We believe the technology we provide enables both environmental and societal benefits to individuals, industries and society.
Our approach to sustainability centers around our new company purpose, creating technology that helps the world act together. We focus on the impact of our technology and digitalization on the world. We maximize our positive impact on society, people and the planet - our handprint. But we also ensure we work continually to minimize our potential negative impact – our footprint. This approach is built on a foundation of responsible, ethical business practices.
Our focus areas where we can have the greatest impact are:
combatting climate change through mitigation and adaptation solutions includes programs on energy efficiency, circular practices and waste, and minerals and substances
Emphasizing the importance of ethics and compliance, security and privacy , responsible sourcing and human rights
Ensuring our ability to attract the best talent and creating high performance inclusive teams that make things happen
These key focus areas are built on a foundation of robust ethical and responsible business practices, processes and procedures
- Environmental management
- Portfolio energy efficiency
- Supplier human and labor rights
- Health & safety
- Inclusion & diversity
- Labor practices in own operations
- Ethics & compliance
- Preventing misuse of technology
- Responsible sourcing
- Data privacy & security
Governance and materiality
Our governance model
Sustainability issues are reviewed regularly at all levels of the company. We will continue to strengthen our governance structures and the processes we have established to manage ethical business practices and corporate responsibility, reflecting the significant change in our mode of operation implemented in the company during 2021.
Our corporate responsibility strategy and activities align with our most material topics related to our business and the impact on sustainable development. As part of the earlier review of our sustainability strategic approach, we took another view of our sustainability activities, requirements and achievements with emphasis on impact, scope, focus areas, and targets. The strategic approach is based on a number of factors related to our business and the impact on sustainable development.
- Global macro trends with impact on sustainable development
- Our regular engagement with various stakeholders
- Requirements and information requests especially from our customers and investors
- Our benchmarking of 23 industry peers and the leaders in sustainability
- Our corporate strategy and Code of Conduct
- Assessments of risks and opportunities through Nokia Enterprise Risk Management system
- Analysis of the economic, environmental and social value we can create throughout our value chain.
- Analysis of UN Sustainable Development Goals and Targets and their relevance to Nokia
- International sustainability frameworks such as SASB, TCFD, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 and the UN Global Compact
- Our long history and experience in sustainability
Our materiality was revised, and we reduced the total number of topics included in our sustainability scope from 20 to 13 for 2021. We also adjusted the contents of the topics and assessed their importance to our business success and sustainable development. The image below shows the top right quadrant of our materiality matrix.
Our sustainability report, People & Planet, is prepared in accordance with the GRI Standards: Core option. As part of our reporting, we also take into account other sustainability reporting frameworks, such as SASB, the UN Global Compact and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We have published annual corporate responsibility reports since 1999 and the reports are available in digital format from as far back as 2003 at our report archive.
Download the People & Planet 2021 report here. Our index on key ESG frameworks can be found on pages 112-127.
You can also watch this video about some key achievements and actions in 2021.
Our priorities and targets
We set short, medium and long-term public targets and report progress on all of them annually in our sustainability report.
In 2021, we had a total of 14 external targets, of which 12 were either achieved or on track. One target was not achieved, and one was not on track.
Awards and recognitions
We are proud to have been recognized for the achievements and actions carried out by our employees to enable a more sustainable business, products and planet. A few recognitions are listed below.
Ethical business: In March 2022 we were named for the fifth consecutive year (2018-2022), and the sixth time overall as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies by Ethisphere.
“World’s Most Ethical Companies” and “Ethisphere” names and marks are registered trademarks of Ethisphere LLC.
Ecovadis: In February 2022 we were again awarded a Platinum EcoVadis Medal. This places our company among the top 1 percent of companies assessed by EcoVadis, with especially high scores for environment and sustainable procurement.
In February 2022, we received a score of A- from CDP Supplier Engagement Rating. It evaluates companies’ work with suppliers to reduce emissions and lower environmental risks in the supply chain.
Sustainability: In January 2022, FTSE Russell (the trading name of FTSE International Limited and Frank Russell Company) again confirmed that Nokia remains a constituent of the FTSE4Good Index Series following the December 2021 index review.
Gender Equality score: In January 2022 we are proud to appear again on the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index, committed to driving accountability through data transparency.
In January 2022, we again this year achieved a score of 100 percent earning the designation as a ‘Best Place to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality 2022’. We have participated in the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index (CEI) for about 15 years to measure our LGBT+ equality.
The HRC Corporate Equality Index is a US national benchmarking tool on corporate policies and practices pertinent to LGBTQ employees. Read more about the
Carbon disclosure: In December 2021, we achieved Leadership level and an A- score from CDP for our work to cut emissions, mitigate climate risks and help develop a low-carbon economy. CDP runs the world’s leading global disclosure system for environmental impact. The CDP questionnaire is aligned with the recommendations put forth by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD).
MSCI: In October 2022, we received a rating of AA (on a scale of AAA-CCC) in the MSCI ESG Ratings assessment.
