Dr. Emiliano Hudtohan

Educator, Business Writer, Industry Expert and Entrepreneur

Threefolding and Corporate Social Initiative

January 30, 2014

(This paper was delivered at the Management Organization Department Forum of De La Salle College of Business on March 6, 2014 and an abridged version was delivered at the international seminar on ASEAN Economic Community 2015: Opportunities and Threats at Halu Oleo State University, Kendari, South Sulawesi, Indonesia on April 29, 2014)


Corporate social initiative (CSI) has evolved from decades of philanthropic corporate social responsibility (CSR) experience. This paper assumes that CSI as a strategy for alleviating poverty needs the convergent initiatives of business, civil society, and government. For me, these three sectors must converge to fight Philippine poverty with strategic rigor in order to achieve positive results. This convergence paradigm is aligned with the threefolding of Nicanor Perlas (2000; 2008), triple helix of Henry Etzkowitz (2008) and the AQAL matrix of Ken Wilber’s (2007).

Business has the financial resources; civil society has the human capital; and government has the political structures to facilitate delivery of services to the poor. But experience on the ground indicates that these sectors are divergent in their programs and initiatives. Current trend in partnerships among these sectors is emerging and the push for tripartite convergence is a challenge if the global desire to eradicate poverty (Sachs, 2006) is taken seriously.

The primary purpose of this paper is to advance the notion that corporate social responsibility (CSR) is already moving a notch higher as it evolves in practice as corporate social initiative. Secondly, it addresses issues related to CSI: 1. A change in perspective from CSR delivery to on the ground social development of the corporate beneficiaries towards financial independence; 2. The beneficiaries themselves need to have a change in mindset from dependency and co-dependency towards developing a sustainable self; and 3. The practice of governance based on Newtonian principles is being challenged by advocates of 21st century quantum politics and management.

These three inter-related issues involving business, civil society, and government create a web of problems and opportunities that directly impinge on CSI. Threefolding by way of convergence of business, civil society, and government for sustainable development is the overarching framework for CSI. As such an interdisciplinary approach to CSI is of primordial importance.

In this regard, social and technological evolution point towards democratization of human existence will lend vital support to corporate social initiatives to address poverty.

The Corporation

Five decades ago, Milton Friedman (1961) insisted that a corporation is “an artificial person and in this sense may have artificial responsibilities, but business as a whole cannot be said to have responsibilities.” He concluded that businessmen who subscribe to corporate social responsibility (CSR) are practicing “pure and unadulterated socialism” and that they are “undermining the basis of a free society” (Friedman, 1970).

His corporate perspective is anchored on the economic fundamentals of Adam Smith (1776), who In The Wealth of Nations, argued that “The great commerce of every civilized society is carried on between the inhabitants of the town and those of the country. It consists in the exchange of crude for manufactured produce, either immediately, or by the intervention of money, or of some sort of paper which represents money. The country supplies the town with the means of subsistence and the materials of manufacture. The town repays this supply by sending back a part of the manufactured produce to the inhabitants of the country. The town, in which there neither is nor can be any reproduction of substances, may very properly be said to gain its whole wealth and subsistence from the country. We must not, however, upon this account, imagine that the gain of the town is the loss of the country. The gains of both are mutual and reciprocal, and the division of labor is in this, as in all other cases, advantageous to all the different persons employed in the various occupations into which it is subdivided.”

More than 22 decades later, Joel Bakan (2004) exposed corporations whose extreme hermeneutics of Smithsonian creation wealth. In his book, The Corporation, he concluded that these corporations are pathologically dysfunctional, blindly pursuing profit and power.

Caroll’s Pyramid

By the end of the 20th century, the rise of corporate social responsibility (CSR) was made prominent by Archie Carroll (1991; 1999) whose CSR pyramid of economic, legal, ethical, and philanthropic activities is now considered a classic framework for CSR practitioners. The basis of what we consider to be the modern definition of CSR is rooted in Archie Carroll’s “Pyramid of Corporate Social Responsibility.”

