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The Many Faces of Corporate Social Responsibility

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Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a fascinating and complex topic. There is consensus that companies both make a large impact on the world and have a responsibility beyond profits. The challenge with this responsibility is that determining businesses' responsibility and

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a fascinating and complex topic. There is consensus that companies both make a large impact on the world and have a responsibility beyond profits. The challenge with this responsibility is that determining businesses' responsibility and measuring the impact remains unclear. Scholars most often point to the early to mid 1900s as its starting point and the increased economic growth and workers' unions occurring in the 1950s as one of the reasons for scholars paying more attention to the topic. This thesis project analyzes current examples of CSR from Starbucks and IBM. These companies have reputations for their positive CSR practices. Both companies' availability of information, the vast number of their CSR practices, and efforts to measure the impact set them apart. IBM and Starbucks stand out because of the sheer volume of CSR activities they have, and when examined closely, the mixed, primarily good, impact of these activities is revealed. Having a high number of CSR practices alone does not equate to doing CSR well. Instead, companies' CSR should be examined based on both the number of practices and their impact. Considering both of these metrics will help consumers, as well as other stakeholders, better evaluate the success or failure of CSR in a business.

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2017-05

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Doctors and Diapers: Promoting Sustainable Practices Through Pediatric Healthcare

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Incorporating sustainability education in primary healthcare practice is an important step toward promoting sustainability in the US healthcare system. This health strategy is also consistent with a renewed focus of the US healthcare system, mainly prompted by the Affordable Healthcare

Incorporating sustainability education in primary healthcare practice is an important step toward promoting sustainability in the US healthcare system. This health strategy is also consistent with a renewed focus of the US healthcare system, mainly prompted by the Affordable Healthcare Act of 2010, toward preventive care and patient wellness. The major challenge, however, is an effective implementation of sustainability education in the healthcare industry. This honors thesis project developed a sustainability education model, in which primary healthcare providers or the physicians educated the patients about sustainability and its connection to public health issues. The main purpose of this thesis project is to analyze the effectiveness of this sustainability education model and to evaluate its impact on the individuals and households in terms of sustainable attitudes and practices. The study was conducted with 26 parents of newborn babies at Estrella Pediatrics PC using a classic randomized control-group pretest-posttest design. The Pre- and Post-Surveys were completed to evaluate change in their knowledge and attitudes toward sustainability practices covered in the sustainability education model. In the research, the relationships between sustainability-related issues and their negative impacts on the health of human beings were established in the sustainability education pamphlet provided to the physicians, which they shared with the patients during the wellness visits. This pamphlet focused on waste management, air pollution, and locally grown food. Moreover, samples of environmentally-friendly diapers were given to the study respondents to complement this education. The study demonstrated positive trends with the intervention protocol, though the level of statistical significance was marginal. More specifically, it was observed that the respondents placed the highest significance on the education provided by the pediatricians. Interestingly, the receipt of the diaper samples by itself did not generate any significant effect. However, the education provided by the physician and the pamphlet coupled with the diaper gave very positive results. In conclusion, physician led sustainability education has significant potential in promoting sustainability in primary healthcare practice, and further inquiry should be pursued.

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2015-12

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Austin City Limits: An Ethnographic Analysis of the Modern Music Festival

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This ethnographic study explores the music festival phenomenon in the context of the Austin City Limits music festival, held in Austin, Texas with a total attendance of over 450,000 people annually. Using Glaser and Strauss' grounded theory method (1967), central

This ethnographic study explores the music festival phenomenon in the context of the Austin City Limits music festival, held in Austin, Texas with a total attendance of over 450,000 people annually. Using Glaser and Strauss' grounded theory method (1967), central questions concerning structure, community identity, sustainable consumption, and waste were generated from the ethnography. These topics were analyzed with supporting theory in cultural anthropology, sociology, and sustainability. The findings are the basis for our "local-washing" theory, suggesting that localness is utilized to create a sense of authenticity. It is our shared conclusion that local-washing is a prevalent phenomenon at the modern music festival and presents the impact of commercialization on the public sphere. The research conducted includes collecting ethnographic fieldnotes pertaining to festival-goers behaviors that we observed at the festival as well as an investigation of the waste at the festival. By attending the Austin City Limits music festival and utilizing the ethnographic research method, we gained a deeper understanding of what motivates and bonds people in the unique context of the music festival. Through this we found basis for an analysis of the sustainable consumption of food and beverages at the festival as well as waste behaviors and theories behind them including the idea of waste having an absent presence in society.

