Deloitte: Boards Need to Actively Engage with the “Sustainability Imperative”

Sustainability is increasingly linked to an organization’s overall performance, making it a strategic priority for boards
Jan 17, 2012 9:15 AM ET

(3BL Media / theCSRfeed) New York, NY — January 17, 2012 — Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL) today launched The Sustainable Board white paper as part of the “Intelligent Board” series issued by the Deloitte Global Center for Corporate Governance. According to the whitepaper, sustainability is increasingly becoming a top-of-mind issue for boards that are seeking to enhance performance and reputation, mitigate risks, and foster innovation and growth.

“Traditionally, only boards of organizations in industries that directly impact the environment were concerned about sustainability,” said Dan Konigsburg, Managing Director of the Deloitte Global Center for Corporate Governance, DTTL. “But today, sustainability has become a key issue for all organizations as a result of increased pressure from customers, suppliers, employees, investors, local communities, and regulators. To respond to these pressures, it is critical that boards have the necessary tools and knowledge so they can guide the development and execution of a strategic sustainability mandate across their organizations.”

According to the paper, although sustainability is an important and growing consideration for stakeholders, it has not yet achieved equal importance on the agendas of all boards. The paper calls on boards to view corporate sustainability as more than just good corporate citizenship, but as an integral component of an organization’s business strategy.

“There is a growing awareness of the strategic importance of an organization’s response to the challenges of sustainability,” said Nick Main, Global Leader, Sustainability & Climate Change Services, DTTL. “Sustainability is no longer just a risk management and compliance issue. Leading organizations are increasingly looking to sustainability as a source of competitive advantage as well as a driver of innovation—in processes, products, and services.”


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