Friday, June 19, 2009

The best of the day from alltop CSR

Thought i would take a break from the Istanbul buzz and check out what's happening on the all-in, all-together, all-inclusive, all-to-all csr page at alltop. 33 sites contribute to making alltop one of the most comprehensive combination of corporate content (see that, alliteration, learnt that in second grade) on sustainability, csr and reporting. What headlines caught my eye?

The Jantzi-Maclean’s Corporate Social Responsibility Report 2009
Jantzi is an independent ESG research firm in Canada and they rank corporations on ESG performance. Macleans is a national weekly current affairs magazine. They produced a list of the top 50 best csr corporations in Canada. Aside from some snippets such as Rio Tinto making the list because their CEO is a woman, the interesting thing about this is Macleans head-to head with Corporate Knights who have been ranking corporations on csr for years and are fairly well branded in this space. Neither ranking, as far as i can tell from the methodology descriptions, includes an evaluation of transparency (existence of accessible information on the corporation's website or existence of a CR report). I think transparency is a core element of responsibility and whilst these two battle out the ownership of the ranking-market, i continue to wonder if these rankings actually fulfil any useful purpose other than PR for the rankers (rankers... careful how you say that ....)

Siemens Sustainability Report 2008 published
An item from Took a quick look at the report. A mammoth 182 pages, GRI indexed but no application level, UNGC indexed, in double page format which is most frustrating when reading PDF's on line. Looks like a nice report. Good materiality matrix on p35. Nice piece on stakeholder dialogue. Quick eye-catcher: in Nov 2008 (just in time!) Simens appointed a CDO. CDO ? Yes. Chief Diversity Officer. She is charged with developing diversity metrics and performance. Looks like she needs to start at the top, because the managing board structure 's only contribution to the CDO's upcoming diversity program is one guy born in the USA. 7 other board members were born in Germany, Austria or Switzerland. One of the 8 members is a woman. 13.4% of the company's management is female. Guess new CDO has plenty of opportunity.

Orange / France Telecom publishes 2008 CSR Report
A news item from csr europe. Tried to download the report but it crashed my IE three times so i decided to move on and finish up with a headline that i just couldnt ignore

Beyond Corporate Responsibility
By now you will understand my affinity for the Beyond Buzz, and no other than Jeffrey Hollender, Mr Seventh Generation, has produced a truly inspired piece about the ongoing evolution of csr and the imperatives that are imperatively imperative. Jeff says it's not good enough to do less bad. My favourite line in the 10 things we must do section: global warming will not be solved with carbon offsets . how come no-one else figured this out ? At least he didnt recommend giving up ice cream.

and one more thing

Worst Bit of Corporate Gobbledygook of the Day

Shel Horowitz is so right in his take on a Starbucks press release. It's true that i havent given too much thought to the life cycle of a plastic cup and Starbucks does deserve a cup of coffee for thinking that one up, and frankly it amazes me to see how they are so excited about engaging in meaningful dialog about recyclabe cups to revolutionize the packaging industry.Just shows you how many tough decisions sustainability issues give rise to: "Darling, how would you like your coffee? Black or white ? One sugar or two? Post-consumer recycled no-co-mingled zero-carbon-emmission virgin-wood-fiber paper cup or that old cracked mug that i was planning to plant my new cactus in? "

elaine cohen is the joint CEO of BeyondBusiness, a leading reporting and social-environmental consulting firm based in Israel. Visit our website at:

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