Valore Sociale: for a New Business Culture
PROVIDING VALUE TO BUSINESS
Valore Sociale is a centre of excellence on CSR that was founded in 2006 with the primary purpose of contributing to the definition, dissemination and implementation - through practical tools and policy -, of a new culture of Corporate Social Responsibility based on economic, social and environmental sustainability.
Members of the association include representatives of some of the most important civil society organizations operating in Italy, academic institutions and public institutions. Among its founding members, indeed, are Action Aid Italy, Amnesty International Italy, ARCI, Fondazione Culturale Responsabilità Etica, Mani Tese, Movimento Consumatori, Movimento Difesa del Cittadino and Oxfam Italy, more recently, the italian association for the World Water Contract, the University of Milano-Bicocca and the association Acli Verona became members of Valore Sociale. The academic branch of Valore Sociale has agreements with European and International Universities.
Valore Sociale’s mission is to achieve a new definition of Corporate Social Responsibility, by developing practical tools for analysis, evaluation and communication of the socio-environmental impacts of organizations, throughout all their supply chain and sphere of influence.
The result is an activity which, moving from the great work made in drafting the Valore Sociale Standard, is currently developing in these directions:
- Development of an accountable business model to serve as a benchmark for companies to monitor and improve their environmental and social performance and, at the same time, which represents the ground for a Certification Process based on the Standard Valore Sociale.
This process, conducted by important accredited certification bodies (RINA and ICEA), is open to any organization, public or private, profit or nonprofit, which operates as a part of any productive or services sector. It grants the license to use the registered trademark "Valore Sociale", as required by the latest international standards in this area, such as the SA 8000 standard and the ISO 26000 guideline. Since 2011, Valore Sociale certifies also NGOs such as Mani Tese and other entities like Banca Etica to ensure the coherence between what the civil society asks to businesses and what itself does on the field of CSR.
- Social and environmental risk assessment of international business activities: we believe that working side by side business to build jointly ethical paths represents an important opportunity for a positive new idea of CSR, sustainable over time and virtuous for all stakeholders. Valore Sociale offers in depth explanatory risk investment packs, that will be different according to fields and geographical contexts and will be based on a preventive approach to the social and environmental impacts of business activities. Thanks to the expertise of its members in the fields of human rights, promotion of ethical finance and research, in fact, Valore Sociale can make an all-round risk assessment, directly involving local communities and evaluating the suppliers through the certification bodies. In the long run, this allows to build Sustainable Supply Chains.
- Scientific research, in-depth analysis, together with Italian and European academic institutions, of the non-economic impact of economic operations, with particular reference to the impact of business policies on human and environmental rights in the current global scenario. In particular, through its associates from the academic world, Valore Sociale brings in Italy the framework developed by the European Union and by the UN Special Representative on Business and Human Rights. This approach is carried out through specific initiatives and academic courses in universities members or partners of Valore Sociale.
- Policy activities on CSR, starting from the European and international debate on the development of instruments to assess the social and environmental impacts of companies' activities on their whole sphere of influence, Valore Sociale develops effective monitoring mechanisms which involve all stakeholders. In this regard, Valore Sociale also represents in Italy the European Coalition on Corporate Justice and other international networks on CSR.