This pyramid has four types of responsibilities. The first and most obvious is the economic responsibility to be profitable. The second is the legal responsibility to obey the laws set forth by society. The third is closely linked to the second, is the ethical responsibility. That is to do what is right even when business is not compelled to do so by law. The fourth is the philanthropic responsibility. It is also called the discretionary responsibility; it is best described by the resources contributed by corporations toward social, educational, recreational and/or cultural purposes. With the development of the stakeholders theory, this discretionary responsibility would later evolve into a commitment that includes responsibility for the community.

Nearly 20 years later, the Pyramid of Carroll remains highly relevant as CSR cornerstone. It is regularly cited, debated, modified and criticized by academia, corporate leaders, politicians and social commentators. Thus, there is a growing development of CSR towards corporate social initiative (CSI).

Corporate Social Innovation

In the same year that Carroll embarked on the idea of CSR pyramid, Rosabeth Kanter (1999) perceived “all social problems are economic problems.” Initially, she observed that “many businesses treat the social sector as a charity case—a dumping ground for spare cash, obsolete equipment, and tired executives on their way out.” She later noted that “a number of companies that are breaking the mold—they are moving beyond corporate social responsibility to corporate social innovation. These companies are the vanguard of the new paradigm. They view community needs as opportunities to develop ideas and demonstrate business technologies, to find and serve new markets, and to solve long-standing business problems. They focus their efforts on inventing sophisticated solutions through a hands-on approach.”   The term “corporate social innovation” was later overrun by corporate social initiative (CSI), whose intent is practically one and the same.

Towards Corporate Social Initiative

While CSR has been around since the 1950s, its importance and practice took hold much later. The basis of what we consider to be the modern definition of CSR is rooted in Carroll’s pyramid of corporate Social responsibility. In this Pyramid a corporation has four types of responsibilities. corporate giving pyramid The first and most obvious is the economic responsibility to be profitable. The second is the legal responsibility to obey the laws set forth by society. The third, which is closely linked to the second, is the ethical responsibility. That is to do what is right even when business is not compelled to do so by law. The fourth is the philanthropic responsibility. Also called the discretionary responsibility, it is best described by the resources contributed by corporations toward social, educational, recreational and/or cultural purposes.

Beyond philanthropic cash donations and photo opportunities, corporations directly involve themselves in community projects (Alperson, 1996; Hess, Rogovsk, and Dunfee, 2002, Habaradas, 2013). According to this new trend, CSR has graduated from giving away fish to teaching the community how to fish by initiating projects that are sustainable and have potential for significant positive impact on society (Hess & Waren, 2008). CSR has evolved into corporate social initiative (CSI) espousing the idea of delivering a meaningful and sustainable initiative.

In the Philippines, the CSI concept is exemplified by The Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP). Founded in 1970, it has involved 260 large, medium-scale and small businesses comprise in helping the poor rise above poverty and become self-reliant. It has benefited 4.5 million Filipinos and has assisted over 6,200 social development projects through more than PHP 7 billion in grants and development loans. (www.pbsp.org.ph).

The League of Corporate Foundations (LCF) founded in 1996 continues to take on the leadership in promoting CSR among 78 corporation members whose foundations and institutions are tasked to implement philanthropic programs for the community (Del Rosario, 2008). While a generic CSR terminology is used by these corporations, a closer look at their activities are further classified by Homintz (2013) as creating shared value (CSV) with the community and Habaradas as CSI.

The belief that “most companies remain stuck in a ‘social responsibility’ mind-set in which societal issues are at the periphery, not the core” gave birth to the idea of creating shared value (CSV) as a means to reach out to external stakeholder (Porter & Kramer, 2011). By putting social issues at the heart of corporate concern, CSR is now moving towards CSI, driven by a central idea the competitiveness of a company and the health of the community it serves creates socio-economic synergy. This vital link between societal and economic progress has the power to unleash the next wave of global growth and to redefine capitalism.

