Forum for Business and Philosophy
problems of practical life.
The Integral Business Forum for Business and Philosophy are a series of open conversations with important business leaders and philosophers, entrepreneurs and theologians, laborers and mystics – from Eastern and Western cultures -- seeking their perspectives as to what is really happening, and perhaps their advice as to where to do we go next.
The Forums will engage conversations from different perspectives, different world views, seeking a common grammar drawn from a range of economic and philosophic languages. The forums will not only be the stage for fascinating dialogues, but will become a platform of creative synergies seeking out new models, the new language, the emergent concepts that will lead us to strategies for survival, if not success.
The Forums will be an original and authentic voice in the ongoing self-examination of the present state of economic affairs -- observing the state of the world from its unique vantage point that blends the "evolution of consciousness" with the integration East-West studies. The Forum will have the independence to ask the fundamental questions that are not explored elsewhere.
Business and Consciousness
Business, Ethics and Sustainability
Can business, ethics and sustainability be reconciled? Is a conscious business ethos more a public relations talking point than a reality - that quickly breaks down against the economic vagaries of survival?
The Ethics of Corporate Culture
How does an individual survive within the dynamics of corporate culture? Who controls an organization's morality - the executive leadership or the stockholders? Are public-owned companies inherently amoral? How should a unified corporate ethos be reconciled with the diversity of employees and markets? Can it make sense to see an organization or a company as a moral agent with responsibilities, on a par with individuals? If so, to whom is it responsible—and for what?
The Spirit of Money
What is money? Is money a force in its own right? What is our relationship to money? Individually, Corporately, Globally? Does the concept/consciousness of Money, how it functions in a society, evolve? What is the future of money?
Conscious Business Leaders
Did our business leaders fail us or was the financial collapse an inevitable result of the evolutionary growth of the economic world order? Was the fall of centrally-controlled (e.g. communism) economic systems, merely the prelude to the fall of free-market capitalistic economic systems?
Trust and Business
Economists and business leaders emphasize “trust” – for the financial system to work the people must have “trust” in the system. If trust is so critical, what is trust? How is it related to accountability? How is trust cultivated? Who should trust whom? Does trust differ from the individual, the community, or a culture? Is trust something measurable—if so, how? Is the development of this trust a function of media? And if trust in the system does not materialize what happens next?
The End of Intellectual Property
Is the Internet making Intellectual Property obsolete? What happens when a culture en masse ignores copyright laws, court rulings, law enforcement? Which reflects the current, real status of the law – rules made by governments or choices made by millions of people? What are the implications for other kinds of property?
Translating the languages of business and consciousness. How our words confuse and separate. Though we may use the same business words internationally, does it mask vast culture differences in how business should be conducted, negotiated? Does the language mask the core differences of what a business is about – does “profit” mean the same for a small business of a large corporation?
If we were to create our world anew, where there was no history and legacy could we imagine a perfect economic system? If there was no legacy to be inherited, what would be the underlying principles? How would it be developed? Would it fall apart? Are such utopias meaningless exercises or are there lessons to be learned from history’s successes and failures at the attempts to create a perfect world?
Exploring the System: The Structure of Ownership
To what extent is the crisis we face due to the structure of business ownership? Is the very structure of the corporation part of the problem? Is it matter of scale? How does control, accountability, moral ethics, sustainability shift as a business grows or shrinks? Does the shareholder models of the past 200 years need to evolve. What are the ownership models from other cultures and nations? What are the motivations behind other cultures view of business? What innovations exist in the ownership of business?
Control of the Law
Relationship between business and law. What happens when powerful business interests become too close to government? What is the laws legitimacy? To what extent is the personal responsibility vs. law? What happens when a culture ignores the laws. How do other cultures perceive relationship between government and its people?