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Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness

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Abstract

A strategic vision that considers the new poverty profiles and climate change generates social value and increases the population welfare. This, in turn, contributes to the business or public programs’ suitability. Thus, expenses become an investment, the system becomes dynamic and the population enters a virtuous circle of work-income-welfare.
José Sánchez-Gutiérrez
Tania E. González-Alvarado
(Coordinators)
COMPETITIVENESS
AGAINST THE
SUSTAINABLE
DEVELOPMENT
GOALS
Universidad de Guadalajara
First edition, 2019
Sánchez-Gutiérrez, José; González-Alvarado, Tania Elena (coordinators).
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals. Mexico:
Universidad de Guadalajara.
This work is a product of the members of RIICO (Red Internacional de
Investigadores en Competitividad) with external contributions. The
findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this work do not
necessarily reflect the views of Universidad de Guadalajara and RIICO.
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Chapter 1
Climate Change and New Poverty
Profiles for the Sustainable
Competitiveness
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
8
Climate Change and New
Poverty Profiles for the
Sustainable Competitiveness
Tania-Elena González-Alvarado
Universidad de Guadalajara, Mexico
Renata Kubus
Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, Spain
Introduction
he aim of this book is to analyse the competitiveness versus the
Sustainable Development Goals. This implies addressing new
poverty profiles and climate change. Poverty and climate change are
factors that change the strategist perception and the construction of
competitive advantages.
Economic development can be achieved thanks to organizations,
regardless if these are private or public. Government policies, the economic
environment, and the entrepreneur actions must fit coherently to achieve the
development synergy (ECLAC, 2013).
A strategic vision that considers the new poverty profiles and climate
change generates social value and increases the population welfare. This, in
turn, contributes to the business or public programs’ suitability. Thus,
expenses become an investment, the system becomes dynamic and the
population enters a virtuous circle of work-income-welfare.
T
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
9
In this context, there is a need for strategists with the capacity to build new
scenarios and the availability for constant checking of emerging strategies
adapted to the new reality. The capacity for analysis and transformation in an
ever-changing system is a decisive element in the 21st-century
competitiveness.
The strategist needs the learning capacity about his own reality. Only from
a critical vision the competitiveness sustainability can be reached (EM, 2015).
Sustainability implies more factors than environment caring. The
environmental element is one of the many factors that involve sustainability
pursuit. It is especially relevant for the competitiveness sustainability in a
capitalist system.
Given the unstable global economic scenario, it is considered fundamental
to focus on strategic analysis and the construction of new scenarios of two
elements: new poverty profiles and climate change, both in the public and
private spheres.
Sustainability in Competitiveness Terms: What Does It Include?
Any strategy to be sustainable must be evaluated from three critical areas:
economic, social and environmental (Calvente, 2007). In the world scenario,
this imposes great challenges, because the information and communication
technologies together with financial internationalization make the
uncertainty even greater.
International events affect local business activities and change costs,
purchasing power, distribution channels, and even consumer preferences
and expectations. Calvente (2007) points out the following characteristics:
supportability, robustness, resilience, and adaptability.
A strategy is supportable in the organization when it has developed the
capacity to produce at a rate in which it does not exhaust the resources it
uses and requires in order to function and does not produce more pollutants
than its environment can absorb. (Berkes, Colding and Folke, (2001).
A strategy is robust when it maintains global production conditions in
volatile environments, implying major changes and transformations away
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
10
from equilibrium. Such is the case of the biosphere. The biosphere is an
unbalanced system, even if it can maintain global conditions on a regular
basis, which gives the appearance of "balance of nature". It is the balance
within the imbalance or order from the chaos. (Berkes, Colding and Folke
2001)
A strategy is resilient when the organization achieves the ability to
recover after a catastrophic situation, not necessarily returning to its
previous state but yet performing its basic functions. It is to recover order
from chaos. If a system does not have enough organizational resilience in
the face of a catastrophe, the way ahead is the extinction of the system.
(Berkes, Colding and Folke, 2001)
The adaptive capacity relates to mechanisms for the evolution of novelty
through learning. (Berkes, Colding, and Folke, (2001).
Sustainability involves the strategy generation that is resilient, robust,
adaptable and supportable.
Indeed, supportability becomes another factor in sustainability. It is also
important to note that ignoring climate change and the new poverty profiles
undermine these four factors, making the strategy not entirely sustainable
because it does not identify the new scenarios origins at the root.
