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News | Managing sustainability

Bosch receives the “Green Controlling Prize”

In a traditionally sustainable company such as Bosch controlling takes on a key role. As “green” consultant of the board of management it ensures that a balance is struck between economic interests and environmental concerns. For this approach to manage sustainability targets, Bosch was honored with the “Green Controlling Prize”, an award of 10,000 euros, at the end of September. The prize was established by the Péter-Horváth Stiftung in cooperation with the International Controllers Association (ICV). Each year, the prize honors best practical solutions for the effective management of ecological programs, projects, or measures. 

 

LTR: Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Péter Horváth, Dr. Richard Watterott, Bernhard Schwager, Dr. Stefan Asenkerschbaumer and Siegfried Gänßlen

 

Dr. Stefan Asenkerschbaumer, deputy CEO of Robert Bosch GmbH, gave a presentation about the basic principles of the “System for strategic and operational environmental controlling,” which Bosch has established in all of its business processes. The company’s e-mobility activities are one example of how Bosch has done this. By developing electric motors, the corresponding power electronics, and components, the company aims to drive powertrain electrification forward. This poses a challenge for controlling, as it is not yet clear when and with which technology a market breakthrough will take place. This is why Bosch relies on scenario analysis, the results of which its financing measures are based on. 

 

In his presentation, Dr. Stefan Asenkerschbaumer, deputy CEO of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH, addressed the basic principles of the controlling approach

 

The company’s sustainability targets are characterized by operational controlling, which is carried out in a decentralized manner. The divisions receive targets for their global business activities, which are broken down to the product unit or site level. Responsibilities are then distributed accordingly. In this way, Bosch aims to reduce its CO2 emissions relative to value-added by 35 percent by 2020 over 2007 levels.

“The Bosch solution is a shining example of how ecological concerns are addressed across the board around the world. It shows how associates take the environment into account in their everyday work, and especially illustrates the active role that controllers play as ‘green’ business partners,” said Professor Péter Horváth, who conferred the prize.

The prize money will go toward supporting the Primavera e.V. charitable initiative. Founded by current and former Bosch associates in 1990, the organization supports children in need. Today, it is active in 15 countries and helps provide opportunities for children living in slums.

More information about the “Green Controlling Prize" can be found here (only in German available).

More information on the Primavera e.V. charitable initiative can be found here.

 

Picture source: Horváth & Partners / konferenzfotografie.de 

News | Table for two rather than dinner for one

The non-profit organisation Table for Two is committed to fighting hunger and obesity

Around the world, one in seven people suffer from malnutrition, and an equal number are overweight. To counteract this imbalance, the non-profit organization Table for Two addresses both sides of the problem. The initiative cooperates with more than 700 companies, restaurants, and schools in 14 countries around the world to offer healthy, low-calorie meals. A portion of the price of each meal served goes toward financing nutritious food for needy children in the school cafeterias of the Middle East, East Africa, and Southeast Asia. This kind of “calorie exchange” is beneficial for everyone involved. Since 2007, Table for Two has put more than 41 million meals on tables around the world. Donations have also helped fund local agricultural initiatives and nutrition education programs.

 

 

Since 2010, Bosch Japan has supported Table for Two at nine locations in the Land of the Rising Sun. Every Wednesday, the initiative offers meals at all the participating Bosch canteens. Last year, some 360,000 yen (3,200 euros) were raised with these meal sales. The next project is already in the starting blocks: on the occasion of the UN’s World Food Day on October 16, Table for Two has set itself the aim of providing one million meals per year to needy children. To this end, the organization has launched the “Change the World with Onigiri” social media campaign in Japan. For each picture that consumers post of themselves eating Onigiri (traditional Japanese rice balls), the participating companies donate 100 yen (88 cents) to school cafeterias in developing countries. The campaign is set to run from October 11 to November 30.

More information on “Table for Two” can be found here.

News | “Wir zusammen” with Angela Merkel

German Chancellor invites integration network to knowledge-sharing event

What does successful integration look like and how can companies create opportunities for refugees? On September 14, German Chancellor Angela Merkel discussed these two questions with members of the “Wir zusammen” (“Us together”) platform in Berlin. The head of government used the meeting at the Federal Chancellery to gain insights into the activities of the participating companies – among them Bosch, Daimler, and Thyssenkrupp – with regard to the training and employment of refugees. A study that “Wir zusammen” conducted in cooperation with the Roland Berger management consultancy served as the basis for discussion. The study highlighted the opportunities that refugees create for the German economy. At the same time, experts argue that the professional qualifications of immigrants should be further improved, and hiring processes simplified – for instance by reducing administrative hurdles.

 

 

Against this backdrop, the aim of “Wir zusammen” is to help refugees become part of German society, and to enable them to access training and work opportunities. To this end, since February 2016 the platform has pooled the integration projects of more than 120 companies from different sectors. The members have already created about 3,800 internships and 750 apprenticeship opportunities. Until now, 490 refugees have been taken on as employees. Almost 16,500 members are active at the companies and serve as mentors for the newly arrived.

