Company law around the world requires the directors of a company to act in the interests of its long-term success. Fiduciary duty imposes a duty of care requiring directors to act in good faith towards the stakeholders of a company.
Contrary to the short-cut logic that the directors have a sole duty to generate wealth for shareholders, it is well-established that for a business to be successful it needs to have regard to its customers, employees, suppliers, communities and the environment. There is over a century of litigation against directors that have failed to properly discharge their fiduciary duties and it continues to be costly with the stakes getting higher as expectations continue to grow around systemic ESG-related risks like climate change.
The current COVID-19 crisis underscores the need for directors to exercise good stewardship to build resilience and fulfil a purpose beyond simply short-term profits.
More resources will be added to this page shortly.
We have curated a list of resources that may be useful to board directors, this is not intended to be an exhaustive list, but rather an example of further reading that can be done to enhance board awareness of key environmental, social and governance considerations.
If there are any resources that you think are missing, or that we should refer to, please do not hesitate to email us.
The Embedding Project
UN Global Compact