Agenda 2030 compass for increased societal value

Sweden is a good place for steel making. Swedish steel products play a vital role when it comes to generating societal or community value around the world and in different spheres. In its industry-wide vision for 2050, Sweden’s steel industry has established the goal that only products of value to the community will leave the steel plants. Together with the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) and the steel companies, Jernkontoret is carrying out research into the concept of societal value and how the steel industry can achieve its bold vision for the future.  An Agenda 2030 compass is currently being developed, a tool for guiding development in line with the UN's global goals and for increased societal value.

Only products of value to the community will leave the companies

By the year 2050, only products of value to the community will leave the steel companies. This is in line with the third commitment of the steel industry’s vision for 2050. Both products that create societal value (operations and products) and societal value itself are relative concepts, it is true. They need to be interpreted in both the shorter and longer term, regionally and globally as well as in respect of the products and processes themselves. The work to implement the third commitment is carried out on the basis of the following convictions: that focusing on value to the community strengthens the competitiveness of the Swedish steel industry; that Swedish steel products play a significant role in creating societal value globally and, last but not least, that Sweden is a particularly good place to make steel.

Working together to increase steel’s societal value

To find out more about how the concept of societal value can be applied and understood, Jernkontoret, the steel industry and SEI, in 2015, initiated a two-year collaboration project. The purpose was to generate a deeper understanding of the concept of societal value and also of what the steel industry and other players must do to contribute to a sustainable community and to societal value creation. The project resulted in, among other things, a proposal for ten strategic action points for community value and a scenario report for 2050

The year 2016 saw the start of a new two-year project, based on the action plan to develop a "societal value compass" in order to steer the industry towards the community value goals of 2050, using as a starting point the UN’s 17 global goals and the Agenda 2030. A prototype of an Agenda 2030 compass was presented in June 2018.

In late 2018, a project was granted within one of Vinnova's strategic innovation programs Metallic Materials, to take the prototype to an internationally useful full-scale model. The project will run until 2022.
UN's Global goals

Under the hash tag #societalvalue one can find various perspectives and comments from 2015 and more recently. Further down the page you can find a number of films connected with different occasions when discussions have centred on the concept of societal value.

Read about Project 1

Read about Project 2

Read about Project 3

Why we are conducting a research project into societal value

By offering products that everyone needs in their daily life, a sustainable future is ensured. The steel industry plays an important role in Sweden’s development. Through its export performance, the industry contributes to Sweden’s high standard of living. The development of the steel industry and the wider community are indeed affected by external factors such as globalisation, individualisation, digitalisation, urbanisation and climate change. These factors must be taken into account when business people and politicians (public–private platforms) actively create preconditions for a process and product development that can make a contribution to societal value.

In the steel industry’s vision for 2050 there is a commitment to leadership in technical development, the creative development of individuals and societal value creation. The different stakeholders who ensure their activities deliver societal value will find their activities justified as ever more discriminating customers and consumers make ever higher demands.

The project with SEI is run jointly in a co-creation process, where the respective organisation’s knowledge is utilised and combined with invited participants from across society as a whole; the academic world, politics, public authorities and companies.

See also: Meeting the UN Global Goals, Cross-linkages and examples from the Swedish steel industry