In 2015, almost 200 countries pledged to meet 17 Sustainable Development Goals that aim to achieve sustainable social and economic development worldwide, contributing to universal justice and peace. These goals must be worked interdisciplinarity, and by all the agents, actors, and segments of society, each of them assuming its share of responsibility. Focusing on the impact that Sustainable Development Goals can have on companies’ communication and promotion policies we conducted a systematic review of the literature in the Web of Science and Scopus databases. The main objective is to understand how the existence of Sustainable Development Goals has influenced company policies, strategies, and communication and promotion activities.
There is currently a consensus on the idea that economic, social, and environmental concerns can no longer be treated as separate and independent (Bergman, Bergman & Berger, 2017; Lozano, 2008; Setó-Pamies & Papaoikonomou, 2016). Some authors even indicate that sustainable development should be seen as a nested concept, redefining it as the “development that meets the needs of the present while safeguarding Earth’s life-support system, on which the welfare of current and future generations depends” (Griggs, Stafford-Smith, Gaffney, Rockström, Öhman, Shyamsundar, Steffen, Glaser, Kanie & Noble, 2013, p. 306).
Among all the agents involved in developing the SDGs, in this research study, we focus on the role of companies, which can be great promoters of sustainable development (or the opposite) when they make decisions related to using and managing resources, investments, infrastructures, innovations, value generation, human resources management, education and communication to the consumers and the society, investor relations, etc. (Agarwal, Gneiting & Mhlanga, 2017; Firoiu, Ionescu, Bădîrcea, Vochița & Enescu, 2019; Fonseca & Carvalho, 2019; Lopez, 2020; Scheyvens, Banks & Hughes, 2016).
The 2030 Agenda establishes some priorities for all organizations and, from our point of view, it is a major challenge that companies must try to integrate into their strategies and policies. In this context, marketing and communication play a significant role in two directions. On the one hand, marketing policies reflect the needs and demands of consumers, and on the other hand, marketing and communication activities can influence the perceptions and attitudes of these consumers. In other words, since the SDGs were promulgated in 2014 companies may have changed messages, modified content, or included new target audiences.
Our purpose is to identify the actions that are being taken (or would have to be taken) by companies in the communication/education area to different stakeholder groups after enacting the SDGs, in order to understand their influence.
The conclusions of this study state that there is a consensus in the reviewed articles on the increasingly important role played by Sustainable Development Goals in corporate strategy and activity, and their effect in companies’ communication and promotion policies. In general, much importance is given to the quality of communication in relation to Sustainable Development Goals. Various studies indicate that good communication related to Sustainable Development Goals contributes to generating a positive impact for the organization. Moreover, “public relations” (through institutional reports) is the most widely used communication tool, while shareholders and public institutions are the most current audiences of companies’ communication and promotion policies.
Documentación de apoyo a la presentación ONLINE de la ponencia
Documento Complementario de Apoyo