A Case Study on the Legal Application of Good Corporate Citizenship and Social License

A Case Study on the Legal Application of Good Corporate Citizenship and Social License

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  • Teaching Notes
Abstract

This case study explores whether corporate directors and officers are legally responsible when it comes to following the mandate of a voluntary sustainability pledge enacted by a corporation. The case study strives to closely represent the real-life 2010 Sustainability Report of Suncor Energy Ltd. and the pledges pertaining to its tailings management program. The students should be encouraged to explore the implications of social license and corporate citizenship upon the legal aspects of corporate fiduciary duties of directors and officers. The case study demonstrates that directors and officers may consider good corporate citizenship and principles of social license as part of their fiduciary duties to the corporation under Canadian and UK law. In contrast, American law has traditionally aligned with a shareholder primacy model that ...

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