The SDGS - Are You Tuned In, Aligning Your Company's Strategies, Operations, Performance, Actions? 2030 Is Just Around the Corner!

The SDGS - Are You Tuned In, Aligning Your Company's Strategies, Operations, Performance, Actions? 2030 Is Just Around the Corner!

Gaining momentum in the global corporate sector, among sovereign governments and institutional investors -- the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals ("SDGs").  After reaching agreement in September 2015, the countries of the world adopted goals to end poverty, protect our planet and ensure prosperity for a greater number of the world's population through a universal agenda for action (with 169 specific targets under the wonderfully-aspirational broad goals).

The nation-states of the United Nations are now busily adopting the SDGs to address their issues, some broad and experienced by many nations, others more specific in impact on the country.  The goals include climate change-related issues; the growing scarcity of natural resources; adoption of absence of, new technologies;  continuing growth of cities at the expense of rural areas; water, water, water; reducing poverty; empowering women...and more.  The SDGs are in force out to year 2030 with many milestones between then and now.

There are 17 major categories of goals and 169 specific targets within these, for attention by all sectors of society out to year 2030.  Are you on board?  Your company or organization?

Matthew Yeomans (founder of Sustainly, and author of the annual Social Media Sustainability Index), writes for Sustainable Brands on the opportunity for organization leaders to align their efforts with the SDGs to work with governments, NGOs, and other companies to address the challenges through a commonly-understood framework for engagement and action on the issues (inherent in the 17 goals).

Aligning the company with the SDGs could help companies in key areas:  for marketers, or corporate communicators, the actions taken could be embedded in a campaign for customers (consumer, business, public sector).  The corporate storytelling could bring data and metrics to life and help guide customers to the company's core sustainability reporting that might otherwise be overlooked or disregarded (perhaps thinking, is this reporting just PR?).  The SDG focus could help to underscore a company's serious commitment, authenticity and transparency regarding actions on the SDGs.

Author Yeomans provides brief examples with Wal-Mart Stores (addressing poverty, women empowerment), Pearson's (quality education for all) and Stella Artois (clean water).  Highlights are in the Sustainable Brands post and there's a link to more information at Sustainly.

The G&A Institute team has been focused on the SDGs and helping our corporate clients to better understand and "adopt" material goals and the targets and key performance indicators under the broad goal, those that can be more "naturally" aligned with the adopted corporate mission and overall strategy and implementation of the corporate sustainability journey.

For example, Goal 6 is to "ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all."  How to do that?  We help corporate managers understand the "natural" alignments available to them within the goals/targets, and explore ways to "adopt" the goal and make it an integral part of the company's sustainability journey.  What are the KPI's that will matter? What are the "water issues" of importance to the company and its stakeholders?  What can the company do to address water availability, water use in products, waste water, protection of public water supplies, making water supply more secure in the communities in which it operates?  And more....

What are the data sets and metrics that will help the company to adopt operations to the goal(s) and later make the storytelling about all of its progress a more compelling tale? What are the important stakeholder relations to begin, or to enhance if a relationship exists?  What are the natural alignments within the industry or sector that can form a collective approach (perhaps through trade association) to address critical issues?  What is the ROI for the company?  How to determine these and then measure progress (or lack of)?  And finally, how to build the progress into the various reporting schemes, including the company's GRI report? 

If you need more information on these aspects of the SDGs for adoption by your company, please let the G&A team know.  We'd love to set up a call to discuss SDGs with you!

Click here to read more about G&A service related to SDG Alignment.

An important resource for you:  The Post-2015 Development Agenda:  Goals, Targets and Indicators


Top Stories This Week...

Why You Should Align Your Brand’s Sustainability Efforts with the SDGs
(Thursday - March 30, 2017)
Source: Sustainable Brands - The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (aka Global Goals) are viewed by most in the sustainability community as the biggest opportunity yet for the world to shape a new and better way of doing business while shaping a...

We're Pleased To Share This News With You:

G&A Institute's Co-Founders Recognized As "Top Thought Leaders In Trustworthy Business"
(Thursday - March 30, 2017)
Source: G&A Institute - G&A's Institute's Co-Founders Hank Boerner and Louis Coppola care a lot about trust in business and society and think that the important element of trust in leaders and their organizations will set apart the market winners and...

Sustainability Trends, News & Issues in Focus

Rural America advances on sustainability, calling it common sense
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: GreenBiz - Local officials in red states responsible for public health, soil conservation, parks and natural resources management, as well as county commissioners and mayors, are concerned about climate change.

Rome Declaration acknowledges our need for a sustainable Europe, now our leaders must deliver
(Monday - March 27, 2017)
Source: European Environmental Bureau - As thousands of European’s took to the streets today to #MarchForEurope, EU leaders sent a message that puts sustainability into the vision for Europe.

