Conference Day 1: 28 September


11:00 - 12:30 Business Leadership in Sustainability

This panel discussion will focus on sustainability leadership. Bold and effective leadership – from business, government, civil society and individuals – is needed to drive the sustainability agenda forward in Asia Pacific. The panelists will be asked to discuss scalable business solutions for increasingly complex global challenges and explore new strategies that position sustainability as a driver of innovation and value creation.

14:00 - 15:30 Breakout sessions

1a. The Asian Corporate Sustainability Leaders – Channel NewsAsia Sustainability Ranking

This session will examine the highlights of the Channel NewsAsia Sustainability Ranking and hear from the companies who top the ranking.   These Asian leaders will share their strategy and approach to sustainability.


The Ranking lists the 100 most sustainable companies in Asia, highlighting the Top 20 Asian companies as well as the Top 3 companies per country. Countries covered in the ranking include China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, and Thailand.


You can find more information about the Ranking criteria and the full listing of companies at:

2a. One year on - operationalising the SDGs

2016 marks the first year in the new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development guided by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To effectively implement the SDGs, a key first step is to move the agenda away from being aspirational at the international level, and to integrate it into development policies, plans and strategies at local level. This session will focus on the business approach to operationalising the SDGs as a framework for good business. We will look at what action companies are starting to take in line with the new agenda, seize the opportunities presented by the SDGs and measure their contribution towards the goals.

3a. When good intentions are just not enough - understanding the risks of bad community investment

Businesses are increasingly spending more time and money on community investment initiatives. The assumption is this is all GOOD.  Good for communities, good for the environment … but is it? Often times, we only paint a positive picture of the different community initiatives supported by business but it is just as important to be aware of what can go wrong, especially when doing good is doing more harm. Even the most well-intentioned CI initiatives can have negative unintended outcomes. More than a talk-show about ineffective corporate giving and misplaced employee volunteering, this session will provide CI professionals and NGO partners the practical tools to mitigate risk and embed safeguards for effective and impactful corporate community investment.

4a. Workshop: Shared value and social innovation

This interactive workshop will examine ways in which companies can design shared value initiatives through developing internal corporate social innovation initiatives. It will examine the practical steps that can be undertaken to start shared value projects. It will examine key principles of corporate social innovation and closely examine case studies of companies that have developed innovative shared value projects. The ways in which companies can develop innovation structures will be considered. Implications for businesses and their partners will be discussed.

16:00 - 17:30 Breakout sessions

1b. Sustainability driven innovation

Sustainability and innovation go hand-in-hand.  Fuelled by innovation, sustainability can drive business growth and bring well-known benefits – enhanced product development, improved reputation, risk mitigation and talent retention, among many. This session looks at innovations that improve the state of the world. It explores how leading companies push beyond their business as usual protocols and innovation boundaries to reap the benefits of products and services that create social and environmental good.

2b. Implementing inclusive business models in Asian value chains

Despite rapid growth and urbanisation in Asia, the region is still home to a majority of the world’s poor. Inclusive business is a powerful model the private sector can adopt to integrate the poor along their value chains, to advance the economic and social conditions of communities while simultaneously enhancing their own competitiveness. In this session, we will share successful experiences of companies working across the Asia Pacific region to create business solutions that include and empower the poor. We will explore the interventions that can be leveraged by a business at different points in the value chain, along with challenges in implementing inclusive business models in Asian value chains.

3b. Exploiting Wildlife: An illegal and unsustainable business

The commercial exploitation of wildlife is devastating ecosystems, reshaping landscapes and jeopardising the health of the environment. As a result there are over 10,000 species becoming extinct each year, primarily due to illegal poaching, land destruction and over extraction. Invited panelists will reflect on their organisations' perceptions and procedures to improve awareness, traceability and in adhering to international laws and regulations.

