Social Responsibility

Organizations are subject to great scrutiny and lobbying by their various stakeholders, particularly on issues such as the working conditions of their employees and suppliers’ employees, the materials used in their products, their relationship with the local community and the ethics of their financial activities.

An organization's performance in relation to the society in which it operates and to its impact on the environment has become a critical part of measuring its overall performance and its ability to continue operating effectively. This is, in part, a reflection of the growing recognition of the need to ensure healthy ecosystems, social equity and good organizational governance. Social responsibility is therefore a salient aspect of an organization’s journey toward sustainable development.



Social responsibility standards help organizations to demonstrate commitment to ethical principles and consideration of a comprehensive list of relevant issues. Social responsibility improves the way an organization is perceived, boosting consumer confidence and goodwill among stakeholders. Social responsibility standards complement organizations’ energy management, greenhouse gas management, resource management and biodiversity management activities, adding a dimension of social awareness to these activities and themes.


Trends and future work in Social Responsibility

Social responsibility rests with all organizations, but some activities have higher responsibility for members of society. The following examples have particularly high risks associated with them.

Fairground rides

Considerable experience is needed for assessing and preventing risks of amusement rides and devices and there are regulations for their safe design, manufacture and operation. Although these areas are well developed and stable, progress in the field of leisure/entertainment is very fast, which necessitates common terminology and classification of amusement rides, and a full list of harmonized safety requirements for different types of amusement rides and devices.

Standards are in development in ISO to establish uniform requirements for the amusement rides and devices at all stages of development that will not only improve the safety of the international community, but will manage the development of international standards in this area and influence the strategy of standardization in the amusement field.

Responsible investment

Socially responsible investing refers to investment strategies which seek to consider both a financial return and social good. It is also known as sustainable, socially conscious, 'green' or ethical investment. The topic is of increasing significance for the global business and investment community with various initiatives in progress, often driven by international financial institutions.

Social value and impact

Social/community engagement takes many forms, including financial donations, staff time for volunteering, and sharing of facilities. Measuring and accounting for these contributions is becoming more prominent but is inconsistent. As a result, many organizations do not understand the contribution they make, or see little value in it.

Standards have the potential to help organizations understand the impact and the value of their community engagement projects, policies and activities, thus enabling businesses and the public sector to optimize the social, environmental and economic contributions they make. Research and stakeholder engagement will allow us to map the possible routes to standardization for impact assessment of community involvement and social value creation. 

Links to standards related to Social Responsibility

BS ISO 26000

Guidance on social responsibility.

BS 8902

Responsible sourcing sector certification schemes for construction products. Specification.

BS ISO 20400

Sustainable procurement. Guidance.

BS 8904

Community sustainable development. Guidance.

BS EN 13814

Fairground and amusement park machinery and structures. Safety.

BS EN 13782

Temporary structures. Tents. Safety.

BS ISO 17842-1

Safety of amusement rides and amusement devices. Part 1. Design and manufacture.

BS ISO 17842-2

Safety of amusement rides and amusement devices. Part 2. Operation and use. 

PD ISO/TS 17929

Biomechanical effects on amusement rides passengers. 

BS 10500

Specification for an anti-bribery management system (ABMS). 

BS 65000

Guidance on organizational resilience.

BS ISO 31000

Risk management. Principles and guidelines.

BS EN ISO 22301

Societal security. Business continuity management systems. Requirements. 

BS 76000

Human resource. Valuing people. Management system. Requirements and guidance.


Links to other related materials and standards in development

BIP 2215

Understanding ISO 26000. Practical approach to social responsibility.

BS ISO 37001

Anti-bribery management systems. Requirements with guidance for use.