Corporate responsibility is of key importance and has a tradition at ZEISS that spans over 125 years. As a company of the Carl Zeiss Foundation, responsible action is a top priority for ZEISS, and is a contributing factor to its long-term success – whether in regard to its employees, its social engagement, the environment, or integrity and compliance.
In autumn 2015, the United Nations adopted the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which extend to the year 2030. The private sector is also called upon to make its contribution to globally equitable and wealth-creating development within the limits of the earth's capacity. ZEISS is committed to this agenda and wants to contribute to its implementation. The company is aware that all sustainability goals are important and require support.
The Sustainability Report relates to the 2018/19 financial year and describes how the company contributes to sustainable development, the goals it has set itself, the structures it has created and the measures it has taken. You can find the current sustainability report, the non-financial report and further information on the topic.
At ZEISS, sustainable business practices have always been a fundamental principle underpinning our business activities. Ultimately, a commitment to the common good and solving important issues impacting society are part of our Foundation Company's core identity.
That's why ZEISS has been able to keep its CO2 emissions nearly constant since 2010 – even as revenue doubled and value added increased.
With the start of the new fiscal year 2019/20, ZEISS has adopted additional, concrete measures to further strengthen sustainability.
More than two billion people around the world have no access to vision testing and eye exams because there are no ophthalmologists or optometrists in their region. Since 2015, ZEISS has been teaming up with nongovernmental organizations, foundations and small local businesses in ther Aloka Vision Programme to deliver basic eye care to remote parts of rural India. Thanks to these partnerships, as well as user-friendly digital platforms and optimized supply chains, Aloka has made it possible to perform up to 8,000 eye exams per month and sell as many as 2,300 pairs of glasses.
More about the Aloka Vision Programme
The South African black rhinoceros is threatened with extinction. Conservationists are working tirelessly in the South African grasslands to save these animals, pushing their limits as they do. To raise awareness about the dedication of these conservationists and environmental organizations, the Rhino Conservation Awards were presented in South Africa in July. ZEISS has been sponsoring the awards since 2015.
In fiscal year 2015/16, ZEISS in Brazil held workshops run by ZEISS experts on microscopy for children and young people as part of the “Amplify! Science and Art for All” exhibition in Rio de Janeiro’s Bonucesso district. The exhibition is run jointly with the organization ArtBio, which presents scientific content in an artistic way and makes it accessible to a large audience.
At ZEISS in Oberkochen, Germany, there are four combined heat and power plants in which natural gas is used to generate heat and power. These are highly efficient combined facilities with overall efficiency as high as 89 percent.
The Code of Conduct adopted in 2007 is a mandatory set of guidelines that did not exist prior to this date and that govern how all employees and members of management within the ZEISS Group must conduct themselves. The most recently updated version was published in 2017. In the latest version, ZEISS highlights the importance of human rights due diligence and, to do so, explicitly makes reference to the labor and social standards of the International Labour Organization (ILO). Studies conducted by the ILO reveal a shocking number of people that currently work and live in conditions similar to slavery. Nearly 21 million men and women are victims of modern slavery. ZEISS explicitly condemns all forms of forced and child labor and takes proactive measures to ensure fair and humane working conditions worldwide.
ZEISS Code of Conduct (PDF)