Accountable Strategies blog

A blog about accountability issues in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors

Should there be a place for bloggers at this “Summit?”

Posted by David Kassel on October 9, 2007

An important discussion is set to take place in Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall next month, and I was thinking about attending and blogging about it.

“It’s billed as “The Summit on the Future of the Corporation,”  and it promises, over a two-day span on November 13 and 14, to be more than just a business story.  It promises, in fact, to raise key issues about the changing relationships between business, government, and the citizenry on solving our most pressing global problems.

The Summit’s website bills the event as marking:

an historical moment for considering how the most influential social institution of our time (business) can serve the broader public interest essential to its own long-term prosperity…

The only problem is that you have to register to attend, and you have three choices.  You can register as a corporate participant for $1,000; as a member of a nonprofit, academic, or government organization for $500; or as a student for $250.   I’m personally disappointed that there isn’t a choice here to attend as a member of the blogging media.  As a blogger, I consider myself a member of the media, which reports to the citizenry.  I was told, however, that the only provision that could be made for me was to allow me to register and attend as a student. (I’m not sure if general press passes are available or not.)

Allen White, one of the organizers of the Summit,  has written an engaging paper on the need at this time in history to “rewrite the social contract” between business, government, and the citizenry.  The reason is that our problems, from global warming to the rising cost of health care, are so complex and pressing that neither one of these institutions can go it alone.  All sectors of society need to come together in rethinking the contract, he writes.

I’m sure the entire event next month will be filled with high-minded discussions along the lines White has laid out.   It seems a shame that a place hasn’t been set aside for modern-day representatives of the citizenry to report about them.

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