News



  • 19 Mar 2013 09:23 | Gwyn Jones

    About The United Nations Global Compact The United Nations Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with ten principles. Over 10,000 members- from large global corporations to small businesses. Members commit to ten principles in the areas of: human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption. The UNGlobal Compact is a practical framework for the development, implementation, and disclosure of sustainability policies and practices, all designed to help advance sustainable business models and markets.


    Who Should Attend? If your organisation has joined the UNGlobal Compact, or is considering joining and you would like to understand more about the UNGlobal Compact -  then this event is for you.( Ecobusiness Exchange is running a separate event for consultants- please contact for details) The event will provide you with an overview and introduction to the UNGlobal Compact and delegates will leave with a clearer understanding of what is needed to implement the UNGC and how to start preparing to submit their first Communication on Progress.


    Register at:  http://unglobalcompact-60min-eorg.eventbrite.co.uk/

    Blog at www.ecobusiness-exchange.com/blog

  • 13 Feb 2013 15:13 | Gwyn Jones

    Westminster Energy, Environment & Transport Forum Keynote Seminar: Smart metering in the UK - consumer engagement, privacy and moving towards the 'mass rollout'

    Tuesday, 23rd April 2013

    Central London

    This event is CPD certified

     

    Guest of Honour: Dr Mike Short, Vice President, Telefónica Europe

     

    This Westminster Energy, Environment & Transport Forum seminar will be a timely opportunity to assess progress and next steps in the delivery of the Government's vision for every home in Great Britain being equipped with smart energy meters, as the programme moves toward the 'mass rollout' stage in 2014. It follows the Government's First Annual Progress Report on the Roll-out of Smart Meters and Response to the Consultation on the Consumer Engagement Strategy.

     

    With the establishment of Data and Communications Company due to be finalised, sessions will bring out latest views on the wider service and 'smarter community' opportunities associated with the smart meter home gateway, and the continued security and privacy concerns surrounding the programme.

     

    Delegates will also discuss approaches to meeting the challenges in wider consumer and industry engagement as the rollout progresses, as well as creating a supply chain and workforce capable of delivering such an ambitious programme.

     

  • 12 Dec 2012 16:44 | Gwyn Jones

    What's at the core of a chief sustainability officer?


    2degrees' recent event entitled ‘Who will put sustainability at the heart of corporate strategy?’, held in conjunction with our friends at GACSO, provoked lively debate among sustainability professionals from diverse industry sectors this month.


    The pressing issue of who will be responsible for leading the charge on sustainability within corporate organisations is still far from clear cut. Katharine Earley summarises the key discussion points to emerge from the evening, and explores the many skills and qualities that may be required of the world’s Chief Sustainability Officers.


    “The great sustainability challenge is this: how can nine billion people have a good quality of life on our planet by 2050?” said Gwyn Jones of the Global Association of Corporate Responsibility Officers (GACSO) to a packed room of sustainability professionals at Oxford’s Jam Factory.


    With explosive population growth, rapid urbanisation and social mobility set to trigger heightened levels of consumption, business will be under pressure like never before to ensure these increasing demands on Earth’s resources are met responsibly.


    As the most powerful force on the planet, companies must channel their energy into a fundamentally different way of thinking, Gwyn explained, decoupling economic growth from environmental degradation and moving beyond compliance to ‘do good’, not just ‘less bad’.


    However, with only three of the FTSE 100 companies employing a chief sustainability officer, the burning question of who will be responsible for bringing sustainability to the C-suite remains to be answered.


    Embedded sustainability
    GACSO wants to see sustainability embedded at the heart of corporate strategy, with at least 250 Chief Sustainability Officers on executive boards of the top 250 organisations by 2020. These respected and valuable individuals would deal with the mind-blowing agenda of poverty, consumption, carbon, well-being and economic reform.


    Importantly, they would recognise the relevance of each of these elements to their organisation’s core business strategy. And of course stay abreast of the world’s ever-evolving environmental, socio-economic and political landscape.


    The first 100 days
    In their first 100 days in the job, a CSO, or head of sustainability, should forge a strategic plan, manage perceptions, inspire the confidence and trust of all sectors of the business, prompt behaviour change, and above all, achieve something, explained Anne Augustine, GACSO Member and founder of the Convergency Partnership. All this while being resilient and adaptable, and staying true to their values.


