The Glasshouse Forum was founded by Proventus to foster debate about capitalism and its polarising and predictable nature. To this day, dogmatic proponents refuse to admit any problems with the system whatsoever: if the market economy rules, then everything will be for the best. Their equally determined opponents lack any sense of understanding of the conditions under which corporations function, and of the market’s merits. The discussion about globalization, which often overlaps with that of capitalism, follows the same debating choreography.

However, the discussion about the problems and merits of capitalism is far too important to be left to dogmatic proponents and opponents. The theory and practice of capitalism is an important discourse that cannot be dominated by dogmatic ideologies alone. There is reason to be alarmed at capitalism’s long-term development – both in regards to how companies grow and to the socioeconomic and political consequences of current dominant business trends.

Over the last few decades, we have witnessed a shift away from classic company building to so-called “short-termism.” This includes a lack of focus on building sustainable competitive advantage, and the misplaced belief that rapid shareholder returns should be a company’s main goal.

Since the fall of communism, many capitalists have exhibited a mix of overconfidence and lack of imagination, which often means that they do not fear new competition. But political memory is short, and if capitalism fails to address its drawbacks, then others will take advantage.

Capitalists need to care about the development and consequences of capitalism. This is why Proventus founded the Glasshouse Forum.

Glasshouse Forum brings together concerned capitalists and researchers and provides an arena for critical reflection on capitalism’s pros and cons. It is interdisciplinary, politically independent, and takes a pluralistic approach. It does not engage in lobbying activities or make policy recommendations.

Glasshouse Forum aims to broaden the discussion on capitalism through conferences, seminars and publications.