In fact, the sustainable development announces the economic rationality
limit, proclaiming the superiority of life values, social justice and
commitment to future generations (Leff, 2000). The inclusion of supportable,
adaptive, robust and resilient processes, in order to reach their prevalence
over time, is very necessary.
Competitiveness Versus to the Climate Change
The climate change obeys to factors in principle unrelated to the
understanding and control of the human being. Yet, human-generated
pollution (industrialization and exacerbated consumption) has fueled the
negative effects on the conservation of life. Climate change has added a
tragic effect on the world economic system and has even reduced human
lives due to natural phenomena for which society was not prepared.
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
11
The main human activity contributing to climate change is the
consumption of fossil fuels, particularly oil and coal, which emit carbon
dioxide. The greenhouse effect is the mechanism by which carbon dioxide
and other gases produce global warming (Rodríguez and Mance, 2009).
There is a disjunctive between industry and the greenhouse effect, which
can favor the reduction of the first one, based on rational and alternative
consumption (EEM, 2005).
The picture emerging from scientific data on Climate change is clear. The
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has come to the
conclusion that the warming of the Earth's climate system is unequivocal. It
is estimated that, in the last century, the average temperature of the planet's
surface has increased by approximately 0.74 degrees centigrade (WTO,
2009).
Many greenhouse gases remain in the atmosphere for a long time. Thus,
climate change will affect the planet for several centuries, even when
emissions are considerably reduced or stopped altogether. (WTO, 2009) We
need mechanisms to confront it and adapt the human activity to the new
reality.
Climate change has a large impact on ecosystems, societies, and
economies and increases the pressure on livelihoods and the food supply,
including fisheries and aquaculture sector. The quality of food has played a
very important role. As the pressure to which food resources are subjected is
increasing, this determines that the availability and access to fisheries
resources become an increasingly critical development issue. (WTO, 2009;
FAO, 2012, 2014, 2015; ECLAC, FAO and IICA, 2014).
The fishing sector differs from the conventional agricultural sector by the
interactions and specific needs that link it to the problems posed by climate
change. Capture fisheries have their own traits in terms of harvesting
natural resources and their links to global ecosystem processes. Aquaculture
complements food supplies and contributes significantly to their increase,
and although its interactions are similar to the ones of agriculture, it also has
important connections with capture fisheries. (FAO, 2012)
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
12
The consequences of climate change affect the four dimensions of food
security: availability, stability, accessibility, and usefulness. The availability
of food of aquatic origin varies due to alterations in habitats, fish
populations, and the species distribution. The stability of supplies and
related risk-taking is affected by seasonal irregularities, the variance in the
productivity of ecosystems. The accessibility of food of aquatic origin is
modified due to changes in livelihoods and in catches or harvest
possibilities. The usage of aquatic products is undergoing alterations, for
example, some societies and communities must adjust their consumption
habits by introducing into their food species that were not part of their
traditional diet. (FAO, 2012)
Conflicts over resources are likely to intensify as a result of the
interruptions of agricultural production and water supply processes. Some
companies in South Korea have sought to offset the effects of Climate
change in their country by investing in the fertile ground on the island of
Madagascar.
It is possible that also another countries must extend their influence to
new regions to guarantee their food security. Among them could be India
and China, since the melting of the Himalayan glaciers will lead to the
deregulation of the water cycle in the region, with devastating consequences
for the production of cereals and rice. (Rodríguez and Mance, 2009)
A future climate scenario with significant alterations generates important
impacts both on the ecosystems and on the socioeconomic sectors,
threatening in an unequal and, above all, disproportionately greater way,
those who, being poorer, have less capacity for reaction and adaptation.
The effects of climate change are not only disproportionately greater in
the sectors of the most vulnerable population, but they are also eminently
unfair to those who have had little to do with the generation of the problem.
(Domínguez, 2007; WTO, 2009)
The poorest countries bear the main burden of climate change effects,
while at the same time striving to overcome poverty and promote economic
growth. For these countries, climate change represents the threat by
multiplying their vulnerabilities, eroding the progress being achieved with
so much effort and by severely damaging the prospects for development.
