在当今不确定的全球格局中，企业如何能够更广泛地赢得政治行动者和利益相关者的心灵和思想的问题越来越成为他们战略的核心，并且可以说是他们的生存。优步，Facebook和亚马逊等新经济巨头的估值 – 以及新兴和成熟行业中的公司 – 不仅建立在其卓越运营，财务敏锐度和对客户的价值主张上，而且通过管理市场和非市场环境中利益相关者的看法来实现手段。他们希望产生的价值是否会被认为是值得他们造成的破坏的代价？最近全球化和新自由主义改革浪潮的承诺不是因为它无法提高效率，而是因为公司和利益相关者对这些收益的分配过于疏忽，而这些收益占据了其最大的利益。正如当前对民粹主义，民族主义和非全球化的强烈反应一样，对于我们从全球一体化的最高水平退出多远和多快的问题的答案;民粹主义和民族主义将如何影响税收政策，公共支出和监管;由实施该议程引发或与之相关的民事和国际冲突的潜在范围非常开放。金融家，投资者和分析师越来越认识到非传统环境，社会和治理因素对其投资策略的重要性。然而，与此同时，他们往往不惜一切代价对成本控制，全球标准化或快速增长提出违法要求。政策制定者寻求为其公民创造价值和就业机会，同时也保护他们免受对不公平的外国竞争的看法。此外，尽管有相反的经济或科学证据，政治家可能会出于政治目的将其公民划分为值得保护或赋予权力的群体以及不公平受益的外群体。非政府组织和活动家的子集谴责跨国公司对自然环境，人类和动物权利的影响，而其他非政府组织和活动家则与公司合作解决这些同样的全球挑战。约瑟夫沃顿在类似的骚动时期创立了沃顿商学院，资本主义受到民粹主义运动的威胁，谴责垄断和信托滥用权力。沃顿与一群进步的商业领袖和政策制定者一起寻求确保管理者被广泛认为能够解决“我们文明中的社会问题事件”。在这个围绕全球政策，技术和国际关系的不确定时期，这是恰当的。沃顿商学院再次举办学术聚会，探索战略与商业环境的交叉点。
In today’s uncertain global landscape, the question of how firms can win the hearts and minds of political actors and stakeholders more broadly is increasingly core to their strategy and, arguably, to their survival. The valuation of the giants of the new economy like Uber, Facebook, and Amazon — as well as firms within nascent and well-established industries — are built not only on their operational excellence, financial acumen and value proposition to customers, but also on the means by manage the perceptions of stakeholders in their market and non-market environments. Will the value they hope to generate be perceived to be worth the costs of the disruption they cause? The promise of the recent wave of globalization and neoliberal reforms was felled not by its inability to generate efficiency gains, but by the inattention to the distribution of those gains by the firms and stakeholders that captured the lion’s share of its benefits. As the current backlash of populism, nationalism and de-globalization evolves, the answers to the questions of how far and fast we pull back from the peak levels of global integration; how impactful populism and nationalism will be on tax policy, public spending and regulation; and the potential scope for civil and international conflict triggered by or associated with the implementation of this agenda are very much open. Financiers, investors and analysts are increasingly recognizing the importance of non-traditional environmental, social and governance factors for their investment strategies. At the same time, however, they are often making contravening demands for cost control, global standardization, or rapid growth at all costs. Policymakers seek to create value and jobs for their citizens but also protect them from perceptions of unfair foreign competition. Furthermore, politicians may divide their citizens for political purposes into in-groups deserving of protection or empowerment and out-groups who have benefitted unfairly despite the economic or scientific evidence to the contrary. Subsets of non-governmental organizations and activists decry the impact of multinational corporations on the natural environment, human and animal rights, while other NGOs and activists partner with companies to address these very same global challenges. Joseph Wharton founded the Wharton School in a similar period of tumult when capitalism was under threat from a populist movement decrying the abuse of power by monopolies and trusts. Wharton together with a group of progressive business leaders and policymakers sought to insure that managers were broadly perceived as capable of addressing “the social problems incident of our civilization.” In this time of uncertainty surrounding global policy, technology and international relations, it is appropriate for the Wharton School to again host a gathering of academics seeking to explore the intersection of Strategy and the Business Environment.