Governance structure and strategy development for corporate sustainability

At Novozymes, sustainability is an integral part of the business approach and organization.

To continuously develop our corporate sustainability strategy and targets, we have established the Sustainability Development Board (SDB). The board is cross-functional and represents vice presidents from all key functions such as R&D, Finance, Sales & Marketing, and BioBusiness Development & Acquisitions, thereby supporting integration of sustainability in all key functions and geographies. Accordingly, the SDB plays a significant role throughout the description of the UN GC Communication on Progress principles covering Human Rights, Labor, Environment, and Anti-Corruption.

Based on functional business strategies and stakeholder insights the SDB sets ambitious short- and long-term targets for sustainable development across our value chain. These are reported on an annual basis in our integrated Annual Report.
The SDB reports directly to Novozymes’ Executive Management who challenge and approve the sustainability strategy and targets. Sustainability performance is reported to the Board of Directors on a quarterly basis, and selected sustainability issues are presented to the Board twice a year. Financial, social, and environmental results are reported quarterly, and achievement of performance and development targets related to sustainability is integrated into incentive programs for management.
To help facilitate the anchoring and continuous development of sustainability in the business, the SDB is assisted by the global Sustainability Development department (SD) which drives day-to-day operations. SD consists of specialists in the fields of business ethics, and social and environmental responsibility, including life cycle assessment.

Sustainability trend-spotting and forecasting

At Novozymes, sustainability trend-spotting makes a significant contribution to the annual strategy development and targetsetting process within the SDB. To provide qualified support for strategic decision-making and pursue an ambitious sustainability strategy, the SD coordinates the identification, analysis,  and assessment of  trends that have a) material business impact and b) relevant stakeholder concern to Novozymes. On this basis, the SDB makes both a qualitative and quantitative selection of the trends, assessing their relevance and importance to Novozymes’ business strategies. This trendspotting process is facilitated in close collaboration with each of our business areas and all our regional offices on an ongoing basis. It helps capture market opportunities, discover risks, spur innovation, and consequently maintain our role as a leader in sustainability.
Trend-spotting has always been a significant part of Novozymes’ general approach to sustainability. Based on our past experiences, we decided to make  the appropriate adjustments to our set up to enable us to work even more strategically and proactively with trendspotting going forward. As part of this process we have developed a materiality tool that allows the SDB to qualify its assessments of both risks and opportunities related to the selected sustainability trends.  

For more information on Novozymes’ risk management please refer to The Novozymes Report 2011.