Corporate Shared Values

Michael Porter and Mark Kramer (2011) argue that innovating to meet society’s need and building a profitable enterprise are the twin goals of the next generation of completive companies. Marc Pfitzer, Valerie Bockstette and Mike Stamp (2013) enlisted Dow Chemical, Nestle, Norvatis, Mars, and Intel as examples of companies following Porter and Kramer’s idea of creating shared value with and for their external stakeholders. Their shared value model encompasses the creation of a social and business value which includes: social purpose, a defined need, measurement, the right innovation structure, and a co-creation. These five elements reinforce on another. They said, “Social purpose helps a firm identify the needs it might want to address…A deeply held social purpose is also important for co-creation, forming the basis for trusted relationships. Understanding a region’s particular needs helps define what can be improved and by how much, and the value of that change to the business. The degree to which the potential for shared value can be anticipated and aligned with the company’s financial criteria determines the optimal innovation structure forth social venture.”

Based on a study conducted by Harald E. A. Tomintz (2013), “the initiatives of LCF members are generally philanthropic and external. There are exemplary initiatives among members of this group that manage to constantly create value by developing local clusters in Philippine society.” His findings reveal that “the concept of Shared Value on a theoretical level by evaluating the potential of using shared cultural values as an additional means to develop a society [and] that there is a rich ground on which future efforts for development can be conducted in terms of enriching Philippine enterprise, through an integration of promoting normative Filipino values, and implementing concrete company initiatives, at the same time.”

Tomintz study on corporate shared value directs the attention of LCF members towards corporate social initiative, which promotes company and community development. He says, “Implementing such cultural values would speed up the integration process while at the same time allow companies to become more in touch with what the community needs. In this way, the values of helping each other can apply to eventually create a synergetic effect in which both the company and society will benefit” (Tomintz, 2013).

According to Habaradas (2012a), there are “Companies [that] undertake corporate social initiatives for a variety of reasons. Many do it for altruistic motives. Some see it as a way to enhance their corporate reputation or to legitimize their business interests. Others respond to pressures from various stakeholder groups, while others consider this as being true to their corporate values. For a few, corporate social initiatives are integral to their business models, and are, therefore, key to their viability.”

Habardas (2012b), in his study, remarked that “there is empirical evidence that a company’s primary motive for undertaking philanthropy can shift over time, and this results into a corresponding change in its philanthropic approach. In the case of Shell in the Philippines, its philanthropic activities started with altruistic motives, but were later designed to legitimize its presence in communities in which it operates”. Today, its major social initiatives are geared towards enhancing stakeholder relations, and address its increasing commitment to sustainable business practices

Pilipinas Shell celebrated its 100 years of corporate presence in the Philippines and Pilipinas Shell Foundation Inc. (PSPI) has 5 technical skills training, 3 agricultural skills training, 3 livelihood and entrepreneurship development, 3 education interventions; and 5 health, safety, and environmental management programs (Habaradas, 2012b). Among its corporate initiatives are: Sanayan sa Kakayahang Industrial Program for honing skills of the Filipino; Shell Bitumen Solution for high quality roads that pave the way to progress, Shell Pepeng Pasada Club that cares for the jeepneys drivers, and Gawad Kalinga Villages for building houses and uplifting communities (The Philippine Star, Jan. 12, 2014)..

Civil Society

From the point of view of the beneficiaries of corporate social initiatives, a pre-entrepreneurial programming has to be initiated to prepare the targeted community for proper reception of the CSI projects. The orientation program is actually part of the community organization (Buenviaje, 2000) and community development (Cura, 2000) social development perspective.

Community Development

While mainstream corporate social responsibility design and implement community projects from the point of view of business presence in the community, there is a need for corporate management to exercise what I call community empathy. That is seeing the project from the point of view of the beneficiaries.

Development projects like that of USAID in Bicol Integrated Area Development failed because disbursement of funds and project implementation were driven by the intent to get the project delivered. Thus, Bicol Health project distribution of ceramic water-sealed toiled bowls failed because the beneficiaries were not consulted in the design of these bowls. In rural Bicol where mornings are chilly near Mayon Volcano, the ceramics bowls were cold for those who use it in the morning.

Thus, there is difficulty to conveniently use them. Six months later, the project evaluators were horrified that the bowls were used as pots planted with flowers and vegetables. Community projects streaming from the top fail because the members are not involved directly in planning and therefore lack ownership to make the project succeed.

