Ban Ki-Moon: „What began as a simple call to action has become a global force for good“
The Global Compact International Yearbook is with more than 400,000 readers one of the worlds leading CSR publications. In the new edition Leonardo DiCaprio speaks about business and sustainability. Declares DiCaprio: “We need to change our thinking and our sense of urgency .” Leonardo DiCaprio may be one of the world’s top movie stars, but he would rather be defined and respected more for his work as a committed environmentalist. Over the years, he has personally funded as well as helped to raise tens of millions of dollars for a variety of green-related causes. He believes that his greatest legacy will be the progress he has helped make toward safeguarding the planet against the ravages of global warming, pollution, and species protection. Other issues are:
The state of CSR and 15th anniversary of the UN initiative
When the UN Global Compact was founded 15 years ago, globalization was just starting and so was the concept of corporate social responsibility. In fact, many early approaches were about fair global trade. Kofi Annan then came to the point, saying if we fail to make globalization work for all, then it will ultimately not work for anyone. Fifteen years later, this belief of Annan’s is still urgent. But the framework of the UN Global Compact and CSR comprises much more than globalization. It is about complex – sometimes too complicated – issues such as the depletion of planetary resources, global warming, and the understanding that we will have to change our lifestyles to make this one Earth habitable for all.
Private Investment and Sustainable Development
Private-sector actors have an inherent interest in seeing sustainable development succeed. As companies, markets, and economies become more global and interdependent, businesses and investors are becoming increasingly aware of the overlap between public and private interests. They realize that their ability to prosper and grow depends on the existence of a prosperous and sustainable society. Conversely, they see that social and income inequality, as well as environmental damage, are already having negative material impacts on supply chains, capital flows, and employee productivity. In this chapter, we highlight the role of private capital in financing the post-2015 sustainability agenda.
Voluntary Sustainability Standards
In today’s globalized world, national standards quickly reach their limits. Therefore, sustainable development needs the support of further partners. One concept is voluntary sustainability standards (VSS), which have progressed rapidly over the last decades. Some are governmental initiatives but most are set up by partners from civil society and responsible business. The standards are voluntary by definition, but once such a standard is adopted, compliance becomes compulsory, turning the standard into a kind of “soft law.” Considering the present global situation, VSS are among the best options we have to foster sustainable development. The following chapter offers profound insights into the evolution and different types of VSS. Implementation by businesses and implications for governance issues are also discussed.
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