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CSR.digital – Sustainably Competitive Kicks-Off on 2 July 2020

How can Small and Medium-Sized enterprises (SMEs) strengthen their resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic and exercise responsible leadership after the crisis? What leverages can digitalisation offer with respect to this? Moreover, how can SMEs successfully adapt sustainability as part of their digital responsibility strategy? The first-ever Centre for Digital Responsibility in North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW), which goes by the name CSR.digital aims to answer these questions collaboratively with economic, social and civic actors in the state.

CSR.digital – Sustainably Competitive is a collaboration between the CSCP and its networking partners, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce North Rhine-Westphalia and Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf. The new centre will link partners from sectors such as business, science, start-ups, civil society as well as chambers and associations. It aims to inform businesses and support them to jointly develop solutions for entrepreneurial challenges in the age of digitalisation, sustainability, and lately under changed circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus lies on the purpose of digitalisation and includes areas such as corporate culture, circular economy, digital leadership, responsibility in the supply chain as well as aspects of social entrepreneurship. During the course of the project, the CSCP and its partners will peak into the challenges and opportunities of artificial intelligence and ask questions about ethical boundaries of digital optimisation. The project will also look for concrete examples of SMEs in NRW that have already found ways to combine digital advancements with proactive steps towards a more sustainable business, be it with regard to climate neutrality, product innovation or employee engagement.

Economics and Digital Affairs Minister Prof. Dr. Andreas Pinkwart stated, “We are consistently continuing along the path we have embarked on with the topic of responsible corporate management in digital times. Digitalisation must be at the service of the people. I am pleased we are now bundling various aspects of digitalisation in connection with economic responsibility in a state-wide centre, offering companies a contact point in North Rhine-Westphalia and thus assuming a genuine pioneering role.’’

In order to serve its purpose of delivering orientation to SMEs in the complex fields of sustainability and digitalisation, CSR.digital provides vital insights by offering workshops, co-working with interested organisations in NRW as well as a newly developed Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), that will be hosted by the Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf.

CSR.digital – Sustainably Competitive is funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs of NRW via the EFRE fund.

For further information, please contact Patrick Bottermann