Buenviaje suggests that community development go through a long process of awakening through the

following stages. Stage 1: Pre-entry – outside Pakikibalita; Stage 2: Entry into the community – outer

layer Pakikiramdam; Stage 3: Immersion with the people – inner layer Pakikiramdam; Stage 4:

Community Organization proper – middle layer   Pakiki-alam; Stage 5: Phase-over Pakikisangkot.

Cura (2000) suggests an organizational development approach to community development. The stages

include: Stage 1: Apathy: No Problem; Stage 2: Dependency – I am part of the Problem. Solution

outside; Stage 3: Pre-critical – Recognition I am part of the Problem; Stage 4: Liberation – Alliance

building local and global.

Jean Netario Cruz (2014) created a social optimum development quadrant of sustainability which combines is a social entrepreneurship approach to social development. The approach involves the partnership of social entrepreneurs, social investors, and the participating community who will roll out a seed project for human development.

The shared value model of Pfitzer, M., Bockstette, V. and Stamp (2013) advance the notion that to create a social enterprise, corporate leaders should apply a social development framework which include five mutually reinforcing elements: 1. Embedding a social purpose, 2. Rigorous definition of the social need, 3. Measurement of the social and business values, 4. Creation of an optimal innovative structure, and 5. Co-creation with external stakeholders or beneficiaries. ,

The Shared Value Model, the OD Community Model and the Community Organization Model are critical inputs for CSI practitioners who earnestly desire to make their companies succeed in entrepreneurial programs sponsored by their respective companies.

Poverty and Charity

A deeper challenge for CSI practitioners is to be fully aware of a mindset that must be redirected; the meaning and nuances of poverty and charity are so well understood [misunderstood] in Philippine religious circles, including the poor themselves. Our 400 hundred years of Catholic orientation has given premium to poverty as virtue. As exemplified by the religious orders that help the poor, they vow poverty as a way of life. Charity is also misconstrued as a form giving and thus a virtuous act. And yet, many at times it has encouraged mendicancy in the streets and has attracted jobless people to extend their hands to people who have the capacity to give.

Table 1 shows our cultural DNA in relation with the influence of our Spanish and American heritage. I am not saying we discard our ethnic Filipino values of: Bayanihan which new hermeneutics interpret it as bayan [town], bayani [hero] = helping together, pakikipagkapwa: kapwa [fellow human] as humanitarism, pagtutulungan: tulong [help] as voluntary helpfulness, kawanggawa as kawawa [pity], gawa [act, deed] to mean merciful action, and charity to mean kabutihang loob and kagandahang loob. In fact, our sustainable self needs all these values as anchor of our cultural DNA (Jocano, 1997; Grauds and Childers, 2005; Browning, 2005; Murray, 2011; Hudtohan, 2013).

Table 1. Axiological Perspective on Philippine CSR Throughout Philippine History

Pre-Spanish EraSpanish Colonial EraAmerican EraPhilippine Democracy
Cultural DNA Bayanihan Pagtutulungan KawaanggawaCatholic Virtues Charity; tithing Vow of poverty Corporal work of mercyDemocratic Principles Corporation Law 1905 Legal framework Social frameworkPrivate Enterprise Corporation Code 1980 Corporate Governance 2002  

Achieving a sustainable society is the biggest issue of our time. It is not an issue confined to a particular subject area or to certain jobs. It is a way of thinking and behaving that needs to be embedded in all aspects of all of our lives.

The long standing issue of poverty in the Philippines is partly colored by our socio-religious underpinnings, interpretation, and popular practice of what is charitable in the context of the Catholic Church. Catholic Church organizations advocate corporal and spiritual work of mercy, Sunday mass Collecta [Tithing] and we abound in doctrinal Catholic Social Teaching. The idea that the poor will always be with us is a given that poverty will always be with us. Charitable donation and palliative give aways are virtuous acts in the light of Christian doctrine.

Catholics Social Hermeneutics

Pope Francis’ new hermeneutics understands and speaks directly to parties concerned: business, government and civil society. His first Papal Exhortation is an epitome of the social teachings of the Church repeatedly issued in Pole Leo XIII Rerum Novarum, Quadragesimo Anno of Pope Pius XII , and Centesimus Annus of Pope John Paul II.

