The 2014 list of the Top 50 Socially Responsible Corporations in Canada has been announced by Sustainalytics, a global ESG research and analysis firm. This sixth annual lineup highlights Canada’s CSR leaders and describes their sustainability initiatives. Companies that made the list performed well across key environmental and social indicators within their industries, and are considered “best of sector” among their peers. (The Top 50 is not a ranking i.e. no company is #1.) Each of the companies featured is either Canadian-listed or a wholly owned subsidiary of a foreign-listed company with significant operations, market capitalization, or brand presence in Canada.
The Top 50 are categorized across 10 sectors, such as Banks, Retailing, Industrial, Food and Beverage, and Technology. Diverse challenges and approaches within individual categories are noted.
Among the Top 50 are familiar names such as TD Bank, Suncor Energy, Molson, Starbucks, Bombardier, SAP, H&M, Intel, Ford, and UPS. Some newcomers made the list for 2014: Siemens and Oracle.
This year’s list notes a significant trend towards collaboration. Working groups and partnerships within sectors have been formed to address common problems through industry-wide sustainability initiatives. This trend is especially pronounced among companies in consumer-facing industries such as textile and apparel, food and beverage, and electronics, which are working together to address shared supply chain challenges, from working conditions to environmental impact.
Another trend recorded for 2014 is the growth in activity of co-op and credit unions that show strong sustainability performance, a trend first noted in 2013. In this year’s list, Sustainalytics reports that these smaller financial companies are developing sustainable initiatives throughout their local communities. In a related development, more green financing and green venture initiatives, including some from outside the financial sector, have been launched.
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