The foundation for the significant progress made in so many spheres of society in the 20th Century was...Oil! The oil-producing nations of the world amassed great wealth with the marketing of oil and petroleum-derived products; those products enabled fantastic progress to be made in industry, government, agriculture, the consumer sector...throughout our modern society.
"Sustainability is front and center in the apparel sector" -- so writes Tara Donaldson in the November 5th feature story in the Sourcing Journal in covering the Textile Sustainability Conference in October. Seven major trends were discussed at the meeting of industry execs.
"The" voice of authority for many board members and C-suite executives is The Harvard Business Review. Sustainability pioneer and influential thought leader John Elkington in the current "HBR" talks about the practice of "issues framing" at the highest levels of the corporation, and suggests (to leaders) that to change our usual way of perceiving, prioritizing and investing time/effort/money, that "re-framing" for social change is the wave of the future.
The authoritative voice for many investors on the always expanding mutual fund universe is the Chicago-based Morningstar organization. The company tracks mutual fund's in- and outflows, performance, focus and other aspects of [mutual fund] activities.
The firm began adding ESG analysis to its legendary and comprehensive analytical work last year. About 200 mutual funds with ESG criteria were initially being monitored by Morningstar, with analysis provided by Sustainalytics. **
The National Geographic Society made its debut as a publishing force in 1888, introducing the natural world and faraway places to generation-after-generation, at first through the familiar yellow cover magazine (the "journal"), then on through broadcast and cable television programming, a web site, and movies. (Remember "March of the Penguins"?)
Many corporations that endeavor to be sustainable become a bit nervous as we pass Labor Day in the USA. The rebalancing of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes is traditionally announced at that time. Is my company in? Out? Increasingly, CEOs and other C-suite execs and board members (as well as numerous managers) are holding "membership" in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices in very high regard.
All news/all the time -- that was the American television viewer's diet of content during the week long siege, with Hurricane Harvey sweeping ashore along the Gulf of Mexico areas of the State of Texas. And the plight of the people of the Houston region, in particular, was on everyone's mind as we watched the struggles of the residents there to stay safe and help their neighbors.
As we watched, many of us from afar, this was the American Spirit at its very best, in such terrible times for Texans to remind us all of the traditions of neighbor-helping-neighbor.
For the past 25 and more years, the focus of the sustainable & responsible investment (SRI) community has been on matters related to corporate compensation, usually a corporate governance concern, as well as additional concerns on a range of other issues and topic areas (in environmental, social/societal, and other categories).