Dynamics and perspectives
Top Ten Trends of Corporate Social Responsibility in China in 2018
In 2018, it was the year of the implementation of the spirit of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China. It was the 40th anniversary of reform and opening up. It was a crucial year for the three major battles to prevent and resolve major financial risks, precision poverty alleviation and pollution prevention. In 2018, the development of China's corporate social responsibility (CSR) will present new trends and characteristics. SynTao and the Southern Weekend Corporate Social Responsibility Center join forces to look forward to the "Top Ten Trends in China's CSR in 2018".
[Trend 1] Going to the Beautiful: The New CSR Pattern in the New Era
The report of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party pointed out that socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, and the main contradictions in our society have been transformed into contradictions between the people's growing needs for a better life and the development of inadequate and unbalanced development. The positioning of the new era will bring a new pattern for the development of China's CSR, and the future CSR will be more closely linked to the people's better life.
The importance of environmental protection, health care, food safety, cultural education, and community integration will become increasingly prominent. In particular, environmental protection has been identified by the Central Economic Work Conference as one of the three major battles in 2018. In the past, the one-sided development concept of "the hero of GDP" will gradually be revised. In this context, enterprises should pay attention to environmental protection work, especially supply chain management, and on the other hand, pay attention to the social benefits of enterprises.
[Trend 2] Big country plays: China CSR practice from catching up to leading
China has put forward the idea of building a "community of human destiny" and showing the power of the great powers. In recent years, China has established a leading position in global climate governance, and the “One Belt, One Road” initiative has gradually become a global consensus. In line with China's international status, China's CSR practice will also accelerate its pace to catch up with international trends and achieve global leadership in some areas.
In 2018, China will continue to stand on the social responsibility issues of mining such as cobalt, carbon disclosure in the financial industry, and green issues in the Internet finance industry. Foreign-invested enterprises should fully recognize the changes in China's CSR, work closely with local Chinese stakeholders, and innovate solutions to grow together.
[Trend 3] Regional Innovation: CSR Outlook of Xiong'an and Dawan District
Known as the “Millennium Plan”, the Xiong’an New District carries many innovative and experimental functions to build a future city. Many central enterprises and large private enterprises have participated in the construction of Xiong'an New District. These enterprises sketch intelligent transportation and intelligent logistics in Xiong'an. In fact, they are also exploring the value of enterprise and society, and are a reflection of CSR. We expect that in 2018 there will be government, business and professional institutions to go to Xiong'an to discuss the issue of CSR, especially value creation.
On the territory of southern and eastern China, the concept of Guangdong, Hong Kong, Macao and Dawan District and the Yangtze River Delta Dawan District has also been outlined. The construction of the two large bay areas will drive the structural changes of CSR, as shown in the following: the industry is more concerned about finance, technology and high-end manufacturing, and the issue is more concerned with environmental protection, community and ethics.
[Trend 4] Poverty Alleviation: Exploring Enterprise Solutions for Accurate Poverty Alleviation
Poverty alleviation is also one of the three major battles in 2018, and the company is duty-bound. The “granting people and fishing” industry poverty alleviation will become the main way for enterprises to participate. In addition to the poverty alleviation effect, enterprises can also find business opportunities. E-commerce enterprises investing in “three rural” poverty alleviation and implementing the rural revitalization strategy will become a beautiful landscape for enterprises to participate in poverty alleviation in 2018.
How to tell the story of corporate poverty alleviation is still a problem that many companies have to think clearly. In the past, too many corporate poverty alleviation stories started with policy logic, talking to themselves, and being difficult to spread. We expect this situation to improve in 2018, and we will see some companies starting with market logic, focusing on theoretical framework support, and describing poverty alleviation performance and impact.
[Trend Five] Waste Recycling: Green Challenges for Consumer Goods Companies
With the strict enforcement of the government's environmental laws, the active environmental protection public welfare organizations, and the public's awareness of environmental protection, consumer electronics manufacturers such as electronics, cosmetics, and beverages, and e-commerce companies that use packaging in large quantities are facing increasing environmental pressures. In 2017, the ecological impact of take-away and plastic pollution have become hot spots in the network. We expect that consumer goods manufacturers and e-commerce companies will face more pressure in 2018. Some companies will adopt innovative ways to reduce, reuse and recycle packaging waste. Establishing an efficient recycling network will be the focus and difficulty of innovation.
