Which are the best international CSR awards and green awards to enter?

Which are the best international CSR awards and green awards to enter?

Chris Robinson

Managing Director, Boost

How to choose Responsible Business Awards and Awards for Sustainability

Would you say that your business is more ethical or sustainable than your competitors or peers? If so then you deserve to be recognised for this, and benefit from this when competing for customers and talent. An increasingly popular area for awards internationally is CSR – Corporate Social Responsibility. These CSR awards typically cover just four themes, as defined by the British non-profit organisation ‘Business in the Community’:

  • Marketplace (responsible and ethical sales & marketing, and responsible supply chain)
  • Community
  • Environment
  • Workplace (encompassing responsible workplaces, safety, wellbeing, diversity and inclusion)

Some awards focus on a specific theme, like environment awards or community awards, but the generalist CSR awards tend to have separate categories covering these. Rather than just list the different awards you can consider, here is a list of different scenarios, and the corresponding awards you should think about if you fit any scenario listed below.

You have a business or department which is ethical in its entirety

Here the best fits are:

  • The Ethical Corporation Responsible Business Awards: These awards (deadline 22nd June) are run from England by the London-based Ethical Corporation. They provide an excellent choice of categories for whole business or individual functions such as marketing and supply chain. They focus on the private sector but have a Social Enterprise of the year category. The awards dinner is held at a highly prestigious London venue in October.
  • The Seal Award for Organizational Impact: These awards previously have had an end of September deadline and applicants are judged on benchmark metrics across Corporate Governance, Corporate Strategy, Supply Chain ESG/CSR, Disclosure and Accountability, Performance, and Corporate Citizenship and Engagement. So these are more like an accreditation process than a “and the winners is…” single winner per category award scheme. Winners are split into regions, but there doesn’t have to be a winner in each region, it depends on whether the entries are strong enough (i.e. if all the entries in Japan are weak, then there would be no winners in that region).
  • The World’s Most Ethical Companies: As the name suggests, these are for the business as a whole. Last year their deadline was 8th November. Companies can apply throughout the year, but to be included in the current year’s program you need to apply by 1st December. Here the rating process is based upon their unique ‘Ethics Quotient’ system, and awards are given out based on 26 industry sectors from Aerospace to Wholesale.
  • The Golden Peacock Awards: These awards are run from New Delhi in India, and are a bit of an audit of a business’ approach to CSR. They have a range of national and global categories to choose from, and the deadline last year was 15th December. 

Chris Robinson

Managing Director, Boost

Choosing Responsible Business Awards and Awards for Sustainability

Would you say that your business is more ethical or sustainable than your competitors or peers? If so then you deserve to be recognised for this, and benefit from this when competing for customers and talent. An increasingly popular area for awards internationally is CSR – Corporate Social Responsibility. These CSR awards typically cover just four themes, as defined by the British non-profit organisation ‘Business in the Community’:

  • Marketplace (responsible and ethical sales & marketing, and responsible supply chain)
  • Community
  • Environment
  • Workplace (encompassing responsible workplaces, safety, wellbeing, diversity and inclusion)

Some awards focus on a specific theme, like environment awards or community awards, but the generalist CSR awards tend to have separate categories covering these. Rather than just list the different awards you can consider, here is a list of different scenarios, and the corresponding awards you should think about if you fit any scenario listed below.

You have a business or department which is ethical in its entirety

Here the best fits are:

