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How ethics and compliance officers interact with ESG principles

Patrick Wellens (patrickwellens@hotmail.com) is currently working as a Global Compliance Business Partner for one of the divisions of a multinational pharma company in Zurich. He is also a board member of Ethics and Compliance Switzerland.

Shaun McMillan (mcmillan.shaun@gmail.com) has a certificate from the University of St. Gallen Department of Ethics in Corporate Social Responsibility and brings her expertise working in diverse industries driving business process solutions across an entire organization.

In order to allow investors, consumers, policy makers, nongovernmental organizations, employees, vendors, competitors, insurers, and contractual counterparties to evaluate the risks and opportunities that will significantly affect a company’s long-term operational and financial performance, more companies have started to disclose nonfinancial information on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) aspects of their business.

Investors typically want companies with high ESG scores, as studies have shown that companies with higher ratings outperform in the stock market.[1] Surveys of millennial respondents (an age cohort that will be a large majority of the workforce by 2025)[2] show that many (nearly 40%) of them accepted a job role because the company performed better with sustainability and it was socially responsible.[3] Many respondents indicated that if ESG was in the company’s corporate strategy, it would affect their decision to stay with that company for a long period of time.

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