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17 May 2018: Global Compact Kenya in partnership with Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) held a half-day workshop on Sustainability Integration for value creation that convened 33 sustainability practitioners from business and non-business sectors. The workshop facilitated by Douglas Kativu, Head of GRI Africa, featured interactive sessions with participants and provided a platform for sharing ongoing good company practices on sustainability integration.

A 2017 UN Global Compact progress report that assessed the extent to which companies are implementing the Ten Principles and taking action on the Global Goals showed over 90% of companies in the initiative have policies in place on all the Principles. However, companies still face challenges in turning policies into action with a significantly lower number setting targets, conducting impact assessment or monitoring performance.

 


                                        
Participants at the workshop

The session was therefore designed to help companies bridge the gap between action and intentions by demonstrating the value of integrating sustainability and processes and methodologies they can use to enable integration.

Discussing trends in sustainability integration, participants observed the role of regulations such as the Code of Corporate Governance Practices for Issuers of Security to the public and industry led initiatives such as the Sustainable Finance Initiative (SFI) for the Banking sector in driving and accelerating action towards sustainable development in Kenya.

The meeting also discussed key barriers and enablers for integrating sustainability such as leadership and a tradition of short-termism where companies de-prioritize long-term value opportunities and reward short-term decisions. This business as usual mindset stands in the way of companies truly contributing positive outcomes for all.

The role of reporting was also discussed as critical in helping business assess their value and enhancing stakeholder relationships. Participants learnt how stakeholder engagement can help a company understand the priorities and expectations of its stakeholders while gathering useful insights on its sustainability performance. Reporting therefore should be seen as a means to an end and not an end in itself.

 
The meeting concluded with a call to all companies to voluntarily integrate sustainability and  make it a national movement for transformative change to occur in meeting its development goals.


Click here to view more photos of the event.