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Collaboration: A new imperative for societal impact

By Barry Salzberg - June 19, 2013

Shutterstock_stpetersburg_300x200In my conversations with leaders in the private and public sectors, there’s a clear desire for businesses to play a significant role in helping address complex global challenges. Outcomes like economic stability, public health and well-being, high-quality education, and protection of human rights are too far-reaching for any one organization, or even a whole sector, to bring about independently. So collaboration among institutions and groups to address these issues is essential.

Over the next few days, I’ll have the privilege of attending the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). Each year the forum draws a distinguished group of business executives, government officials, media leaders, and other influential figures.

Collaboration is an approach these stakeholders and others have come to expect. For Deloitte member firms, a significant number of clients and people want to see our organization join forces with others to address major societal issues. And Deloitte leaders recognize we have a long-term interest in helping make society stronger and more resilient.

I believe public discussion can be an important starting point for collaboration that involves business. Insights from business leaders can help policymakers mobilize companies and other organizations toward mutually beneficial outcomes. Likewise, policymakers can benefit from getting business on their side, by making clear what gaps business can help address.

The SPIEF agenda is full of sessions where business, government, and civil society leaders will be talking about potential solutions to shared challenges. Among others, I’m looking forward to the SPIEF session presented by Deloitte CIS on 22 June. Elena Lazko, a consulting partner with Deloitte CIS, will moderate a discussion among six executives and public sector leaders about the “green agenda” in Russia, and how regulatory policies and management techniques that promote environmental sustainability can drive productivity and competitiveness.

It’s exciting to see how much good business can do by collaborating with other sectors, and to help business realize its tremendous potential for positive impact. SPIEF is just one setting where leaders can connect and find ways of using their influence and resources to address challenges we all face.


Barry Salzberg headshotBarry Salzberg is the Global Chief Executive Officer of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL). As DTTL Global CEO, Barry leads and manages the Executive and sets the strategic direction of the Deloitte global network. Prior to this role, he served as Chief Executive Officer of Deloitte LLP (United States) from 2007 to 2011.

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