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Training courses

ESG (A New paradigm for business)


What is ESG and what does it mean for your business

The term sustainability is overused but at its core it is simply about recognising that we cannot have a thriving economy without a healthy planet and a more equitable society. In the context of COVID-19, the climate crisis and rising social inequality and populism, businesses are increasingly under pressure – from finance providers, governments and consumers - to show that they are playing their part in shaping a more sustainable future.

The pressures on business from finance providers is attributable to the increasing recognition that sustainability related risks and opportunities, which span Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, are financially material and can significantly influence profitability and long-term value. As a result, investors, banks and insurance providers are now evaluating companies through an ESG lens. They want to know that the companies they are investing in, lending to, or insuring, are managing ESG well. It is therefore essential that businesses understand the ESG issues that are relevant to them and can demonstrate clear strategies and policies to manage the risks and take advantage of the opportunities. Added to this there is a surge of new EU regulation around companies’ disclosure and reporting on ESG, intensifying the focus on the topic.

The bottom line is that being able to demonstrate robust ESG credentials is becoming a must-have for business. Having a clear sustainability or ESG strategy in place is mission critical for your organisation and its growth. This is about your stakeholders, your people and the future success of your business.


How to book
Bookings can be made via the Ibec.ie website. Please click here to make your booking.

Programme outcomes:
On completion of this seminar, participants will be able to navigate the jargon and emerge with a firm understanding of ESG and how it relates to their business. They will learn how better management of ESG issues can create business benefits, from improved risk management, to enhanced reputation, increased profitability, and better access to capital. A high-level overview of recent regulatory obligations will help participants understand what is required and what optional or nice-to have. And participants will be given an overview on how to develop their own sustainability/ESG strategy with real case studies and practical advice.


09.00 Welcome from Fergal O'Brien, Director of Lobbying and Influence, Ibec

09.15 Sustainability as a strategic imperative for business: Profit, purpose, survival
Speaker: Laura Heuston, Co-founder, SustainabilityWorks
  • Overview of global sustainability issues, trends and risks
  • Why sustainability is relevant for business from a risk and opportunity perspective
  • Overivew of stakeholders driving the sustainable business

09.40 Developing/Updating your Sustainability Strategy
Speaker: Karen Deignan, Co-founder, SustainabilityWorks
  • Overview of steps to develop a sustainability strategy
  • Overview of sustainability reporting frameworks, certifications and initiatives
  • Short case study

10:10 The E in ESG
Speaker: Conor Minogue, Senior Executive Environmental Policy, Ibec
  • Environmental policy trends: What’s coming down the track in relation to climate, waste, circular economy etc
  • Practical impacts on business: Greenwashing v genuine corporate action
  • Setting targets and metrics: What does good look like?

10.40 Break

11.00 The S in ESG
Speaker: Catherine Smith McKiernan, Group HR Director, Epic
  • Key issues and trends: DEI (diversity, equity & inclusion), decent employment, wellbeing, modern slavery
  • Practical impacts on business: Talent attraction and retention, engagement
  • Setting targets and metrics: What does good look like?

11.30 The G in ESG
Speaker: Patrick Downes, Principal Partner, Lionheart
  • Key issues and trends: Board diversity, board quality and composition, board’s role in shaping culture, independence, board literacy (tech, cyber risk, climate, sustainability and ESG)
  • Setting goals, values, targets and metrics: What does good look like

12.00 Panel: Learning from Industry Leaders
  • Dave Fitzgerald, Head of Responsible Sourcing, Kellogg Europe
  • Cormac Madden, Environmental and Sustainability Manager, ESB
  • Karen Coyle, Head of the Workplace Operations Sustainability, Health & Safety Team, AIB Group

12.35 Q&A

12.50 Closing remark

13.00 End

Upcoming dates:

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  • Course Fact File

  • Location:
  • Course fee:
    Member rate: €280
    Non-member rate: €320
    + VAT
    * Cost quoted per person

    Payment method:
    - Pay by credit card online here
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