Summary: In this article, an important and troublesome trend of the EC's environmental and social policy is discussed. This trend is best described as a new governance model. In this new model, the government and private sector work together to make new laws (the co-operative approach), and, conversely, corporations are required to assume social responsibilities. Thus, there are two sides to this trend: public government is privatised and corporate government is publicised.
The first part of this article discusses the co-operative approach, which has become popular in the environmental area. The main reason for this approach's popularity is that it is believed to avoid the pitfalls of the adversarial approach. The second part analyses the European Commission's ideas about corporate social responsibility (CSR) as set forth in a green paper on this topic. The definition and scope of CSR, the objectives and instruments proposed by the Commission, the CSR stake-holder model, and the management structure and tools required to implement CSR are discussed. The merits of the co-operative approach and CSR are discussed in the third section. The fourth section focuses specifically on the stakeholder model on which CSR is founded. In the next section, some issues that the CSR debate has neglected are brought to the forefront. A final assessment of the co-operative approach and the CSR model is set forth in the final section.European Energy and Environmental Law Review