Top 10 Stakeholder Engagement Trends of 2017

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We are pleased to release Future 500’s Report on the Top 10 Stakeholder Engagement Trends of 2017. This is our sixth annual report. The report compiles careful monitoring and analysis of current events, combined with feedback from our diverse stakeholder network, to make projections and suggestions in environmental, economic, and social trends shaping business and advocacy in the coming year.

In 2016, our team anticipated greater corporate involvement in global climate politics, more inclusivity in environmental discussions, and stakeholder-driven transparency in consumer products. Many of these trends proved accurate with COP21 implementation, civil rights movements claiming a stake in conservation efforts and technology-assisted monitoring in oceans and water infrastructure.

Despite the changes to the political landscape, challenges for corporate and advocacy leaders remain clear. Future 500’s 2017 report shows how effective, proactive stakeholder engagement is more important than ever in advancing systemic change.

“Our goal is to provide a ‘field guide’ for corporations and NGOs to navigate an ever-changing stakeholder landscape,” said Future 500 CEO Bill Shireman.

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Top insights revealed in this report include:

  • Taking advantage of localized climate and conservation efforts.

  • Addressing elevated calls for social equity and a "just transition."

  • Bracing for more and varied obstruction tactics, including litigation and lobbying.

  • Driving private sector collaboration in environmental advocacy.

  • Identifying market opportunities in federal gridlock.

Shireman said the future of politics is uncertain, but environmental challenges haven’t changed.

“The mission for leaders in business and advocacy is clear: Collaborate, and commit resources and influence to build bridges to a healthy economy and a healthy environment.”

Want to dive deeper into any of the issues discussed in this report, or learn more about our sustainability and stakeholder engagement services? Contact Kellen Klein, Director –

For media inquiries, please contact James Glaves, Sr. Advisor - Communications –