Doing well by doing good

Nowadays, many upcoming and leading companies are blossoming with the combination of earning high revenues, while taking future generations into account. Part of this change in business practice is due to the increased influence of consumers who are demanding higher transparency concerning the origin of products. Unethical practices like environmental pollution and child labour are becoming less accepted by consumers. More and more, companies are being collectively held responsible for practising sustainable business and this way making a positive impact on society. The idea has grown that if a company treats society well, society will return the favor. The Rhineland model represents this way of thinking by supporting collective responsibility, social security and sustainability. However, this strategy might make companies more long-term focused and therefore less responsive to unexpected changes in the market. So, to what extent is it possible to use sustainable business as an instrument to achieve higher profits? And what distinguishes genuinely good intentions from practices as greenwashing or window dressing? How can companies do well by doing good?