Marc Le Menestrel
Home page > Teaching > Undergraduate Level > UPF: Seminars of Strategic Management > Fairphone
logo

Fairphone

Save this article in PDF

by Marc Le Menestrel (26/11/2014)

Fairphone in its own words

Fairphone is a social enterprise with the goal of creating a fairer economy. We open up supply chains to understand how things are made and build stronger connections between people and their products.

We developed the Fairphone to help us tell a much bigger story. Our phone serves to uncover production systems, address challenging problems and stimulate discussions about what is truly fair. We’re leading by example to expand the market for ethical products and giving a voice to consumers that care about social values. Together with our community, we are changing the way products are made.

Fairphone started in 2010 as a project of Waag Society, Action Aid and Schrijf-Schrijf to raise awareness about conflict minerals in consumer electronics and the wars that the mining of these minerals is fueling in the DR Congo. The campaign and related research ran for three years. In 2013, Fairphone was officially established as a social enterprise to help us expand the reach of our goals. By creating a smartphone, we are using commercial strategies to maximize our social impact at every stage of the value chain, from sourcing and production to distribution and recycling.

Our starting point was more ethical products in general. We decided to focus on phones simply because they are ubiquitous – nearly everyone owns or frequently uses one. The Fairphone is a storytelling device that provides a useful metaphor for complex, interconnected supply chains. This symbolic product guides our journey as we open up the processes behind production, one step at a time, and work to put social values first. We want to change the relationship that people have with their products and contribute to an economy based on different values. Our phone is just one result of that.

Here is an easy piece I wrote about Fairphone: Much more than a fair phone.

Question for preparation:

What would you like to learn about Fairphone?

Back to the course


This section's pages

Creative Commons License This creation is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License.