CSR Europe News
The Compass Your Company Needs to Navigate the Climate Crisis

At Davos 2020 corporations talked the talk. Why? Complex, cross-boundary environmental and climate issues involve multiple actors, making it difficult for a single company to have an impact alone. The solution? Multistakeholder dialogue via Collaborative Platforms to boost expertise, identify and scale-up solutions to cross-country and cross-sector challenges. Discover CSR Europe’s Collaborative Platforms READ MORE


SAVE THE DATE, The Brussels SDG Summit is Back

Join us on 10-11 June 2020 at the Brussels SDG Summit! We are back for a new exciting edition on “Transforming Business for a Sustainable Europe”. Registrations will open next week, on 10 February! READ MORE

What is the EU Agenda on Future of Work?

With the new European Commission having taken the office for the next five years, here is a breakdown of the most important topics on President von der Leyen’s agenda regarding Future of Work. CSR Europe members are invited to join the next webinar on Workforce Transformation, on 12 March 2020. READ MORE

CSR Europe News & Upcoming Activities
Calendar of Events 2020
Responsible Sourcing, New Materials Available to Tackle Capacity Building in Mining


Despite the increasing number of guidelines and regulations, it can still be difficult for companies to ensure responsible sourcing on the ground. The solution? Investments in capacity building activities. CSR Europe and the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), has now made available a new training template to address the responsible sourcing in large-scale mines, smelters and refiners and their suppliers. The template was built on the Supplier Training Model developed by the collaborative platform Drive Sustainability. Discover all the other Platforms facilitated by CSR Europe. READ MORE


Voicing the Social Conditions of Truck Drivers


Extensive sub-contracting, cross-border exploitation of different national legislation, inadequate drivers’ facilities, and driver shortage are only some of the difficult situations faced by European truck drivers. At the next working group meeting of the collaborative platform Responsible Trucking, on 27 February, project partners will listen first-hand to the experience of Polish truck driver Iwona Blecharczyk. READ MORE


Mitigation of Tyre and Road Wear Particles, New Activities Planned


Knowledge exchange, a “Blueprint for Action on TRWP Hotspots” and a project proposal for the EU LIFE Programme will be at the centre of the European Tyre and Road Wear Particles (TRWP) Platform’s activities for 2020. Launched by the European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers Association (ETRMA) and facilitated by CSR Europe, the Platform addresses the environmental impact of TRWP. Next steps will be discussed at the meeting on 18 February. READ MORE

Ensuring Sustainable Markets and Finance in 2020

With the upcoming « Business Taxation for the 21st century » and Action Plan to Fight Tax Evasion, the EU Commission is setting the stage to deliver « an economy that works for the people ». Keep abreast of these changes with CSR Europe’s 3-Step Approach to Responsible and Transparent Tax Behaviour. READ MORE

The EU Green Deal, A Timeline for Action


In the recently released Communication on the European Green Deal, the Von der Leyen Commission outlines the key actions to deliver Europe’s growth strategy for the years to come. CSR Europe will discuss these latest developments at the Public Affairs Workshop on 11 February. READ MORE


EU Update
Upcoming EU Events


Halting the loss of pollinators: The role of the EU agricultural and region – 21 February 2020, Brussels

The European Committee of the Regions is organizing the conference on “Halting the loss of pollinators: The role of the EU agricultural and region” to look back at what has been achieved in the 2014-2020 period and discuss how to step up actions in the future.

For more information, see here.


INSPIRE Conference 2020 – 12 – 15 May 2020, Dubrovnik

The European Commission will discuss how to bring sustainability and digitalisation together in the near future. The focus will be on the role of data and artificial intelligence in the framework of the digital and sustainable transition.

For more information, see here.


EU Green Week – 1 – 5 June 2020, Brussels

At the 2020 edition of the EU Green Week the European Commission will focus on nature and biodiversity to explore possible pathways for change, in light of the potential impact of the European Green Deal at regional and global level.

For more information, see here.


Policy Conference of EUSEW 2020 – 22 – 26 June, Brussels

Make sure to attend the biggest European conference dedicated to renewable and efficient energy and its use in Europe. 

