Case Study Of Nike: Global Ambassador Orolith

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Nike: Global Ambassador or Material Monolith?

While Nike sneakers may appear to be a stylish, functional brand of shoes, their function within the context of globalization and the global market is far-reaching. One pair of Nike shoes can feed a family of factory workers, represent the personal style brand of some of the world’s most popular entrepreneurs, or get a child killed in a poor neighborhood. The way these shoes travel provides millions of jobs and connects people from around the world in a looping supply chain. Yet, the shoes – the brand – starts to take on a mind of its own as the image shifts, and the consumer mindset changes. While the brand may have economic and social ramifications, it also goes beyond the shoes and the call to consumerism, with an Ambassador program that associates “Nike” with philanthropy. In this paper, I will trace the path of a pair of Nike sneakers – from where the shoes are produced, to how they are viewed
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Activists claimed that this would be beneficial for workers in the factories that made the major corporations’ products, as disclosures would force responsible corporate practices and better working conditions. Nike surprised the corporate community when they published their supplier list in 1995, in response to their image which co-founder and former CEO Phil Knight described as “synonymous with slave wages, forced overtime, and arbitrary abuse (Doorey 2011, 600-601).” This image prompted an anti-Nike movement and resulted in the company taking several steps towards corporate responsibility to lose their negative image. In fact, image is paramount in Nike’s corporate decision-making over the past two decades – leading to greater workers’ rights, corporate responsibility actions, and initiatives such as the Nike Ambassador program that continues to change the lives of people who cannot afford Nike
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