ISO 26000 Guidelines: Social Responsibility

ISO has launched the development of an International Standard providing guidelines for Social Responsibility. The guidance standard will be published in 2008 as ISO 26000 and be voluntary to use. It will not include requirements and will thus not be a certification standard.

There is a range of many different opinions as to the right approach, ranging from strict legislation at one end, to complete freedom at the other. ISO is looking for a golden middle way that promotes respect and responsibility based on known reference documents without stifling creativity and development.  Their work will aim to encourage voluntary commitment to social responsibility and will lead to common guidance on concepts, definitions and methods of evaluation.

The need for organizations in both public and private sectors to behave in a socially responsible way is becoming a generalized requirement of society. It is shared by the stakeholder groups that are participating in the Work Group on Social Responsibility to develop ISO 26000: industry, government, labor, consumers, nongovernmental organizations, and others, in addition to geographical and gender-based balance.

To learn more about ISO 26000, go to:  http://www.iso.org/sr