The growing significance of sustainability was furthermore acknowledged through organizational measures. Using corresponding organizational structures, the company manifested sustainability as a key management responsibility.
Sustainability Council 2001
As one of the first companies in the world to do so, BASF established a Sustainability Council in 2001 – and at the highest level with a Board Member as its Chair. In doing so, it guaranteed a place for sustainability at the highest level in the organization.
The council was the mainstay of sustainability management for the BASF Group and was tasked with creating the structures and tools required to implement sustainability in the company. With the help of this, BASF ensured that sustainability became a key management task and was increasingly established as a part of its everyday work.
In the early stages, the Sustainability Council was supported by an international steering committee (later on by several regional steering committees) in the worldwide implementation of its strategic decisions. The first Chair of the council was Eggert Voscherau, Board Member and HR Director at BASF.
In 2008, the committee was supported by an additional member for the first time: the climate protection officer. This was an even clearer expression of BASF’s commitment to climate protection as a long-term strategic task.
Continued Development from 2013 until today
BASF continued to develop its sustainability management and in 2013 established the Corporate Sustainability Board as the central steering body for Sustainable Development. Within this responsibility, it bore responsibility for the implementation of the sustainability aspects of the BASF strategy. In addition, the CSB defined sustainability goals for the BASF Group. In 2023 the Corporate Sustainability Board was dissolved as it had become redundant as today Sustainability is an integral part of BASF’s organization and deeply embedded in BASF’s corporate strategy and operations. BASF considers a broad range of sustainability indicators in all decisions and discuss them at Board level as well as in all relevant leadership bodies. The Board of Executive Directors of BASF took over the role of the highest steering body for all sustainability topics.
In 2013, BASF also established the Stakeholder Advisory Council to incorporate the stakeholders into sustainability management to an even greater extent. This external advisory committee is comprised of numerous international experts from science and society, and has the goal of contributing an important external perspective to the discussions held with the BASF Board of Executive Directors.