The director of CENARSECS (FCE-UBA) Julián D’Angelo analyzes the five trends of 2023 in terms of social responsibility and sustainable development. Responsible and sustainable consumption; diversity, equity and inclusion; reporting on ESG (Environment, Society, Governance); the home office and the empowerment of human capital; the climate agenda in a framework of global crisis, are the issues that the specialist addresses.
Responsible and sustainable consumption
This trend shows us a greater demand from consumers in terms of sustainability and corporate social responsibility, challenging companies and motivating them to modify the inputs and materials they use, the type of energy they consume and the carbon footprint they generate. It encourages us to rethink production processes in all phases of the cycle: design, production, logistics, consumption and waste management. Along these lines, CENARSECS recently conducted a survey of Argentine consumers regarding their purchasing decisions for the Christmas holidays. From there it emerged that 73% of consumers thought they would prioritize sustainable products when shopping for Christmas. But, in addition, almost 75% of the consumers consulted expressed that they were willing to pay more for these sustainable products from companies that they return to society.
Diversity, equity and inclusion
One of the actions most implemented by companies in terms of diversity are, without a doubt, those that seek to reduce gender inequality. However, the Global Gender Gap Index prepared by the World Economic Forum indicated, in 2022, that the gap was 68%. At that rate, it would take the world about 132 years to reach parity. Furthermore, in terms of economic empowerment, there could be some 155 years to go before reaching parity in terms of economic participation.
In a recent study carried out in Argentina by the CIO Investigation consultancy, to corporate executives, 26% of those consulted responded that the percentage of management positions held by women in their companies will be between 5 and 15% by 2023. While in the case of female coverage between 41 and 60%, the percentage of responses was 23%. And only 6% answered that women will occupy more than 60% of management positions.
The year 2023 is bringing great news in terms of non-financial information reports, those that deal with ESG (Environment, Society, Governance) issues. One of the obsessions behind the changes in the standards and frameworks of these reports is the need to take stronger action to combat greenwashing, asking more questions, requiring more specific data sets and standardizing more precisely. the information, with its corresponding correlate of goals and indicators.
In Argentina, it is estimated that more than 70% of the most important companies report.
The home office work modality, which until three years ago seemed like a privilege reserved only for some professions, has managed to sustain and consolidate in a much higher proportion than expected. The study by the consultancy CIO Investigación, cited previously, also shows that, in one in three companies, home work will continue in 2023, covering more than 60% of the workforce. According to another study, by the consulting firm Adecco, more than 80% of the Argentine market is currently working under the hybrid modality: they alternate between face-to-face and home office.
At this point, it is important that the corporate definitions regarding the type of work are taken from the perspective of social responsibility and the empowerment of human capital, because for the vast majority of workers, the home office is already part of their new jobs. acquired rights. According to a study by the consulting firm Manpower, 40% of workers want to decide on the days they can work remotely, and be able to change them periodically.
In 2022, many parts of the world experienced very visible impacts in terms of the climate crisis, from floods or droughts to record temperatures. Therefore, the action on the part of civil society organizations, governments and corporations to support the communities on the front line of the environmental crisis grew.
In terms of carbon dioxide (CO2), despite the commitments made at the Summits, the reality is that emissions continue to rise (in 2022 they were one point more than in 2021), and the increase in the cost of energy, as a result of of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, has made it particularly difficult to meet these goals. This makes the possibility of the necessary and urgent decrease in order to limit global warming ever more remote.
lobal by 1.5 degrees Celsius at the end of the century.
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