San Francisco, April 23, 2013
Future 500 today released its Top 10 Stakeholder Issues report. The report analyzes the core issues that will drive NGO activism in the U.S. and abroad over the next 12 months. Issues such as “extreme” energy, health and obesity, GMOs, and digital freedom present risk to all companies. “The issues we identified will impact all business sectors, but most directly Consumer Brands, because stakeholders expect and demand more from them due to their market power,” says Future 500 COO Erik Wohlgemuth.
The networked activist movement that came of age during the Seattle WTO protests in 1999 and blossomed globally during the 2011 Arab Spring, is stronger than ever in 2013. Fueled by a consumer base increasingly concerned about sustainability issues, activists are becoming highly adept at leveraging digital media to amplify their message and quickly mobilize grassroots pressure on companies, such as Greenpeace and Rainforest Action Network have done against a host of brands regarding their paper sourcing practices.
Similarly, the recent Forward on Climate rally, organized by 350.org and Sierra Club, demonstrated that the movement goes well beyond armchair activism, when 40,000 people took their protest against the Keystone Pipeline to the streets. “Ending Climate Silence” is Future 500’s #1 issue and activist groups will continue to ratchet up pressure on companies to take public action in support of efforts to mitigate climate impacts to assure long-term economic and ecological security.
“With all the top 10 issues, we see great potential for forward thinking executives within companies and NGOs to align around workable solutions”, says Wohlgemuth.
To learn more about the Top 10 issues and the risks and opportunities they pose for companies and NGOs, please email Kathrin Jansen for a copy of the report. (firstname.lastname@example.org)