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
13
At the same time, many developing countries fear the limits that may be
imposed on their decisive call for energy development or new rules that
may prevent them from meeting their many needs, from infrastructure to
entrepreneurship. (World Bank, 2010)
Climate change is double-sided for the Latin America’s countries. It could
become a serious threat because of the risks involved or, on the contrary an
opportunity to contribute to economic development within the framework
of sustainability. The risks are related in part to the preponderant role of
agriculture in the economies of the region and their dependence on weather
changes. The potential advantages have to do with the financial instruments
that emerge. (CSDA, 2000)
A high degree of creativity and cooperation is needed in order to face the
immense and multidimensional challenge of climate change. A world with
an "intelligent climate approach" is possible in our time, but, as maintained
in the report, in order to achieve this transformation we must act now, at
one and in a new way. (World Bank, 2010)
The effects on international trade have been felt in two ways:
infrastructure and trade routes. Port facilities, but also buildings, roads,
railways, airports, and bridges, are at serious risk of damage as a result of
rising sea levels and the increasing frequency of extreme weather events
such as floods and hurricanes. In addition, changes in sea ice, especially in
the Arctic, are expected to lead to change the existing navigation routes.
(WTO, 2009)
Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) is a mechanism for dealing with
change. It has its origin in the Brazilian proposal for the creation of a Clean
Development Fund that would be constituted by financial resources of rich
countries that did not fulfill their quantified obligations to reduce or limit
greenhouse gas emissions (usually referred to as "goals"). Such a fund
would be used to generate projects in developing countries.
The concept of penalization was not accepted by some developed
countries and the idea of the fund was modified, becoming the Clean
Development Mechanism. (Frondizi, 2009; Jiménez, 2007; SERCAL, 2013)
Most of the projects under the Clean Development Mechanism are focused
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
14
on renewable energy and the capture of methane in solid waste
management. (Coto and Morera, 2007)
They can include the substitution of fossil energy by other one of
renewable origin, rationalization of the use of energy, afforestation and
reforestation activities, or more efficient urban services, among other
possibilities. (Frondizi, 2009)
According to the picture presented in the previous sections, it is shown
that both the new poverty profiles and climate change become pivots
triggering the competitiveness. They transform the vision with which we
approach, understand and act in the local market. Such is the case of those
companies that offer green products (Rodríguez and Mance, 2009).
Technological innovation, as well as the transfer and generalized
application of technologies, are the axis of the global efforts to face the
mitigation of Climate change. Adaptation technologies can be applied in
different ways, including, for example, the construction of infrastructures
(dykes, coastal retaining walls, ports, railways, etc.); the design and
structure of buildings; and research on drought-resistant crops, their
development, and their practical application. (WTO, 2009)
The main barrier to technological transfer lies in patents and distrust
related to the perception of it being subject to acts of opportunism.
However, this does not indicate that the transfer does not occur; it does not
occur in the same dimension and speed as the climate change and the new
poverty profiles processes would require from it.
Rodríguez and Mance (2009) cite five climate change risks for companies;
however, only the following three are considered relevant for the study:
1. Materials. Damage to property, assets and distribution networks.
Less availability of natural resources such as water.
2. Security. Increased competition for scarce resources could generate
and lead to global instability and collapses in supply chains.
3. Financial. The cost of insurance increases, particularly in
vulnerable regions - for example, coastal areas. Plus the losses due
to catastrophic events.
The meteorological effects of climate change on migration can be divided
into two conditioning factors: on the one hand, climate processes such as sea
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
15
level rise, soil salinization for agricultural use, desertification and increasing
water scarcity; and on the other hand meteorological phenomena such as
floods, storms and flash floods of glacial lakes.
But non-climate factors such as government policies, population growth
and the resilience of communities after a natural disaster also play an
important role. All this determines the level of vulnerability of the
population. (Brown, 2008)
Pettengell (2010) produced a report based on case studies from around
the world and the experience acquired by Oxfam in its work with rural
communities. Oxfam's approach combines experience in areas such as
livelihoods, natural resource management and disaster risk reduction, with
firm decision making to manage uncertainty and risk, and thus develop the
capacity to adapt at the local, national and global scale.
The report identifies the need to combine processes from the global, the
national and the local levels to create the necessary conditions for people
living in poverty to adapt to climate change, it also exposes a series of
possible measures for this purpose. (Pettengell, 2010)
In 1990, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) noted
that human migration is the most serious consequence of climate change.
