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Author's profile photo Marilyn Pratt

Learning about Sustainability as a Corporate Strategy

Yesterday, April 21st, one day before the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, Corey Coley-Christakos (whose twitter handle corycc reads: “SAP. Education. Sustainability. Marketing. Proud Canadian”) and I headed over to NYC to meet with Peter Graf, Chief Sustainability Officer and Executive Vice President of Sustainability Solutions at SAP.   


This was no ordinary meeting as Peter was situated thousands of miles away in Waldorf and a group of us were able to meet with him via telepresence(with a great saving of carbon by the way).  It was also, coincidently the same day that Peter Graf announced the acquisition of Technidata where he stated “we now share the common belief that in the future all business processes will have sustainability at their core and this transformation is what unites our efforts today”.

As our telepresence session got underway, Peter explained that “businesses increasingly understand that sustainability now goes beyond calculating and reporting your carbon footprint.  It’s about capitalizing on the full range of economic, environmental and social opportunities to improve business performance by developing and executing on strategic sustainability goals.  This includes increasing revenue, identifying and eliminating waste, ensuring human rights in their supply chains and becoming more efficient in compliance and risk management”.


Before heading into the telepresence room, I had the privilege of chatting informally with Dr. Steven Stokes, who was a VP of Sustainability Research at AMR and is now presently a VP for Sustainability at Gartner.  Dr. Stokes described how sustainability is increasingly becoming the realm of information enablement. 



2:00 What should our SCN community being listening to, focusing on from an SAP  sustainability perspective

3:10 The overall organizational metabolism – outputs and inputs

4:12 Transformation from a society where energy is a driver to one where information technology is driving



0:10 SAP as a Sustainability Enabler

0:55 SAP taking the “noble” step of making sure their house was in order on outset

1:35 Contrasting the SAP sustainability landscape with other ERP vendors

3:40 Logic of ERP commandeering and ruling the Sustainability market

4:10 Discussing Technidata’s capabilities in the realm of sustainability 

4:40 Compliance isn’t the endgame – the future of the planet is business intelligence

5:50 Sustainable production = driving efficiency, leveraging information technology, leveraging innovation to build environmentally harmonious performance


More information about mapping the corporate sustainable future can be found in this AMR Research White Paper

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