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Walt Disney CSR Programs

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Business Studies

Our commitment to corporate responsibility is fundamental to our culture and aligns with the growing calls for businesses to take action. "

- Christine McCarthy, