UN Global Compact: Where is your company on the journey to 2030? (UNGC Annual Report 2019, October 2019)

Extracts from UNGC’s introduction of the Annual Report 2019:

“Each year, the United Nations Global Compact takes an in-depth look at the progress of participating companies to advance the sustainability efforts of the 2030 Agenda.

The UN Global Compact Progress Report 2019 provides essential insights into how companies are implementing the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact and taking action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Most importantly, it lays bare the transformations needed to get the business community on track as we approach 2020 and the final decade of delivery. More

UN Global Compact guide: Setting Site Water Targets – A Guide For Companies (published 2019)

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY from the guide:
“The world’s water resources are under growing pressure from rising water consumption, greater pollution, weak governance, and climate change—exposing companies to increased water-related risks.

In response, many companies are engaging in water stewardship and setting water targets to help address their waterrelated externalities and secure water for the growing needs of all users.

Site water targets informed by catchment context have an important role to play in addressing water challenges and driving informed actions at the local level. Yet a minority of companies are setting them.More

181 major US businesses commit to act fairly and sustainably (published August 2019)

A welcome development this week was the declaration from 181 chief executives of US companies to operate in a way that values and recognizes all their stakeholders.

The signatories to the Statement on the Purpose of a Corporation, organized by Business Roundtable, includes commitments to:

  • Respect communities and the environment by embracing sustainable business practices;
  • Deal with suppliers and partners fairly and ethically;
  • Invest in their employees, fostering diversity and inclusion;
  • Demonstrate transparency and effective stakeholder engagement.

More

Unilever warns it will sell off brands that hurt the planet or society (article in The Guardian, July 2019)

Unilever has warned it will sell off brands that do not contribute positively to society, with British favourite Marmite and Magnum ice-cream among the big names thought to be vulnerable to a cull linked to the company’s sustainable business agenda.

Unilever’s chief executive Alan Jope said it was no longer enough for consumer goods companies to sell washing powders that make shirts whiter or shampoos that make hair shinier because consumers wanted to buy brands that have a “purpose” too.More

More CEOs Sacked For Ethical Failure Than For Poor Financial Performance (Article by Andreas Rasche, June 2019, CBS)

From article, June 5th, 2019 by professor Andreas Rasche:

“According to a recent study from Strategy&, for the first time more CEOs have been dismissed for ethical lapses than for poor financial performance (in 2018).

What is the lesson?

I think that we overvalue compliance and undervalue the effects of a corporate culture on sustainable business decisions…”More

Danskerne: “Vestas, Ørsted og Coop er de mest bæredygtige virksomheder” (analyse fra Advice, maj 2019)

Uddrag af analysen, side 18:

“Der er altså ingen tvivl om, at danskerne har taget virksomhedernes bæredygtigheds­ dagsorden til sig. Men hvem, mener de så, skiller sig positivt ud? I Bæredygtigheds­ barometeret har vi spurgt respondenterne om, uhjulpet, at nævne virksomheder, som de mener gør meget for en bæredygtig udvikling. Det er interessant, at danskernes top tre dækker virksomheder, som er bæredygtige på tre forskellige måder.

Vinderen er Vestas!More

A new approach to materiality: Back-casting from the future to prioritize what really matters (Article by Sustainable Brands, March 2019)

Article by Sustainable Brands on futurefitbusines.org, March 2019:

It’s time for a reverse materiality assessment — rather than trying to divine what matters most by forecasting from the unsustainable present, we must prioritize by back-casting from the sustainable future.

One of the most commonly used tools in the CSR professional’s toolkit is the materiality assessment, an exercise in gathering insight on the relative importance of social and environmental issues as a means to inform reporting and strategy development. And yet the way such assessments are conducted often seems to be more of an art than a science. A recent article in Sustainable Brands highlighted some of the key flaws, from focusing on the wrong questions and factoring in only limited stakeholder views, to looking only a short way into the future.More

Yes, Sustainability Can Be a Strategy! (article in HBR, February 2019)

Article in Harvard Business Review, February 11th, 2019 by Ioannis Ioannou and George Serafeim:

In recent years, a growing number of companies around the world have voluntarily adopted and implemented a broad range of sustainability practices. The accelerating rate of adoption of these practices has also provoked a debate about the nature of sustainability and its long-term implications for organizations. Is the adoption of sustainability practices a form of strategic differentiation that can lead to superior financial performance? Or, is it a strategic necessity that can ensure corporate survival but not necessarily out performance?

More