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Future peace and prosperity will no longer be within our reach, if we in Germany do not commit more resolutely to greater sustainability and channel all our energy into making it happen – be it in politics, business, science or civil society.

Marlehn Thieme, Chairwoman of the Council

Marlehn Thieme

The principle of sustainability is the only option for responsible global action; it protects our eco-systems and thus ensures the survival of generations to come.

Olaf Tschimpke, Deputy Chairman of the Council

Olaf Tschimpke

Measuring sustainability and identifying interrelationships are major success factors for anchoring this topic in companies and on capital markets.

Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Alexander Bassen

Avoiding past mistakes means pointing progress in the right direction: the principle of sustainable development is a good compass for technical and social innovations at local, national and global level.

Ulla Burchardt, Member of the Council

Ulla Burchardt

The global sustainability and climate protection goals are the long-term milestones. Now we have to engage in an honest discussion about what the state, private sector and citizens can and must do to achieve them.

Kathrin Menges, Member of the Council

Kathrin Menges

The energy revolution has greatly reduced the costs of green electricity, so it is competitive at international level and helps to achieve the global sustainability goals without additional CO2 emissions.

Alexander Müller, Member of the Council

Alexander Müller

The idea of sustainability is at the core of a viable, innovative economy and is vital for a society that aims to safeguard quality of life in the long term. That is why the three pillars of sustainability – economic, environmental and social – must be considered together.

Katherina Reiche, Member of the Council

Katherina Reiche

Make the sustainable choice the easy choice.

Prof. Dr. Lucia A. Reisch, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Lucia A. Reisch

Sustainable development requires to find as much common ground as possible but also to accept differences.

Dr. Werner Schnappauf, Member of the Council

Dr. Werner Schnappauf

Today, sustainable development requires an agenda which explicitly links global and national goals and policies and thus gives global cooperation a strong push forward.

Dr. Imme Scholz, Member of the Council

Dr. Imme Scholz

In forest science, we learned how important the sustainable management of natural resources is centuries ago. Empirical knowledge, openness to new things and humility in the face of nature can help other sectors, too.

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Schraml, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Schraml

Cities, even more so than today, will become hubs of technological and social development in the future. All the more important are efforts to encourage the sustainable development of our cities.

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schuster, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schuster

The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) oblige all countries to adopt new ways of thinking and acting. They are the yardstick for the limitations and opportunities of globalization.

Achim Steiner, Member of the Council

Achim Steiner

We need to make bold political decisions that reward growth less and sustainability more and that encourage the common good instead of profit-seeking.

Prof. Dr. Hubert Weiger, Member of the Council

Prof. Dr. Hubert Weiger

The UN Sustainable Development Goals present the vision of a fundamental socio-ecological transformation. They are not a specialist task for development or environmental policy, but are binding for all cabinet members.

Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul, Member of the Council

Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul
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Content

The German Council for Sustainable Development continues activities on CSR

Against the background of the global efforts to achieve corporate sustainability and of the disputed claims for and means of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), the German Council for Sustainable Development has developed recommendations for the German government and trade and industry.

German Ranking of Sustainability Reports

The German Ranking of Sustainability Reports considers the reports of the 150 biggest german companies. The selection was based upon the list of the Top 500 companies of the daily Frankfurter Allgemeinen Zeitung. Taken into evaluation are the Eco-, Sustainability- and CSR-Reports or comparable company reports. In the current turn the SD reports of small and medium sized enterprises are evaluated for the second time.

The German Ranking of Sustainability Reports is carried out every two years by future e.V. and the Institut für ökologische Wirtschaftsforschung gGmbh (Institute for Ecological Economy Research, IOeW). The German Council for Sustainble Development supports the Ranking of Sustainability Reports in cooperation with the Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs.

The Rankingà´s criteria and former results can be found in the English version of the website www.ranking-nachhaltigkeitsberichte.de.

A framework for Sustainable Economy

Wether Corporate Social Responsibility are profitable, depends on the existence of an appropriate framework. One factor for success is for example the response of citizens with their consumption patterns. Therefore the Sustainable Shopping Basket is reviewed annually and in October 2009 a recommendation on "Consumtion and Sustainability" passed as resolution. Public authorities were addressed for sustainable procurement in 2008.

