October 6, 2017Doug Hadden
Sustainability and CSR monthly news summarized by the FreeBalance Strategy & Innovation Team.
CUSTOMER-CENTRICITY IS CRITICAL FOR CSR: Customer participation is one of 7 elements of a results-driven CSR program according to Brian Honigman in the Huffington Post. This was confirmed by FreeBalance President and CEO, quoted in CFI magazine about the FreeBalance International Steering Committee: “Our customers have a unique opportunity to work collaboratively with our team and with their peers to provide an in-depth look in to public financial management trends.” Customers at FISC participate directly in the FreeBalance product development process by voting for roadmap changes over the course of a two-year window. FreeBalance also engages directly with ministers of finance through its bi-annual Ministers’ Roundtable. This event brings together ministers from customer countries to explore how governments can better plan and execute to achieve sustainable economic growth through digital transformation.” Honigman identified the need to align CSR activities with company offerings.
ETHICAL AND IMPACT INVESTING: Impact investing can result in improved financial resources wrote Cary Krosinsky in GreenBiz. Krosinsky suggested a new approach: “What makes this question difficult is that the field of impact investing hasn’t always asked the right questions when it comes to maximizing impact. What’s really needed is a paradigm shift across markets. Impact cannot and won’t be maximized if “impact investing” remains siloed to high-net-worth individuals and foundations. Impact investing needs to factor in all asset classes to be as meaningful as it can.” The Economist reported that “Wall Street has taken to selling products linked to virtue.” The article also articulated the difficulty in measuring impact returns.
CITIES WIRED FOR COUNTERING CLIMATE CHANGE: A white paper from Arup, a consultancy, described the leading role that cities are taking for climate action. The paper explored “the use of digital technologies for citizen engagement in climate action, aiming to understand how cities are using digital platforms, social media, open data, crowdsourcing and other engagement tools to create truly participative solutions and unlock climate action.” Citizen engagement is important because “humans aren’t well wired to act on complex statistical risks” like sustainability, wrote David G. Victor, Nick Obradovich, and Dillon J. Amaya at the Brookings Institution. “Voters consistently report being worried about climate change. But asked to rank their priorities, they rarely put climate policy high on the list. Nor does the public indicate that it is willing to spend what is needed to address the problem.”
TECH DRIVING THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY: Peter Lacy of Accenture described disruptive technologies helping the circular economy in the World Economic Forum Blog. Lacy asserted that “as we enter the Fourth Industrial Revolution, new technologies carry immense opportunities to transform the way we do business. These technologies are driving new ways of creating value in a circular economy, for both emerging and established businesses alike.”
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