GemeinwohlAtlas 2017: companies under scrutiny by the Swiss population The Center of Leadership and Values in Society of the University of St.Gallen in cooperation with the Leipzig Graduate School of Management interviewed 14,500 people throughout Switzerland about the contribution that the leading private and public enterprises make towards public welfare. This makes this survey the biggest on this issue in Switzerland. 25 September 2017. The Swiss population refocuses on the strength of the country’s institutions. However, private and public enterprises are also increasingly called upon to take the Swiss population’s expectations into account. At the same time, citizens are themselves willing to make a contribution towards public welfare. One thing is clear: in the last two years, something has happened with regard to public welfare in Switzerland. Citizens are considerably more worried that companies pay too scant attention to public welfare. 73 per cent are of this opinion. This is tantamount to an increase of 12 per cent. However, if people’s worries have increased, then so has their appreciation of what is in place: most companies are rated more favourably; they are credited with goodwill. 92 per cent of the interviewees agree with the statement that it is the companies’ responsibility to contribute towards public welfare. The companies themselves also recognise this responsibility. 95 per cent of the interviewees indicate that they are able to make a contribution towards public welfare through their own behaviour. This is a strong avowal of Swiss people’s mentality to tackle things themselves rather than placing responsibility on the state and the economy alone. The ranking This year, first place went to the Swiss Air Rescue Service (Rega). The runner-up was the winner of 2015, Spitex, followed by the Swiss Paraplegic Foundation, which has made it into the Atlas for the first time. The top ten consists entirely of institutions whose performance mandate intrinsically aims at public welfare. The next ten places are largely occupied by cooperatives (Migros, Landi, Volg, Raiffeisen) and public enterprises (SRF, SBB). The first private companies occupy places from 30th upwards (Geberit, Swiss, NZZ, Schindler). The two football organisations UEFA and FIFA are at the bottom of the list. Top 10 Swiss Air Rescue Service (Rega) Spitex Federation Switzerland Swiss Paraplegic Foundation Pro Senectute Switzerland Pro Infirmis Swiss Red Cross (SRC) OASI Swiss Travel Fund (Reka) Cooperative Swiss Accident Insurance (Suva) Caritas Last 10 Amazon.com Inc. Facebook, Inc. FC Zürich Credit Suisse Group AG FC Sion Syngenta AG Blick Tamoil Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) The entire ranking can be viewed at www.gemeinwohl.ch. Clear instructions to companies and organisations The interviewees clearly call upon companies and organisations to do more for public welfare. All the industries are lagging behind the potential expected with regard to contributing to public welfare – the banks, the media and the insurance companies, in particular, are taken to task in this respect. The former President of the HSG, Peter Gomez, under whose auspices this survey was conducted, says the following about the results: "There’s only one way for executives to form an opinion about their companies’ social acceptance: interview citizens and be ready for a surprise." Timo Meynhardt, who headed the survey, explains: "The Switzerland of 2017 is no longer the Switzerland of 2015. It has undergone a mental change – more worries and more appreciation all at once. What looks like a paradox at first sight is psychologically plausible: at a time of increasing uncertainty, Swiss people look at things more closely and refocus on what is in place. They stick to what holds them together – their companies and organisations. At the same time, they put this issue on the agenda of those very companies and organisations with renewed vehemence. Here, everyone is called upon to join in the dialogue; no one will be able to keep out of it."