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SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT – WHAT IT MEANS

NCS-definition-sustainability

WHY CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY

A new trend is emerging in the corporate world: “The evolution of corporate sustainability inside companies has shifted the conversation from the margins to the mainstream. The early conversations focused on regulatory compliance and then on “doing well by doing good” — aligning cost-saving measures with reputational benefits — and, more recently, with creating value by aligning sustainability with innovation.” (Source - 2013 six growing trends in corporate sustainability – Ernst & Young survey in cooperation with GreenBiz Group)

Ray Anderson has been one of the most inspiring CEOs who embodied what true leadership for corporate sustainability is all about. Watch this video below to learn more:

ELIA CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY SERVICES

We provide comprehensive custom-designed corporate sustainability consultancy services for companies and their stakeholders. This includes:

  1. Assessment
  2. Visioning and Strategic Action Plan
  3. Corporate Sustainability Reporting
  4. Corporate Sustainability Training
  5. Institutional Design for Corporate Sustainability
1. ASSESSMENT

Through an assessment process, using systems mapping we make a proper analysis of the current operations and potential strengths and weaknesses within the organisation as  related to corporate sustainability.

2. VISIONING AND STRATEGIC ACTION-PLANNING

Engage your stakeholders in the further co-development of your Organisation’s Vision & Action-Plan for Sustainable Development. Your stakeholders are much more willing to support and take responsibility for sustainable development commitments when they feel included and part of the process of change for sustainability.

ELIA facilitates Visioning and Action-Plan sessions for organisations and their stakeholders, which can be members of the organisation and also those related to or impacted by the operations of the organisation. Multi-stakeholder engagement is now a requirement of the new GRI G4 guidelines for sustainability reporting and is becoming the trend in corporate leadership for sustainability.

ELIA and the Mauritius Institute of Directors are working in partnership to implement Vision 2050 and Action 2020 of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), for private sector engagement in sustainable development in Mauritius and the Indian Ocean Region.

3. CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY REPORTING & CARBON ACCOUNTING

ELIA supports companies to develop the necessary capacity for carrying out their sustainability reporting, based on the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). This includes Ecological Footprint Analysis reports for determining materiality under the GRI requirements. We have also developed a carbon accounting tool that has been tailored for Mauritius. The tool employs international benchmarked methodologies of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and, where applicable, emission factors of the IPCC. It is also compatible with ISO14064 for carbon reporting. For more information click here.

4. CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY TRAININGS

ELIA works in partnership with the Mauritius Institute of Directors (MIoD) to develop and deliver corporate sustainability trainings in Mauritius and the Indian Ocean Region. For more information click here.

We also provide ongoing and in-house training in corporate sustainability, including systems thinking and leadership and management for sustainability.

5. INSTITUTIONAL DESIGN FOR CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY

To support organizations in their structural capacity and alignment for corporate sustainability, we provide consultancy for the institutional design and governance aspects of corporate sustainability. This is especially important to develop and integrated system with the necessary internal capacity for continuing corporate sustainability commitments. The right institutional design and corporate governance system can make a significant difference to the ease or difficulty of sustainability reporting.  Once the right structures are in place this will bring value accross the entire supply chain of an organization.

A few examples

Having worked with numerous companies and company groups in Mauritius, ELIA is in a position to compare the different institutional arrangements that are in place within each organization and compare the ease or difficulty this makes to sustainability reporting. The following examples listed below showcase the kind of institutional design that has been found amongst many of today’s Corporate Sustainability (CS) leading companies and demonstrate how CS has become embedded within the organization:[1]

  • Board Organization – The leading companies in CS have in common that they have found ways to institutionalize their CS vision and commitment at the Board level. In many of these companies you now find Sustainability or corporate responsibility Board Committees to embed social, environmental and public policy issues into corporate governance.  This also requires the training of high-level management, including Board Members, and investor engagement on sustainability issues.
  • Sustainability leadership Team and Networks – These teams and networks are created to encourage company-wide collaboration across different business units, functions and countries or around specific sustainability issues.  Examples are bottom-up Green Teams, social-media platforms, sustainability award programmes, and volunteer networks.
  • Sustainability or stakeholder advisory councils – These are created to provide independent and challenging input to senior managers on sustainability issues.
  • Sustainability Business Units and Ventures – This serves the purpose of incubating and scaling-up innovative new products, services, technologies and/or business models.  Examples are, Accenture Development Partnerships, GSK’s Developing Countries and Market Access, GE’s Ecomagination Challenge.

[1] Jane Nelson, Scaling the Impact of Sustainability Leadership, (Cambridge Sustainability Network, 2013), p.5-6.