Are the world’s institutions running up a trust deficit? Geopolitical tensions are rising and supranational alliances disintegrating. Popular unrest against elites is surging, the pace of change, globalisation and automation challenge employees across countries and industries, while climate change is testing the boundaries between politics and business.
Society’s trust in key institutions – with business sharing the fate of governments, NGOs and media – has declined markedly over the last years. CEOs have a low credibility among the broader population, and are short of a key currency. At the same time, technology is offering new capabilities to build but also distort trust, which may demand new ways for business leaders to relate to their stakeholders.
Trust is firmly embedded in the mission of the Business for Peace Foundation. With trust as the overarching theme for the 2018 Summit, we will look at how business leaders can address the trust deficit. To build trust in business, we believe that leaders need to step outside of their traditional roles and place sustainability and the opportunity to create value for society at the core of their strategy. We need businessworthy leaders.
Climate change is probably the most tangible global challenge requiring business to work diligently with society in search of solutions. We need to define and accelerate Climate Leadership in business. Can a renewed sense of trust enable us to speed up on climate leadership?