Business Schools Innovate in Sustainability Education - The Minute
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: 3BL Media - As sustainability in its various forms becomes more integrated into business practices and strategies, business schools are adapting their programs to better prepare the sustainability professionals of the future. McGill...

Wastewater treatment: an undervalued driver of sustainability
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: Huff Post - Wastewater is no longer waste as innovation and holistic thinking enables water reuse and resource recovery.

National Coalition Launches Pilot Research Project to Improve Sustainability in US Beef Industry
(Thursday - March 30, 2017)
Source: KTIC Radio - The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation, Beef Marketing Group (BMG) and Golden State Foods today announced the two-year pilot research project that will seek methods to improve sustainability across the entire beef value chain, test...

To Confront Child Mortality, Governments Must Prioritize Pollution and Food Sustainability
(Thursday - March 30, 2017)
Source: Huff Post - High levels of infant mortality due to malnutrition and pollution are closely linked, as new research by the World Health Organization (WHO) and The Economist Intelligence Unit shows. Those countries with unsustainable...

Pressed by Investors, CFOs Awake to Sustainability
(Friday - March 31, 2017)
Source: CFO - The notion of using resource conservation, plant safety, labor, or other environmental and social issues in a company’s valuation and financial reporting has always been a tough sell for CFOs.

Focus on ESG Topics & Issues

Climate change: ‘human fingerprint’ found on global extreme weather
(Monday - March 27, 2017)
Source: The Guardian - Global warming makes temperature patterns that cause heatwaves, droughts and floods across Europe, north America and Asia more likely, scientists find

Brexit: 50 things the UK needs to do after triggering Article 50
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: CNN - London — UK Prime Minister Theresa May will trigger Article 50 on Wednesday, officially kicking off the Brexit process and the painstaking legislative to-do list that comes with it.

The Perks of Socially Responsible Investing
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: Bloomberg - Jerome Dodson, who runs the $3.7 billion Parnassus Endeavor Fund, talks about how he's beating the market with socially-responsible stocks. He spoke with Scarlet Fu and Oliver Renick on "Bloomberg Markets"

The IT Sector is Paying Attention to ESG … Are You?
(Monday - March 27, 2017)
Source: Pam Styles, Alphasense - If you are in the IT sector and think, “ESG / sustainability is not that big of a deal for our company,” or worse, “nobody is asking investor relations about sustainability, so nobody cares,” here’s why you should be very...

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News & Opinion: Asset Managers, US Pension Funds, Sovereign Wealth Funds

Why Buffett and BlackRock Think You Should Fire Your Fund Manager
(Thursday - March 30, 2017)
Source: Insurance Journal - BlackRock is responding to a surge of money into what’s known as passive investing. It’s an approach endorsed by Warren Buffett, who thinks the smartest thing your money can do is climb into the hammock and take the rest of the...

The Norwegian Government Pension Fund - Global , Oslo, today reported...
(Thursday - March 30, 2017) Associated Profiles : Norwegian Government Pension Fund – Global (Statens pensjonsfond – Utland) , Norwegian Government Pension Fund - Norway
Source: Pensions & Investments - The Norwegian Government Pension Fund - Global, Oslo, today reported it had 1.7 trillion Norwegian kroner ($263 billion) in assets as of Sept. 30. The fund - the second-largest in the world, according to Pensions &...

From the Corporate World -- News for You

More dirt on General Mills’ sustainable agriculture goals
(Monday - March 27, 2017)
Source: Green Biz - General Mills operates in more than 100 countries and manufactures food in 15 countries. The giant food company stands behind iconic brand names such as Cheerios, Haagen-Dazs, Pillsbury and international favorites such as Yoki, a...

Apple's 2016 supplier sustainability report shows labor, environmental improvements
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: MacWorld - Apple takes environmental sustainability seriously, but producing electronic devices that don’t cause harm to the earth or the people who make those devices requires the efforts of Apple’s suppliers, too. That’s why the company...

AkzoNobel and Maersk Line partner on sustainability
(Friday - March 31, 2017)
Source: Marine Log - AkzoNobel and leading global container shipping company Maersk Line have signed a strategic sustainability partnership to reduce carbon emissions per container shipped by 10%.

Trump Administration News... Affecting Sustainability and Climate Change

Trump Signs Executive Order Unwinding Obama Climate Policies
(Wednesday - March 29, 2017)
Source: NY Times - President Trump, flanked by company executives and miners, signed a long-promised executive order on Tuesday to nullify President Barack Obama’s climate change efforts and revive the coal industry, effectively ceding...
Trump Coal Sale Plan Challenged by Environmentalists, Tribe
(Thursday - March 30, 2017)
Source: Bloomberg - Native Americans and conservation groups moved to challenge the Trump administration’s decision to restart coal leasing on federal lands, arguing in a legal filing that the activity violates federal environmental laws.


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