chapter  11
19 Pages

Constructive Consumption

Corporate Leadership in Bridging Livelihoods and Conservation in Democratic Societies
WithSaleem Ali, Mirza Sadaqat Huda

This chapter argues that consumption needs to be considered with greater nuance, particularly by corporate leaders at the individual and organizational levels. It shows that while environmentalists started from much more uncompromising positions on societal norms, they are moving towards pragmatic partnerships that recognize the value of 'constructive consumption'. Collaborative corporate leadership from the private sector can find common ground with the public sector in moving society towards a more constructive and nuanced view of consumerism and consumption. Envisioning consumption within a broader framework of sustainable livelihoods and efficiency is of greater salience than the well-meaning calls to reduce consumer expenditure. As explained by Sacks, the basic characteristic of 'collaborative consumption' is that access to goods and skills is more important than ownership of them. The shared economy can be divided into three broad categories: product-service systems, redistribution markets that enable re-ownership of a product such as Craigslist and the sharing of assets and skills, such as workspace.