From the perspective of consumption, the trend of green consumption will continue, especially the green consumption related to personal interests such as home improvement building materials, food, toys and clothing will continue to be sought after.
[Trend 6] Enforcement of Letters: A New Look of Social Responsibility Report
Beginning in 2018, the requirements of the regulatory authorities for "gradual establishment and improvement of the mandatory environmental information disclosure system for listed companies and bond-issuing enterprises" will gradually fall. According to the latest regulations of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, key pollutant discharge companies must enforce environmental information and other companies must implement the principle of “compliance or interpretation”. In 2018, the HKEx's "ESG Reporting Guidelines" entered the second phase, and listed companies should disclose environmental key performance indicators; from July, the GRI standard will completely replace G4. These will have an impact on the CSR report, and the CSR report will have a new look.
In addition, after the Schaeffler incident, the need to include subsidiaries and supply chains in CSR reports has become more prominent. At the same time, the content and use of CSR reports are diversifying into different types of specific-purpose reports for different groups.
[Trend 7] Capital is responsible: ESG investment concept is gradually approaching
The switching of the market environment and investment style has made the ESG investment concept focusing on environmental, social and corporate governance issues gradually recognized by mainstream investors. Negative cases such as the red, yellow and blue kindergartens and fun shops that occurred in 2017 also revealed to investors the investment risks that were hidden from CSR and ESG. We expect that from 20 months from the regulatory level to industry associations to institutional investors will be more active in promoting and participating in responsible investment, there will be more fund companies to develop ESG investment products.
The supporting infrastructure, such as data services and index services, will also usher in new development opportunities. As the ESG wind vane, the Landsea China ESG boom index is expected to gradually increase. Green finance will continue to be the most shining star in the field of responsible investment, and the internationalization process of the green bond market is expected to make a breakthrough.
[Trend 8] Entrepreneurial competition: Public welfare has become a place of business competition
Represented by the Internet industry, industry giants have extended business competition to the public interest sector, both to brand and to traffic. We expect this trend to be further strengthened in 2018. In many industries, especially those that are open to the public and sensitive to brand reputation, public welfare will become a must for leading companies. The dispute between public welfare and business will also be intertwined in the dispute, and the boundaries between public welfare and business will become increasingly blurred.
The application of new technologies will further promote the combination of business and public welfare. We expect that new technologies such as cloud computing, big data, blockchain, mobile internet, and artificial intelligence will be more and more applied to the public welfare field, which is both innovation and risk.
[Trend 9] Winter Olympics Preview: Advance layout 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics
After the end of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in February 2018, the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics cycle begins immediately. The Beijing Winter Olympics adheres to the concept of green, shared, open and honest, and will bring new opportunities and new ideas to the company's CSR projects. In 2018, it will be a year for many companies to arrange the Winter Olympics CSR in advance.
On the one hand, large companies can participate in the Winter Olympics official partner or sponsor program as the core CSR project in the next four years, and in conjunction with the preparations for the Winter Olympics. On the other hand, companies that cannot become partners or sponsors can also combine the characteristics of the snow sports and the Jing-Zhang area with their own CSR projects.
[Trend 10] People-oriented: Enterprise CSR job demand growth
Regardless of whether it is in society or in the business world, the popularity of CSR is getting higher and higher. More and more companies are setting up CSR special posts, and the demand for CSR professionals is increasing. We expect this trend to become more pronounced in 2018, and will show a trend from first-tier cities to second-tier cities, from multinationals to state-owned enterprises and private enterprises. The increased demand for CSR talents has driven CSR talent development, and the practice of the Business School has proved this. In 2018, the China Corporate Citizenship Committee will launch CSR professional manager certification, which will be an innovative attempt to cultivate CSR talents.
At the same time, some senior CSR managers who have been in business for more than 10 years are facing the middle-aged challenges in the workplace. What skills are they to enhance and what value they create for the company is the core question they have to answer.