to what constitutes a responsible enterprise. Motivating
sustainable development and driving corporate social responsibility initiatives
are key in order to become a responsible organasation. Though this essay only
covered a few worldwide challenges, many exist and are increasing rapidly throughout
the world. These struggles pertain to economic, social
and environmental issues and by recognising these and putting in place maintainable
solutions we can prolong life on earth, raise global social wellbeing and push
economic development in preparation for future generations.

Overall, partnerships
are essential from business’s, non profit organasation and the government. Working
together means that there is an increased level of contribution to improving sustainability
in order to tackle current global challenges. Businesses become aware by
the  implementation of initiatives and
legislation by the government in order to reduce gender inequality.

In regards to
non profit organisations, they address the issues by investing in the problems
that require the most help and support. Sustainability requires a far reaching contribution
thus showing that associations are necessary in order for the three elements to

Due to the far reaching
involvement sustainability requires. It is evident collaborations are needed as
the three models cannot exist in pure form because markets everywhere have already
developed in co-operation with the government, voluntary sector and even wider society.