Study Identifies Best Practices of Sustainability Leaders in the Insurance Sector and Beyond
VANCOUVER, B.C., Nov. 10 - Companies considered leaders in sustainability understand their sustainability risks, opportunities and stakeholder concerns, and use their influence to advance sustainability progress in society, says a recent study by Strandberg Consulting. Commissioned by The Co-operators, the paper examines the evolving sustainability practices of 13 leading insurers and 4 non-insurance companies.
The study, International Scan of Sustainability Practices of Insurance and Non-Insurance Companies, identified 61 common practices among 17 companies considered to be among the most progressive in the area of sustainability. "Common to all these sustainability leaders are such practices as engagement of employees, clients, suppliers and communities; carbon management; advocacy; governance systems; and sustainable insurance processes," said Coro Strandberg, Principal of Strandberg Consulting.
"There are a number of organizations doing great work in the area of sustainability," explained Barbara Turley McIntyre, Director, Sustainability & Corporate Citizenship, The Co-operators. "By identifying emerging best practices both within the insurance industry and outside of it, we're hoping to learn from them and improve our own performance. We've made the findings public in hopes that other organizations interested in contributing to a healthier, greener tomorrow find the information useful as well."
The report found a wide variety of approaches to stakeholder sustainability engagement among the companies surveyed. In contrast, a considerable degree of commonality was identified in the areas of sustainability governance systems, carbon management, product development, sustainable investing, sustainable purchasing, and diversity management.
Within the insurance industry, there was a notable lack of reporting on how the companies approach underwriting for sustainability and sustainable claims management. Nevertheless, there are ongoing efforts to incorporate the effects of climate change into the underwriting process, and to reduce waste created during the claims process. Various insurance product innovations have been introduced, with climate change mitigation being the primary focus.
To view the full report, visit www.cooperators.ca or www.corostrandberg.com.
About The Co-operators
The Co-operators Group Limited is a 100-percent Canadian-owned co-operative with more than $36.9 billion in assets under administration. Through its group of companies, it offers home, auto, life, group, travel, commercial and farm insurance, as well as investment products. The Co-operators is owned by 47 Canadian co-operatives, credit union centrals and like-minded organizations. It is well known for its community involvement and its commitment to creating a more sustainable future. In 2010, The Co-operators was ranked No.2 among the 50 Best Corporate Citizens in Canada and listed among the 50 Best Employers in Canada. For more information, visit www.cooperators.ca.
About Strandberg Consulting
Strandberg Consulting provides strategic advice and facilitation services to organizations that seek to integrate social and environmental factors into their business models. A thought leader in corporate social responsibility, principal Coro Strandberg specializes in sustainable governance and sustainable purchasing, finance, and human resource management. For more from this organization, visit www.corostrandberg.com. For more information, please contact:
Coro Strandberg Principal, Strandberg Consulting