(New York, 21 August 2009) – The Global Compact Office has released the final report of the most recent meeting of the Global Compact Board, held on 24 July at UN Headquarters in New York.
As the discussion of the Global Compact’s integrity measures was given significant time during the Board’s deliberations, the Global Compact Office has developed a brief statement seeking to clarify the role of the integrity measures within the Global Compact’s governance framework:
The United Nations Global Compact is a voluntary business platform focused on dialogue and learning around issues related to corporate responsibility. It is neither a regulatory body, nor a mechanism to monitor, evaluate or certify company performance. Instead, the initiative builds on the convening power of the United Nations to stimulate constructive dialogue and knowledge sharing between business and other stakeholders.
Environmental and social sustainability is a long-term aspiration that often requires far-reaching and complex changes of corporate strategies and operations. Based on this understanding, the Global Compact has welcomed businesses facing serious challenges, as long as their commitment to the Global Compact was made in a spirit of openness to constructive dialogue and practical solution-finding. In this sense, the Global Compact’s is to be understood as a guide, not a watchdog. The initiative has neither mission nor mandate to monitor and judge business performance. It cannot supplant existing legal frameworks or other, more refined instruments.
Nevertheless, the Global Compact’s governance framework, introduced in 2005, includes a set of clear measures to safeguard the initiative’s brand, protect the integrity of the United Nations, and to ensure transparency and accountability:
Through these measures, the Global Compact can make a significant contribution to public dialogue and social vetting, specifically in the following ways:
Ultimately, the Global Compact does not act in isolation; it is one critical element in a balanced and complementary mix of voluntary engagement, social vetting and regulatory power.
Download the Board meeting report .
Download the new FAQ on the Global Compact integrity measures , as approved by the Global Compact Board on 24 July.
Spokesperson, UN Global Compact