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Reports 1 Sep 2004

Gearing Up

From corporate responsibility to good governance and scalable solutions

By Seb Beloe, John Elkington and Kavita Prakash Mani

This report is SustainAbility’s response to a request from the UN Global Compact to evaluate the potential for corporate responsibility initiatives to stimulate a transition to more sustainable forms of development by linking to wider policy frameworks.

Gearing Up assesses examples of private sector leadership in preparing the ground for timely and effective public policy responses.

The efforts of business, government and civil society, are quite simply being outpaced by the problems.

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The conclusion: despite achieving impressive momentum, the corporate responsibility movement is bumping up against real limits. The efforts of business, in combination with government and civil society, are quite simply being outpaced by the problems. To reach its full potential the corporate responsibility movement must shift gear.

To help Global Compact participants and other companies make this shift, SustainAbility has also produced the Global Compact Challenge, based on the analysis in Gearing Up. This tool helps companies scrutinize their approach to corporate responsibility based on five ‘gears’ plus reverse. The focus is not on the UNGC principles themselves, but rather on the need for companies to mobilise wider improvements in performance across industry sectors, along and through links with public policy.


The Art Of Alignment

Sustainability & Financial Transparency

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