Supporting the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development
'If business isn’t sustainable then society is at risk. And if society isn’t sustainable then business is at risk.'
Group Chief Executive Officer
Since Mark Wilson, Group CEO, Aviva, addressed the UN General Assembly in New York at the launch of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015, we have continued to call on businesses and governments to work in partnership to accelerate the use of sustainable capital markets and help successfully deliver these ambitious targets.
A call to action for a brighter future
A year on from the historic launch of the SDGs, Mark Wilson was back in New York in Autumn 2016, responding to a report by the Brookings Institution that identifies policy strategies to help achieve these goals and supporting the launch of the UN’s Innovative Finance Platform. Our practical recommendations included:
- Creating publicly available corporate sustainability benchmarks, closely aligned to the SDGs, which give companies a commercial interest to make changes in their sustainability practices to climb up the rankings
- Establishing a Responsible Investment Standard – a ‘Fairtrade for Finance’, allowing investors and consumers to clearly identify asset managers who were operating sustainably
- Aiming to create a UN Resolution on Sustainable Finance, which can act to crystallise work in this critical area, including tackling regulatory short-term thinking and increasing levels of sustainable financial literacy
This work continues as we collaborate with a wide range of stakeholders to help build a supportive coalition around these aims and make them a reality.
You can read our report Money Talks: How finance can further the sustainable development goals here. ( . )
What's more, at Aviva, we are focused on helping to meet the Sustainable Development Goals that we feel most align with our business strategy and core strengths. We're doing this by using some of the bright ideas outlined in this document. ( )
Can you protect the planet with your pension?
Alongside seeking a good return for our savers, we want that money to be invested in a way that helps create the kind of future they wish to retire into. So at Aviva, we believe that responsible investing is Good Thinking, plain and simple. Not only can the investments we make support the transition to a low-carbon economy, but we also use our influence to encourage businesses to take a longer-term view and act now on the issues that affect us all.
As part of our work in helping to meet the SDGs, we are particularly focused on ensuring that people have the relevant information and awareness to understand how capital markets currently work and how by choosing how their money (e.g. their pension) is invested, they can provide a more sustainable future for everyone. To support this aim, in 2016 we created an animation that highlights the journey a pension contribution takes as it makes its way through the capital markets system and how individual pension savers can influence companies to develop more long-term sustainable business strategies.
Mark Wilson speaking at the launch of the Sustainable Development Goals in September 2015.
Read more about how we supported the launch of the Sustainable Development Goals.