The concept of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) was formalised some fifteen years ago, based on a greater determination by private companies to self-regulate in order to comply with international requirements in terms of professional ethics and standards.
More recently, the concept of CSR has been extended to specific activities and actions by companies aimed at contributing to the social and environmental development of societies.
This wider concept of Corporate Social Responsibility, this determination to be “socially responsible” has been intrinsic to the vision, positioning and action of Sigma Orionis since its creation.
Most of Sigma Orionis’ projects reflect this approach, particularly:
- the many S&T cooperation projects between Europe and the rest of the world (particularly Africa and Asia) in which Sigma Orionis has been and still is involved, and which effectively support Europe’s foreign policy, bring together stakeholders in research, innovation and markets across continents and may ultimately contribute to more peaceful relations between countries,
- projects, especially collaborative research projects supported by the European Commission (such as RESILIENT or PERFORMER), aiming at taking advantage of information and communication technologies in buildings, districts and cities, in order to reduce their energy consumption and limit their negative impact on the environment,
- foresight studies such as those developed under the FLAGSHIP and PARADISO projects designed to provide a better understanding of the possible futures of our societies and of the role that information and communication technologies can play, or studies focusing on technical assistance and services for people with reduced mobility.
In addition to the CSR component which is inherent in most of its projects, Sigma Orionis’ CSR policy is also based on specific actions that are designed to create a stronger link between the “Ivory Tower” that inevitably constitutes an entity such as Sigma Orionis, and the world around it:
- traditional actions under a charter shared by all employees and, periodically reviewed: limiting printing, recycling waste and equipment, office energy management, adaptation of working hours to traffic flows, selecting suppliers who also have ambitious CSR policies, etc.,
- more innovative initiatives such as volunteering at local education establishments, providing company experts for local projects for free or funding from the company for volunteering missions of its employees (agreeing to spend part of their holidays as volunteers for projects in developing countries).