Responsible leadership in a globalized world: A cosmopolitan perspective: Handbook of research on global corporate citizenship

Thomas Maak, Nicola Manuela Pless

Producció científica: Capítol de llibreCapítol

17 Cites (Scopus)


One of the key lessons to be learnt from Enron and other corporate scandals in recent years is arguably that it takes responsible leadership and responsible leaders to build and sustain a business that is of benefit to multiple stakeholders and not just to a few risk-seeking managers. The scandals have triggered an ongoing and broad discussion on the role of business in society: on its legitimacy, obligations and responsibilities. As a result, businesses and their leaders are increasingly held accountable for what they do -and fail to do - by multiple stakeholders and society at large. Moreover, given the increase of power and influence of large multinational corporations (MNCs), stakeholders expect that business leaders take a more active role and acknowledge their co-responsibility in solving the world¿s most pressing problems (e.g. global warming, poverty, diseases such as malaria and HIV/AIDS). There is widespread agreement that MNCs and their leaders have both power and potential for contributing to the betterment of the world. We argue in this book chapter that being responsible - responding to the call of stakeholders (and the market) - is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for responsible leadership. This endeavour ultimately requires responsible global leaders who think and act as cosmopolitan citizens -that is, leaders with responsible mindsets who are aware of the pressing problems in the world, care for the needs of others and in particular for the distant needy, aspire to make this world a better place and act in words and deeds as global and responsible citizens. We contend that responsible leadership in a globalized world requires business leaders who have a cosmopolitan mindset, live and enact cosmopolitan ethics and fulfil their cosmopolitan responsibilities in a densely connected and increasingly complex global stakeholder society.
Idioma originalAnglès
Títol de la publicacióHandbook of research on global corporate citizenship
Estat de la publicacióPublicada - 1 d’ag. 2008


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