1. Points on Which to Be Commended
This year's CSR report was issued as a combined report that included the annual report. I had the clear sense of the integration between management based on the KDDI Philosophy and the Company's CSR activities. At the same time, I believe the report was effective in cultivating a deeper understanding among previous annual report readers of KDDI's CSR initiatives.
Looking at CSR-related reporting, within the Special Feature the section entitled "Our Social Mission as a Telecommunications Operator" explains KDDI's countermeasures for the Great East Japan Earthquake. This is followed by a "Yearly Activities Report," which reports on the seven core subjects and issues addressed in ISO 26000, centered on four material issues.
In the Special Feature, the measures in the aftermath of the Great East Japan Earthquake deserve high marks for the way they begin by verifying the efforts to address the issues raised in the previous year's report that were undertaken during the disaster and then, based on this approach, strive to enhance networks, improve operations, and provide new services, raising their level of sophistication through a review process. Particularly impressive were KDDI's efforts to support reconstruction in the disaster-affected area by leveraging its strengths. These activities included establishing an operations center to promote employment in clerical positions in the affected area and the use of ICT to support education in affected regions.
In the "Yearly Activities Report," this year KDDI included a chart entitled "CSR Targets, Achievements, and Issues" that identifies targets in line with seven core subjects and issues, reports on and evaluates these efforts, and describes issues for the upcoming fiscal years. In addition to reviewing these activities, the chart makes it easy to understand what ongoing initiatives KDDI is promoting.
As in last year's report, this year's publication focuses on communication with stakeholders, such as through dialogue with stakeholders and by eliciting stakeholder opinions. Also, the report deserves to be commended for its publication of negative information, as in the section in "Consumer Issues" entitled "Responding to Administrative Guidance from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications," and its sincere efforts to respond.
The "Environment" section reports on KDDI's introduction of tribrid base stations to conserve energy at mobile phone base stations, which account for approximately 60% of the Company's energy consumption. In addition to contributing to the environment, these are meaningful from the standpoint of BCP, as they represent a response to power outages in times of emergency. "Green by ICT" initiatives, such as the teleworking system and smart communities, leverage KDDI's strengths as a telecommunications company. Not only do these have an environmental impact, but they also present major possibilities in terms of good working styles ( "Labor Practices") and lifestyles.
2. Areas for Improvement
The third-party opinion of last year's report touched on the idea that it is generally important for "everything-companies, people, and the community-should work off of each other and combine efforts," and indeed the age asks for "Ichien-yugo" (meaning that everything mutually affects each other and that the combined effects produce the results; an idea developed by early 19th century thinker Sontoku Ninomiya). It was suggested that this idea formed the basis for interactions between companies and society, and for corporate behavior.
With regard to "Ichien-yugo" within the Company, the integration of the CSR report and the annual report can be considered an innovation addressing the fact that Japanese companies are prone to "a silo approach among divisions" and "divisional optimization." Going forward, to realize the "KDDI Philosophy," I would hope to see the development of efforts that foster greater integration and assimilation among all divisions and sections- "autonomous/divisional optimization (what is best for the self and the division" and "overall optimization (what is best for Company overall)."
From the standpoint of "Ichien-yugo" between society and the Company, ICT provides the communication functions for "Ichien-yugo" in the true sense, as it enables communications among people, between companies, and between society and companies. ICT plays a major role in responding to climate change and other risks that jeopardize the sustainability of society, as well as in addressing issues in healthcare, education, and a host of other fields. Consequently, I hope to see KDDI introduce even more innovations as a telecommunications operator. While addressing the negative elements of an increasingly mobile and networked society frankly and with integrity, I hope that KDDI will embody the corporate behaviors that enable the transition from "overall optimization (what is best for Company overall)" to "societal optimization (what is best for society as a whole)."
Our Response to the Third-Party Opinion
In FY 2012, we published a combined annual report and CSR report as a single volume. I was quite pleased to see Ms. Akiyama's comment that she "had a clear sense of the integration between management and CSR." This commendation made the challenges we faced in revising the publication format seem worthwhile.
As the Message from the President explains, our biggest responsibility is to provide uninterrupted telecommunications services, and this is the foundation of our CSR. Going forward, in addition to the measures outlined in this report we will strive to enhance our response initiatives by strengthening the disaster preparedness of communication facilities, improving business continuity plans, and providing services that will be useful in the event of disaster. We will also participate proactively in efforts to support the recovery of the affected region.
Ms. Akiyama placed a major focus on the "Ichien-yugo" function of ICT for companies and society, and expressed her expectations for further innovation. This comment made me keenly aware of the importance of embracing reform-particularly in the present-day context of an uncertain future outlook-addressing the issues that society faces courageously and with new ideas.
I understand "Ichien-yugo" to mean "making positive changes and generating results on the basis of a shared understanding." This concept coincides with the TCS Policy, which forms the foundation of KDDI's CSR approach. Through dialogue with our stakeholders, we will remain mindful of integrity as we seek to deepen mutual understanding and foster integration between the issues society faces and ICT. In this manner, we will endeavor to contribute to the sustained development of society and seek to resolve the issues that society faces.