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Priority Issues & Activities

By taking proactive and strategic actions related to corporate sustainability, defined as a company’s delivery of value in financial, social, environmental and ethical terms , in line with the principles of the UN Global Compact, business can contribute to a more sustainable and inclusive global economy. Funds raised by the Foundation are allocated to high impact activities carried out by the UN Global Compact that serve to promote awareness of the initiative, deepen engagement of companies and encourage partnership development.

Priority areas for action under the Global Compact framework for corporate responsibility include:

1. Implementation of universal principles: More companies need to engage more deeply on corporate sustainability issues through the Global Compact. This includes moving from pilot programmes in select corporate departments to an integrated approach to implement all Global Compact principles throughout and beyond headquarters, into subsidiaries and the supply chain. Within companies, boards and other corporate governance entities are also called on to better integrate corporate sustainability issues into their deliberations and policymaking, as they have the ultimate responsibility for the long-term stewardship of the organization.

2. Comprehensive disclosure: More comprehensive and accurate disclosure is needed to make a strong link between corporate sustainability performance and long-term value. The Global Compact’s Communications on Progress (COP) framework was introduced for this purpose.

3. Climate change:The risks from climate change are intimately linked with issues at the core of the corporate responsibility movement: human rights, labour and good governance. Business must answer the call to create a future based on a low-carbon economy and make use of supply chains to diffuse clean technologies. Through the Caring for Climate and the CEO Water Mandate initiatives, hundreds of Global Compact participants are developing, implementing and disclosing related policies and performance.

4. Collective action: Effective partnerships can make it possible to overcome dilemmas that are too difficult or complex for one organization or sector to address. The collective voice of business can lead to significant changes in expectations. Almost all UN entities work with business and civil society to address the Millennium Development Goals, as well as issues such as security and disaster relief. More and stronger collaboration is sought.

5. Global frameworks:The Global Compact is urging business to call for collaborative solutions to global challenges, including to work toward agreement on climate change in Warsaw at COP19. In the area of corruption, Global Compact CEOs have called on governments to effectively and robustly implement the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC).