News & Views

Business leaders meet to rebuild trust in corporate Australia

In the wake of the Hayne Recommendations, the Global Compact Network Australia (GCNA) is hosting 250 delegates from some of Australia’s leading businesses at its inaugural conference from 30 April to 1 May, to discuss how to rebuild trust in corporate Australia.

GCNA Executive Director Kylie Porter said the expectation for leadership has shifted away from government institutions to business, and more specifically business leaders. “It is crucial that businesses come together to discuss how they will demonstrate that they have a social license to operate while simultaneously acting in the best interest of their shareholders,” she said.

“At the conference we will discuss how companies have the opportunity to rebuild trust through sustainable and responsible business practices, and how businesses can shift their culture to be one founded on ethics and purpose over profit.”

Participants will hear from renowned speakers including Gillian Triggs (former President of the Australian Human Rights Commission), Professor John Ruggie (former special adviser to UN General Secretary, Kofi Annan and author of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights) and Emmanuel Lulin (Chief Ethics Officer of L’OREAL). The speakers will address:

  • the need for business leaders to speak out on social and environmental issues and challenge existing business norms;
  • rebuilding trust through a human rights lens and the social component of ESG; and
  • what the ethics revolution means for businesses in Australia and globally.

Trust will also be explored through the lens of businesses becoming leading authorities on policy debates, such as anti-corruption regulation and climate change, and on topics such as trust in digital technology, the role of the circular economy and the power of Indigenous reconciliation.

“Australian corporates need to demonstrate how they are shifting their focus to building robust cultures that drive purpose and enable organisations to thrive. We hope that the GCNA’s conference will allow business leaders to understand what levers they can pull to balance the pillars of responsible business and ethics with the expectations of profit to regain trust in corporate Australia,” said David Cooke, Chair of the GCNA.

See the full conference program here http://www.unglobalcompact.org.au/2019conference

Venue: The Arts Centre, 100 St Kilda Road, Melbourne

Date: 12pm on 30 April to 5.30pm on 1 May 2019

Media spokesperson: GCNA Executive Director Kylie Porter: 0448 321 528