Leading European Retailers and the Sustainable Development Goals

Jones, Peter ORCID: 0000-0002-9566-9393 and Comfort, Daphne (2021) Leading European Retailers and the Sustainable Development Goals. Journal of Sustainability Research, 3 (1). doi:10.20900/jsr20210001

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The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed at a United Nations General Assembly in 2015 embrace an ambitious and wide-ranging set of global environmental, social and economic issues designed to effect a transition to a more sustainable future. The United Nations called on all governments to pursue these ambitious goals but also acknowledged the important role of the private sector in addressing the SDGs. The aim of this paper is to offer an exploratory review of if, and how, Europe’s leading retailers publicly claim to be committed to addressing the SDGs. The paper reveals that seven of Europe’s top ten retailers reported their commitment to contribute to the SDGs, though the scale and the extent of their commitment varied. The paper also suggests that if the leading European retailers are to make a substantial contribution towards the achievement of the SDG’s then they may have to face up to four sets of challenges, namely the prioritisation of SDGs, issues about measurement and metrics, reporting and communication, and fundamental tensions between sustainability and economic growth. The paper concludes by outlining a number of avenues for future research.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Additional Information: This article belongs to the Virtual Special Issue "Corporate Sustainability"
Uncontrolled Keywords: Sustainable Development Goals; retailing; Europe; measurement; reporting; economic growth
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business > HF5428 Retail Trade
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Business, Computing and Social Sciences
Research Priority Areas: Applied Business & Technology
Depositing User: Anne Pengelly
Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2020 14:55
Last Modified: 03 Aug 2023 09:16
URI: https://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/8967

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