Edmund M. Burke, 80; dean at BC encouraged corporate citizenship - The Boston Globe
A corporation that moves into a town is just as much a resident as the family down the street, Edmund M. Burke believed, and if the business wants to do well, it should become what he called a "neighbor of choice."
"A company must also demonstrate its concern for the environment and to the communities where it is based. People expect them to be more responsible."
Along with the permits and municipal approvals that companies collect to build their factories and office buildings, they also must obtain a metaphoric "license to operate," Dr. Burke wrote in publications such as his 1999 book "Corporate Community Relations: The Principle of the Neighbor of Choice," which became a text of choice for many students and businesses.
The "license to operate," he wrote, might include company workers participating in community events and fund-raisers. Interaction between workers and neighbors, he said, builds a kind of trust that was absent in years past, when a corporation might simply write a check once a year and donate to a local charity.
Dr. Burke drew inspiration for many theories from growing up in Allston. Ed believed strongly in social justice - in his younger days, rather vocally," said his wife, Lee.