Future 500 Forges Coalitions Between Odd Bedfellows

Future 500 was formed to forge relationships between corporations and NGOs. Their mandate is to advance the “triple bottom line” –solutions that support the economy, the society and the Earth.

They have brought together NGOs like Amnesty International, Friends of the Earth, Global Exchange, Greenpeace, Live Earth, Natural Resources Defense Council, Public Interest Research Group, Rainforest Action Network, Sierra Club, and World Wildlife Fund with corporations as well known as Coca-Cola, Dell, Disney, DuPont, HP, Home Depot, Intel, Nestle, Owens Corning, Visa, and Wal-Mart.

They are convinced that when people with very different power bases and perspectives can be brought together, extraordinary things can happen.

Ending the Politics of Demonization

Future 500 focuses on carefully-planned engagement strategies, with a preference for personal one-on-one or small group engagements with truly strategic stakeholders, to build the genuine trust that leads to understanding, mutual support, collaboration, and breakthrough solutions.

Having worked to build a network of corporate and NGO executives who trust them, Future 500o uses a systematic but flexible engagement approach to help the involved parties find common ground. The process can initially cause discomfort since collaboration is being suggested between companies and stakeholders who may strongly disagree with one another at first. Future 500 has found that such work is essential to move past the politics of demonization to find solutions.

Millions of Acres Preserved, Billions of Bottles Recycled, Savings of Billions Generated, Innovative Forest Management Developed

Future 500 crafted California’s innovative “Bottle Bill” – documented to be the most cost-effective in the world – using economic incentives to drive the recycling of 100 billion beverage containers and counting. They forged a partnership between Mitsubishi companies and the Rainforest Action Network, and developed simple, practical procurement specifications, now adopted by over 400 companies, to save over four million acres of Old Growth forest.

Their stakeholder process between Weyerhaeuser Canada (MacMillan-Bloedel), Greenpeace, Sierra Club, and RAN led to an innovative approach to forest management that all sides could support, and the “biggest step forward in North American forest protection in 17 years.”

Their stakeholder projects for Alcoa, Chevron, Clorox, Coors, Procter & Gamble, and others led to better-designed Green Products and more effective Market-Based Alternatives to Command-and-Control Regulation, winning larger sustained market shares.

Specific stakeholder initiatives have generated documented savings in excess of 3.25 billion, while protecting the environment, recycling resources, and benefiting people.

Now Calling for a Broader Alliance to Unite Behind Systemic Solutions

Future 500 is initiating The Dialogue. The Dialogue brings together business leaders, activists, Republicans, Democrats, and independents that reject the politics of fear, hate, and demonization that are tearing the world apart.

When we find common solutions, we hold businesses, activists, and Democratic and Republican candidates accountable to them, and base our support for them in part on their willingness to reach across interest group lines to support what is best for the whole.

Check out Future 500 at http://www.future500.org/

Get Future 500 CEO, Bill Shireman’s book: What We Learned in the Rainforest – Business Lessons from Nature.

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