Profile: GeSI - enabling digital sustainability

By William Girling
In a news post on its website, the Global Enabling Sustainability Index (GeSI) announced a collaboration to reduce emissions in the telecoms sector.Th...

In a news post on its website, the Global Enabling Sustainability Index (GeSI) announced a collaboration to reduce emissions in the telecoms sector.

The resulting Science-Based Target (SBT) emerged from a pooling of expertise between GeSI, the ITU, the GSMA and SBTi to create a specialised route to decarbonisation which aligns with contemporary scientific opinion and the Paris Agreement. 

GeSI, which has industry luminaries such as Deutsche Telekom, Telstra and Verizon on its board and T-Mobile USA, Fujitsu and TDC in its membership, stressed that its mission was now to engage the wider industry via its extended membership.

Embracing the challenge

Founded in 2009, GeSI was created as a result of telecoms companies’ desire to highlight best-practice within the industry and become a dispensary for up-to-date, objective and scientific information relating to socio-environmental sustainability. 

Recognising that the rapid evolution of telecom tech is a double-edged sword with both challenges and benefits, the organisation seeks to promote CSR (corporate social responsibility) initiatives and investigate emission-mitigating options. 


GeSI’s membership is both dynamic and global - 40 of the world’s leading telecoms companies are contributors to the project, whilst other partnerships include the UN and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).

Part of GeSI’s purpose is to generate a sense of urgency within the industry to be proactive in accepting its responsibility. In the organisation’s ‘Digital With Purpose’ report, it states “Given the slow pace of progress against SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals), it is also non-negotiable.”

Collaborating on sustainability

Commenting on the SBT, James Gowen, Chairman of GeSI and CSO of Verizon, believed that the organisation’s dedication to tackling climate change had been made clear and was confident that environmental challenges in the sector could be addressed.

“Through the work of GeSI member companies, we have seen how digital technologies are key to shaping a decarbonized world. 

“We are proud to have been a part of this collaborative effort in voluntarily setting a science-based target towards climate action for a more sustainable future.”


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