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UN Global Compact Russia

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Lise Kingo. Age of man

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Ms. Lise Kingo

CEO and Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact

Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact, Bachelor of Arts in Religions and Ancient Greek Culture from the University of Aarhus, Denmark; a Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing Economics from the Copenhagen Business School; and a Master of Science degree in Responsibility and Business Practice from the University of Bath, United Kingdom.

Long-term experience in ecology, health, human resources and sustainable development (Novozymes, Grieg Star Group, Novo Nordisk, the Danish Council for Corporate Responsibility, the Danish Nature Foundation, Collaborating for Health).


Lise is a beautiful and elegant woman in a modest suit with a scarf or collar. Her hair is always pulled back. She was born in Denmark, a small kingdom, which is associated with Andersen tales. Hans Christian was a kind ans intelligent author. Kind - as he wrote for children, intelligent - as he addressed to adults all that he wrote for children. He looked unto the windows, visited gardens, watched life in all its forms and told stories. Many of his tales are sad but they all make us look deeper into our souls and smile to the wise storyteller: you sre right, everything seems much better if you are strong and honest and learn how to love and believe.

Today Lise has a similar role - to call for love, inspire for joint work within UN GC goals. The main goal is to change the world for the better. Lise looks into it, opens the doors, and gives her inspiring speeches at GC stages all over the world: «Welcome to the age of man! Don`t be scared, the world can become as we want to see it». Business leaders and people should know that together we can improve lives of billions of people. We all have a motivation to become a part of a global movement. Speaking about her motives Lise shows a photo of her son.

It is an honour and a privilege to take over the leadership of the UN Global Compact. I have a long-standing passion for sustainability and extensive experience working to link values and principles with global business strategy and practices. I am thrilled by the challenge of taking forward the UN Global Compact and building on the strong foundation that ensures business is a force for good.

Lise Kingo about the most important things. Extracts

About Sustainable development goals (SDG)

Our current economic system has resulted in a series of concerning events — climate change & extreme weather, natural resource depletion, threats to food security, biodiversity, lack of access to arable land, fresh air & water, large-scale human migration, antimicrobial resistance, and a steep rise in lifestyle-related diseases. It has also resulted in unacceptable levels of extreme poverty and inequality in our world. The fact that we need to change something shouldn’t be in any doubt. The magnitude of these challenges requires a disruption of a symmetrical scale. It will take significant creativity and effort to foster the changes needed to eliminate poverty, reduce inequality and protect our planet. SDGs set an ambitious and transformative vision for peace and prosperity on a healthy planet and importantly, chart a course for how to get there. It is widely recognized that to make such radical and swift change, all sectors of society must cooperate, with businesses seen as integral to the plan. The private sector brings the creativity and expertise needed to help scale and develop the essential technologies and breakthrough innovations that can meet the 2030 Agenda. The recent Business and Sustainable Development Commission report (of which I was honoured to be a commissioner), concludes that achieving the Global Goals opens up at least $12 trillion in market opportunities and generates 380 million new jobs by 2030. There are major opportunities for significant innovation and new business models. The most critical message is that this is urgent, and it is not going to be easy. The 2030 deadline is not far away; we will need to disrupt the status quo now. We are at a period in our collective history where the changes that have been talked about and predicted now emerge as realities, and the challenges we have ahead of us are complex and systemic.

The first movers to align their businesses with the Global Goals will have a five-to-fifteen year advantage on this sustainable playing field.

About climate agenda for business

We are disappointed by the decision of the United States to leave the Paris Agreement, a historic global accord to combat climate change and protect our planet for future generations. Despite this setback, there is also cause for optimism. The Paris Agreement has activated an unstoppable momentum for climate action, with an essential role spelled out for responsible business. At the United Nations Global Compact, we have built a coalition of businesses taking action on climate. We are seeing private sector engagement on climate change grow exponentially across the board, with businesses everywhere committing to a suite of effective policies including pricing carbon and setting science-based targets. At the same time, investors are increasingly demanding climate information, while consumers are demonstrating a willingness to pay a premium for environmentally-friendly products. There is a clear and growing market opportunity for climate compatible products, services and investments. We believe the Paris Agreement sends the right market signals to provide predictability, unlock capital, drive innovation and reward responsible companies..

About gender inequality

Despite global recognition that women’s empowerment is good for business, the economy and society, many women of the world today do not feel equally valued. Many workplaces are too dominated by unconscious bias against women, and the global business community has a responsibility to take this fundamental problem seriously. So why are business leaders still holding women and the economy back? It's simple: their biases – which are undermining the future of women – are invisible to them. Adopting a mindset of a gender champion is a first step. If business leaders can shift from unconsciously gender-biased decisions to consciously championing women, imagine the possibilities for women to be treated fairly at work, rise through development opportunities, and increase the health and safety of both women and men in the workplace. Fortunately, women are already blazing the trail towards consciously championing equality and are taking their own steps to assume leadership positions by becoming their own bosses. With more women setting the example for what gender equality can look like, business leaders have an opportunity to watch, listen and learn what's possible with women leading business – and take action to support and partner with them for mutual and societal benefit.

UN Global Compact includes responsible companies supporting important values and principles. I am proud of my cooperation with the UN GC participants.

About human rights

Many companies are re-thinking their way of approaching responsible business inspired by the SDGs. This approach begins with taking stock of the dual realities of our world. First is the fact that business is recognizing, with greater clarity, its vital role in upholding human rights. Second is the grim truth that attacks on human rights defenders and civil society are on the rise. A growing and global human rights crisis is emerging, in tandem with—and to some extent intertwined with—the escalation of the refugee crisis, xenophobia and the growing wealth gap. Our world urgently needs business as a voice and a leader on the advancement of human rights—a voice that will both highlight the dangers of a closing civil society space and safeguard those who defend human rights worldwide..

Ambitious goals demand true leadership. We need visionary and holistic business leaders who can translate the Global Goals into business strategy.

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