For more information, see here.

Discover the von der Leyen Commission’s 2020 Work Programme


The European Commission (EC) has published 43 new initiatives planned for 2020. Building on President von der Leyen’s political guidelines, the EC is now working to deliver new proposals and actions that span from climate to artificial intelligence and employment.


The document anticipates six workstreams that will mark the Von der Leyen Commission’s activity in 2020:

  1. Green Deal
  2. Digital Challenge
  3. Social Europe
  4. European way of life
  5. Democracy
  6. A stronger Europe in the world

For more information:

EC Work Programme 2020 Factsheet and ANNEX I

The Commission’s New Financial Plan to Leave No-One Behind


On January 14, the European Commission presented its proposals on the Just Transition Mechanism and the Sustainable Europe Investment Plan, building on the ambition of a 2021-2027 multi-annual financial framework in line with the 2015 Paris Agreement.


The Just Transition Mechanism will focus on supporting the regions and sectors that will be most affected by the green transition. In order to create “a green investment wave”, the Mechanism will be supported by the Just Transition Fund, the Just Transition Scheme (under InvestEU) and the European Investment Bank.


At the same time, the Commission will mobilize €1 trillion in sustainable investments with the Sustainable Europe Investment Plan.

To ensure the fulfilment of the green transition, targets will be monitored and reported on at a yearly Sustainable Investment Summit.


CSR Europe, with the support of Enel, is tackling the issue at the upcoming High-Level Roundtable on A Just Transition to a Low Carbon and Inclusive.

Europe Set to Become a Strategic Leader on Biodiversity


The European Union is setting the stage to become a global leader on biodiversity at the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 15) on Biological Diversity that will take place on 15-28 October 2020Europe Set to Become a Strategic Leader on Biodiversity .


In  European Green Deal, the Commission outlined its plan to publish a Biodiversity Strategy 2030 this March and to develop specific measures in 2021. The strategy will define the Commission’s position for the Conference. According to the Biodiversity Strategy Roadmap, the EU  will commit to tackle the root causes of Biodiversity loss in the Union. To protect nature and to restore damaged ecosystems, biodiversity aspirations will be integrated into almost all EU policies.


At the same time, the European Parliament’s Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) tried to raise the bar on the Green Deal goals, putting biodiversity at the core of the green transformation. According to Pascal Canfin, President of the Committee a Biodiversity Strategy that does not include, among all, a proposal to fight imported deforestation, “is a strategy for nothing”.


Discover how CSR Europe is engaging companies on biodiversity via the Collaborative Platform on Biodiversit&Industry

Davos 2020, von der Leyen’s Attempt to Shape the International Role of the EU


At the 2020 World Economic Forum in Davos, Ursula Von der Leyen presented several business-friendly initiatives during her first international appearance as the Commission President.


The Green Opportunity


With climate change at the core of the WEF (WEF) discussions, Von der Leyen laid out Brussels’ plans to transform Europe in the first climate-neutral continent by 2050. The European Green Deal will have a central role in stimulating green investments and in mobilising global actors to tackle the climate crisis. At the same time, she addressed the need for countries like China to approach a CO2 pricing system too, in order to overcome the need for a carbon tax in the first place.


A Europe fit for the Digital Age


At Davos, von der Leyen also underlined the importance of data policies in protecting people’s digital identity.  “With the General Data Protection Regulation, we set the pattern for the world. And we have to set a similar frame for artificial intelligence, too,” the Commission president explained.  This would “allow digital businesses to grow in Europe” and would inform companies that want to do trade within the Union.

A New Circular Economy Action Plan to Transform EU Industry


Circular Economy is at the heart of the fight against climate change and calls on the EU industry to take up responsibility.


The New Circular Economy Action Plan, expected to be published in March 2020, aims to strengthen the European industry, fight climate change and preserve the EU’s natural environment. It will mainly tackle resource-intensive sectors and the release of microplastics into the environment. According to the European Commission roadmap on Circular Economy, the Action Plan will be launched at the same time as the EU Industrial Strategy.


