Materiality Matrix Consulting

 
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Lessons from DSM’s Winning Sustainability Strategy

The roots of global specialty chemicals company Royal DSM are as a Dutch state-owned coal mining company that started in 1902. The company’s future, however, is far removed from its past. DSM’s Strategy 2021 describes how the company plans to drive above-market growth through developing innovative solutions addressing Nutrition & Health, Climate & Energy and Resources & Circularity, together with increased customer-centricity and large innovation projects. In this article, DSM’s approach is decomposed by looking at the elements of its sustainability strategy, and we provide tips how to replicate this.
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The Benefits of Forward-Looking Materiality

The COVID-19 outbreak shows that a topic that seems to be immaterial a few months ago, can be material today. The increasing transparency, growing stakeholder influence and visible changes of our planet increase the pace in which ESG topics become material. Companies should avoid being surprised by the impact of future ESG factors and identify which topics become material for their business in the future. In this article, we illustrate the importance of a forward-looking approach towards materiality.
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Using the materiality matrix for focusing sustainability performance and stakeholder engagement

ESG Acceleration Webinar: More from Materiality

In this 1-hour webinar, we'll be diving into the world of materiality to take the matrix out of the reporting trap and into a strategic tool for sustainability focus and stakeholder engagement. Guest speaker Simon Gobert, Sustainability Performance and Reporting Manager at DSM, will give practical insights on how DSM uses the matrix to shape and strengthen the company's leading sustainability program.
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Maintain the Motion: ESG Acceleration Webinar Series

Finch & Beak launches the ESG Acceleration Webinar series: three webcasts in May 2020 aimed at speeding up sustainability performance and building resilience in the decade to deliver - especially during these challenging times. We'll be sharing practical insights on how to use DJSI, materiality and impact valuation to take your sustainability program to the next level.
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Materiality Matrix in Focus

Analysts are better able to assess fundamental risk and reflect it in stock prices when corporate disclosures are specific and avoid vague, abstract language. However, according to SASB’s State of Disclosure Report, companies used vague and non-specific language more than 50% of the time across ESG topics. Sustainability leaders such as DSM, Unilever and Barry Callebaut demonstrate that a focused materiality approach that is strongly allied to the company’s Enterprise Risk Management and aligned with its business strategy leads to better results, both for society and for shareholders. With only an approximated 30% of companies actually combining their materiality assessment with their Enterprise Risk Mapping, “StratESGy”, i.e. the alignment of business strategy with ESG factors, is still in its infancy.
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Tuning in on Materialities That Matter

Spraying sustainability efforts large and thin puts organizations at the risk of not tackling relevant material issues. Successful sustainability strategies require focus and direction. Defining your focus relies on the identification of relevant material issues for your organization through a materiality analysis. The Materiality Map and its accompanying workshop provides new insights on the current and future importance of sustainability issues.
Deepening your Focus for Better Sustainability Reporting

Deepening Your Focus for Better Sustainability Reporting

This time of year many annual reports are under construction to inform stakeholders about the 2019 performance and to provide them with an outlook on the upcoming years. Although reports can seem like straightforward tools to inform investors about the impacts of a company over the past reporting period, companies can get stuck in the reporting trap. The reporting trap causes companies to lose focus on the long-term, leaving limited time to make a real impact and turn strategy into action.
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Conducting a Materiality Scan

Companies and individuals frequently must cope with limited bandwidth in terms of attention and resources. Hence, it is important to select a limited number of high-impact sustainability efforts, instead of the all-too-common machine gun approach of spraying efforts large and thin. Effective implementation requires sniper precision in the definition of sustainability targets and dedicated efforts in execution. A materiality analysis provides guidance for focus, and the Materiality Map makes it possible to develop this in a quick-and-dirty fashion.

5 Steps for Integrating ESG Risks into ERM

5 Steps for Integrating ESG Risks into ERM

According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report in 2018, four of the top five risks were environmental or societal, including extreme weather events, water crises, natural disasters, and failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation. Growing interest from investors seeking to understand how organizations are identifying and responding to ESG-related risks is pressuring companies to fully integrate them in their Enterprise Risk Management (ERM). To support organizations in this challenge, COSO and the WBCSD released the final version of the “Guidance for Applying ERM to Environmental, Social and Governance related Risks”. The guidance presents a pragmatic 5-step process to identify and manage ESG risks today while maintaining resilience to adapt and respond to the megatrends of tomorrow.
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Mature Materiality Management for Long-Term Shareholder Value

Over the last few years, the link between financial interest and companies’ effective management of ESG issues and risks has rapidly become more and more evident. We see an increasing number of cases where corporate loans are issued by financers such as ING, BBVA, and DBS Bank whereby interest rates are linked to sustainability performance as indicated by third-party ratings such as Sustainalytics or inclusion in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index. These examples make the business case for an effective management of the right ESG issues extremely straightforward.
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