The UN Global Compact released its 2014-2016 strategy on 10 February 2014, which lays out how the initiative will work to make corporate sustainability a transformative force in achieving a shared, secure and sustainable future.
The Global Compact is the main vehicle for the United Nations to engage with the private sector and to involve them in its development and governance objectives. According to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, “ the Global Compact asks companies to embrace universal principles and to partner with the United Nations. It has grown to become a critical platform for the UN to engage effectively with enlightened global business.”
Developed by the management and staff of the Global Compact with support from Deloitte, the new strategy is released after 18 months of consultation with a range of key stakeholders including the Global Compact Board, Government Group and Local Networks.
Over the next three years, the Global Compact aims to achieve scale and transformation, while maintaining quality and impact, by focusing on four priorities: participant engagement; Local Networks, a global portfolio of issues, and responsible business in support of UN goals and issues.
The Global Compact’s global portfolio of issues – covering human rights, labour standards, environment and anti-corruption – has been at the forefront of engaging companies and driving implementation of the ten principles.
Commenting on the strategy, Rory Truell, IFSW Secretary General, observed that ‘the active commitment of the private sector to the principles and objectives of the United Nations, including respect for human rights, improved working conditions, respect for the environment and food security, is crucial for the future of our world. Some multi-nationals are now bigger than nation states and have more power and influence over everyday lives of ordinary people than national and local governments. The Global Agenda for Social Work and Social Development recognises the need for partnerships with all sectors. We call on private sector partners in The Global Compact to live up to their vision and to support social development’.