Millions of people move because of the coastline erosion, the coastal
flooding, and the agriculture ravages. Forced migration has at least four
ways to hinder development: it increases the pressure on urban
infrastructures and services, it undermines economic growth, it increases the
possibility of conflicts and, among the migrants themselves, it worsens
health, educational and social indicators. (Brown, 2008)
The World Bank points out that in order to face climate change, we have
to act now, act in common and act differently (World Bank, 2010). Mitigation
and adaptation have been the two mechanisms adopted against climate
change. Mitigation refers to policies and options that aim to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions or to enhance sinkholes (for example, oceans or
forests) that absorb carbon or carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. (WTO,
2009)
Adaptation, on the other hand, refers to the responses to reduce the
negative consequences of climate change or to take advantage of its possible
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
16
benefits. That is, mitigation reduces the speed and magnitude of climate
change and its associated effects, while adaptation reduces the
consequences of those effects by increasing the capacity of human beings or
ecosystems to cope with changes. Most of the international measures have
focused on mitigation. (WTO, 2009)
Inclusive business favors adaptation and is a response to the fact that
migratory flows do not continue to lead to poverty belts (WBCSD, 2006).
Communities must have the capacity and resources to act as intermediaries
and connect the processes driven from below and from above (bottom-up
and top-down), based on the following factors, according to OXFAM:
1. Populations that depend on agriculture are particularly vulnerable to
Climate change. Communities need access to the forecasts and
appropriate technologies to be able to put into practice the most
appropriate management methods and to address the conditions that
currently limit their ability to adapt. (Pettengell, 2010).
2. Climate change exacerbates the scarcity of traditional resources and
causes the search for different resources. Some areas become
increasingly arid and others, like coastal zones, suffer from saline
intrusion; the availability of water for domestic use and the production
is decreasing there. (Pettengell, 2010)
3. Climate-related disasters have increased in frequency and intensity
as a result of climate change (Pettengell, 2010).
Brown (2008) indicates that migration may be the only adaptive solution
in the case of some small island states or countries with very low land.
Andrew Simms, from the New Economics Foundation, points out that
internal solutions are, in some cases, absurd given that it is the national
territory that can be submerged (Lovell, 2007). Climate change, migratory
flows, and new poverty profiles are closely linked. These three elements are
also convenient in order to consider the strategies to commit with under the
current world scenario.
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
17
New Poverty Profiles: Between Climate Change and
Competitiveness
It is not very gratifying to address poverty, particularly if the question is
about competitiveness. In some cases, there is a contradiction and the
misconception that profitability comes at the expenses of poverty and
competitiveness can have negative effects for the welfare state.
Unfortunately, there are situations that these controversial statements
can be confirmed. Fortunately, there are also different situations. The
inclusion principle allows the creation of economic activities that mitigate
poverty.
Many organizations have been in a competitive race that, in many cases,
has sharpened and increased poverty. It is also clear that this is not the only
pattern of behavior.
Strategies in search of competitiveness that have undermined the welfare
state, have given this result probably due to the lack of a more accurate
reality vision. Most of the investment projects, export plans, and other
planning exercises focus only on competitiveness and profitability. These are
strategies centred on the financial benefits and market expansion. They were
implemented without including poverty mitigation as an element of their
sustainability. This dynamic led to the creation of new poverty profiles.
Misleading assumption: it is comfortable to ignore poverty because it
generates the perception of having eliminated it. Indeed, this ignorance does
not eliminate it, what is more, it reproduces it and makes it more complex.
The complexity level causes a higher cost to the system. Higher costs could
be avoided by giving place to the poverty phenomenon inside the system.
Finally, poverty is the system product and corrective mechanisms must be
generated to mitigate it.
One way to alleviate poverty is to accept the relationship it has with
strategies for competitiveness. It requires abandoning the idea that it is up
to public bodies to mitigate it. The alleviation of poverty corresponds to all
organizations. Furthermore, mitigating poverty is profitable and
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
18
competitive because it creates social value. And it is this value that can be
translated into economy.
A strategy is self-limited if it is not based on reality. The new poverty
profiles are part of this reality. Part of the sustainability of the business is to
understand what the new poverty profiles are, so that the strategies that are
developed also adapt to the reality in terms of the latter.