The New Circular Economy Action Plan will focus on the lifecycle of products and will include policies on the design, production and marketing of sustainable products.


Consumers are also expected to play a role in driving change, by adjusting their consumption habits and products choices.


Finally,  waste will be tackled through a revision of sector-specific waste legislation and the Waste Shipment Regulation.

Corporate Member News
DAVOS 2020 – Discover How CSR Europe Members are Leading in Sustainability


Our members made a significant contribution during the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos and were recognised for leading the way in sustainability.

ENEL made it to the Corporate Knights Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World index and ranked 8th. The Italian multinational company ranked first amongst the other four Italian companies included in the index and second within the power sector. READ MORE

10 of our members made it to the Disclosure Insight Action (CDP) ’s annual "A List Ranking" of the 179 most pioneering companies leading on environmental transparency and performance;

  • BASF
  • Coca-Cola
  • Enel
  • Engie
  • Hitachi
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Orange
  • Samsung
  • Toyota
  • Volkswagen

Check the full list of results here!

Coca-Cola Sets Ambitious New Sustainable Packaging Goals for Western Europe


Coca-Cola Western Europe and Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) are stepping up their ambition for a World Without Waste by accelerating their joint action plan to collect, recycle and reuse their packaging.

The two partners are raising the bar of "This is Forward", their sustainability action plan for Western Europe, which pledged that by 2025 Coca-Cola will: collect a can or bottle for everyone that it sells; ensure that all of its packaging is 100% recyclable and that at least 50% of the content of its plastic bottles comes from recycled content.

Today, they are announcing further goals designed to accelerate their delivery of a sustainable packaging roadmap for Western Europe, ensuring that all of their packaging is collected, recycled and reused.


Social Responsibility, Volkswagen Group and Microsoft Expand Partnership


The Volkswagen Group and Microsoft Germany have agreed to work together on long-term sustainability and social initiatives. The aim is to promote and jointly implement projects in the context of social responsibility issues, such as sustainability, digital education and training, as well as corporate employee engagement for the common good. A framework agreement between the two companies has been signed.

Ralf Pfitzner, Head of Sustainability at the Volkswagen Group, says: “Climate protection and digital transformation are the key issues for the future of business and society. The challenges are immense - so it is particularly important that the transformation takes place on a broad social basis and that we take people with us. For this we need cooperation with efficient partners more than ever. ”

Sabine Bendiek, Managing Director of Microsoft Germany emphasizes: “The time of solo efforts is over. The new decade requires common answers to major challenges. That is why we are bundling our commitment with Volkswagen and want to promote the use of digital technologies and artificial intelligence for the benefit of the environment, society and the economy. The focus is on supporting people of all ages in developing skills for a digitised world.





Ferrero Signs Circular Plastics Alliance


Ferrero joins the signatories of the Circular Plastics Alliance and takes action to boost the EU market for recycled plastics up to 10 million tonnes by 2025.

The Circular Plastics Alliance is open to all public and private actors from European plastics value chains that are ready to actively contribute to delivering on the declaration of the alliance





BASF, How to build a more climate-friendly chemical industry



Martin Brudermüller, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors and Chief Technology Officer, BASF, illustrates the vital role that the chemical industry has to play in the climate discussion.



National Partner News and Events
MVO Nederland Introduces the New Economy Index (NEx)



New Economy Index: 12.1% of the Dutch economy is sustainable; the target for 2025 is 20%.


12.1% of the Dutch economy is sustainable. That is the finding of a major research conducted on behalf of MVO Nederland, the movement for new economy entrepreneurs. The New Economy Index (NEx) is a score calculated annually – this year for the first time – showing the percentage of the Dutch economy and supply chain that is ‘new’, i.e. circular, climate-neutral and inclusive.


“The Netherlands needs a NEx of 20% in 2025 to reach a turning point where the sustainability of the economy accelerates and there’s no way back to the old economy. A NEx of 12.1% in 2020 confirms a solid start. But Dutch businesses need to do much more,” says Maria van der Heijden, director of MVO Nederland.




