Welcome to the worst decade since the Great Depression. Trillions of dollars of financial assets destroyed; trillions in shareholder value vanished; worldwide GDP stalled. But this isn't a financial crisis, or even an economic one, says Umair Haque. It's a crisis of institutions--ideals inherited from the industrial age. These ideals include rampant exploitation of resources, top-down command of resource allocations, withholding of information from stakeholders to control them, and a single-minded pursuit of profit for its own sake.
All this has produced "thin value"--short-term economic gains that accrue to some people far more than others, and that don't make us happier or healthier. It has left resources depleted and has spawned conflict, organizational rigidity, economic stagnation, and nihilism. In The New Capitalist Manifesto, Haque advocates a new set of ideals:
(1)Renewal: Use resources sustainably to maximize efficiencies,
(2) Democracy: Allocate resources democratically to foster organizational agility,
(3) Peace: Practice economic non-violence in business,
(4) Equity: Create industries that make the least well off better off, and
(5) Meaning: Generate payoffs that tangibly improve quality of life.
Yes, adopting these ideals requires bold and sustained changes. But some companies--Google, Walmart, Nike--are rising to the challenge. In this bold manifesto, Haque makes an irresistible business case for following their lead.