4b. Disability at work

Diversity in the workplace is becoming a measure of long term success.  This session will be a round table discussion to present the current available research on disability in the workplace, case studies and approaches to support business and employees to build an inclusive workplace and identify areas for future opportunity and collaboration.  Roundtable hosts will present the current state of play and examine approaches for the future.  Delegates will be encouraged to share challenges and engage in creating the future approach to disability in the workplace.


Conference Day 2: 29 September

09:00 - 10:30 Breakout sessions

1c. How to get more from your sustainability report

Sustainability reporting is no longer something ‘nice to have’, but is becoming an essential, and expected, form of stakeholder communication in many Asian markets. Stock exchanges across the region have started to enforce mandatory ESG disclosure, and many listed companies are now facing the challenge of preparing their first report. Whilst the initial driver for disclosure may be compliance with the minimum standard, there is evidence that reporting on sustainability issues generates significant business benefits.

This session looks at the value of the information disclosed in sustainability reports and the reporting process. Two Hong Kong companies at different stages of their sustainability journey share their experiences of how to unlock these benefits, and we will also hear from the investment community and the developers of the world’s most widely used sustainability reporting framework, GRI.
2c. Going beyond partnerships to collective impact  

Partnerships leveraging on different organisations’ expertise, networks and resources, are commonly described as the solution to solve complex development challenges. Whilst there are countless examples of such partnerships involving the private sector, often-times these partnerships involve just one business working alongside an NGO or charitable organisation. These one-on-one partnerships may result in positive outcomes but the impact is often limited, unable to scale and barely scratching the surface in terms of moving the needle on complex challenging social issues such as poverty alleviation. A collective impact approach is now increasingly seen as essential to tackle deeply entrenched and complex social problems. Collective impact is NOT about coming together to support promising new programmes -it is about coming together to identify the most important social outcomes, commit to finding best ways to drive improvement and closely tracking the performance of these outcomes. This session will explore the different collective impact approaches applied in Asia.

3c. Tackling modern day slavery and deep supply chain issues

Mapping and understanding company supply chains has long been part of any sustainability strategy.  This session will look at the changing legislation in the UK and US which has required companies supplying to those markets to publish and report on specific information relating to labour and human rights issues amongst others.  The session will examine approaches from mapping,  due diligence, codes and audit through to partnership, industry approaches and future solutions.

4c. Multistakeholder initiatives – challenges and benefits

There is a growing consensus that business, civil society and governments will need to work together solve the tremendous sustainability challenges we are facing today. Climate change, deforestation, supply chain risk and land rights issues cannot be resolved by individual organisations’ actions. In this interactive session, companies and NGOs involved in emerging and well-established initiatives will share their experiences, successes and challenges. The session will offer delegates a sample of the multistakeholder experience by inviting the panel and other participants to offer their views on dilemmas submitted by the audience.

11:00 - 12:30 Breakout sessions

1d. Shared value and development challenges

With representatives from government, NGOs and the private sector, this session will examine the role of shared value and inclusive business in dealing with development in the region. We will examine approaches for dealing with poverty alleviation and smallholder inclusion, gender and other development challenges. The design of initiatives that can create scalable development opportunities will be discussed. Ways in which shared value is actually shared in a way that benefits the poor will also be considered.

2d. Financing a sustainable future in Asia: innovation in financial instruments and services

Raising finance for projects which are socially important but have little appeal to hard-nosed investors has been a major challenge for entrepreneurs as well as governments and donor agencies. This also creates an opportunity for the private sector to develop innovative financing instruments that can have a social impact, as well as improve the efficiency of traditional aid and development finance. In this session, we will hear the experiences of pioneers in developing innovative financing instruments such as social impact bonds and green bonds. We will explore the recent development of socially responsible investment in Asia and future trends in developing innovative and socially responsible financial instruments.

3d. Climate change reality check – are we really ready for our future?

