Glasshouse Forum brings together concerned capitalists and researchers from different disciplines and provides an arena for critical reflection on the merits and demerits of capitalism.
Glasshouse Forum is founded on the conviction that critical analysis of capitalism is most constructively formulated by those who fundamentally accept this system.
Glasshouse Forum is research-oriented and interdisciplinary. It is politically independent and maintains a pluralistic approach. It does not engage in lobbying activities, or make policy recommendations.
Glasshouse Forum is dedicated to deepening the debate on capitalism through various forms of meetings, seminars and publications.
Why Glasshouse Forum?
The debate about capitalism is polarised and predictable. Dogmatic proponents refuse to admit any problems whatsoever – if only the market economy rules, then everything will turn out for the best. Similarily, dogmatic opponents lack any sense of understanding of the conditions under which corporations work and of the merits of the market. The discussion about globalization, which often overlaps with the one about capitalism, follows the same debating choreography.
However, the discussion of the problems and merits of capitalism is far too important to be left to dogmatic proponents and opponents. There is reason to be alarmed at its long-term development – both with regard to how companies are developing and to the socio-economic and political consequences of current dominant business trends.
During the last decades we have witnessed a shift away from classic company building to so-called “short-termism” with not enough focus on building sustainable competitive advantage, and with rapid shareholder returns being regarded as the main purpose of the company. After the fall of communism there seems to be a mix of self-confidence and a lack of fantasy among many capitalists, which often means that they do not fear new challenges. But political memory is short, and if capitalism cannot handle its drawbacks, then others will build their political capital on them.
Capitalists need to care about the development and consequences of capitalism. Glasshouse Forum provides an arena for critical reflection on the merits and demerits of capitalism.