Poverty is a way of life that arises because of the impossibility to access
resources that satisfy basic physical and psychic needs. This inability to
access results in the deterioration of life quality. The resources that are not
accessed are food, housing, education, healthcare or access to drinking
water. It also includes the lack of means to access such resources as
unemployment protection, zero or low income. Sometimes, it is the result of
processes of social exclusion, social segregation or marginalization (EAPN,
2014).
Latin America is one of the most unequal regions in the world. Poverty is
a part of the general picture of its territory. Originally, this poverty was, in
general, linked to rural areas, big cities instead were the development
symbol, and opportunity source. Rural poverty is a problem that has not
been resolved and that liberalization, decentralization, and privatization
have had little impact on.
In 2017, the number of poor people in Latin America reached 184 million,
equivalent to 30.2% of the population, while the number of extremely poor
ones stood at 62 million, or 10.2% of the population (ECLAC, 2017).
According to ECLAC (2017) estimates, between 2002 and 2014 poverty
and extreme poverty both fell considerably in the region: the poverty rate
fell from 44.5% to 27.8%, and the extreme poverty rate from 11.2% to 7.8%,
with the steepest fall occurring in the first half of that period. However, in
2015 and again in 2016 both rates rose, representing a setback that was
especially severe in the case of extreme poverty.
Economic liberalization increased the attractiveness of emigrating to large
cities. Also, social violence and climate change forced many to leave their
homes to seek a new life in a high-income economy.
The development policy in the big cities did not imply mechanisms for
the absorption of migratory flows and expansion by overpopulation. The
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
19
disproportionate and unplanned growth has resulted in human settlements
in highly disadvantaged conditions, even in cities of developed countries.
New York is an example of that. In most cases, these settlements were on
land not appropriated for the construction of houses and they were lacking
basic services such as electricity and/or water.
These settlements lead to new reproductions of poverty with new
profiles. To these nuclei are adding those poor people that arise in the same
cities due to social fragmentation, the fall in wages and the economic crisis.
Faced with the more classical conceptions of poverty, which emphasize
the level of material life and the income insufficiency as determining factors,
other approaches have emerged. "Poverty in terms of capabilities" or "social
exclusion" are approaches to poverty with a broader perspective. A common
element of these new approaches, as opposed to the conventional one based
on income, is the vindication of the multidimensional nature of poverty.
(Malgesini and Candalija, 2014)
New poor people even if with better preparation, are derived from
prolonged unemployment and precarious jobs and they are located in
different regions of the world. It is expected that in the coming years the
proportion of vulnerable employment will remain around 46 percent at the
global level. The problem is especially serious in emerging economies (ILO,
2016, 2014, 2007).
The new poverty profiles are not derived only from the loss of
employment, or employment with low incomes, but also due to changes in
the family structure (increase in single-parent households, family
breakdowns), as well as the non-complete labor participation of all
members. This problem is greater when there are several dependent
children involved. (Red Cross, 2016)
Likewise, the Red Cross (2016) has established four major profiles of
people at risk of exclusion: 1) foreign men are subject to extreme and
multidimensional risk, without income and without home; 2) foreign people
in general are at extreme economic risk; 3) immigrant women with present
family and social problems are subject to moderate risk; 4) older people are
at low risk (Red Cross, 2016).
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
20
The international economic context and financial crisis has resulted in a
significant increase in unemployment and has put at risk of poverty people
who had never thought they would be in that situation after the job loss. On
the other hand, although the fact of having paid employment is a key factor
to avoid the poverty risk, in certain circumstances, it is insufficient to
maintain a home, which can also lead to situations of poverty risk at work
(Herrera et al., 2012).
When decent employment is scarce, more workers can stop looking for
work. In 2015, the number of people of working age who did not participate
in the labor market increased by about 26 million, reaching more than two
billions (ILO, 2016).
Poverty can be analysed according to different demographic or
socioeconomic variables, one of which is the relationship between people
and the labor market. To some part of population, integration in the labor
market does not guarantee the way out of poverty. Working poor is an
English term that refers to job precariousness. This word link work with
poverty (Herrera et al. 2012). A reality, that not even Europe escapes.
The impoverishment and precariousness of the living conditions of recent
times have brought out the fragilities and deficits of social protection of the
welfare model. (Gutiérrez, 2014).
