22 February 2018

GCs must influence boards to drive sustainability

General counsel are uniquely positioned to take over the sustainability agenda, according to a new book.

Andrew Kazmierski

Influencing the board of directors is key to driving sustainability issues. A new publication by the Global Compact Network Canada (GCNC) with real estate company JLL, aims to give general counsel, board of directors, senior executives and management the tools to take action and deliver long-term value. 'A growing group of stakeholders are calling for sustainability and climate-competent boards, and one of the key allies of the board is the general counsel,' said Helle Bank Jorgensen, president of the GCNC. 'This guide gives concrete and practical advice on how to influence the board from some of the world’s most renowned general counsel and business leaders.'

10 Principles

The GCNC is the Canadian chapter of the UN Global Compact and has been active in promoting the 10 Principles of the UN Global Compact which include anti-corruption, labour, human rights and environment. This guide is part of a growing number of tools that the GCNC provides to help foster the capacity of the Canadian private sector to embrace sustainable and responsible business practices. Other tools include the anti-corruption certificate programs, sustainable development goals surveys and many others. Paul Greven, chief counsel, JLL Canada, and chair of the GCNC’s general counsel working group, said: 'Because of their skill sets, insight into the company’s operations and access to senior management, general counsel are uniquely positioned to take a leading role in implementing corporate sustainability initiatives, as well as persuade others in positions of power to do the same. This Guide is produced by the Global Compact Network Canada General Counsel working group. For a copy, click here.

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