The use by Nokia of any MSCI ESG research LLC or its affiliates (“MSCI”) data, and the use of MSCI logos, trademarks, service marks or index names herein, do not constitute a sponsorship, endorsement, recommendation, or promotion of Nokia by MSCI. MSCI services and data are the property of MSCI or its information providers and are provided ‘as-is’ and without warranty. MSCI names and logos are trademarks or service marks of MSCI.
Digital Inclusion Benchmark: In December 2021 we were recognized as the leading European hardware company in the World Benchmarking Alliance’s Digital Inclusion Benchmark, where we were placed 22nd out of the 150 companies assessed. The benchmark measures how the world’s most influential technology companies are helping to advance a more inclusive digital society.
Sustainalytics: In June 2021, Nokia received an ESG Risk Rating of 12.4 and was assessed by Sustainalytics to be at low risk of experiencing material financial impacts from ESG factors.
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Other awards and recognitions
COP26 Compass Award: In November 2021 at the COP26 Climate Conference in Glasgow, we were honored to receive the Compass Award for our Capacity Building work with our supply chain. The Compass Awards were granted by the Responsible Business Association and DEFRA, the UK Government Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. The award recognizes a high level of collaboration or partnership, highly impactful climate actions initiative (global and local and an impressive application of global and local capacity building in supply chains.
As of December 2020, the Wall Street Journal included Nokia on its list of the world's 100 most sustainable companies, placing us 4th on the list. We scored particularly high in the areas of supply chain transparency, diversity & inclusion and efficiency.
Nokia and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) provide a common framework and set of goals for all countries, all industries, all companies and all individuals to achieve a truly sustainable world. They are the north star that guide us to a sustainable, inclusive and prosperous future for all. Goals 8, 9, and 13 remain the most material for us and represent the areas in which we can have the greatest positive impact.
Beyond these focus areas, the work we do actively contributes to all 17 SDGs. We believe technology, digitalization and enhanced connectivity will continue to play an ever more critical role in accelerating and achieving all 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Click on the icons below to learn more about how we actively support the global goals.
1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere.
We provide technology that connects the unconnected bringing access to information, education, healthcare and greater economic opportunity. In 2021, we delivered technology that improved network capacity, connectivity and coverage in many emerging and other markets with new cooperation announced in countries and territories such as as Angola, rural regions of Argentina, Armenia, Bangladesh, Ecuador, Iraq, Kenya, Nepal and Malaysia.
2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.
Connectivity, IoT applications and sensors, AI, Machine Learning and other new technologies bring faster access to information and greater efficiency across industry and agriculture. In partnership with AeroFarms, Nokia Bell Labs is pioneering in indoor vertical farming. The Nokia Bell Labs innovation provides AeroFarms with a continuous monitoring solution that can track the growth of millions of plants. Drones can peek into the most inaccessible nooks of a vertical farming tower, covering more ground at a faster pace than any human. AI-trained computer vision can capture plant data down to the pixel level. As part of AeroFarms’ proprietary growing platform, this technology not only detects areas of poor growth, but it will eventually diagnose the causes, whether from malfunctioning irrigation systems or suboptimal lighting. This continuous monitoring of the entire farming operation will increase crop yields and improve efficiency, helping make vertical farming even more productive.
3. Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages.
The digitalization and connectivity of healthcare is already beginning to yield benefits. We help healthcare organizations use intelligent infrastructure and digital technologies to reduce costs and support better, more targeted patient care. Our solutions enable the automation of manual processes, to share medical information more easily, and provide connectivity to support health monitoring, automated workflows and innovative new treatments. High-resolution video consultations, assistance robots and smart wearables enabled by 5G all help to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of treatments.
4. Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning.
The role of education is undeniable in enabling economic prosperity for individuals and countries. Our corporate community investment programs also emphasize the importance of education. We have worked with UNICEF between 2018-2020 to bring internet connectivity and quality digital education materials to children in Kenya, focusing particularly on girls and children with disabilities.
We have further worked with UNICEF and Safaricom to connect 90 primary schools to the internet across Kenya during 2021.
5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
Our ambition remains to have a gender balance that reflects the world around us, and a workplace where both men and women have an equal opportunity to succeed in every function and at every level. To ensure that the unexplained pay gap which was first closed in 2019 stays closed, we consistently address decisions, practices, and processes which might cause the unexplained pay gap to reopen. For example, we have put measures in place that aim to avoid inheriting the former pay gap of new hires, and we ensure objectivity through the use of graduate offer matrices globally.
6. Ensure access to water and sanitation for all.
Our own operations are not heavily water-dependent, but we realize that some parts of our supply chain may operate in areas of high water-security risk. We address supplier categories where water may be a material risk through a water assessment program. In 2021, xxx (275 in 2020) of our manufacturing suppliers completed the CDP water assessment, representing over xx% of our total [manufacturing supplier] spend (51% in 2020).
7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.
Mission-critical communications networks are essential for power utilities. The digitalization of power utilities will bring sustainable power efficiency to enable both increased quality and potential cost savings to end consumers. We work with a range of energy companies and utilities to help them evolve, digitalize and drive efficiency and sustainability in their operations.
8. Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work.
As a global company we have significant direct and indirect economic impact. Our direct economic impact includes for example our purchasing from suppliers, wages and benefits paid to our employees, income taxes paid to the public sector, and community investments. We contribute indirectly to the economy in many ways, but the benefits of the technology we provide deliver our greatest indirect impact. Our own research has found that 5G-enabled industries have the potential to add USD 8 trillion to global GDP by 2030, as COVID-19 accelerates medium and long-term digital investment and value creation.
9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.
This remains the most material SDG for us in the area of improving people’s lives with our technology. It relates directly to the core of our business. The networks we supply to our customers served XX billion subscriptions by the end of 2021, providing access to people everywhere, connecting them to more information, more public services and greater economic opportunities. We are powering the fourth industrial revolution, bringing infinite new possibilities for industries, governments and cities that dream of building a more agile, digital, resilient and sustainable future.
10. Reduce inequality within and among countries.
The technology we provide connects the unconnected and helps to bridge the digital divide. We advocate for more urgency on connecting the unconnected through top level engagements in key international fora. In the beginning of 2021, our CEO Pekka Lundmark joined the EDISON Alliance, in association with WEF, with the mission to foster affordable and accessible digital opportunities for everyone by 2025.
11. Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
While cities grow, there will be increasing pressure on city infrastructure, services and quality of life. Technologies such as 5G, Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence and data analytics software are set to drive the development of smart cities that can manage and cope with the growing needs of city living, making them safer and more sustainable.
12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns.
The earth's resources are not infinite. Artificial Intelligence, The Internet of Things, blockchain, and sensors are already being used to bring greater efficiency across industries, greater transparency in supply chains, and improved production, circularity and consumption patterns. A circular approach to business brings more efficient, less wasteful, consumption patterns, while also reducing the use of virgin natural resources. We offer Asset Recovery service to our customers, enabling recycling, reuse and refurbishment of old telecoms equipment, both our own and other manufacturers’.
13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.
We take responsibility for minimizing our own global footprint but we also aim to maximize our positive impact by driving innovation and digitalization through the technology we create to help industries, cities, supply chains and individuals to reduce their footprints. We have set ambitious targets in line with the 1.5°C warming scenario, and we are committed to reduce our emissions by 50 percent by year 2030.
14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resource.
5G, sensors and analytics will play an increasing role in supporting conservation and sustainability of our seas by providing immediate up-to-date information on the environment status on both land and at sea. For example, we worked with other companies and organizations in Finland to demonstrate how 5G and drones can be used to detect blue-green algae in the Baltic Sea.
15. Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss.
Managing and nurturing forests and lands and protecting the earth’s biodiversity can be improved by applying technology that provides immediate and constant access to data, analysis, and the tools to quickly react to that data. Protection of our environments also depends on individuals playing their part in their communities. For example in India, Nokia volunteers have worked with local communities, industries, gram panchayat members and officials of Bangalore Rural District Administration, to restore Bashettihalli, a wetland located in the Rural District of Bangalore.
16. Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies.
Ethical business practices are part of our company culture. Our Code of Conduct provides the framework for how we act and do business internally and externally. We work hard to promote and enable a responsible supply chain, respect for human rights and freedom of expression, as well as ensuring an inclusive workplace. We aim to be transparent and active by working with key industry stakeholders including, among others, through our continued membership in the Global Network Initiative (GNI). The GNI is a unique multi-stakeholder group involving leading ICT companies, investors, academics and civil society groups, and of which we are a Board member.
17. Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.
We work with a range of stakeholders to drive sustainable development forward while creating shared value for all. These include customers, suppliers, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), authorities, governments, other industries and associations.
For example, Nokia is a partner of the World Economic Forum, contributing its expertise to deliver on the WEF’s promise to improve the state of the world. In 2021, we were among the founding members of the WEF Edison Alliance, a global movement aiming to prioritize digital inclusion as foundational to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals in areas such as health, finance and education. In November at the COP26 climate conference, Nokia became a founding member of the First Movers Coalition, a public-private partnership between the U.S. State Department and the World Economic Forum. As a member we committed to sustainable procurement and creating demand for critical emerging solutions that help reduce emissions to net-zero.
Engaging with stakeholders
We believe that collaboration brings greater impact. We work with a broad range of stakeholders including industry partners, engaging with policy makers, international and multi-lateral organizations, civil society and academia, to help drive forward the digital economy and society.
Nokia government relations collaborates with governments, regulators, influencers and academia to drive policy environments that encourage investment in digital and broadband technologies. These technologies enable transformation towards a digital economy and society that will enhance productivity and the quality of life on a global scale.
We actively contribute to discussion by engaging in forums, working groups and virtual conferences organized by, for instance, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), European Round Table for Industry (ERT), Global System for Mobile Communications (GSMA), DIGITALEUROPE, and national associations such as BITKOM. We are a partner of the World Economic Forum (WEF), and among the founding members of the WEF Edison Alliance and the First Movers Coalition.
Read how Nokia and UNESCO’s new framework helps governments to use technology to make people’s lives better