Summary of Webcast on Policy Influence & Human Rights

Two increasingly important aspects of the DJSI
Summary of Webcast on Policy Influence & Human Rights
Publ. date 16 Oct 2017
On October 5th, the second out of 5 webinars on the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) 2017 results was broadcasted by RobecoSAM. The webcast covered the newly introduced criterion on Policy Influence, as well as the questions on Human Rights. Both criteria have become more data-driven, indicating that RobecoSAM is merely looking for quantitative based answers rather than qualitative stories. Furthermore, the public disclosure is a major assessment aspect for both topics. In the download section of this article, you can find our summary of the webcast.

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Policy Influence & Human Rights

For the questions on Policy Influence, companies are required to provide information on contributions made to organizations that have the aim or creating or influencing public policy. The results of the 2017 assessment show that companies, on average, scored 50% of the available points. This was mainly due to the fact that requirement on public disclosure was insufficiently fulfilled.

For the topic of Human Rights, the assessment results revealed that for all four sub-questions the average score decreased compared to last year’s assessment. This is due to the fact that companies are required to take on a companywide perspective looking beyond its own operations and employees in terms of human rights. Again, RobecoSAM transitions to a more data-driven approach in order to see a company’s impact, as well as its mitigation undertakings.

Leveraging the outcomes of benchmarking efforts

With the publication of Dow Jones Sustainability Index data in the Bloomberg terminal, companies are now better capable of combining their perceived and actual sustainability performance, and compare it with their peers’ position. The outcome drives more efficient communication and helps sharpen the sustainability program; whether it is to accelerate actual performance on specific issues or to better to leverage sustainability leadership through alignment of communication.

The increasing hunger for ESG information from investors and institutions is more and more burdening companies. Reporting activities take up a lot of time, at the cost of generating real impact. Meanwhile, research continues to show that it is not the overall sustainability profile that is driving long-term company value, but a focused approach on the organization’s most material topics.

Benchmarks as drivers to accelerate your sustainability program

Finch & Beak helps companies to avoid the reporting trap by focusing on issues that are key for your company and society, by choosing the right benchmarks, and through efficient ways of reporting. With over 12 years of experience in Dow Jones Sustainability Index support and a long-term collaboration with RobecoSAM, Finch & Beak is one of Europe’s leading experts in assisting companies with their submission to ESG benchmarks.

Our work for (ex-) industry group leaders is characterized by a pragmatic, 12 month-approach that leverages existing assets in the short term, while identifying opportunities for strategic development in the future. If your organization is looking to improve its sustainability performance, please download our service description or contact Nikkie Vinke, Senior Consultant and DJSI expert at nikkie@finchandbeak.com or call +31 6 28 02 18 80.

About Bas Nuijten

Sustainability professional aiming to help organizations to continuously improve their sustainability strategies. | 
bas@finchandbeak.com

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