With half of the world's population living in cities at this time -52.1
percent in 2011 to be precise (United Nations) -, the prototype of the poor
has ceased to be the peasant, as it was in the past. Now the poor is located in
the neighborhood. Large metropolitan areas, which are expanding rapidly,
especially in countries of the South, have become breeding grounds of
misery and despair, at the same time that they are places of great
conspicuous wealth and unattainable housing. (Argyriades, 2014)
Exclusion is the term that nowadays, is used to characterize the situation
of people without access to centers of power or economic resources and,
therefore, totally incapable of exerting any influence in the direction taken
by the economy or of determining their own future in a meaningful way.
With a low number of declining jobs and a very low salary, the idea that
anyone with a couple of years in school and a minimum of skills could get a
stable job is no longer related to the real world. (Argyriades, 2014)
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
21
In 2003, a new indicator was included in the European list of social
indicators: in-work poverty risk, which is defined as the poverty risk rate of
the people who are working, i.e. the percentage of people who work and
who have equivalent disposable income below 60 percent of the median
income of the society of reference (Herrera et al. 2012).
Herrera and others (2012) show that the deepening of the segmentation of
labor markets by qualifications, security and salary, generate risks for the
most vulnerable social groups. These groups are caught in the alternation
between low-skilled jobs and unemployment, which can lead to poverty
and social exclusion (Gallie, 2002; Marx and Verbist, 1998; Nolan and Marx,
2000; Caprile et al. 2008; Herrera et al. 2012).
With less than five percent of the world's population, the United States is
the home to the highest incarceration rate worldwide. Too often, these are
people who left school or are the product of poor neighborhoods, where
education leaves much to be desired (Blow, 2014: A19; Blow, 2013: A21;
Argyriades, 2014).
As part of this recount, large groups of recently settled immigrants,
mostly from Asia and Africa, are now a prominent feature of the urban
landscape in Europe, where they constitute representative minorities of the
population. (Argyriades, 2014)
The majority's reaction to this substantial influx has varied over time and
has sometimes been hostile. The integration of these groups in the
community, in general, has rarely been a success and as expected, the
recession has not helped. (Argyriades, 2014)
Violent actions have worsened over time instead of diminishing.
Likewise, they have expanded to other countries where their existence
would be difficult or almost impossible. In this way, sympathizers of ISIS
can be found in the Philippines, Neonazis in America and “Mara
Salvatrucha” in France.
If the indicators on the new poverty profiles compiled in Europe were
applied in Latin America, it would lead to exceptionally high numbers in
terms of poverty. The Latin American society that inhabits the big cities has
lost the memory about what the middle class implies, i.e. savings and family
patrimony. This class has already practically disappeared, before the
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
22
impoverishment of the population. This impoverishment has been slow and
it was the purchasing power that was mainly affected.
The point is that given the generalization and the slowness with which
poverty has advanced, the majority of the population does not perceive
itself as poor. The media and statistical data address extreme poverty, but
not the new poverty profiles. This leads to the perception that the
population situation "is bad, but it could be worse”.
There are less economic opportunities and families are over-indebted.
The new poverty profiles are also expressed by food and clothing purchases
with credit cards that offer them to divide the amounts to pay up to 48
months. In other words, it is becoming common for families to acquire food
and clothing in the same way that it purchases a car. The aberrant thing is
that the automobile is not a basic necessity, but feed and cover are.
In this sense, Latin America is a clear example of the crisis in terms of
EAPN (2012). For the EAPN the economic crisis cannot be as serious as the
memory crisis and the crisis of vision that seem to invade the debate of the
construction of government policies and programs. These two crises evade
the true roots of the new poverty profiles and prevent the generation of
mechanisms that could allow their reduction.
The new poverty profiles demand the generation of business with greater
inclusion. Not only in terms of the generation of jobs that allow facing
precarious work, but also the generation of social values that promote the
integration and unity of the population in the face of the changes generated
by migratory flows and climate change. If we are to achieve sustainability in
business at all.
The region’s poor performance in recent years, coupled with the weak
economic cycle, call for public policies on social protection to be
implemented and renewed. It refers especially to workplace inclusivity and
income redistribution measures (ECLAC, 2017). Efforts must be redoubled
to promote high-quality jobs and the construction and expansion of
comprehensive and effective social protection systems, which would enable
the most disadvantaged households to accumulate the resources needed to
have a decent quality of life (ECLAC, 2017).
