The Italian ceramic industry and the UN’s SDGs | by Andrea Serri
The Earth’s future depends on shared choices that must be made by all the world’s countries without leaving anyone behind. In its 2030 Agenda, the UN has defined 17 Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs covering social and environmental issues (on the one hand reducing poverty, improving education and ensuring water and sanitation for all; on the other aspects such as combating climate change and ensuring sustainable management of water and modern energy). The business world is likewise called on to honour precise commitments including responsible consumption and production, decent and fair employment, and the construction of better and more liveable cities and communities.
This wide-ranging collection of goals must be pursued by everyone based on a position of knowledge. The Italian ceramic industry is the first manufacturing sector in the country to have conducted a survey of the efforts that individual companies and the trade association Confindustria Ceramica are already making to achieve this goal. The report reveals that 55 actions are already underway, focused mainly on responsible production and consumption, innovation in terms of products and the production process, and workplace quality.
For more than 40 years the Italian ceramic industry has made sustainability the centrepiece of its strategies, based on initiatives conducted both by individual companies and at a sectoral level and with approaches that have evolved over time. While the initial aim was simply to reduce pollution, there is now greater awareness of all issues and areas of corporate social responsibility, including attention to and respect for all stakeholders including employees, customers and the supply chain.
Future efforts will focus on raising awareness of these goals and taking further action to achieve them while at the same time developing communication strategies – particularly initiatives such as Cersaie – aimed at fostering an appreciation of this excellence. As public opinion grows increasingly aware of the climate emergency, consumer preferences will shift towards products from companies that are attentive to the future of the planet.