  • The Ethical Corporation Responsible Business Awards: These awards (deadline 22nd June) are run from England by the London-based Ethical Corporation. They provide an excellent choice of categories for whole business or individual functions such as marketing and supply chain. They focus on the private sector but have a Social Enterprise of the year category. The awards dinner is held at a highly prestigious London venue in October.
  • The Seal Award for Organizational Impact: These awards previously have had an end of September deadline and applicants are judged on benchmark metrics across Corporate Governance, Corporate Strategy, Supply Chain ESG/CSR, Disclosure and Accountability, Performance, and Corporate Citizenship and Engagement. So these are more like an accreditation process than a “and the winners is…” single winner per category award scheme. Winners are split into regions, but there doesn’t have to be a winner in each region, it depends on whether the entries are strong enough (i.e. if all the entries in Japan are weak, then there would be no winners in that region).
  • The World’s Most Ethical Companies: As the name suggests, these are for the business as a whole. Last year their deadline was 8th November. Companies can apply throughout the year, but to be included in the current year’s program you need to apply by 1st December. Here the rating process is based upon their unique ‘Ethics Quotient’ system, and awards are given out based on 26 industry sectors from Aerospace to Wholesale.
  • The Golden Peacock Awards: These awards are run from New Delhi in India, and are a bit of an audit of a business’ approach to CSR. They have a range of national and global categories to choose from, and the deadline last year was 15th December. 

You have a project within your business that is very environmentally sustainable

There are no shortage of awards that focus on initiatives, projects and campaigns. Our favourites are:

  • The Green Apple Awards: If your project could be described as “green” in nature, then there are award schemes run by The Green Organisation which are worth considering:
    1. The Green Apple Awards for Environmental Best Practice: These awards have a deadline of 31st July with categories for types of project like “Habitat & Diversity” and “Energy Management” alongside a long list of specific industry sectors like “Automotive Industry” and “Banking/Finance/Insurance”. Multiple awards are given out for each category.
    2. The Green World Awards: These are awards for environmental best practice by companies, organisations and governments with a deadline of 30th June. The categories fall into two camps: Environmental Improvement and Sustainable Development. Each has a range of subcategories. You are required to write 300 words to summarise your entry and you then have another 2,000 words to provide the details and results. 
queen's award

“Gaining recognition for your sustainable or environmentally-focussed product, project or campaign could prove invaluable to its future development”

  • The Seal Award For Environmental Initiatives: If you have a specific environmental project which can bear up under scrutiny, then these awards, with their end of September deadline enable applicants to be assessed in a manner more akin (like the SEAL Awards mentioned earlier) to an accreditation process than most awards schemes. Entries are judged against the following criteria: impact metrics, innovation/uniqueness of the initiative, sharing of insights and best practices, and investment of organizational leadership capital.
  • The Rushlight Awards: If your project involves something to do with “clean tech” then you should consider these awards. The previous deadline was 30th November, and they feature 30 categories focusing on reducing the environmental impact of energy generation and waste management.
  • The Cynopsis Social Good Awards: If your project involves “utilizing the media industry as a tool for social good” then these international awards would be a great option. The previous deadline was 27th December. There are 15 campaign categories, 8 content categories, 6 people/partnerships categories, and 4 categories for individuals.
  • The Global Good Awards: These excellent awards which really set an example in terms of an ethically-run awards scheme, are UK focused but they have a “Best International Sustainability Project” category that you might want to consider. They have a mid February deadline each year and a seminar-style awards event in London.
  • The International CSR Excellence Awards: These awards are squarely aimed at the international community and have a massive 42 categories, each of which can have multiple gold winners and a “champion”. They are free to enter until late March, then paid entries until the final deadline which was 31st May in 2018. The ceremony is held in London, but, being international, it is not expected that all finalists will attend.

You have a project within your business that is very environmentally sustainable

There are no shortage of awards that focus on initiatives, projects and campaigns. Our favourites are:

  • The Green Apple Awards: If your project could be described as “green” in nature, then there are award schemes run by The Green Organisation which are worth considering:
    1. The Green Apple Awards for Environmental Best Practice: These awards have a deadline of 31st July with categories for types of project like “Habitat & Diversity” and “Energy Management” alongside a long list of specific industry sectors like “Automotive Industry” and “Banking/Finance/Insurance”. Multiple awards are given out for each category.
    2. The Green World Awards: These are awards for environmental best practice by companies, organisations and governments with a deadline of 30th June. The categories fall into two camps: Environmental Improvement and Sustainable Development. Each has a range of subcategories. You are required to write 300 words to summarise your entry and you then have another 2,000 words to provide the details and results. 
queen's award