    Many people enter the field of sustainability because they are passionate about making a positive difference, Anne commented. This resolve can be severely tested when countered with the demands of business continuity and pressure from shareholders.


    So, with all this in mind, what does it take to be a Chief Sustainability Officer?


    The CSO career path
    There’s currently no obvious or uniform path to becoming a board level sustainability professional. Those who are progressing through the corporate ranks to take up the mantle of sustainability come from a variety of backgrounds and have led highly diverse careers.


    Gwyn Jones challenged our audience to identify the skills, competencies and qualities that would be required by tomorrow’s CSOs, and discuss where they would sit within a corporate organisation.


    Core competencies
    With a passion for their subject, the CSO would be a highly motivated and enthusiastic individual. He or she would be a brilliant negotiator, whose charisma, creativity and blue sky thinking would be tempered with a balanced and realistic approach to the issues in hand. Importantly, they would have the stamina, persistence and emotional intelligence required to communicate their vision effectively to the rest of the C-suite.


    This assertiveness in the boardroom would be matched with an exceptional understanding of business, including finance, supply chain, sales and marketing. Indeed, commercial awareness would be critical to successfully embedding sustainability at any level.


    Importantly, the CSO should be an absolutely sparkling communicator. He or she should clearly convey the importance of sustainability, its relevance and benefits throughout the business. The opportunities must be made crystal clear. An expert facilitator with an ability to translate pressing issues into compelling stories and articulate messages, the CSO would also have the organisational skills of a world-class project manager.


    He or she would be able to plan for the short and long term, assembling a dedicated team to activate sustainable practices throughout the company. And finally, they would remain humble in the face of the great challenges ahead.


    Maximising the CSO’s impact
    It’s currently unclear as to where exactly the CSO fits into the corporate framework. Our audience voiced varying opinions as to where the CSO would have most impact. The overriding feeling was that he or she must be directly connected to business strategy in some shape or form, whether this meant being located within the finance, investor relations, strategy or operations functions of the business.


    The message from the floor was clear: in order to make an impact, the CSO must be inextricably linked to business planning.


    GACSO’s Defining the Corporate Sustainability Professional document, which deals directly with the issues discussed at our event, can be downloaded from www.gacso.org.


    In the meantime, if you know anyone fitting the above description, please encourage them to push for the creation of a CSO role in their organisation.
  • 22 Nov 2012 11:00 | Gwyn Jones
    Webinar:  22/11/2012 11:00





    Despite economic pressures, sustainability remains very firmly on the boardroom agenda. Almost seven in 10 businesses (69%) consider sustainability to be a priority business driver for success in 2012. What’s more, 40% of those see it as a high priority, i.e. at the core of their business strategy.

    Temple Group, Sustainable Business and edie.net commissioned a survey of senior business leaders which asks why are businesses prioritising sustainability?

    With contributions from CBI Head of Energy and Climate Change Dr Matthew Brown, Temple Group Head of Sustainability Carol Somper and some of the exemplar case study subjects featured in the report itself, this webinar introduces the reasons for taking a sustainable approach and asks what the benefits are to business, detailing why creating value from sustainability should be on every boardroom agenda.

    Download your copy of the ’Why Are Business Leaders Prioritising Sustainability’ from
    edie.net/sbreport2012 and register for the webinar using register button above.
  • 15 Nov 2012 08:07 | Gwyn Jones
    Do Sustainability has released their first series of Do Shorts for sustainability professionals.

    GACSO members enjoy a 15% discount on all their publications. More details HERE
  • 14 Nov 2012 14:17 | Gwyn Jones
    Hi.

    I need some advice / steer. As you might know I am a Trustee for Chance UK. Chance UK is a charity that provides mentors for children who require support and guidance at challenging stages of their young lives. We are looking for secondees to support them with the planning and delivery of the Fund-raising and operational development areas of the charity. The CEO Gracia McGrath OBE is a fantastic lady very inspirational I wanted to know if you had any contacts / know of any organisation that might offer secondees and would want to make use of working with a phenomenal charity like Chance? www.chanceuk.com.

    Any help / steer would be appreciated as we need to start restructuring their income and establish a fund-raising team but wont be able to convince the board on the spend until  we raise income and its been proven a success so a seconde would be an ideal way to development further funding and make a case for a permanent resource.

