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David A. Katz and Laura McIntosh. Courtesy photos David A. Katz and Laura McIntosh. Courtesy photos

After many years, this past summer the Business Roundtable updated its principles of corporate governance with a new Statement on the Purpose of a Corporation. In the accompanying press release, the Business Roundtable emphasized the larger societal role of corporations in America: “If companies fail to recognize that the success of our system is dependent on inclusive long-term growth, many will raise legitimate questions about the role of large employers in our society.” Superseding the decades-long period during which the Business Roundtable supported the view that “corporations exist principally to serve their shareholders,” the revised statement of purpose is oriented toward “the long-term interests” of “all of our stakeholders.”

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