Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has been a buzzword for companies since the turn of the 21st century, particularly from 2010 onwards. However, the dynamics of CSR have changed during this period, due to the growth of new communication tools and new areas of operation. This has resulted in CSR developing a new set of parameters.
The medley of today's media is unprecedented. While Britain's biggest publishers find themselves in similarly unparalleled levels of turmoil - shrinking revenue, the threat of state regulation, and a growing tendency to aim their guns at each other - the range of outlets beneath them is fragmenting like light through a prism.
Small independents versus big chains; bricks and mortar versus online; Bill Grimsey v Mary Portas: the debate about the future of the high street is nothing if not divisive. But safeguarding the future health of our high streets means moving away from the confrontational approach so beloved of UK media to focus instead on partnerships.
For those firms which misstep, fallout can be very damaging, both for the financial bottom-line and reputationally. However, for those which are pro-active and invest in their capability, the prizes -- both in terms of mitigating risk and seizing opportunity -- are potentially ever more significant.
Having a greater variety of voices, backgrounds and experiences represented makes conferences better, and that, in turn, makes the tech industry better. But for that to happen, organisers need to be more proactive about recruiting diverse speakers, and more of us need to get over our nerves, grab opportunities where they come, and put ourselves forward.
With the area of monetisation developing rapidly, now is the time for merchants to consider the most appropriate strategy for their business model. However, merchants first have to explore which model is best. The starting point is identifying consumer demands and expectations and how these trends differ globally.
There is a role that we all have to play in responding to the changing skills needs that we will continue to face, and the diversity of the sector will mean that different organisations will need to reflect on these broader themes and identify priorities and appropriate solutions that work for them.