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A blueprint for a better future - engagement on the UN SDGs

The UN's Sustainable Development Goals address global challenges such as poverty, inequality, climate change and environmental degradation. What can companies do to help advance these policy goals and build a sustainable future?

Fast reading

  • Why and how we engage on the SDGs
  • Challenges to overcome
  • BP and Dexcom case studies

The UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development sets out 17 goals and 169 underlying targets, providing a blueprint for shared prosperity in a sustainable world — one where everyone can live productive and peaceful lives. The goals call for action by all countries to promote prosperity while protecting the natural environment, and have been adopted by all UN member states.

As heads of state and government meet at the UN's headquarters in New York to review the progress towards implementing the 2030 Agenda, we reflect on our own approach to engaging with companies on the SDGs, highlighting the benefits of doing so.

Related Insights

Duke Energy case study
In 2010, Duke Energy adopted its first carbon dioxide emissions reduction target – it planned to reduce emissions 17% below the 2005 levels by 2020. The Clean Power Plan (CPP) was finalised in 2015 by the US Environmental Protection Agency, targeting power generation emissions reductions of 32% by 2030 relative to 2005. The Supreme Court stayed the CPP’s requirements in early 2016 and it was never implemented.
Centrica case study
Reflecting our engagement requests, Centrica has set ambitious targets for the reduction of the emissions of its customers, which comprise over 90% of the emissions associated with its business, together with a commitment to set a pathway to net-zero emissions by 2050, in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Governance challenges at Japanese companies
Since the introduction of Japan’s Stewardship Code in 2014 and the Corporate Governance Code in 2015, dialogue between investors and Japanese companies has become more common and the governance of many companies has improved. However, many challenges remain and progress in some areas has been slow.
Amplified: the future of finance is female
Millennials are changing the investment market.
Eliminating gender bias: how to improve corporate diversity
How does gender bias manifest itself in the business environment?
Shareholder engagement and its effects on target companies
The award-winning study ‘ESG shareholder engagement and downside risk’, which uses engagement data from Hermes EOS, reveals that companies that are successfully engaged by EOS exhibit a lower risk profile, particularly when environmental issues are tackled.

EOS Client Service and Business Development

Amy D’Eugenio,
Head of Client Service and Business Development, Hermes EOS