The role of companies in transforming seven systems needed to put the world on a more sustainable path.
The world is far off track to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and is failing on their defining principle to ‘leave no one behind’. Across most of the SDGs, which cover intersecting environmental and social issues, global progress is slow and, in some cases, even moving in the wrong direction. Companies play a critical role in achieving the 2030 Agenda, but widespread corporate support has not translated into the real, SDG-aligned action that is needed to put progress back on track.
Our benchmarks show that companies have a long way to go if they really want to align their strategies with the SDGs and the majority of companies are not living up to their promises and potential to play their part in achieving global agendas like the SDGs, Paris Agreement and the Global Biodiversity Framework.
This paper is the third in a series of publications focused on the seven systems transformations needed to put our society, planet and economy on a more sustainable and resilient path to achieve the 2030 Agenda.
The first paper, ‘Measuring what matters most’, laid out the seven systems transformations and emphasised the urgent changes needed. It provided the strategic framework that guided benchmark development and the identification of keystone companies – companies whose contribution is vital to achieve the SDGs, referred to as the SDG2000.
The second paper, ‘It takes a system to change the system’, shone a light on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and how the World Benchmarking Alliance (WBA) is operationalising these seven transformations through our benchmarks and engagement, and highlighted early findings, learnings and insights.
Supported by our most recent benchmarking findings, this third paper zooms in on relevant megatrends and developments related to each of the seven systems transformations, shows the transformations’ relevance in today’s world, and where company progress is needed most. It also highlights interactions between systems, showing that these interactions can involve trade-offs while others are more synergistic.Read report