CECP Accelerate Projects
Amplify your company as a thought leader while creating new insights to advance the field
The world in which companies are operating is volatile, and the need to advance the thinking in critical new areas within the social investment landscape and beyond is now a competitive advantage. It is an important factor to position companies within a range of stakeholders that will ultimately help move the needle for more than 200 of the world’s largest companies’ social strategies and the field as a whole. Accelerate Projects are one of the avenues offered to companies that seek deeper engagement and are looking to position themselves as thought leaders through sponsored research opportunities that fall outside of CECP’s normal publication cycle (i.e. Giving in Numbers Report).
CECP will bring to the project a team of experts in corporate strategy and corporate social engagement, as well as access to leaders at the world’s largest companies to ground the specific focus area research with real-world examples. CECP will drive the agenda of Accelerate Projects internally and assign a point person at sponsoring company to check in on progress. Further, CECP will propose a range of approaches to increase visibility of the research and mobilize action.
An Accelerate Project requires a committed advocate from within the company. If the primary sponsor company is open to bringing additional corporate partners to the project, CECP will disseminate the opportunity for secondary sponsors to join the project in a targeted way. Accelerate Projects are usually led by 1 company but could include up to 4 companies.
Exclusive Accelerate Project Benefits
Leadership: Demonstrate the commitment of your company in a focus area that guides your priorities and strategy. Establish your company as a thought leader in how societal investment is a core business strategy, among global company CEOs and Corporate Social Engagement professionals by identifying key areas where corporate contributions are most needed related to specific topic area.
Advance the field: CECP will leverage our network of leading companies, unparalleled repository of corporate societal investment data, convening power, and insights in service of Accelerate Projects, which will push boundaries to uncover new solutions for greater integration of the focus area into corporate social engagement strategies. Insights uncovered by Accelerate Projects are used throughout the years and repeatedly promoted through CECP’s communications channels. The research has the potential to prompt further exploration by CECP, such as through an Accelerate Community.
Peer Learning: Opportunity to be featured at the 2021 CECP Summit to give exposure to the company’s efforts, and obtain recognition from, leading global company attendees. There may be other opportunities such as roundtables and webinar to feature the work.
Global Exposure: The project’s output will be presented with CECP’s Global Exchange, a network of country-based, mission-driven corporate societal engagement organizations based in +15 key markets that represent over 50% of the world’s population and over 60% of the world’s GDP.
Media Opportunities: Tailored and first notice of media opportunities, including the dissemination of the Accelerate Project’s output and the dissemination of high-level findings through blogs featured in 3BL media and CECP website.
- Accelerate Projects help advance the field; the Accelerate Project’s output will be externally facing, with a specific target of corporate social investment leaders in large companies in the US and around the world.
- On a case by case, there is the option for a component of an Accelerate Project’s deliverable to be exclusive to CECP companies only. This is the exception and not the rule; if one of the objectives of the Accelerate Project is to test/pilot a specific initiative/framework/toolkit, then the content can be restricted for CECP companies’ use.
ESG Focus Area Generation
Companies can request research in a specific focus area. For example, Walmart Foundation came to CECP wanting to focus on the topic Diversity & Inclusion and asking CECP to conduct research. However, if a company has a high level idea of what it hopes to advance the field on, CECP can serve as a trusted party to help design a research plan and identify a specific area that represents a gap in current knowledge. The narrowed focus should overlap with an area CECP knows others in its coalition would value new insights (i.e. impact investing, Diversity & Inclusion, mental health, etc.)
Accelerate Projects – Past and current examples:
- Investing with Purpose (Sponsoring company: Prudential
- Making work more meaningful: building a fulfilling employee experience (Sponsoring company: PwC)
- What Counts: S in ESG (Sponsoring company: USAA)
- D&I in CSE (Sponsoring company: Walmart Foundation)
- Service for Impact research (new)
The gestation of these projects will be defined on a case by case basis. The timing from initial conversation to final approval will depend on the extent/specifics of the project. Overall project length can span a fiscal year; a sample timeline is below:
Q1 Sept – Nov 2020: Project launched. Proposal and agreement formalized. 1st virtual/in-person session with key CECP member stakeholders to narrow the issue of focus and define project success and hypotheses. Subject matter experts and existing resources consulted to ensure unique contribution to the field and for landscape analysis. Research plan finalized.
Q2 Dec – Feb 2021: Listening tour, research launched. Sources may include CECP data, data drawn from secondary sources, company interviews, and more. Synthesize, review, package preliminary findings.
Q3 Mar – May 2021: Assess and prepare CECP Summit updates and Accelerate Community launch. Write and produce public content. Summit Report out/panel and invite companies to learn about workgroup at CECP 2021 Summit in NYC.
Q4 Jun – Aug 2021: Findings released publicly; white paper/output published by Fall 2021.
Historically, each Accelerate Project is a custom proposal with contributions varying depending on the depth and rigor or research requested. Proposals will range from $50K to 150K. For an investment within this range, CECP has bandwidth to partner with companies in maximum of two Accelerate Projects per fiscal year.
For more information, please contact Alison Vultaggio.