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Social challenges in review: 5 most popular articles on Do Better

The social challenges that our society and the world must face have only multiplied in the first decades of this century. The Covid-19 pandemic, with its enormous social impact, is the latest challenge to arrive.

Esade researchers always have their sights set on contributing to society and building a better world.

As we reach the peak of the holiday season, Do Better offers a compilation of the most read articles on social challenges published this year. Check them out for insights and ideas on how to create a better society.


Shining light on the 'dark side' of social media

What are the potential risks of social media? While social media undoubtedly brings many benefits to the lives of its users, its complexity means there may be more going on than we can see on the surface. This article discusses the many potential dark sides.

Researchers categorised the risk areas into seven segments that are related to the activities carried out within social media applications – which tend to be similar across platforms and networks: conversations, sharing, presence, relationships, reputation, groups, and identity.

"The best way to manage our use of social media networks is to take control of our interaction with them," state the authors after observing that people differ widely in their view of the risks involved.


Are growth and sustainability two opposing worlds?

How can sustainability be introduced into an economic model which still mistrusts any practice that goes against shareholder interests? David Murillo’s research warns that the market alone is not enough to generate sustainability and suggests ways to make the economic model more sustainable.

The author calls for a radical transformation of how we understand business success: "We must encourage a zero-tolerance of tax fraud and the exploitation of labour and natural resources."

The author asks: "What is the use of business ethics if this comes with the erosion of tax, labour, and the environment?" The article discusses how to make sustainability a core issue for companies. Murillo states that we need real pioneers: individuals and companies that go beyond – and against – traditional market logic.


Podcast: Can homelessness happen to anyone?

In this episode, Lisa Hehenberger, director of the Esade Entrepreneurship Institute, and Nevena Radoynovska, assistant professor at Emlyon Business School, take a closer look at the critical challenges of homelessness.

Homelessness affects people in every country in the world. The last time a global survey was attempted, the United Nations estimated that more than 100 million people were homeless and described this as a "global human rights crisis directly linked to increased inequality of wealth and property, and requiring urgent attention."

“There are a number of biases and misconceptions that people tend to have about the homeless," points out Nevena Radoynovska, adding that: "it is really important to get those who are in an emergency homeless situation back on their feet as soon as possible."


Exit strategy: from self-confinement to green zones

This article proposes a practical exit strategy to Covid-19 quarantines based on two key elements: identifying green zones, and progressively joining them together once it is safe to do so.

Supported by simulations, the authors show how territories could be rapidly unified within two to four months by following a zoning approach to return to normal life.

"The zoning approach should play an important role in the exit strategy from the Covid-19 pandemic," say the authors, foreseeing the phased approach adopted by the Spanish government with provinces as the main territorial unit.


Podcast: How can social entrepreneurs with a migrant background drive change?

Asma Naimi, PhD candidate at Esade’s Entrepreneurship Institute and Institute for Social Innovation, and Kenny Clewett, executive director of Ashoka Hello Europe, discuss how social entrepreneurs with a migrant background can improve the world by driving meaningful change and tackling the most pressing challenges.

"Social entrepreneurs with a migrant background aim to solve issues related to migration – and that in itself makes them very valuable," says Kenny Clewett, adding that they "put people at the centre of what they do."

"If we start seeing migrants as changemakers, then we will reshape our organisations and how we support them," he concludes.

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