How can South African businesses find economic value in the country’s social challenges?
There has never been a better time and opportunity for executives and senior management leading businesses in South Africa (SA) to find economic value in the country’s immense and complex social problems.
Maritha Erasmus is an expert in social sustainability strategies and is one of the country’s foremost consultants on social sustainability in the mining industry.
The economic situation has been met with dire concern as the country faces immense social, environmental, and financial challenges that threaten the economic and social wellbeing of citizens and businesses. This interview aims to highlight how a shared value creation (SVC) strategy can drive economic value for society that can also positively impact the bottom-line of businesses.
What is shared value (SV) and what are the benefits for businesses in South Africa?
The concept of SV, first proposed in 2011 by Harvard Professor Michael E. Porter focuses on the connections between societal and economic progress as the next wave of economic growth.
- reconceive products and markets,
- redefine value chain productivity, and
- enable local cluster development.
In other words, it an exploration of new approaches that generate innovation and growth for companies that also produce benefits for society.
For which industries would a shared value creation (SVC) strategy be most relevant?
A SVC strategy is possible and relevant in almost all major industries. For example, the crisis that the mining industry finds itself in with the Mining Charter, which is also currently under scrutiny – brings an opportunity to assess the positive aspects and benefits of implementing a shared value strategy.
Can you share examples of successful shared value (SV) strategy initiatives?
Locally, the Anglo American’s eMalahleni Water Reclamation Plant, commissioned in 2007 had to solve a problem where the coal workings contained significant volumes of water in a water scarce region.
The Water Reclamation Plant was developed, and this initiative resulted in…
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Read this interview article by Maritha Erasmus, CEO, Managing Transformation Solutions Holdings, as well as a host of other topical management articles written by professionals, consultants and academics in the February/March 2018 edition of BusinessBrief.
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