Pearson 2016 Sustainability Report: continued vision for driving alignment between business and sustainability strategies

2016 report shows progress in first year of implementing Pearson’s 2020 Sustainability Plan to transform the company’s social, environmental, and economic impact

LONDON, 13-Jul-2017 — /EuropaWire/ — Pearson, the world’s learning company, today published its 2016 Sustainability Report, which highlights the progress made in implementing its 2020 Sustainability Plan and a continued vision for driving alignment between business and sustainability strategies.

Pearson’s 2020 Sustainability Plan is a five-year strategy to integrate social and environmental issues into every aspect of the business in order to drive growth and support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The plan is centered around three pillars – be a trusted partner; reach more learners; and shape the future of learning – that outline Pearson’s work to:

  • Operate responsibly, create effective products, respect human rights, support people and communities, reduce its impact on the planet, build a sustainable supply chain, and ensure strong governance;
  • Reach more learners by improving access to quality education for learners from all backgrounds; and
  • Play a leading role in ensuring education prepares learners for the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century and creates more inclusive societies.

“At Pearson, our mission is to help people make progress in their lives through learning,” said Amanda Gardiner, VP of Sustainability and Social Innovation at Pearson. “We strive to improve access to high-quality education and outcomes for all learners – no matter who they are or where they come from. Our 2020 Sustainability Plan is helping us to do this by ensuring we focus our business priorities on where we can make the most impact.”

Select 2016 highlights include:

  • Setting new targets, such as:
    • Ensure 100% of Pearson’s digital portfolio will be fully accessible to people with disabilities by 2020.
    • Publish gender pay details for Pearson’s UK businesses by 2018 and extend its reporting on gender pay to cover its global operations by 2020.
    • Roll out new Global Content Principles by 2020 to ensure Pearson’s content is appropriate, effective, and relevant for all learners, for the 21st century and beyond.
  • Increasing access to education, including by extending Pearson’s partnerships with Save the Children, Camfed, and Kiva, and launching the Tomorrow’s Markets Incubator to enable employees to innovate new products for low-income and underserved communities.
  • Reducing its environmental impact, including by cutting the company’s absolute carbon footprint by 13.7% year-on-year.
  • Fostering employee learning and advancement with Pearson’s online learning platform Pearson U, including a Technology Academy, to support the company’s digital transformation.
  • Developing cutting-edge adaptive technologies, for example through a partnership with IBM Watson to develop a virtual, personal tutor to improve education access and outcomes.
  • Showing how Pearson’s transformation to become a digital-first company is helping them to reach more learners in more places.

Throughout 2017, Pearson will develop more targets to help us deliver on our 2020 Sustainability Plan and will continue to report on progress against these annually in forthcoming sustainability reports.

The report, which covers 1 January – 31 December 2016, is Pearson’s second in accordance with GRI G4 Core. Pearson is a founding signatory to the United Nations Global Compact, and this report also represents its Communication on Progress (COP) and outlines its contributions to the SDGs. Pearson focuses on three SDGs — 4 on quality education, 8 on decent work and economic growth, and 10 on reducing inequalities — where it can have the greatest impact.

To read Pearson’s full 2016 Sustainability Report and learn about its 2020 Sustainability Plan, visit


Tom Steiner
+44 (0) 20 7010 2793

About Pearson
Pearson is the world’s learning company, with expertise in educational courseware and assessment, and a range of teaching and learning services powered by technology. Our mission is to help people make progress through access to better learning. We believe that learning opens up opportunities, creating fulfilling careers and better lives. For more, visit

SOURCE: Pearson PLC Global


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