Another important player with potential leverage effect is the capital market. To foster the orientation towards sustainability there, the German Council for Sustainable Development has adopted a German Sustainability Code, which standardises sustainability information and makes them transparent and comparable.

Draft Dialogue:

Corporate Social Responsibility: Perspectives and Further Development - Corporate Social Responsibility in a Globalized World [PDF, 112KB]
Draft Dialogue for a Recommendation put forward by the German Council for Sustainable Development to the German government and to trade and industry
(6 February 2006)

Leadership CSR forum on 17 May 2006:

Kurz-Dokumentation Leadershipforum CSR [PDF, 534KB, in German]
(Berlin, 17.05.2006)

Multi-stakeholder CSR forum on 18 May 2006:

Kurz-Dokumentation Multistakeholderforum CSR [PDF, 766KB, in German]
(Berlin, 18.05.2006)

The recommendations on CSR have been presented to the public in September 2006 on the the Councilà´s annual conference. The draft put forward by the German Council for Sustainable Development, which contains the recommendations for Corporate Social Responsibility, seeked to stimulate the discussion and called for standpoints to be made known. The German Federal Government responded in September 2007 with a letter of State Secretary Kajo Wasserhövel [PDF, 20KB, in German].

In 2007 the Council continued its activities on the issue of Corporate Social Responsibility and invited the German public to participate.

Download:
Ergebnisbericht „Dialog 2007 zu Nachhaltigkeit und CSR des Rates für Nachhaltige Entwicklung“ [PDF, 140KB, in German]
Institut für ökologische Wirtschaftsforschung (IÄW) gGmbH
(Berlin, 14.01.2008)

Multistakeholderforum on CSR

The German SD Council has realized a multistakeholderforum on Corporate Social Responsibility on Sept 27/28 2007 at the German Museum of Technology Berlin. In this event different stakeholders have taken into critical reflection the actual discussions in the field of CSR and identified common activity fields. The event invited representatives from the business sector, society and politics and was facilitated with highly interactive methods like world caf©.

Further information and fotos of the dialogue and the Metaplan boards are available on the Council events site on theMultistakeholderforum.

Download:
Dokumentation: "Multistakeholderforum Verantwortliche Unternehmen - verantwortliche Gesellschaft? Neue Perspektiven der Kooperation für CSR" [PDF, 1.152KB, in German]

Workshop "Sustainability Management Schemes in SMEs - how to realize?"

On the annual conference of the German Council for Sustainable Development a workshop for small and medium sized enterprises "Sustainability Management  Schemes in SMEs - how to realize?" was offered.

The workshop addressed entrepreneurs of SMEs which gained already experiences with eco-management schemes and environmental statements and wanted to continue to a sustainability management.

The two-hour-workshop was part of the annual conference of the German Council for Sustainable Development, which took place on Nov 27, 2007 in Berlin.

Download:
Protokoll des Lernworkshops „Nachhaltigkeitsmanagement in KMU – Wie umsetzen?“ [PDF, 43KB, in German]

KMU-Lernworkshop: Einladung und Programm [PDF, 62KB, in German]

Online evaluation

In an online evaluation until 24 August 2007 entrepreneurs and civil society were invited to comment the current state of discussion on CSR in Germany and to assess the activities of the German Council for Sustainable Development. The results will be presented in a short English summary on this website in winter 2007/2008.

Download:
"Stand und Perspektiven unternehmerischer Verantwortung in Deutschland" [PDF, 338KB, in German] (Langfassung)
Auswertung einer Online-Umfrage des Rates für Nachhaltige Entwicklung
Institut für ökologische Wirtschaftsforschung (IÄW) gGmbH
(Berlin, 14.01.2008)

"Stand und Perspektiven unternehmerischer Verantwortung in Deutschland" [PDF, 84KB, in German] (Kurzfassung)
Kurzauswertung einer Online-Umfrage des Rates für Nachhaltige Entwicklung
Institut für ökologische Wirtschaftsforschung (IÄW) gGmbH
(Berlin, 24.09.2007)

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