From left to right: Judge Professor Mervyn E. King, Chairman, IIRC and Arved Lüth, :response

From left to right: Kyle McNally, Global Policy, Dr. Jon White, FCIPR, Chartered Institute of Public Relations, Toni Muzi Falconi, Senior Counsel, Methodos, Adjunct Professor, New York University, Emilio Galli Zugaro, Head of Group Communications, Allianz SE, Joao Duarte, Head of Iberia Communication Agency, Endesa, Enel Group Spain, Dr. Eva-Maria Nag, Global Policy, Judge Professor Mervyn E. King, Chairman, IIRC

From left to right: Thorsten Pinkepank, Head of Corporate Sustainability Relations, BASF SE, Richard Ellis, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, Alliance Boots Group, Arved Lüth, :response, Dr. Nelmara Arbex, Chief Advisor on Innovation in Reporting, GRI, Adrie Heinsbroek, Senior Sustainability Advisor, ING

First :response and Global Policy Conference at the LSE

"If Stakeholders ruled the World"

"Stakeholder Relations should be on the agenda of every board meeting", according to Judge Professor Mervyn E. King, Chairman of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) at the first :response and Global Policy conference at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). 

European high-level managers from Allianz SE, Enel Group, Chartered Institute of Public Relations, Alliance Boots Group, Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), ING and BASF SE discussed the rising influence of stakeholders on senior management.

Arved Lüth, Founder and CEO of the consultancy :response emphasized clear progress in the discussion: "In the digital 21st Century the board has to build and oversee stakeholder relations". Companies have recognized this development. However, the necessary change in corporate culture has only been implemented in pioneer companies. "Corporations that listen and maintain relationships with their key stakeholders benefit from better and faster decision making processes" Lüth stated.

Stakeholders such as customers, investors and employees grow in awareness of their responsibility. A higher level of transparency in stakeholder relations is critical for a major change. "You have to make it easy for an investor to buy an index without a bad conscience", Emilio Galli Zugaro, Head of Group Communications of Allianz Group argued.

The power of stakeholders has increased dramatically in the last decade. However, the stakeholder management structures of many corporations have not kept pace with this development. Thus, organizations in the 21st century have to find strategies to build effective relationships with their stakeholders and thereby to contribute to sustainable development. Not doing so runs the risk of losing their societal legitimacy, their “license to operate”.

"This conference was one of the rare moments where people talked about the company boards' involvement" Dr. Nelmara Arbex, Chief Advisor on Innovation in Reporting, of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) summed up. All participants agreed that the next conference title should really be 'Stakeholders rule the World'.

Please see herefor the programme and herefor the conference presentation (including Judge Professor Mervyn E. King's keynote speech).


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