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2016-05

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The Importance of Graphic Design Skills in Marketing

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This thesis examines the importance of graphic design in the marketing profession, with an emphasis on the necessity of specific graphic design skills in the acquisition of an entry-level marketing position or internship. The research begins with a thorough examination

This thesis examines the importance of graphic design in the marketing profession, with an emphasis on the necessity of specific graphic design skills in the acquisition of an entry-level marketing position or internship. The research begins with a thorough examination of various job posts requiring a marketing degree and a detailed analysis of how certain changes in the marketing landscape are causing graphic design skills such as the Adobe Creative Suite to be important in entry-level marketing. The thesis then discusses and critiques what actions are being taken by universities across the United States to address the issue of marketing undergraduates not feeling prepared to enter the workforce. Using these actions as a basis, the thesis then concludes with recommendations for universities in general, recommendations specific to Arizona State University, and recommendations for students given these new insights regarding graphic design. Some of these university recommendations, which also apply to ASU, include creating an interdiscplinary degree program, improving or changing current major or minor programs to integrate the two disciplines, implementing new courses, and encouraging students to use a variety of low-cost, online resources. The student recommendations include searching for degree programs with design-related major and minor offerings, pursuing a minor in a design-related area, utilizing online learning resources and approaching design students and faculty for individualized instruction.

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2014-05

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Zero Waste Efficiency: Small Business Analysis

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In this paper, I analyze the costs and benefits of waste prevention and zero waste initiatives that are inflicted upon society. The problem lies in the amount of human municipal solid waste (HMSW) resulting from human activities, especially as growing

In this paper, I analyze the costs and benefits of waste prevention and zero waste initiatives that are inflicted upon society. The problem lies in the amount of human municipal solid waste (HMSW) resulting from human activities, especially as growing global urban population estimated to be producing three times as much waste as it does today (Goto, 2014). Landfill externalities are addressed to explain the purpose of this research. Additionally, the efficiency of diverting waste from the landfill is assessed; these diversion methods are recycling, composting, and the uses of TerraCycle. It is important to note the difference between waste prevention and zero waste: Waste prevention is simply reducing the amount of waste, whereas zero waste is aiming to divert HMSW for other uses other than going its final destination, the landfill. This research highlights tax policies and incentive-based approaches that cities currently enforce, as well as repercussions of these approaches. Waste prevention is explored from the user perspective and reactions to taxes on waste that were implemented to promote global sustainability, which can be seen from the primary data collected. I analyze the success of zero waste initiatives in the online marketing agency, Vertical Measures, comparing landfill waste diversion with the implementation of zero waste initiatives. This paper highlights the observations and results from this two-month analysis. With both the analyses of city regulations and first-hand application of zero waste and waste prevention methods, the findings suggest that the success of these initiatives depends on various factors including location and participant attitudes. This research and data can help provide insight for other small businesses for a more sustainable environment and workplace.

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2016-05

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Trade Liberalization and Economic Degradation

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This thesis looks at the theory and empirical evidence that surrounds the debate between environmentalists and economists regarding the link between trade liberalization and environmental degradation. The main points of the theory are the scale, composition, and technique effects which,

This thesis looks at the theory and empirical evidence that surrounds the debate between environmentalists and economists regarding the link between trade liberalization and environmental degradation. The main points of the theory are the scale, composition, and technique effects which, when aggregated, are ambiguous as the harm or benefit of trade's effect on the environment. The empirical evidence studied ranges in time periods from the early 1990s to 2011 and mainly focuses on the existence or absence of an environmental Kuznets curve for certain pollutant. However, the data still proves to be inconclusive. The debate about the possible link between trade and the environment is as important as ever, especially in regards to carbon dioxide emissions. Going forward, it is extremely important that international cooperation regarding emissions targets and abatement goals increases. Trade will prove to be an invaluable tool in this endeavor as it provides a mechanism for the spread of green technology as well as can be used as a method of environmental policy enforcement.

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2016-05

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A Partial Life Cycle Assessment of Oranges Grown Locally and Afar: An Evaluation of the Significance of Food Miles

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This thesis was conducted in order to determine the role played by food miles metrics in making the agricultural industry more sustainable. In an effort to analyze the importance of eat locally this study utilizes a partial life cycle assessment.

