Emerald and the SDG Publishers Compact

Emerald Publishing’s core purpose for over 50 years has been to champion fresh thinkers and help them make a difference so that little by little those in academia or in practice can unite to bring positive change in the real world. Sponsoring the Green Gown Awards is a real and tangible demonstration of this commitment as the awards recognise the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges.

Thankfully, sustainability has moved up the agenda on a global scale, being largely propelled by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. So, in addition to Emerald sponsoring the Green Gown Awards (along with lots of other initiatives and projects!) we have also recently joined the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Publishers Compact as a founding signatory.

The Publishers Compact is designed to inspire action among publishers and accelerate progress to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

Being committed to equality in its broadest sense, we have an established focus on mission-based research to support the UN SDGs, calling for research to be published that can help solve real world issues such as creation of a fairer society, supporting healthier lives, quality education for all, and mitigation of the climate crisis. Signing the Compact makes a clear commitment to the underlying principles of developing sustainable practices and acting as champion of the SDGs during the Decade of Action (2020–2030), publishing content that will help inform, develop and inspire action in that direction. Emerald has long sought to challenge the status quo in the market; thinking differently about its content programme and creating new impact barometers that more accurately reflected the modern research era.

Tony Roche, Publishing and Strategic Relationships Director and SDG Champion at Emerald, will co-ordinate Emerald’s SDG themes. Commenting on the Compact, Tony said, “The motivation for making changes, shifting cultures and driving impact is continuously dictated by the world around us, if anything heightened by the pandemic, we are all living through. Despite many different mandates and aims expressed by funding bodies, the UN and international governments, we all recognise that we are not making rapid enough progress on the SDGs. It is the duty of research institutes, publishers and funders to come together to meet these challenges with far greater urgency. Ultimately, we all have a responsibility to play our part in solving significant global challenges.”

Along with other signatories of the Compact, Emerald commits to:

1.           Committing to the SDGs: Stating sustainability policies and targets on our website, including adherence to this Compact; incorporating SDGs and their targets as appropriate.

2.           Actively promoting and acquiring content that advocates for themes represented by the SDGs, such as equality, sustainability, justice and safeguarding and strengthening the environment.

3.           Annually reporting on progress towards achieving SDGs, sharing data and contribute to benchmarking activities, helping to share best practices and identify gaps that still need to be addressed.

4.           Nominating a person who will promote SDG progress, acting as a point of contact and coordinating the SDG themes throughout the organisation.

5.           Raising awareness and promoting the SDG’s among staff to increase awareness of SDG-related policies and goals and encouraging projects that will help achieve the SDGs by 2030.

6.           Raising awareness and promoting the SDG’s among suppliers, to advocate for SDGs and to collaborate on areas that need innovative actions and solutions.

7.           Becoming an advocate to customers and stakeholders by promoting and actively communicating about the SDG agenda through marketing, websites, promotions and projects.

8.           Collaborating across cities, countries and continents with other signatories and organizations to develop, localize and scale projects that will advance progress on the SDGs individually or through their Publishing Association.

9.           Dedicating budget and other resources towards accelerating progress for SDG-dedicated projects and promoting SDG principles.

10. Taking action on at least one SDG goal, either as an individual publisher or through a national publishing association and sharing progress annually.

Clearly this really supports Emerald’s continued goal to drive change and create more equitable publishing practices that empower decision makers and influence real change. In 2018 it launched the Impact Manifesto led by Vicky Williams, Emerald CEO. This was followed by the launch of the first SDG open research publishing gateways, in partnership with F1000, early in 2019, to advance fully open publishing solutions under the banner of Emerald Open Research. In fact, one of the collections on the platform is in collaboration with EAUC so please take time to visit the free content available here: https://emeraldopenresearch.com/collections/eauc

Emerald are proud to sponsor the 2020 Green Gown Awards UK & Ireland Research with Impact – Institution category. Take a look at the finalists here.

Author: Sharon Parkinson, Senior Journals Publisher, Emerald Publishing

Delivered by EAUC