In contrast to Pope Benedict XVIII’s Caritas Veritate, “Love – caritas – is an extraordinary force which leads people to opt for courageous and generous engagement in the field of justice and peace…it is the principle not only of micro-relationship (with friends, with family members or within small groups) but also of macro-relationship (social, economic and political ones.).” Pope Francis’ language in his book, On Heaven and Earth, defines charity both as a cardinal virtue and condemns self-gain in helping others. He says, charity, “can begin with aid, but it cannot stop at fundraising events. These are things that are called works of charity when, in reality, they are social-conscience calming activities…There is no charity without love, and if vanity is part of helping the needy, there is no love; it is feigned charity.”

In Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis(2013) makes a preview of global change. He says, solidarity “refers to something more than a few sporadic acts of generosity. It presumes a new mindset which thinks in terms of community and the priority of life of allover the appropriation of goods by a few…Changing structures without generating new convictions and attitudes will only ensure that those same structures will become, sooner or later, corrupt, oppressive and ineffectual.”

Pope Francis no longer trust the unseen forces and “the invisible hand” of the market referring to a metaphor conceived by Adam Smith in his Wealth of Nations to describe the self-regulating behavior of the marketplace where Individuals can make profit, and maximize it without the need for government intervention. For him, justice requires that “the creation sources of employment and integral promotion of the poor which goes beyond a simple welfare mentality.” This statement hammers corporate social initiative as a way to benefit the poor in a sustainable manner. In addition, if corporations adopt a duty of care in promoting social initiatives, the question of common good, justice and rights are at once subsumed by this humanitarian act in alignment with Christian charity.

In his first encyclical Lumen Fidei, he proclaimed that “Love and truth are inseparable. Without love, truth becomes cold, impersonal and oppressive for people’s day-to-day lives.”   In that same encyclical he presents the relations of faith and reason, faith and common good, faith and search for God, and faith and theology. I was curious to find his connection with beauty, because the triune values of truth, goodness and beauty have been subsumed in describing God as all-truth, all-goodness, and all-beauty. Thus far, beauty or ecority as Brian Hall elevates this value to its highest category has not been popularized globally, as Haught and Belita have initiated.

Ecority/Aesthetics is “The personal, organizational or conceptual   influence to enable persons to take authority for the created order of the world And to enhance its beauty and balance through creative technology in ways that have world-wide influence.” (AVI 1988- Zygon Associates 2001- www.minessence.net).

The real hermeneutics of charity and poverty should lead our church leaders and followers to add a fourth P to the triple bottom line of Profit, People and Planet. The Asian Social Institute pioneered in advocating Prayer as an added dimension to Brundt’s report which was later adopted by the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the World Council on Economic Development. (WCED).

Prayer as fourth P is viewed as theological stewardship (Cajes, ). Stewardship theory in management (Donaldson & Davis, 1991) is in fact agency theory and the agent [manager] acts as a steward of the resources of the corporate owner. Similarly, theological stewardship calls upon every person to protect the interest of Creator as good agents in managing created resources (Hudtohan, 2011).


Quantum Politics

Neil Walsh (2009, p.175-176) observes that “Government programs can be self-perpetuating. Their objective can be every bit as much to justify their existence as to help those they are meant to assist. If there is a limit to all government assistance, people would be helped when they genuinely need help but could not become addicted to that help, substituting it for their own self-reliance.”

Dator (2009) claims that the rules and principles upon which human race has relied upon is 199 years behind, no long able to cope with the complex system in which government, business and society relate to each other. The supposedly ordered system on this planet is plunged once more into a chaos. Worse, the natural laws of the universe governing our natural system, like our climate, are drastically changing. We need to understand the new dynamics of human existence, no longer from the Newtonian physical laws and ecclesial spiritual [religious laws] that govern our lives. Between the natural [science] and supernatural [theological] reality, we are reminded there is a metaphysical reality.   What is the 21st century age of enlightenment? How do we move from chaos to new world order in the 21st century? The challenge to new governance so that no one is excluded from the banquet of life.

According to Nicanor Perlas (2011; 2003), we have to move from state-centered to societal-governance. Societal innovation cannot happen if civil society is not organized enough to provide a count perspective to the practice of both state and the market that are most past oriented and often dominant.