    Any help / steer would be appreciated.

    Thanks T
  • 30 Oct 2012 16:03 | Gwyn Jones

    M&S, BMW, BAA, Bloomberg, GRI, Nordea, Pirelli share lessons on stakeholder engagement

    Senior experts from leading companies will gather in London on 20-21 November to share best practice on how to create an innovative reporting and communications strategy that does not rely on a CR report

     

    Companies now recognise that whilst annual CR reporting is crucial, the CR report is just one method of engagement. The rules of CR engagement depend on the stakeholder. Consumers for example are unlikely to have heard of let alone read a CSR report.


    This year’s summit, Ethical Corporation’s 6th Annual CR Reporting and Communications Summit will have an expert line-up of speakers from the likes of; Warburton’s, InterfaceFLOR, BMW, Pirelli, International Post Corporation, BAA, Caesars Entertainment, Bloomberg and more. Over two jam-packed days the speakers will highlight and showcase the opportunities within CR reporting, not just via the report, but also through the full spectrum of tools that can be used to engage stakeholders on sustainability.


    Topics to be covered include: how to use social media to engage consumers on CR and how to de-escalate a social media storm, how to incorporate supplier performance into your CR report, future developments for CR reporting such as G4 and integrated reporting, how to engage critics transparently and use of ethical and sustainable messages to enhance stakeholder reputation. 


    During the Summit delegates will be treated a live ‘CR reporting X Factor show’ where three selected reports will be critiqued on stage. Delegates who sign up before the end of August can submit their sustainability for a free twenty minute health check.


    The Summit will provide the meeting place for over 150 delegates that work and specialise in CR reporting and communications.


    For more information about the event, visit:  ethicalcorp.com/reporting



    Ethical Corporation provides business intelligence for sustainability to more than 3,000 multinational companies every year. We provide objective analysis in our reports, news, events and updates for the corporate sustainability. Ethical Corporation publishes the leading responsible business magazine and website.

     

    For more information contact:

    Steven Wilding
    Conference Director
    Ethical Corporation
    00 44 207 375 7226
    E: steven.wilding@ethicalcorp.com

  • 30 Oct 2012 08:58 | Gwyn Jones

    12 October 2012 – 

    Mandatory carbon reporting requires action from all companies listed on the main London Stock Exchange and a new report by business and financial adviser, Grant Thornton UK LLP, highlights how enhanced sustainability reporting is influencing mid-tier businesses and public sector organisations. Over three quarters (80%) of companies with a turnover between £250 million and £1 billion have board-level accountability for sustainability reporting, with over half (51%) of CEOs* taking this on personally.  Up to 70% of these organisations also state that sustainability is either ‘fully’ or ‘partially’ embedded in their corporate financial targets and 92% state that sustainability performance is either ‘very important’ or ‘important’ to the overall success of their organisation.

     

    As the largest listed companies look to reduce their own carbon impact by choosing suppliers offering more sustainable products, services and raw materials, mid-market companies recognise this will impact their business - 84% cite customers as a key audience to communicate the business implications of their sustainability efforts, second only to policy makers.  This is particularly important in the food and beverage sector which has the highest proportion of organisations (32%) with sustainability goals fully embedded in their supply chain management, reflecting the connections between consumer demand, food production, packaging and transport and the strategy of major retailers. 

     

    Despite recognising the commercial impact of carbon reporting, mid-tier organisations face challenges embedding sustainability targets throughout their business.  The departments with the lowest score for ‘fully’ or ‘partially’ embedding sustainability in their function are sales, HR, and research and development.  Given consumer concern about sustainability is growing and increasingly features in corporate purchasing decisions, these are areas for mid-tier organisations to focus on in order to generate revenue from sustainable products and services. 

     

    A large percentage of respondents (67%) already include sustainability information in some form of external reporting – either as a standalone sustainability report or within their annual report however less than half (43%) are using independent external verification of their sustainability efforts to ensure it is accurate, complete and balanced. 

     

    Jane Stevensen, Head of Sustainability at Grant Thornton, comments: “Medium sized businesses are the backbone of the UK economy and the CEOs of these firms recognise the importance of sustainability and are taking personal accountability for this.  The impetus of mandatory carbon reporting for larger firms will accelerate changes in business practice across UK plc. It is clear from this report that the mid-tier companies that take the initiative integrating and publicising sustainability alongside financial reporting will be able to differentiate their brands with investors, shareholders and customers.  Embedding sustainability targets within key functions such as sales, research and development, and HR will also be vital in engaging staff and ensuring this is an integral part of business practice.”

