In a ranking of the most sustainable corporations in the world the ICT sector is well represented, with at least 13 companies in the top 100 list. (Possibly more, depending who you include). Heading the ICT companies is Nordic telecoms company TeliaSonera, in 13th place, followed by Intel (18), but with IBM in a relatively lowly 69th place.
Corporate Knights, a Toronto-based media, research and financial products company, formed the Global Responsible Investment Network to create the 2012 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World (the Global 100) list. According to the company, The Global 100 is the most extensive data-driven corporate sustainability assessment in existence.
The rankings are determined through a two-stage research process. Firstly the ‘Global 400 Sustainability leaders’ were selected based on their ratings from The Global Sustainability Research Alliance (GSRA) and on their performance on a financial stress test administered by Global Currents. Then the Global 400 companies were ranked against their industry peers on 11 KPIs used in the Corporate Knights research model.
Looking through the rankings, ICT companies in the top 50 (with ranking) include:
- TeliaSonera (13)
- Intel (18)
- Swisscom (20)
- Schneider Electric (26)
- Dassault Systemes (32)
- BT Group (33)
- Siemens (41)
- Logica (46)
Also included in the top 100 are Vodafone (65), IBM, in (69), Ricoh (72) and Samsung (73). (Of course it’s not always clear cut as to who is an ICT company and who isn’t – Schneider Electric might not be considered mainstream ICT, but is a major supplier of power and cooling products and services for data centres).
It’s noticeable how relatively poorly US companies do in this rankings, given the country’s leading position in the global ICT industry. Europe is much more strongly represented, and its good to see three UK companies in the top 100 (there aren’t very many UK ICT companies big enough to get into these rankings!).
Corporate Knights says that its aim is ‘to mainstream sustainability in the business community’. It wants to create a virtuous cycle where the most sustainable companies attract the most capital and earn the best returns. It also points out that these companies are models for the art of the possible, ‘living proof of how billion dollar entities can squeeze more wealth from less material resources while honouring the social contract.’