At the beginning of September, German Federal President Joachim Gauck visited “Wir zusammen” event in Essen to gain insights into the network’s activities. In his welcoming address, the German Federal President commended the commitment of those who actively help people who have sought asylum in Germany. After his speech, the head of state spoke with representatives of the network – among them Dieter Lochbihler of the Robert Bosch GmbH works council – about the opportunities and challenges of integration. Moreover, guests had the opportunity to find out more about the alliance thanks to an exhibit about five sample projects.

 

 

As a member of “Wir zusammen”, Bosch helps young refugees prepare to live and work in their new environment. The company’s sponsorship of a project in Immenstadt in Germany’s Allgäu region reflects its commitment. The state-of-the-art manufacturing location has created three rotating internship spots for 24 young refugees who are living in the town. The aim is to help them enter the labor market more easily. The internships are run in cooperation with the Immenstadt vocational school and last six weeks each. Mentoring programs with Bosch associates as well as supporting German lessons help participants with the process of integration. Thanks to the highly motivated young interns, the first round of internships was a huge success.

More information on the work of “Wir zusammen” can be found here (only in German available).

 

Origin of photo material: Federal Government (Hans-Christian Plambeck) and wir zusammen.

News | Saving fuel with water

An innovative Bosch water injection system saves fuel and CO2

With the WaterBoost system, Bosch is the first and only automotive supplier to offer a water injection system for gasoline engines. The aim is to promote fuel savings, as even modern internal combustion systems consume up to a fifth of their fuel for engine cooling purposes. By injecting water, gas consumption can be noticeably reduced, especially in driving situations with high rpms. The trailblazing technology helps saves fuel especially in mid-sized vehicles with downsized engines. The BMW M4 GTS is the first series-produced vehicle to be equipped with the WaterBoost system.

 

 

The water injection technology is based on a simple principle. To ensure that the engine does not overheat, a fine water mist is sprayed into the intake passage before injection, which evaporates and ensures effective cooling. Water demand is low: a small additional tank filled with five liters of distilled water suffices for 3,000 kilometers. As a result, even when the car accelerates rapidly or is travelling on the highway, fuel consumption decreases by as much as 13 percent.

 

 

The new technology not only makes vehicles more eco-friendly, it also improves their performance. The ignition time occurs earlier and the optimized center of gravity leads to greater efficiency . As a result, the engine operates more efficiently and its performance is up to five percent better – for more horsepower with the same engine displacement and boost pressure. At the same time, the use of water protects the components in the engine’s interior and reduces knocking, which can damage the engine. Ultimately, the H2O engine promotes better performance and lower fuel consumption. For this reason, it definitely has a bright future.

More information on waterpower for gasoline engines can be found here.

News | Acceptance rather than tolerance

The company’s LGBT network is celebrating its 10th anniversary

Ten years ago, Bosch associates joined forces to found RBg, the Bosch gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender associate network. Their aim was to make the LGBT community more visible at the company, and to promote greater tolerance and acceptance. A great deal has happened since then: today, more than 290 members in 10 countries are active members of RBg. And Bosch sponsored this year’s Christopher Street Day celebrations in Stuttgart, demonstrating the company’s commitment to promoting diversity. This sent out an important signal, says Dr. Jean-Claude Loux, a Bosch engineer and the associate network’s spokesperson.

 

 

Dr. Loux, this year’s CSD was held under the banner of “Operation Visibility”. How visible is the LGBT community at Bosch?

As a result of our involvement in events such as Christopher Street Day, it is become increasingly visible. The Bosch sponsorship was communicated through a variety of channels: there were articles on the intranet, in the associate newspaper, and on Facebook. As a result, colleagues see what we are doing and just how important diversity and the LGBT community are at Bosch. The sponsorship has helped Bosch strengthen its position, also vis-à-vis its associates. Today, Germany has the greatest RBg representation, but our network is also growing in other countries in which the topic of homosexuality is still taboo. This is mainly the result of our board of management’s clear support of our network.

 

 

How can an associate network promote greater tolerance with regard to sexual orientation?

As the network has grown, each and every one of us has become more visible. This is important, because it has contributed to making interaction with the LGBT community more natural and relaxed. Many people still associate homosexuality mainly with sex. We want to change that: after all, sexual identity is a great deal more, and shouldn’t be reduced to physicality.

What would you like to see for your community in the next ten years?

If I look around at Bosch in Germany, I can see that tolerance is widespread. But sometimes there is still a lack of acceptance. For this reason, I would like the LGBT community to be just a normal part of the Bosch community. I’d also like to reach out more to our colleagues in production as well. Since they aren’t sitting at a computer, they are more difficult for us to reach.

Thank you very much for the interview, Dr. Loux.

More information on diversity at Bosch can be found here.