Democratic Capitalism Consumer Power Fundamentals

Democratic Capitalism and Making Sense of the World in Times of Change

By Taylor Gray, Ph.D. on October, 20 2020

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Taylor Gray, Ph.D.

The world is a better place when companies are good corporate citizens. I remain focused on developing meaningful and actionable insights from empirical data in pursuit of a better world.

A worldview is a sense of how the world operates and how we fit into it. Whether explicitly or implicitly developed, we all have a worldview. Perhaps we set our own worldview, perhaps we ascribe to one set by some larger entity, or perhaps some combination of the two--regardless, we all have a worldview and this shapes how we understand the world and how we act within it.

"The world is a better place when companies are good corporate citizens, and consumer demand is the most important force in driving companies to become better corporate citizens."

We came together to develop Motive from a shared worldview--one which we know as Democratic Capitalism. Democratic Capitalism is a political economic perspective in which the corporation, through our aggregated efforts to transform and multiply capital in all forms--human, natural, and financial--is understood as the predominant institution shaping the modern world. Equally, all individuals, as consumers, have free choice in which companies they engage, and in how they engage them. Together, this results in a distribution of agency in how the world is shaped.

In other words, Democratic Capitalism is the belief that no other institution is as well-structured, well-resourced, and well-incentivized to effect and manage change in the modern world as is the corporation and no other force is as powerful in guiding corporate development as is consumer choice. The world is a better place when companies are good corporate citizens, and consumer demand is the most important force in driving companies to become better corporate citizens.

We should be clear in pointing out that Democratic Capitalism is not the glorification or idolization of corporations. Rather, it is the acknowledgment of the significant potential companies have as vehicles of change and the understanding that consumers are the actual agents of change directing these vehicles. If Democratic Capitalism is to glorify anything, it would be the importance of consumer power--mobilized by informed decision-making--in shaping the world as we know it and as we wish it to be.

 

Our Pillars of Democratic Capitalism

We understand Democratic Capitalism has having four fundamental pillars and have developed Motive specifically to operate within elements of these four pillars:

  1. Choice: In a developed democracy we have freedom of choice. All choices have consequences, some of which are intended, some of which are unintended, and some of which are unforeseen. Although some choices may feel freer than others, we are all responsible for the choices we make. The interactions of the consequences of everyone’s choices create a landscape of change. (Read More)
  2. Change: Modern society is a project in change. The world is perpetually changing and progress arises from an ability to direct this change toward a particularly desired setting. Chaos and progress are both products of change which differ in how change is managed. Modern society is a project in change--a project in managing change. (Read More)
  3. Corporate Citizenship: Corporate citizenship is a framework of how a company is governed within a perpetually evolving business and society relationship. Change is critically important to making the world a better place and no other institution is as well-structured, as well-resourced, and as well-incentivized to catalyze and to adapt to change at scale and as quickly as is the corporation. (Read More)
  4. Consumer Power: Although remarkably consequential, the corporation is but a legal structure designed to operate as a vehicle coordinating the desires and intentions of its agents--that is, the people making decisions within, and for, the company--but the company itself has no agency. In this sense, the corporation is a vehicle for change but not an agent of change. Consumers are the ultimate agents of the corporation--through every engagement with a corporation we are effectively motivating this structure to act. We may not make the decisions within a corporation but we certainly set the agenda for which decisions need to be made. (Read More

"Consumer choice is infinitely powerful, and credible information is required to mobilize this power. Together, we can make the world better."

Motive’s Contribution to Democratic Capitalism

Our perspectives, decisions, and developments are informed by our worldview of Democratic Capitalism. We provide information to support your choices and empower your consumer agency. Change is perpetual and our objective is to assist in guiding change toward progress...rather than simply chaos.

Our research team covers hundreds of public and private sources every day to collect data—actual empirical data and not simply promises, PR statements, or marketing slogans—about everyday products and the companies behind these products. Our science-based approach, shaped by what matters to you, makes it easy to understand the impacts of the brands you choose and to discover new brands committed to being better. We built Motive from a fundamental commitment to the science of impact. From its inception, we have designed Motive for consumers—Consumer choice is infinitely powerful, and credible information is required to mobilize this power. Together, we can make the world better.

Motive is a promise of unfettered truth. With evidence and insights, we support people in making good decisions based on what they care about. Truly independent of the companies we cover, we seek to build trust through transparency...and choose progress over chaos.

 


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