“Gaining recognition for your sustainable or environmentally-focussed product, project or campaign could prove invaluable to its future development”

  • The Seal Award For Environmental Initiatives: If you have a specific environmental project which can bear up under scrutiny, then these awards, with their end of September deadline enable applicants to be assessed in a manner more akin (like the SEAL Awards mentioned earlier) to an accreditation process than most awards schemes. Entries are judged against the following criteria: impact metrics, innovation/uniqueness of the initiative, sharing of insights and best practices, and investment of organizational leadership capital.
  • The Rushlight Awards: If your project involves something to do with “clean tech” then you should consider these awards. The previous deadline was 30th November, and they feature 30 categories focusing on reducing the environmental impact of energy generation and waste management.
  • The Cynopsis Social Good Awards: If your project involves “utilizing the media industry as a tool for social good” then these international awards would be a great option. The previous deadline was 27th December. There are 15 campaign categories, 8 content categories, 6 people/partnerships categories, and 4 categories for individuals.
  • The Global Good Awards: These excellent awards which really set an example in terms of an ethically-run awards scheme, are UK focused but they have a “Best International Sustainability Project” category that you might want to consider. They have a mid February deadline each year and a seminar-style awards event in London.
  • The International CSR Excellence Awards: These awards are squarely aimed at the international community and have a massive 42 categories, each of which can have multiple gold winners and a “champion”. They are free to enter until late March, then paid entries until the final deadline which was 31st May in 2018. The ceremony is held in London, but, being international, it is not expected that all finalists will attend.

What if you are doing community or charity work for philanthropic reasons only

It might surprise you to know that most CSR awards require evidence of business benefits as well a societal benefits. This is where most applications fall short. However, if your work is absolutely only for societal benefits and you are not measuring the business benefits, then there is an international award for you: The Communitas Awards. This scheme doesn’t have an awards dinner as such, but it will assess your story and, if worthy, award you a lovely trophy and logo in recognition of it. There are 18 published categories but you can suggest your own too.

What if you are doing community or charity work for philanthropic reasons only

It might surprise you to know that most CSR awards require evidence of business benefits as well a societal benefits. This is where most applications fall short. However, if your work is absolutely only for societal benefits and you are not measuring the business benefits, then there is an international award for you: The Communitas Awards. This scheme doesn’t have an awards dinner as such, but it will assess your story and, if worthy, award you a lovely trophy and logo in recognition of it. There are 18 published categories but you can suggest your own too.

What next?

These are just a selection of the most relevant International CSR Awards, I hope you find them useful. I recommend browsing our database of over 3,500 business awards on our International Awards List website or for UK-based award schemes, try UK Awards List. Many of the other industry sector awards include categories for CSR, Sustainability and Environmental initiatives, campaigns and projects.   

What next?

These are just a selection of the most relevant International CSR Awards, I hope you find them useful. I recommend browsing our database of over 3,500 business awards on our International Awards List website or for UK-based award schemes, try UK Awards List. Many of the other industry sector awards include categories for CSR, Sustainability and Environmental initiatives, campaigns and projects.

Boost – a helping hand entering international CSR awards

Boost is the world’s first and largest award entry consultancy, having helped clients, from SMEs to Multinationals, win over 1,100 credible business awards including many international CSR awards, Environmental awards and awards for Sustainability. Increase your chances of success significantly – call Boost on +44(0)1273 258703 today for a no-obligation chat about awards and how we can help you win them or contact us via email. (C) This article was written by Chris Robinson and is the intellectual property of award entry consultants Boost Awards.

boost award entry writers

Boost – a helping hand entering international CSR awards

Boost is the world’s first and largest award entry consultancy, having helped clients, from SMEs to Multinationals, win over 1,100 credible business awards including many international CSR awards, Environmental awards and awards for Sustainability. Increase your chances of success significantly – call Boost on +44(0)1273 258703 today for a no-obligation chat about awards and how we can help you win them or contact us via email. (C) This article was written by Chris Robinson and is the intellectual property of award entry consultants Boost Awards.

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