Conrado de Quiros (2013) suggests a “pro-poor proposal” consisting of church initiatives as exemplified by Tony Meloto, Chito Tagle and Pope Francis. The GK model is a partnership of civil society represented by the Couples for Christ and business sector. What he failed to suggest is to get the government sector to work with civil society and business. He asks, “Why should we wait for government to discover the urgent need to begin to end poverty? Why should we wait for government to embark on the urgent task to begin to end poverty?” I ask: Why can’t the government, business and civil society work together to end poverty? I believe the ultimate strategic intent to end poverty is tri-sectoral unity. For corporate social initiative business must rethink on how create wealth, civil society must relearn to create health, and government must redesign itself for effective management and governance.

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) January 27, 2014 encapsulates the Church’s concern for the poor in a message To Bring Good Tidings to the Poor. Rcardo Saludo (2014) suggests that in this year of the laity the “the Church should lead by example by launching an Adopt-a-Parish campaign praioing all parisheses in wealth communities with the poor ones, with the former sharing their human and material resources to enrich church facilities, liturgical and instructional materials, and spiritual programs in less-endowed partner parishes.” I may add, the welth sector belonging to business must endeavor to help the poor parishioners the importance of self-reliance and empowerment through skills in business acumen.

The idea of helping the poor and getting their side of the project is aidred by Archbishop Socrates Villegas (2014)who said that, “They must be consulted first and heard. If they prefer building materials, let it be. If they prefer that houses be constructed, let’s do it.” He captures the essence of community organization and community development the very grassroots. He must, to my mind broker a partnership with the businessmen who will help build and with government agencies to provide support services to get the project going. Thus far, kanya-kanyang views and the beneficiaries are awaiting converging of efforts provide them integrated development.

On governance, the United Nations is pioneering a leadershift move towards women leaders. UN world leaders in New York on September 25, 2013, to establish “ the rights of women and the equality of their participation at all decision-making levels” as cited in UN Security Council resolution 1325 in 2000. In real terms, it means: 1. Appointment of a Woman as the next United Nations Secretary-General; 2. Nomination of Women as future presidents of the General Assembly by the regional groups; 3. Election of more Women as heads of various UN governing bodies; and 4. Appointment by member-states of more Women as administrators in the United Nations in New York and Geneva.

Irwin Laszlo (2006) cites a worldshift from a nation-state system to a planetary system (Alistair M. Taylor, xxxx), where federation states and interstate organizations govern under the principle of ecumenism and incarnationalism driven by Einsteinian [metaphysical] science. He developed his systems-theory model of the historical evolution of human societies, which he designated Time-Space-Technics (TST). TST understands human societies as instances of open natural systems equilibrating with their environments in a hierarchy of integrative levels. It identifies an evolutionary sequence of world-views that organize societal systems at the different levels.

Bentham Utilitarianism is a theory in normative ethics holding that the proper course of action is the one that maximizes utility, usually defined as maximizing happiness and reducing suffering. Classic utilitarianism’s two most influential contributors are Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill. John Stuart Mill in his book Utilitarianism, stated, “In the golden rule of Jesus of Nazareth, we read the complete spirit of the ethics of utility. To do as one would be done by, and to love one’s neighbour as oneself, constitute the ideal perfection of utilitarian morality.” Over the years, this hermeneutics has been neglected by hardcore bottomline economists.

Governance of the Future

According to Jane McGonigal and Kathi Vian (2009), we need to reorganize ourselves for the 21st century. They suggest we superstruct to survive as species by becoming more energy efficient in a complex global complex organization. Superstruct means “to build new structures that extend our reach, expand our capacity, and go beyond the limits of today’s institutions. It means to bridge, to traverse boundaries, not just of organizations, communities, or nations, but also of scale itself…building anew level of sociability into our economic and institutional lives – and into all our projects, from securing food and shelter to governing ourselves.”

Contextualizing CSI in the web of superstructures, there are two ecologies work mentioning. First, the quantum governance ecology embraces “a post-Newtonian, quantum worldview” which seeks to generate radical, world changing ideas to allow humanity to survive superthreats and emerge stronger than before. Second, the community works ecology calls for “people with skills in agriculture, engineering, medicine, law enforcement, construction, and banking to create and mobilize talented and compassion-driven professionals and experts to collaborate on projects and programs for marginalized communities.

