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Title:CSR: who walks the talk?
Date of publishing:May 14, 2012
Also available in the following languages:Dutch, French

CSR: who walks the talk?
May 14, 2012

Many companies and investors claim their corporate social responsibility or the ethical character of their investments. But who walks the talk and how can we exercise control over the CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policy of firms? These questions were the subject of an article in MoneyTalk (22 March 2012) in which the role of Forum ETHIBEL as an independent advisor was explained.

The article points to the important influence of controversies on the risk profile of a company. A CSR program that sounds convincing on paper, can be undermined by the reputational damage as a result of lawsuits and allegations. This means that a comprehensive audit of a company in the field of corporate social responsibility can only be based on a combination of exclusion criteria, positive selection and the critical voice of the civil debate.

The composition of the sustainable investment registers Ethibel PIONEER and EXCELLENCE is based on this three-pronged approach that often leads to surprising and counterintuitive findings . Thus, MoneyTalk cites the examples of France Telecom, Nestle, and Vestas who, despite their proactive CSR policies, were rejected from the Ethibel investment registers due to controversies (the suicides at France Telecom), a high risk (the supply chain problems, palm oil extraction and trade unions issues at Nestlé) or a defective and little transparent reporting (Vestas).