What We’re Reading is a roundup of current news and commentary on the challenges and opportunities of aligning business decisions with the long-term health of society. As 2022 draws to a close, we ask: what is the health of the U.S. economy? There are some encouraging answers, but questions abound, both about the year ahead and about the beneficiaries of the long-term economic shifts underway.
America’s Inflation Fever May Be Breaking at Last (The Economist) “Indeed, concern may soon start to shift from high inflation to low growth. The nature of monetary policy is that it always operates with a lag. It takes months for rate changes to filter through into investment and spending decisions—much of the tightening implemented so far will only hit the economy next year.”
Trust the Models? In This Economy? (Jeanna Smialek, The New York Times) For all the good news, there is broad uncertainty about the U.S. economy in the new year. This article examines why.
Workers on Solar’s Front Lines (Lee Harris, The American Prospect) How will the spoils of the nascent green economy be divided? And how can we keep the industries of the future from replicating the inequalities of the past?
Workers at E.V. Battery Plant in Ohio Vote to Unionize (Noam Scheiber, The New York Times) Whether or not the transition to electric vehicles will benefit workers has a lot to do with whether those jobs are unionized. Is this vote in Ohio an outlier or an indicator?
ESG Managers Told to ‘Punch Back Hard’ as PR Pros React to Attacks (Saijel Kishan, Bloomberg) A must-read on the need to reset ESG as a brand, and why it is just so difficult to do so.
Predictions for Business & Society in 2023 (Aspen Institute Business & Society Program) Are there developments on the horizon that could strengthen—or undermine—the attention paid to environmental and social performance? That’s the question we asked our network of executives, journalists and scholars. These are their predictions on the path ahead for ESG in 2023.
The Year Labor Organizing Came to Tech (Peter Allen Clark, Axios) Despite Silicon Valley’s history of rejecting unions, is labor activism tech’s newest trend? (but also see Apple, Amazon Union Battles Just the Start of Big Tech’s Fight)
Is This the End of Elon Musk’s Twitter Odyssey? (Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker) “Rehabilitating the platform has now become Musk’s white whale—an ambitious pursuit that has as good a chance of bringing him down as it has of succeeding.”
For more on our work to align business with the long-term good of society, sign up for our publications and visit our website. (Please note, the purpose of this newsletter is to highlight what Aspen BSP staff are reading, and is not intended as advertisement or endorsement of content or viewpoints.)
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