Jake Dunagan (2009) observes, “The governance of tomorrow must rest on the deepest understandings of reality we have today – and the ultimate design task for this century will be the redesign of governance…Scholars from across disciplines have thus begun to look to quantum physics for new principles of governance. However, making the case for the limitations of Newtonian system has been much easier than showing how a quantum politics might actually function in our world today., And operationalizing the quantum view of reality into a working structure is a profound design dilemma. ”

The stunning observation of James Allen Dator (2009) surmised that up until today a normal operating society is running a system based 20th century cosmology, technologies, and social values. He concludes, “What happened in the 20th century is that a new cosmology called quantum physics – and the new technologies of the electronic information and community’s revolution – became out of sync with many social institutions and practices, specifically with government systems, which are still very much locked into technologies of 200 years ago.”

The Institute for the Future (2009) suggests that to superstruct the institutions and activities of daily life. They believe that: “The next decade will be new at scales where humans have never before experienced. From vast geoengineering projects that aim to curb climate change to loots for tinkering with the tiniest neuro-receptors in our brains, humans will explore the technology of scale. But more important, we will also reinvent our social and economic systems on scales both massively global and fundamentally local” (IFTF, 2009).

Governance of the 21st century calls for a deeper understanding of systems theory which invariably connects us all, chaos theory which sees disorder and disharmony as prelude to equilibrium and stable relationships in a complex system, and Gaian theory which advocates a feminine governance force aligned to Mother nature and galactic governance. In business Wheatley presses for the application of chaos theory in management, Deepak Chopra calls for quantum leadership, Martha Beck reminds us of ancient and modern technologies for survival, and Bruno Dyck and Mitchell Neustrom indicates a multi-stream approach to management.

In the Philippines we lost tremendous opportunities to reshape our governance from the 1989 independence lead By Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo against Spain, the establishment of a commonwealth under President Manuel L. Quezon, the declaration of the nation as a republic, the imposition of Martial Law by Ferdinand Marcos, the EDSA revolution that propelled Corazon Aquino to presidency and the second EDSA that put Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in place. And under the Benigno Aquino, Jr. presidency we continue to struggle for reforms.

Carmen N. Pedrosa (2014) believed that we should push for constitutional reform. She says, “A new constitution could indeed be crowdsourced and its results be used as a basis for a Constitution. When that crowdsourced is used it could and should say with confidence in its Preamble – We, The People and put up that banner for referendum when the time.” The constitutional reform, she added should not only include the economy, but must address the governance “shift to parliamentary government and adopting the federal principle in a new political structure.”

ODA and Poverty

The decline on trust in government has been brought about by many factors including the inefficient and ineffective delivery of services, waste of public resources, graft and corruption, lack of integrity in government, poor leadership, excessive red tape, ineffective reorganization and structural changes, too much centralization, among other things. (Brillantes   and Fernandez, 2011)

According to Jeffrey Sachs (2006), one way to end world poverty is through Official Development Assistance (ODA). Through nation-to-nation assistance, a rich country is providing funds for poor or developing country to stimulate economic growth and indirectly bring a trickle effect to the poorest of poor and directly provide them capital to be able to generate funds for personal need and save for sustainable economic survival.

The ODA model of Sachs considers the rich nations as a critical factor for providing immediate relief of the impoverish sectors (with a hope to stimulate productivity and household savings) and help public budget to stimulate public investment (with a hope increase per capita person) to effect economic growth.

Figure 1. ODA paradigm in alleviating poverty among developing nations.

In the case of the Philippines, as outlined by former National Economic Development Authority director Romulo Neri, the layers of bureaucratic sectors through which the funds pass through appear to be the source of internal distribution of ODA funds. It has been misused [graft and corruption] from the national government in Manila, to the provincial government, to the city government and to barangay level. The distribution of government funds through Department of Budget Management (DBM) has also been a source of ‘financial failure’ based on the practice of what is known as Pork Barrel, which has been politicalized (Landingin, 2008). In 2013, Philippine society witnessed the entrenched and systematic diversion of PDAF funds sourced from local taxes through pork barrel channel enacted by Philippine senate and congress.

