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Sustainability Execs Should Look to ‘Mavericks and Outsiders’

Corporate sustainability professionals should reach out to “mavericks and outsiders” to find fixes to key sustainability challenges in 2014 such as food security, climate change and resource constraints, according to a Guardian Sustainable Business column.

Oliver Balch writes that corporate sustainability is “too important to be left to corporates themselves.” He predicts a new sustainability strategy in 2014 that will see “new faces and fresh thinking from the worlds of religion, science, philosophy and history; from the marginalized north and the globalized south; from enterprising social movements and social enterprise start-ups.”

This, in turn, will lead to a “richer, wider, more vigorous discussion” about sustainability problems and solutions.

Companies that close the gap between consumer expectations and perceptions of their corporate social responsibility work can positively transform their brand, according to Craig Bida, executive vice president of cause branding and nonprofit marketing for Cone Communications.

The public relations and marketing executive says closing the CSR gap— that gulf between what consumers think companies should do and what they think they actually do — is a valuable sustainable strategy worth pursuing.

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