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Conflict Minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Part of the Pentalemma Series on Managing Global Dilemmas

Dylan Scudder

Against the backdrop of an increasingly globalized business environment, this book provides readers with a pragmatic approach to international management of complex issues that arise from the tension between fiduciary and ethical priorities. If the challenge of management is making decisions in situations of uncertainty, Conflict Minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo is the ultimate test of finding business solutions in extremely volatile situations. Based on firsthand experience and years of rigorous research, this book leverages a real-world case of a global tech company grappling with the dilemma of whether to continue sourcing a vital mineral in the conflict-affected region of the Democratic Republic of Congo at the risk of ruining its reputation or to suffer the immediate financial consequences of pulling out. Putting readers in the role of consultants to a client operating in the area lets them experience defining moments of managing with limited information, time pressure and a dwindling budget. Almost as if „parachuting“ into an escalating conflict scenario, readers form critical relationships with characters that introduce them to management tools and techniques they need to arrive at a successful conclusion. The excitement and intensity of Conflict Minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo equips business leaders of today and tomorrow with valuable know-how they can apply to the uncertainties of everyday business in an international context.

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Introduction

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This book aims to help business leaders of today and tomorrow learn how to stay profitable in an increasingly volatile world. Drawing on the latest risk management research, Conflict Minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo provides an immersive reading experience based on the real-world case of a global company responding to a highly uncertain environment in the midst of armed conflict. The central challenge concerns how to reconcile the competing demands of diverse stakeholders: those most interested in immediate and long-term profitability, social concerns and environmental priorities. The book is grounded in the insight that such issues are always interdependent. As such, companies that ignore their stakeholders put their own future viability at risk.

This is easy to say, but much more difficult to realize. Following the PDCA model made popular by W. Edward Deming and refined in Japan, the book is organized around the four phases of Planning, Doing, Checking and finally, Acting. Within this framework, readers develop competencies by working through business challenges that they prepare for, engage in, reflect on and then draw lessons from that can be ←xv | xvi→applied to the next round of challenges they encounter. Readers work as managers at Pentalemma Inc., a major risk advisory that has several large multinational corporations in its client base. Conflict Minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo is part of a series of books on leadership in complex environments, each covering a different location and linked to a specific industry facing...

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