Associations of Accreditation Bodies ISEAL Alliance - Association of Global Accreditation and Standard-Setting Bodies ISO - Association of National Accreditation Bodies
Accreditation Bodies FSC - Forest Stewardship Council IFOAM SAAS - Social Accountability Accreditation Services
Accredited Certification Bodies BVQI Rainforest Alliance SGS - Societe Generale de Surveillance
Recent News 2/12/08Rating Agencies Balancing Competition with Harmonization, Social Funds. Users of CSR ratings are interested in more consensus on criteria, but the producers of ratings are conflicted because they wish to retain a competitive edge. 11/8/07 FAQs about Toy Safety, Toy Industry Association. The industry perspective on toy safety, especially relating to products imported from China. 11/06/07 Consumers Rate Whole Foods as Most Socially Responsible Company, BBMG via CSR Wire. An online panel of more than 2,000 consumers surveyed by the Global Strategy Group rates Whole Foods Market #1 (22%), Newman's Own #2 (19%), Wal-Mart #3 (18%), Burt's Bees #4 (17%). Ben & Jerry's, General Electric and Johnson & Johnson tied for #5 (16%). 11/5/07 SAI 10th Anniversary Conference, The Social Accountability International conference in New York City brought together human rights workers, government officials and corporate officers from many parts of the globe. The SA8000 standard is being reviewed.
Commentary 11/12 (Blogspot): The Ethical Corporation has a comment on laggard companies to which I would like to add. The focus of much CSR commentary and debate is over the leaders, who are carving out and paying for new levels of compliance with higher standards of environmental care, workplace quality, fair trade or the reporting thereon. Activist groups tend to focus on the leading brands because the media are more interested. If you have a problem with "blood diamonds", for example, go after the leading jewelry companies. This is common sense, because the best-known brands make better headlines. However, there is a danger in the focus remaining solely on the top brands' raising their standards. More: 11/12/07 Blogspot, John Tepper Marlin, Basic Standards for Laggard Companies.
- Dow Jones Sustainability World Indexes ( DJSI World) and Dow Jones STOXX Sustainability Indexes ( DJSI STOXX).
- Innovest Strategic Value Advisors analyzes companies' performance on environmental, social, and strategic governance (ESG) issues, with focus on their impact on competitiveness, profitability and share price performance.
- Vigeo is a European independent Corporate Responsibility rating agency.
- ASPI Eurozone Index, the Ethibel Sustainability Index, and the Ethical Index Euro and Global.
Socially Responsible Investors
A major source of criteria for evaluating CSR in individual companies is the internal screens and ratings of socially responsible investment (SRi) firms. They attempt to constrain investment choices to companies that meet certain standards of socially responsible behavior: - Some funds simply screen out companies based on what they sell - alcohol, cigarettes, gambling, military armaments. - Others attempt to find CSR leaders in each industry sector. Socially responsible mutual funds are operated by financial intermediaries such as - Neuberger Berman, - Calvert, - Domini, which has a research arm KLD, - Dreyfus... ...on behalf of individuals, private pension funds and municipal employee pension funds, of which the largest are those of California, New York State and New York City. Pension funds collectively own a large portion of the shares of American corporations and seek to influence corporate executives through "social" proxy resolutions, although these social proxies may not be considered binding. Some proxies have won a majority of shareholder votes but have not been acted on. A response of institutional investors advocating change by proxy has been to pass resolutions requiring changes in by-laws that would mandate greater responsiveness to shareholder majorities. Another response has been to seek changes in corporate charters. A recent development has been the creation of "Vice" funds to invest in companies that have been screened out of social funds. Two stories appeared in the New York Times in 2007 noting the good performance of one of these funds relative to most socially responsible funds. One consideration is the extent to which governments are attuned to, for example, environmental protection. If one believes that greater attention will be paid by governments to environmental issues in the future, then green companies may perform better in future than in the past. Similarly, If one believes that governments will become more interventionist in seeking to reduce public and pri vate smoking, then tobacco stocks may become less attractive. On the other hand, sale of an addictive substance has proven resistant to downturns in the business cycle.
New content (c) 2007, 2008, 2009 by CSRNYC. This website was maintained by John Tepper Marlin until March 29, 2009. To be informed about changes in the status of this webside and that of CSRNYC, go to the CSRNYC website and add yourself to the email list.