This thesis was conducted in order to determine the role played by food miles metrics in making the agricultural industry more sustainable. In an effort to analyze the importance of eat locally this study utilizes a partial life cycle assessment. This study looks at oranges grown in Arizona and California and inputs such as water, energy, fertilizer, herbicide, pesticide, frost mitigation, and distance in order to conduct the partial life cycle assessment. Results of this study indicate that food miles are not as significant, in relation to overall energy input, as the locavore movement claims. This is because production processes account for a larger portion of the total energy used in the food chain than what these claims suggest. While eating locally is still a significant way of reducing energy use, this thesis shows that decisions about eating sustainably should not only focus on the distance that the products travel, but place equal, if not more, importance on energy use differences due to geographic location and in-farm operations. Future research should be completed with more comprehensive impact categories and conducted for different crops, farming, and locations. Further research is needed in order to confirm or challenge the results of this thesis. With more research conducted regarding this topic, ecological labeling of agricultural products could be improved to help consumers make the most informed choices possible.

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Date Created
2014-05

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Sustainability Assessment of a Local Coffee Shop

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Derived from the idea that the utilization of sustainable practices could improve small business practice, this honors thesis offers a full business assessment and recommendations for improvements of a local, family-owned coffee shop, Gold Bar. A thorough analysis of the

Derived from the idea that the utilization of sustainable practices could improve small business practice, this honors thesis offers a full business assessment and recommendations for improvements of a local, family-owned coffee shop, Gold Bar. A thorough analysis of the shop's current business practices and research on unnecessary expenses and waste guides this assessment.

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Date Created
2015-05

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Tossing Out the Waste: An Exploration of Sustainable Solutions for an Arizona Restaurant

Description

The goal of this project is to gain and use knowledge of sustainability topics as a value-adding function for a business in the Tempe, AZ area and to develop the skills to approach and consult with business owners and staff

The goal of this project is to gain and use knowledge of sustainability topics as a value-adding function for a business in the Tempe, AZ area and to develop the skills to approach and consult with business owners and staff about sustainable business options. Sustainability searches for a balance between society, economy and the environment where all three can thrive; therefore, the ideal project partner was a business that values the wellbeing of mankind, is locally owned and operated and promotes environmental stewardship. The Original Chop Shop Co in Tempe Arizona was appropriately selected. Throughout the duration of our partnership, I observed their daily routine, interviewed employees and managers and used the collected information to identify three areas of focus that have the largest potential to reduce The Original Chop Shop Company's impact on the environment. Information on the areas of recycling, composting, and food sourcing was researched and synthesized to make suggestions for ecofriendly changes to business practices. The scope of the project includes small changes in daily practices such as implementing a recycling and composting program and employee training sessions and minor investments such as purchasing a micro washer and silverware in order to eliminate nonrenewable plastic utensils. The scope does not include major renovations or investments in technology. The suggestions offered position The Original Chop Shop to conduct business in a way that does not compromise the health of the environment, society, or economy.

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2015-05

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MARKETING AND MANAGING SUSTAINABILITY WITH THE ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS: INCREASING ORGANIZATIONAL COMMITMENT AND PARTICIPATION TO SPARK SOCIAL CHANGE IN THE VALLEY

Description

Sustainability has been a growing topic since the 1970’s, but is truly taking shape today as society is beginning to understand the necessity of protecting our environment. Business organizations are following this ‘megatrend’ and are beginning to incorporate sustainable initiatives

Sustainability has been a growing topic since the 1970’s, but is truly taking shape today as society is beginning to understand the necessity of protecting our environment. Business organizations are following this ‘megatrend’ and are beginning to incorporate sustainable initiatives in their organizations from the inside out. The sports industry is no exception as they are extremely influential over the millions of fans that follow them, whom have a strong affiliation with their favorite team. The Arizona Diamondbacks understand this responsibility and seek to be a leader in their community by creating many sustainable initiatives within their organization and community. The current problem the organization faces, is that much of the community are not aware of their environmental commitment. This is in part due to a lack of marketing within the organization and to the Arizona valley. This project analyzes the sports industry’s commitment to sustainability and how the Arizona Diamondbacks compare to industry leaders. Included is a detailed marketing plan for the organization comprised of current initiatives and of new initiatives that the Diamondbacks could potentially carry out. The implementation of this proposal could deem extremely beneficial as it would strengthen their identity, unify their employees and engage fans, which will make them feel a deeper affiliation with the organization. The Diamondbacks have made a commitment to the environment, but it is time to deepen that commitment, set an example for people in the Valley and in turn, spark social change.

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2015-05