Shortcuts - April 2016

7th April 2016

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  • Business & Industry ,
  • Management ,
  • Corporate governance ,
  • Employee engagement ,
  • Stakeholder engagement


Peter Hodgson

A round-up of news on business sustainability and ethics.

Business sustainability

More than 80% of companies in the US S&P 500 index published corporate sustainability reports in 2015, a 5% rise on 2014 and up from 20% in 2011. Louis Coppola, executive vice-president at the Governance & Accountability Institute, which compiled the figures, said: ‘Measuring, managing, and reporting on ESG [environmental, social and corporate governance] issues has been established as a mainstream practice in both the corporate and investment communities. [Business] leaders increasingly understand the critical importance of adopting and implementing strategies, products, services, programmes and initiatives that reflect the 21st century business environment, and the interest of investors and important stakeholders.’

Impact knowledge gap

A study by Corporate Citizenship has found that just one company in five believes external stakeholders have a good understanding of their impacts on the world. The consultancy said this was due to an internal and external ‘impact knowledge gap’. It found that few corporations were able to measure effectively how they create change and that many did not know how to communicate their future impact. It added that too many stakeholders knew surprisingly little about corporations’ impacts.

Ethical companies

Some 131 businesses, representing 21 countries and 45 industries, have been named the world’s most ethical companies in the 10th annual index from the US Ethisphere Institute. The 2016 list includes 14 ten-time honorees and 13 first-time members. Four UK companies are listed: retailer Marks & Spencer; utility firms National Grid and Northumbrian Water; and vehicle parts manufacturer Delphi Automotive. Several other firms with UK operations, including Japanese electronics equipment manufacturer Ricoh and US engineering and environment consultancy CH2M, were also on this year’s list.


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