SUSTAINABLE CORPORATE MANAGEMENT

The challenges are huge. Sustainability will change our construction environment massively. As the biggest producer of CO2 emissions and high energy requirements, the sector carries huge responsibility for future buildings, technologies, and uses. But it is ever-changing, cities must change, neighbourhoods define the local, robust environment, mobility is being reinvented, energy efficiency is the focus and the expectations civil society places on the real estate industry’s contribution are increasing.

The new demands: Modern governance is not only based on complying with the law, but instead also manages voluntary commitments and anticipates growing expectations. 

Stakeholder instead of shareholder value: Integrating all vested interests (stakeholders) into the company’s business policy without damaging obligations to investors (shareholders) is becoming complicated.

Good solutions need joint understanding in order to balance expected yields with achievable output.

Sustainable finance as a business model: The Green Deal will have a massive influence on capital allocation. Investors, financiers and insurers will adjust their priorities. Corporates are changing their user behaviour. Sustainability is becoming the standard. Wiggle room is getting tighter. Timely action creates options – only with ESG will the real estate industry continue to grow.

Reputation is built on credibility. Credibility is built on actions. Self-commitment is becoming the benchmark for sincerity. If personal commitment is not enough, the trade in CO2 certificates will increase. Greenwashing is the risk if transparency is not enough.   

Invest with an impact: A contribution by the real estate industry is needed. Pure profit-taking is no longer acceptable. Money is not neutral – ecological, social and economic aspects must be incorporated into decisions. What effect does the sector want to achieve in order to play a part in relieving civil society and built up areas?

This requires a new understanding of leadership in the sense of sustainable, values-based corporate management. The ICG is making important contributions here and offers practical tools with events, handbooks and publications.