CSR Turkey's 11th CSR Summit and Collaboration with IGA



On 24 December, CSR Turkey held its 11th CSR Summit, which brings together corporate social responsibility solutions that benefit and add value to society with stakeholders from different sectors and pave the way for partnerships. 


Within the scope of the summit, CSR projects that were evaluated by an independent jury and added value to the UN Sustainable Development Goals were awarded. You can access detailed information about the projects from the 11th CSR Summit English Catalogue.




CSR Turkey also organized a Social Hack project in collaboration with Istanbul Grand Airport (IGA). The project brings together social entrepreneurs, graphic designers, computer programmers, interface designers, and project managers to create digital solutions for social problems by developing software or business ideas.


In the IGA Social Hackathon, teams are expected to present a business or project idea by choosing one of the branches “Decent Work and Economic Growth” or “Sustainable Cities and Communities”.


6 teams that achieve the top three spots will be allotted time to transform their ideas into projects. At the grand final where last six teams will compete, the team whose project ranks the 1st will be provided a grant and have an opportunity to turn their project into reality.



UPJ Annual Conference 2020



UPJ is organising its Annual Conference on March 19 this year, on Corporate Social Responsibility and Cooperation for a Sustainable Transformation


What contribution can responsible and committed companies make to socio-ecological transformation, and what is the potential of cooperation between companies and actors from business, civil society, politics and administration?


We cordially invite you to participate in further lectures and to enter into direct exchange in workshops on topics such as sustainable business models, corporate digital responsibility, sustainable finance and the real economy, CO2-neutral business, business and biodiversity, the role of corporate commitment in sustainable urban development, CSR and sustainability in the context of the upcoming German EU Presidency and current developments in corporate volunteering and citizenship.


The UPJ Annual Conference is organised annually by the Corporate Citizenship and CSR Network of businesses and intermediary organisations and offers a platform for networking, knowledge transfer and collegial exchange. Around 350 participants will discuss current topics and good practice in the field of responsible business conduct and partnerships of business, civil society, politics and public administration.


For more information and registration, click here (in German).


Ecochain - Register to the Interactive Supplier Capacity Building Program


Our German partner network econsense has started an international cross-sector training program on social and environmental responsibility: econchain – German Business Initiative for Sustainable Value Chains.


The purpose of the interactive training is to foster continuous improvement processes in factories by teaching instruments for practical implementation, and capacity building for sustainable supply chain management. Participants receive six full-day workshops and home assignments to deepen their understanding of the training content and to apply it to the context of their factories.


The program is now open to all interested companies and can be booked at several locations in Mexico, China, Turkey, and Bangladesh.



GRACE - Portugal has a new annual corporate volunteering program focused on the SDGs
As a response to associate members’ requests for volunteering initiatives within the communities, GRACE developed the GIRO project in 2006. In 13 editions, GIRO allowed more than 8600 volunteers to intervene on 75 locations all over the country, helping 150 social economy organizations. With the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the increasing companies’ commitment to the SDGs, GRACE decided to reformulate its corporate volunteering program.
Focused on sustainability, the GIRO 2.0. was changed into an annual program, allowing to strengthen the participation and involvement of employees in long-term volunteering by helping companies and social economy organizations become closer. Aligned with the SDGs, GIRO 2.0 intends to help companies correctly identify social problems and present dynamic and effective answers, as well as assess their impact.
This new version was tested at the end of 2019 and the results were extremely positive. In 4 months, GIRO 2.0 had the participation of 442 volunteers of 27 member companies who gave 1961 working hours to help 18 partner organizations, with a 72% volunteer commitment rate. Also, with this format, we avoided the use of 1050 plastic bottles and 442 T-shirts and hats when compared to the older version of GIRO.
According to the participating member companies’ assessment, 66% increased the collaboration with organizations and 47% of volunteers had their first contact with the SDGs. As for partner organizations, 100% consider this new version more aligned with their real needs, 57% maintained collaboration with the participating companies and 3 partnership protocols were signed.
Registrations for GIRO 2.0 participations are now officially open for all member companies and hopefully results in the end of 2020 will exceed our expectations.
For more information on this Corporate Volunteering Program, contact GRACE.