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Gaining on the SDGs – Inspiration from Ethical Corp’s Responsible Business Summit Europe

The Responsible Business Summit Europe (RBSEU), which recently took place in London, sparked debate about how we can transform the world while building great and sustainable businesses. I was inspired by sessions describing how companies are putting into practice processes to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and committing to the Paris agreement, and hope to pay that  inspiration forward just a bit, by writing about it here.

 

Understanding the SDGs and what they mean for businesses

In September 2015, all Member States of the United Nations adopted a plan for achieving a better future for all. The objectives are simple, yet represent an important challenge to achieve: they established a plan for the next 15 years to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and protect our planet. At the heart of Agenda 2030 you will find the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which clearly define the world we want. The SDGs apply to all nations and leave no one behind.

Outtakes from some of the discussions I found most inspiring

Jorge Laguna-Celis, Director of  UN Environment, pointed out that SDGs are not about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), rather they are about the survival of business in the long term. Taking a lifecycle approach allows companies to create more profits and more jobs, but requires that companies measure what they do – and they must report on those measures.

Tim Mohin of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) said that sustainability reports are not enough for decision making. These reports which are sometimes long on nice pictures, glossy paper and words, need to become more consistent, comparable, and concise. They also need to look forward rather than just reflect on what’s behind us.

Read full article here.

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