On 25 September 2015, the Member States of the United Nations (UN) adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which is composed of 17 goals and 169 targets to ensure well-being for all. In Russia, global actors still take the leadership in integrating sustainability principles into business, while large Russian companies are picking up the international initiative and adopting best practices. The vast majority of Russian companies continue to perceive sustainability as corporate social responsibility and charity.
For Russian consumers, responsible business involves, first of all, decent work opportunities (61% of the respondents say so), production of high-quality items (45%) at fair affordable prices (41%), and concern for employee welfare (40%), which is roughly equivalent to global values. The main concerns of Russian consumers are inflation and high prices, economic recession, and having enough money only to cover basic needs, while environmental pollution comes only sixth, and economic inequality is placed seventh. Social and environmental responsibility of producers and organic packaging are the least important factors influencing purchase decisions of Russian consumers.
The study was carried out in spring 2018. After a multiple-stage research, the jury shortlisted 10 projects which, in their opinion, had implemented SDGs in their business strategies and operations to the greatest extent. The majority of the participants of the survey pointed out their commitment to achieving the following goals: SDG 3. Good health and well-being (30%) and SDG 9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure (30%).
Based on their study of SDG integration, the experts from KPMG and Effie Russia came to the following three main conclusions: demand for responsible products and services among consumers in Russia is immature; SDGs as an initiative have not yet gained wide recognition in Russia; communications containing SDGs are in most cases one-offs not integrated in business and communication strategies.