     

    To help motivate change in their companies, 51% plan to fully or partially embed employee recognition (without financial incentives) for incorporating sustainability into their strategy over the next two years.  In terms of integrating sustainability into pay and bonuses, the most popular options are using executive bonuses (33% fully or partially embedding this in their business), promotion decisions (28%), employee bonuses (24%) and employee pay rises (21%).

     

    Risk and investment

    The Grant Thornton report also asked mid-tier organisations what they felt were the most significant sustainability risks for them over the next two years.  In order of importance, respondents cited carbon regulations; energy prices; water scarcity; environmental regulations; rising commodity prices; extreme weather and the risk of their products being substituted for more sustainable competitor offerings. 

     

    With these risks in mind, the key areas for capital investment over the same period are onsite renewable energy; video conferencing technology; projects to make buildings more energy efficient; data centre improvements; electric vehicles for the company fleet; software for energy and carbon management and finally, equipment to reduce industrial emissions. 

     

    Stevensen continues: “Carbon reporting may only be mandatory for LSE-listed businesses but it is clear that mid-tier organisations anticipate its impact and potential extension in the future.  For companies looking to capitalise on green growth opportunities, commercialising new products and services to help with carbon monitoring and reporting and energy efficiency are critical.  Water scarcity and rising commodity prices are lower down the agenda but are likely to become more pressing for mid-market organisations over the next few years.”

     

    -ends-

     

    * Includes CEOs or their equivalent in higher education or public sector organisations – for example Vice Chancellors and Heads of Councils.

  • 03 Oct 2012 15:55 | Gwyn Jones

    17 Wednesday October 2012,Princess Alexandra HallLondon

    18:30 - 20:30

    Do you want to uncover significant savings for your company that have previously been missed?


    Join us for an exclusive evening from 6.30 – 8.30pm on Wednesday the 17th of October at the elegant Princess Alexandra Hall in London and hear from leading companies including Tesco and GSK about how they have found efficiencies through collaboration that ‘lean’ processes do not reveal. Hear about the size of the opportunity from Julian Walker-Palin of Asda here.


    A panel debate will be followed by an opportunity for the audience to ask questions and networking drinks.


    The evening will also launch 2degrees’ second paper on collaborative efficiencies, which will be complementary for our specially selected guests.

    The drinks reception will be an excellent opportunity to network with your peers, discuss your sustainability challenges and find out the benefits that can be gained from collaborative efficiency.


    To secure your place email klina.jordan@2degreesnetwork.com or call on 01865 597 640 to find out more.


    Helen Fleming, Climate Change Director, Tesco

    Richard Pamenter, Head of Environmental Sustainability, GlaxoSmithKline Martin Chilcott, CEO, 2degrees

    Simon Brown, MD, 2degrees Enterprise Services

  • 12 Sep 2012 13:59 | Gwyn Jones

    Dō Sustainability is the publisher of DōShorts; a new series of concise, expert, action-oriented e-books for busy professionals. http://www.dosustainability.com

     

    GACSO members can purchase any DōShort for a 15% discount during September, using the code on this page (members only)  when ordering from www.dosustainability.com/shop

     

    The first two DōShorts were published this week:

     

    (1) The Changing Profile of Corporate Climate Change Risk by Mark Trexler & Laura Kosloff

    (2) Solar Photovoltaics Business Briefing by David Thorpe

    To be alerted when a new DōShort is published, please sign up to our monthly eNewsletter. (Forthcoming shorts include: Sustainable Fuels Business Briefing; How to Make Your Company a Recognised Sustainability Champion; The First 100 Days on the Job; Sustainable Supply Chains; Green Jujitsu: The Smart Way to Embed Sustainability into the Culture of Your Organisation). You can also interact with us and our authors on Twitter and Facebook. We'd value your involvement in developing our library of sustainability ebooks - so please consider writing for us, or Suggest a DōShort on our website.

     

    Don't hesitate to get in touch with any queries, suggestions or feedback: gudrun@dosustainability.com
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