Think of the global economy as a jigsaw puzzle.
At the heart of solving the puzzle and addressing global disturbance and uncertainty lies three identifiable issues that need need to fit: First, income and other inequality within societies has been on the rise, while productivity and wage growth slowed, and countries are burdened by debt. Second, the market power of the world's largest companies reached unprecedented levels, raising questions on the spread of innovation and productivity gains. And third, the exploitation of natural resources is leading to a deteriorating environment, affecting the lives of many for the worse.
The debate over what caused this situation is still open: whether laissez-faire governments, a poorly managed globalization, or the rise of technology that favors the few, the possible culprits are legion. In any case, Schwab argues our current system has failed to properly register and address many of the issues we are now faced with.
What are the real causes of our system's shortcomings, and what are false positives? Do solutions lie in small adjustments to our current system, or a complete overhaul of it? And what best practices exist around the world, including Asia, that would allow for better outcomes?
There are no easy answers, and no single stakeholder can provide them. But it is certain that individual actors do have agency, and that policies matter, when it comes to dealing with external forces. Moreover, as success stories from the Switzerland to Singapore, and from Costa Rica to China show, it is only when government, businesses and individuals all play their respective roles, and agree on a social contract with shared responsibility that societal outcomes will be optimal.
Stakeholder Capitalism addresss these problems, and provides achievable answers to solve them. Piece by piece, this new book by Professor Klaus Schwab, Founder and Chairman of the World Economic Forum, shares answers for all stakholders in the global economy, rich and poor, vested and disenfranchised, engaged or searching. The goal: to address problems and provide solutions, piece by piece, stakeholder by stakeholder, country by country, world citizen by world citizen.