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Toyota, Unilever, HSBC Top Ethical Reputation Rankings

Geneva-based Covalence has published its quarterly ethical reputation rankings. The main results across sectors are:

  • Toyota gets Best EthicalQuote Score across sectors ahead of Unilever and HSBC.
  • Automobiles and Technology occupy best progress category
  • Wal-Mart, Toyota and General Motors again show best Reported Performance
  • Emerging topics in Q2 2008 have been: Social Stability, Lobbying Practices, International Presence, Product Environmental Risk, and Social Sponsorship, while the following criteria have lost importance: Wages, Anticorruption, Policy, Environmental Impact of Production, United Nations Policy, and Eco Innovative Product (see below).


Best EthicalQuote Score and Best EthicalQuote Progress are given by confronting positive and negative news. Best Reported Performance is calculated by quantifying positive news only – it shows how companies report on their ethical performance without considering criticisms and demands. Some companies being highly targeted by activists have a low EthicalQuote Score while at the same time ranking high in terms of Reported Performance. We can assume that “ethical demands” (negative news i.e. stakeholder issues, campaigns, expectations) stimulate “ethical offers” (positive news i.e. initiatives, reporting, communication by companies).

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