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
23
The situation becomes even more critical when the shortage of jobs is
combined with the transformation of the productive system and lifestyle
due to climate change. A transformation that has been reactive and not
proactive in the face of the new reality that the global environment shows
and that is beyond the human being control. The adaptation has been slow
and less oriented to the creation of new jobs; it has rather focused on the
reduction of pollutants and the containment of migration.
Inclusive growth in the short term, as well as sustainable growth in the
long term, require effective coordination of policies at the national, regional
and global levels. Although it may seem ambitious, given the degree of
financial deregulation that characterizes many countries, it is critical for
policymakers to ensure that the financial sector stimulates and promotes
long-term productive investments, breaking the vicious circle of weak
aggregate demand, low investment, low productivity and growth below the
potential of the world economy.
While reducing excessive dependence on monetary policy, policymakers
will have to implement fiscal policies aimed at stimulating aggregate
demand, investment, and growth (UN, 2016). The global system is
committed to achieving the SDGs through market mechanisms.
The Competitiveness Versus the Sustainable Development Goals
The search for development on behalf of the international community and
the efforts to achieve it seem to get out of hand. At least in part, it is due to
the lack of long-term vision that would include the generation of social
values along with economic ones. It is especially true for economic agents.
In the short term, the capitalist system rewards through the economic
value accumulation and it leads to the social value detriment. It is the cause
of the consideration of only competitiveness and profitability for the
strategies.
Although, this does not guarantee the business sustainability in the long
term, it generates the strategist perception of doing the right thing and
having the key to success in the markets. This is a trap because the
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
24
perception of the short term leads the attention away from the possible
long-term results.
The Sustainable Development Goals, as well as the process of building
them, are a window into that misalignment in between the short and long-
term visions, and at the same time, in between the generation of social and
economic values.
This conceptual gap is the key in the strategy generation for long-term
competitiveness. The big corporations do know this and their owners have
created foundations for that purpose, which concept should be much more
expanded. The primordial question is for smaller companies. Are they
building strategies in terms of this reality? Or do they remain as spectators
trying to give a sense of tragedy to the new economic scenarios, at the same
time that they undermine social values without any effort to generate them?
Definitely, the Sustainable Development Goals are a compass that clearly
indicates where to go before the prevailing reality of the 21st century.
Innovation (Chen, Lin and Chang, 2009) and entrepreneurship, in line with
these objectives, will be those that will fill the gap and give a new
dynamism to the global economic system.
The SDGs are preceded by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The MDGs were eight objectives and eighteen goals. Its achievement was a
necessary but not sufficient condition to achieve the general objective of
eradicating poverty and eliminating social disparities and increasing
inequality during the period 1990-2015. (IDB, 2004)
The MDGs helped more than a billion people escape extreme poverty,
fight hunger, facilitate more girls to attend school, and protect the planet.
They generated new and innovative collaborations, boosted public opinion
and showed the immense value of setting ambitious goals. (UN, 2015)
The International Conference on Financing for Development, held in
Monterrey in March 2002, was the first attempt to comprehensively examine
the means and impediments for mobilizing resources towards poverty
reduction, through mobilization of domestic resources, trade, official
development assistance, debt relief, direct foreign investment, and other
flows. (IDB, 2004).
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
25
Despite the efforts, the poorest and most vulnerable continue to suffer
(what they must?). Gender inequality still persists. There are large gaps
between the poorest and the richest households, and between rural and
urban areas. Climate change and environmental degradation undermine the
progress made, and the poor suffer the most. Conflicts remain the greatest
threat to human development. Millions of people still live in poverty and
hunger, without access to basic services. (UN, 2015)
There are more people to feed with less water, farmland, and biodiversity.
But the world economy produces enough food for everyone. Current food
systems, which use a high quantity of inputs, have to be transformed to
make them more supportable - including the reduction of food loss and
waste - through better management and better techniques in agriculture,
livestock, fisheries, and forestry. (FAO, 2015)
Although the funding requirements for SDGs are extremely broad, i.e.
public and private savings worldwide, according to United Nations (2016),
it would be sufficient if the financial system were to efficiently intervene
these flows to direct them towards the SDGs. However, currently the
financial system is not stable or efficient in allocating credits where they are
needed to achieve inclusive and supportable growth, and the loans granting
is not aimed at creating a social or environmental impact.
This is a great challenge because the international financial system has
favored speculative rather than productive investment. The financial
instruments and the mechanisms for the allocation of resources are oriented
to satisfy the needs of the financial market, dissociating themselves from the
sectors dedicated to production. In other words, we are witnessing the
persecution of the SDGs with a divorce between the productive sector and
the financial sector. Hence, much of what is achieved will depend more on
cooperation for development and international agreements.
The effective mobilization and use of public resources will remain a
critical aspect to achieve sustainable development. This will require
additional and more effective international financing, including Official
Development Assistance, South-South cooperation and other official flows.
To complement existing public funds, there is also an important role for
development banks at the national, regional and multilateral levels,
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
26
especially since private resources are not currently being channeled
effectively in this direction. (UN, 2016)
Tax evasion and fraud and illicit financial flows have become an
important difficulty for efficient mobilization of resources. According to the
United Nations (2016), this can be improved with greater efforts towards
international tax cooperation. The Sustainable Development Goals are:
1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere.
2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote
sustainable agriculture.
3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.
4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong
learning opportunities for all.
5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation
for all.
7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for
all.
8. Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and
productive employment and decent work for all.
9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable
industrialization and foster innovation.
10. Reduce inequality within and among countries.
11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and
sustainable.
12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns.
13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.
14.Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for
sustainable development.
15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems,
sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse
land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.
16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development,
provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and
inclusive institutions at all levels.
Climate Change and New Poverty Profiles for the Sustainable Competitiveness
González-Alvarado, T.; Kubus, R.
27
17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global
partnership for sustainable development.
Conclusion
The sustainability implies that something reaches continuity by itself but
also in relation to its surroundings. An example of this is the planet Earth
and its position within the solar system. For millions of years, it has
maintained a dynamic position in relation to the Sun and other planets.
The Earth as an element of the solar system has reached its sustainability.
The same system logic allows it to continue dynamically conserving its
position with the corresponding results. In the same way, an economic agent
achieves the sustainability of its strategies when its activities are
perpetuated by the same system logic. The economic agent is not static, nor
is the environment in which it operates.
The dynamics that the economic agent follows contributes to the logic of
the system and it is in turn influenced by the system. Both feed off each
other, making the millions of agents at the world level feed and shape the
economic system. Climate change and new poverty profiles become
elements that require the strategist to consider them; thus abandoning the
unique vision of competitiveness and profitability.
Furthermore, considering climate change and the new poverty profiles
will increase competitiveness and profitability, just because these factors
transform the scenarios and their consideration facilitates the generation of
sustainable strategy. In the present book, the Sustainable Development
Goals are considered as the essential guidelines that facilitate the strategic
consideration of climate change and the new poverty profiles to achieve
greater competitiveness.
Hence the need to understand the world scenario through the Sustainable
Development Goals (SDG). These objectives express the degree to which the
system has been mined or saturated and which is the ways that allows it to
continue. Understanding the new poverty profiles and climate change
allows linking the SDGs with competitiveness, and not interpreting them as
Competitiveness against the Sustainable Development Goals
28
independent and unrelated. It also facilitates the implementation of
strategies in organizations that entail several of these objectives, while at the
same time contributing to greater competitiveness and profitability of the
organization
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Competitiveness against the sustainable development goals
se terminó de editar en octubre de 2019
en las oficinas de Ediciones de la Noche
The existence of strategists
with the capacity to build new
scenarios and constantly evaluate
emerging strategies adapted to the
new reality is necessary. The
capacity for analysis and
transformation in an ever-
changing system is a decisive
element in the 21st-century
competitiveness.
The aim of Competitiveness
against the Sustainable
Development Goals is to analyse
the competitiveness against the
Sustainable Development Goals.
This implies addressing the new
poverty profiles and the climate
change. Poverty and climate
change are factors that modify
strategist perception and the
construction of competitive
advantages.
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
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Public Administration, Poverty Alleviation and Democratic Governance: a Necessary Interface
  • D Argyriades
Argyriades, D. (2014). Public Administration, Poverty Alleviation and Democratic Governance: a Necessary Interface. Revista del Centro de Investigación, 11 (44) pp. 31-50.
50 Year Later: from "I have a dream" to "We have hit a ceiling
  • C Blow
Blow, C. (April 24, 2013). 50 Year Later: from "I have a dream" to "We have hit a ceiling". The New York Times, Op-Ed, Saturday, 2013, p. A21.