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Topic 1

The New Theory of the Business — Toward Full Spectrum Flourishing.

TOPIC purpose

Facilitate the emergent New Theory of Business dialogue

This topic is designed to facilitate, across national boundaries and management disciplines, the emergent new theory of business dialogue within the management sciences and the interdisciplinary domains of constructive human science and organization theory. Including among its participants—each with a powerful contribution to the emerging theory of business—are thought leaders and vanguard models and a myriad of forms that are proliferating.

Consider the rapid growth of the B-corporation movement; positive organizational scholarship (POS), the business strategy domain of shared value creation; the remarkable new consensus toward relational leading and the stakeholder theories of the firm including the calls of the Business RoundTable and World Economic Forum to re-define the purpose of the corporation; the social business, impact investing, and micro-enterprise fields; the rapidly rising Conscious Capitalism domain and purpose economy movements; the flourishing enterprise writings calling for all of us to aim even higher, beyond unsustainability, to the positive ideal of long-term and full-spectrum flourishing; the rise and promise of 4th industrial age platform organizations, exponential technologies, and mass-collaboration tools; the study and practice of management innovation and alternative organizations; the advances for strongly sustainable business model development; circular economy modalities and design thinking domains; the power of purpose-driven leadership; and the field of positive organizational development with its appreciative inquiry methods for focusing on the discovery and design of “positive institutions”—"institutions that not only elevate our highest human strengths and combine those strengths within the enterprise, but organizations that then take, magnify and refract our highest human strengths outward toward building a world of full-spectrum flourishing.”

As many distinguished thinkers and in recent years have noted, business has the opportunity to be one of the most agile, resourceful, and adaptable institutional forms ever created, but also because of this, to emerge as one of the most significant forces for human well-being and whole-scale betterment on the planet.

It’s time for vital ideas. That’s what this topic is about. We are at the end of one economic era and entering another. Society and our living biosphere—constituting together what we call “the envelope of enterprise” has changed more than the business organizations on which they co-exist.  We are in search of the deeper leadership and enterprise logic for the who, what, why, when and how of business as a force for world benefit that results in the kind of company that will be loved by its customers and admired by its people, and is prized by all those who care about the leading and succeeding in the solution revolution—for the future of our planet.


This years speakers for this topic include the following:

Kathleen McLaughlin

Chief Sustainability Officer, Walmart | President, The Walmart Foundation

Sanda Ojiambo

CEO and Executive Director, UN Global Compact

Marga Hoek

Global Author and Speaker

Halla Tómasdóttir

CEO and Chief Change Catalyst, The B Team

Roberto Marques

Executive Chairman and Group CEO, Natura &Co

John Salzinger

Founder and Chief Business Development Officer, MPOWERD

Seungah Jeong

Chief Executive Officer, MPOWERD

Tom Szaky

Founder and CEO, TerraCycle

Dr. Gillian Marcelle

Founder and CEO Resilience Capital Ventures LLC

Ken Blanchard

Co-founder, The Ken Blanchard Companies

Andrew Winston

Adviser, Speaker, Author

Paul Polman

Co-founder and Co-chair of IMAGINE, Co-author of Net Positive

Tom Peters

Author of In Search of Excellence

Jodi L. Berg, PhD

President and Chief Executive Officer, Vitamix