Climate change is one of the issues at the top of the risk leader-board – and this is true whoever or wherever you are. Countries, governments, businesses, and ordinary people all will be and already are affected, especially in Asia. Last year was a milestone year in the climate debate, with the historic 2015 Paris Agreement negotiated at COP21 to hold the increase in global average temperature to below 2 °C. International figures are also speaking out, from politicians like Barack Obama, to celebrities like Julia Roberts and Leonardo DiCaprio, and even religious leaders such as the Pope. Never before has so much attention and action been paid to this issue – but is it enough? Even with a limit set for global temperature rise, changes are still coming – do we need to do more? This responsibility falls to us all – are we really ready for our future?

4d. Workshop: Embedding sustainability in organisational culture  
An increasing number of business leaders believe that embedding sustainability into core business will drive revenue growth and new opportunities. Yet, most companies struggle to integrate sustainability into their organisational culture and everyday operations. This session will look into what companies are doing to develop a culture of sustainability, sharing best practices, key success factors and lessons learnt. An interactive exercise will help you identify what you can do to build and support a culture of sustainability within your own organisation.


13:10 - 14:00 Lunch session

Sustainable Peak Performance through Breathing & Mindfulness

Are you seeking calmness, peace of mind, joy, vibrant health, greater energy, positive relationships and fulfillment in life? You can enjoy all these benefits and much more, with breathing and mindfulness!

•  The breath is an extremely powerful source of energy that directly affects one's business performance. The breath is linked to one's vital life force or bio-energy.   A lack of this energy results in lethargy, irritability, low enthusiasm, and even depression.   Conversely, when the body is filled with this energy, we become more energetic, innovative and productive, experiencing an overall improvement in health and well being.

•  Participants will learn how to create peak performance using scientifically proven techniques. Learn how to get into the FLOW ZONE and effortlessly achieve Sustainable Peak Performance and increased focus. Skillfully respond to challenges & take advantage of opportunities.  Boost your memory, creativity, energy level, moods & more. Vibrant Health + Happiness + Positive Outlook

14:00 - 15:30 Breakout sessions

1e. Workshop: Social and Environmental Compliance in the Supply Chain: We can do better!

 Join industry leaders to advance the dialogue around ethical sourcing in the supply chain and how companies, factories, farms and other stakeholders can move beyond a compliance/audit model towards a partnership/performance model.   This is a working session.  Participants will be expected to work, to contribute and to share your experiences and views on how to drive impact and improve performance.


2e. Building smart, sustainable and liveable cities for the future

Businesses have the potential to drastically change the landscape of our cities by leveraging technology that promotes innovation, connectivity and the digitisation of public services and infrastructure. As the Asia-Pacific region expands to 22 ‘mega-cities’ by 2030, our cities will need to change the way they think about urban planning from waste management to transportation. In this session, invited panelists will speak to delegates on the challenges and opportunities that exist in building the cities of the future.

3e. Workshop: Balancing PR and CSR

Are companies reporting accurate and consistent messages that can be relied on? A recent NGO report on the apparel sector stated that "the scale of the communications operations in retail countries, compared to the impact or scope of the ethical initiatives they refer to, is, in our opinion, quite shockingly disproportionate”.  This session will examine current practices in disclosure, marketing and communications and examine if statements like that are accurate.  This session will examine the risks of over-claiming initiatives and activities, especially as investors look to rely on information disclosed and will take action against companies reporting  general statements on compliance that could mislead.

4e. Workshop: Beyond energy efficiency

Greater evidence on the financial and environmental benefits of energy efficiency leave little excuse for corporations not to act. The session will look at what can be done after you have captured the low hanging fruit. This session will make the business case for energy efficiency and share examples of companies that have implemented successful programmes. It will explore trends in energy management such as big data, intelligent automation systems, going beyond simply reducing energy use in buildings to producing energy and going beyond technology to changing people’s behavior.




Gold Sponsors


Silver Sponsors


NGO Scholarship


Lunch Roundtable Host


App Sponsor