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Raising the Bar

Raising the Bar

Creating Value with the UN Global Compact 

Edited by Claude Fussler, World Business Council for Sustainable Development; Aron Cramer, Business for Social Responsibility; and Sebastian van der Vegt, International Labour Organisation
June 2004   240 pp   297 x 210 mm  
paperback   ISBN 978-1-874719-82-3   £POA

Alternative formats: eBook (PDF)


Review copies   Inspection copies

This book fills a critical void between support for the UN Global Compact Principles and the need for this support to be translated into the day-to-day running of business to create value and improve performance.

Please note: this title is currently out of print. However, the ebook version (PDF) is available to buy .

"unquestionably one of the most concise explanations available about the doctrines of the Global Compact"

"a key book"
John Elkington

This book, produced by a unique team of business experts and UN agencies, is designed to fill a critical void-between the support of more than 1,000 organisations for the globally recognised Principles of the United Nations Global Compact and the need for this support to be translated into the day-to-day running of business to create value and improve performance.

The ten Global Compact Principles cover human rights, labour standards, environmental responsibility and anti-corruption. But what does it mean to implement the Compact and its principles? How can the broad brush strokes of the Principles form the basis of management change? And how should companies establish benchmarks and performance indicators for implementation? For many companies, the journey is just starting. How can they ensure that they align with the Global Compact in ways that continue to reward their other business objectives? How should they embrace and capitalise on the Global Compact's potential for bringing together business, the public sector, trade unions and civil society in new partnerships?

The aim of this book is to answer these questions by providing a performance model clearly grounded on the total quality management approach to assist businesses in putting the Global Compact into practice. Raising the Bar collects together and categorises a wealth of corporate responsibility tools, good practice and case studies in a structure familiar to anyone aware of business excellence models and demonstrates that values create value-leadership commitment to the Global Compact can impact both the boardroom and the shop floor, public image and balance sheet.

Full of graphics and designed with accessibility in mind, the book will be a goldmine for managers looking for inspiration on how their businesses can be good corporate citizens and real proof that good business is also good for the bottom line.


This book is a leader in advancing corporate citizenship — practical, innovative and focused on results. It is a useful guide at a time when leadership matters most.
Henry A. McKinnell, Chairman & CEO, Pfizer Inc.

This book illustrates brilliantly the capacity of business to address the whole range of issues related to corporate social responsibility. It shows how business provides effective and innovative solutions by walking the talk and putting into practice its commitment.
Bertrand Collomb, Chairman, Lafarge

This book will help bridge the gap between principles and practice, providing companies with useful terms of reference to improve their social and environmental impacts and to begin to deal with human rights issues. It is a step towards addressing the Global Compact's most pressing challenge — the need for practical impact.
Irene Khan, Secretary-General, Amnesty International


The book's sub-title makes its purpose clear. The aim is to help the growing number of companies that have signed up for the Compact's ten principles to deliver against the implied promises. This is a key book. If a majority of signatory companies have not got well down this path three years from now, we should seriously question whether the Compact deserves a UN-endorsed future.
John Elkington, SustainAbility Radar, August 2004

This book will become a valuable handbook that sits next to the telephone of every CSI, CRS or Sustainability Manager. I suspect it may also be useful to the Communication Manager or the Crisis Communications Team to act as a source for reality checks and benchmarking. A must for every corporate library and an excellent reference work.
Eagle Bulletin 15.1 (July 2004)

... unquestionably one of the most concise explanations available about the doctrines of the Global Compact ... The tools described in the book give executives a road map to follow the principles with rigor and, perhaps, with more precision than some companies have managed so far ... the experts delve into a 10-step plan-do-check-act approach required to embed the Global Compact into the routine operations of the corporation...

It is a timely, necessary and an essential addition not only to those organisations who have already engaged with the United Nations Global Compact, but for those who have been considering it and for those who want to consider it.
The Corporate Citizen, Vol. 4 Issue 2 (2004)

... a comprehensive reference guide produced by a international team of experts.
Industry and Environment, September 2004

Win-win options are brilliantly summarised ... This book, in combinations with other available resources ... will act to strengthen corporate environment and social responsibility.
Natural Resources Forum, November 2004

From the UN Secretary-General


Why this book matters

Georg Kell
This item available in PDF format for free download     Download

The UN Global Compact’s Principles

Summary of tools and case studies

Abbreviations of organisations

The Global Compact: an extraordinary journey

John G. Ruggie, Harvard University, USA
This item available in PDF format for free download     Download

Part 1

1. The UN Global Compact: a primer on the principles

This item available in PDF format for free download     Download

2. Getting started: first steps

3. The Global Compact performance model

4. On stakeholder engagement and partnerships

Part 2

5. Forming a vision

6. Leadership decisions

7. Empowerment for implementation

8. Policies and strategies

9. Allocating resources

10. Processes and innovation

Part 3

11. Impact on employees

12. Impact on value chain

13. Impact on society

14. Communication of progress and results

Performance and value creation

Claude Fussler

Further reading