How can a publishing company be sustainable? This seemingly simple question constantly guides our reflection on corporate social responsibility.

In order to respond effectively to this question, the company also needs the contribution of all its stakeholders in order to fully understand their needs and demands.

In our path to sustainability, we wanted to give a new centrality to relations with stakeholders. This resulted in a more complex and systematic plan for the involvement of the Mondadori Group’s stakeholders. We started with an internal process within the company to update the stakeholder map: identifying them, starting from the organizational evolution and activities of the company, and grouping them into more homogeneous categories. The new stakeholder map guides the planning of the engagement activities put in place each year in order to understand together what the Mondadori of the future should look like.

Materiality analysis and stakeholder engagement

The Mondadori Group periodically carries out a materiality analysis process, in order to identify the elements of strategic interest in the field of sustainability and ensure the correct presentation and understanding of the Group’s activities, its performance, results and the impact produced, with regard to the social, personnel, and environmental spheres, respect for human rights and the fight against corruption and bribery.

Specifically, the year 2021 saw an update of the materiality analysis, in light of the following four steps, which are further detailed below:

  1. mapping of relevant stakeholders;
  2. identification of sustainability topics of potential interest to the Group and its stakeholders, in line with the relevant industry trends and identified priorities;
  3. prioritization of identified sustainability topics, including through internal and external stakeholder engagement activities;
  4. identification of material topics and their approval.

Prioritization of identified sustainability issues also through internal and external stakeholder engagement activities

In order to prioritize the sustainability topics identified for the Group, specific internal and external stakeholder engagement activities were carried out.

Specifically, in 2021, individual interviews were conducted with top management, including members of the Sustainability Committee, and a specific online questionnaire was administered to the Group’s employees and associates, which collected over 1,400 total responses (approximately 78%). Additionally, a further online questionnaire dedicated to the teaching staff was developed, collecting almost 5,000 total responses, thanks to the contacts that the Group has developed over time with this category in light of its crucial importance.

The stakeholders involved were asked to identify, in line with their own expectations and needs, the sustainability topics they consider more or less relevant. The participation of the Group’s internal and external stakeholders was paramount in the materiality analysis process, as it made it possible to identify more objectively the topics of interest and to capture with greater clarity and depth the different perspectives and information needs that mark the stakeholders involved.

The materiality results also include responses from questionnaires administered to customers in 2020.