CSR & SDGs: CONCEPTS FOR BETTER FUTURE

by | Mar 15, 2019 | Insight

Ai Ratih Rusmayanti

Ai Ratih Rusmayanti

Brand Management, Filantra

We all certainly hope a better future for our children, this can be realized if we succeed in creating this world as a better place for prosperous life, freedom from all forms of crisis and poverty and a good place for the sustainability of resources.

Sustainable Development is not a utopian ideal that cannot be done, but a big dream that can be achieved with strong collaboration between various parties, including companies with sustainability programs in the form of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility).

The relationship between Sustainable Development and CSR does not only materialize at the theoretical level, but moreover at the practical level where it shows that the company has a big role in sustainable development in line with the 2030 SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) through its business strategy.

SDGs 2030

In order to realize sustainable development, the United Nations established the SDGs agreed upon at the world meeting in September 2015 as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by applying some principles: Universal, Integrated and Inclusive to ensure that “No-one Left Behind”. SDGs consist of 17 Goals and 169 targets in order to continue the efforts and achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which ended at 2015.

The SDGs are a new agreement that drives changes that are shifting towards sustainable development based on human rights and equality to promote social, economic and environmental development.

 

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

The noble goal of the SDGs is to realize sustainable development for a better future in line with the concept of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility). The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) which is an international institution established in 1955 and consisting of 120 multinational companies from 30 countries in the world, through its publication “Making Good Business Sense” defines Corporate Social Responsibility: “Continuing commitment by business to behave ethically and contributed to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families as well as of the local community and society at large”.

 

This definition shows CSR is a form of action that is lifted from the company’s ethical considerations directed at improving the economy, accompanied by improving the quality of life for employees and their families, as well as improving the quality of life for the surrounding community and society more broadly.

ISO 26000 stated that “The Objective of Social Responsibility is to contribute to sustainable development.” Meanwhile, Sustainable development has an understanding as “Development that meets the needs of the future without compromising the abilities of future generations to meet their own needs “(United Nations General Assembly, 1987, p. 43).

Thus, CSR in ISO 26000 has a real objective for sustainable development, whereas in line with the SDGs 2030.

 

Relationship between SDGs and CSR

According to the journal of The Role of CSR In Achieving Sustainable Development – Theoretical Approach* the concepts of CSR and SDGs progressed separately for a long time and it was not explicit what relationship was between the two. After reviewing the development process of Sustainable Development, it can be concluded that CSR is a business model which promotes business contributions to sustainable development i.e, it creates a balance between economic interests, environmental needs and social expectations by integrating the spirit of Sustainable Development into the business strategy.

The interaction between the conceptions of CSR and sustainable development has strengthened in recent years; CSR is considered to be an integral part of sustainable development (World Business Council for Sustainable Development, 2000). Corporate sustainability is the company version of sustainable development, while CSR is a voluntary managerial approach to sustainable development (Steurer, Langer, Konrad, & Martinuzzi, 2005). Corporate responsibility and corporate sustainability can be used as synonyms (United Nations Global Compact, 2013).

Governments, international organizations, business sectors and other non-governmental organizations must contribute to changes in unsustainable consumption and production patterns and move towards sustainable consumption and production patterns. Private business activities play a key role in solving the challenges of sustainable development with creativity, investment and innovation.

Thus, the similarity of goals between CSR and SDGs becomes a spirit to realize sustainable development in terms of business strategy with the implementation of CSR programs. If all elements are committed to realizing 17 SDGs, then we can pass on a better future for our children – with low levels of poverty, earth and environmental sustainability, low levels of inequality in the economic, social and legal education sector.

SDGs and CSR, concepts for a better future.

References

  • The Role Of CSR In Achieving Sustainable Development – Theoretical Approach, European Scientific Journal August 2016 edition vol.12, No.22 ISSN: 1857 – 7881 (Print) e – ISSN 1857- 7431
  • Empirical Findings on Business–Society Relations in Europe, A. Konrad, R. Steurer, M. E. Langer & André Martinuzzi Journal of Business Ethics 63 (1):89-105 (2006)
  • ISO 26000,
  • United Nations Global Compact, 2013
  • World Business Council for Sustainable Development, 2000