Racial Capitalism and Environmental Injustice in the Anthropocene
Academy of Management
Academy of Management Proceedings
In this paper we study the intersections of racial and environmental injustices in histories of the Anthropocene – a new geological epoch where human activity has changed the functioning of the earth system. Drawing from environmental justice and racism scholarship, we critically analyze recent management research on grand challenges and show how the proposed solutions, such as sustainable technologies, circular economy, and shared economy, exacerbate racial injustices faced by communities of color. We contend that a climate justice agenda that is grounded on racial justice is necessary for our scholarship to develop a racially just management and organization studies in the Anthropocene. To accomplish this agenda, we propose three shifts: from studying elite institutions to grassroots organizations concerned with climate and racial justice, from global technology to understanding local adaptation by communities of color, and from offering decontextualized solutions to unraveling racial histories that can address racial and climate injustices in the Anthropocene. We argue that management and organization studies cannot afford to overlook climate justice and racial justice – they are both inextricably linked and one cannot be achieved without the other.