The Bank has published the thematic reports that review our responsible banking activity during 2019.
These thematic reports review in detail all Santander’s activity in the area of responsible banking in our main geographies and markets and complement the chapter on responsible banking in the annual report published last February. The transparency with which Santander tackles these reports is essential to the bank's positioning in indexes, rankings and analysis in the ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) sector, such as the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), where we were acknowledged as the most sustainable bank in the world last year.
There are seven reports in total, each of them dedicated to a specific subject area on: financial inclusion and empowerment; diversity and inclusion; culture; climate finance; support to higher education; investment in the community; and a report on the stakeholder relations and material aspects.
Financial inclusion and empowerment report: provides details of the initiatives that we run in three main lines of action, which aim to: favour access for unbanked, barely banked or financially vulnerable people to basic banking services; offer specific products and services to people with a low income; and help people to improve their financial knowledge through financial education programmes. As part of these three lines of action, more than 2 million people were financially empowered in 2019.
Diversity and inclusion report: shows and explains all the diversity and inclusion initiatives that we put in place for our employees, customers, shareholders, suppliers and stakeholders. Thanks to the initiatives detailed in this report, the bank topped the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index for the third consecutive year.
Climate finance report: develops our commitment to the environment, listing our work to comply with the 4 pillars set by TCFD; our collaboration with our customers, employees and stakeholders to support the transition to a low-carbon economy by financing renewable energy and developing sustainable structures; and our progress reducing our environmental footprint. In 2019, we continue to be a global leader in renewable project finance and we helped finance greenfield renewable energy projects with a total installed capacity of 8,036 MW, thus avoiding the emission of 63 million tons of CO2.
Culture report: summarises our progress implementing our culture, the Santander Way, and our corporate values (Simple, Personal and Fair); and also, on the main initiatives that are being run globally to include them throughout our activity. In 2019 we have been recognised by Great Place to Work as one of the 25 best companies to work for in the World.
Support to higher education report: it is centred around our commitment to supporting higher education through scholarships and talent programmes run by Santander Universities and Universia Foundation. In 2019, EUR 119 million was invested in actions focused on fulfilling this commitment, and Santander was acknowledged as the private company that invests most in Higher Education around the world.
Community investment report: we organise and participate in numerous volunteering initiatives and community investment programmes to contribute to inclusive, sustainable development in communities where we have a presence. In 2019, we helped 1.6 million people through social action programmes.
Stakeholder relationships and material aspects report: provides details of how we relate to our stakeholders and explains how we identify the material aspects of the bank in the area of responsible banking. By listening to our stakeholders, we identified 15 issues as the most relevant for Santander, and established four key issues to focus in: Customer satisfaction measures, Diversity, Financial inclusion and Financial activity with climate and environmental impact.
To see the full reports, click here.