In 2009, Ambassador Albert del Rosario observed that “Corruption in the Philippines has been repeatedly criticized at home and in international reports, most recently in a World Bank assessment that rated the Philippines as the most corrupt country in East Asia. In yet another report, Transparency International has downgraded our country to being among the most corrupt in the world. The scourge of corruption has even reportedly penetrated the ODA field.”

As a palliative solution, he shifted the burden of poverty alleviation from the Philippine government to civil society. He says, “Although the government must take the lead in deciding the general direction and priorities for our country’s national development plan, the government is not the only actor in our national development. Philippine civil society has had a long and honorable history of active involvement in development projects from the local to the national level through the years. For example, the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) has supported some 6,000 development projects with about four million beneficiaries nationwide.

He also observed a new phenomenon in social development. He noted that “The charitable and humanitarian efforts carried out, in cash, in kind and in personal service, by the vast overseas Filipino community. Every year, Filipinos abroad organize free medical and dental clinics, social and educational assistance, community service, and donation drives for emergency relief and rehabilitation to help ease the terrible human suffering caused by natural disasters. The most successful large-scale effort involving extensive participation by and contributions from overseas Filipinos is the celebrated Gawad Kalinga program that is building houses, schools and communities for tens of thousands of poor Filipinos.”(Del Rosario, 2008).

Nicanor Perlas in MISSION Possible (2011) calls for civil society to actively shape the future vis-à-vis government and business. He says), “The future of the world depends on individuals making the free choice to develop spiritual and personal mastery to access the states of non-dual consciousness required to renew the planet. When they access the future of the world, thru non-dual consciousness, they can then, with others and thru appropriate societal processes, create new, sustainable societies ” (Perlas, 2013). In this regard, the social enterprise movement when applied in business becomes creative threefolding partnerships to eradicate poverty in the field of agriculture and in governance a shift from state-centered to society-centered leadership can lead to clean and honest elections, and transparency and accountability of public funds.

CSI, Civil Society, Business, and Government

In conclusion, this paper seeks convergence of poverty initiatives among business, government and civil society. CSI of business is encouraged to make use of social development models of Cura, Buenviage, and Pfitzer, Bockstette & Stamp. The Catholics church and its network in the Philippines needs to redirect the donor and the done to a sustainable understanding of poverty and charity. The Philippine Government, business and civil society face a daunting challenge to superstruct governance in the 21st century, where Newtonian principles are not replaced in practice by quantum physics in technology and global relations.

The tripartite framework of Perlas, the solidarity call of Pope Francis, the worldshift of Laslo, the valueshift of Brian Hall and the superstructuring of the future are strategic intents that await implementation by civil society, business and government. When these initiatives are in place the ground for corporate social initiative at a global scale will be felt by the marginalized communities.

Ambassador Alberto del Rosario’s call for private sector social initiatives, and Conrado de Quiros’ modest proposal make good sense, in the inadequacy of government to provide social services. At least, the business and private sectors are moving even if the third sector is causing a drag towards sustainable progress. The promptings of Koch in 20/80 principles of action, James Redfield’s critical mass, and Gregg Braden’s square root of percent formulae provide us a paradigm that change is possible between the power of one, threefolding, solidarity, and superstructuring.

Jeffrey Sach’s power of one is affirmed by John Assaraf and Murray Smith (2008, p. 75)) who said, “It’s not about governments, corporations or organizations anymore. In the twenty-first century, it’s the individual man and woman passionately in pursuit of their business dreams who will have a positive transformative impact on everyone’s lives.”


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Dr. Emiliano T. Hudtohan is faculty of the Graduate School of Business of San Beda College, Graduate School of De La Salle Araneta University and Graduate School of De La Salle College of St. Benilde. He former faculty of Management and Organization Department. Ramon V. del Rosario Sr. College of Business of De La Salle University, Manila and  Graduate School of Social Work of Philippine Women’s University. He is co-founder and president of AcademiX2Business, Inc. His email: dr.eth2008@gmail.com and website: www//emilianohudtohan.com.

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