Second Session : Ethics, Social Responsibility and Sustainable Investment

Speaker: Geoffrey Bush

Corporate Philanthropy and Global Citizenship

  • The evolution over 15 years from "fringe activity" corporate philanthropy to embedded and integral global corporate citizenship
  • Drivers and mechanisms to support ethical choices and measure performance:
    • Corporate values
    • Codes, policies and compliance
    • Risk and reputation management
    • Stakeholder engagement
  • Issues and dilemmas:
    • Long term v short term
    • Consistency
      • Global/local standards
      • Cross-functions and geographies
      • Good and bad trading conditions
    • Stakeholder conflicts
      • Competing demands - economic, social and environmental
      • Whose ethics and moral standards?
    • Complexity of issues v focussed purpose and delivery
    • The "acid test" - when values and ethical standards conflict with business opportunities
    • Leadership and partnership - setting standards, addressing issues:
      • Collaborating v competing within an industry sector
      • Governments and international agencies - public policy
      • NGO interests and legitimacy
    • The role of multinationals - where are the boundaries?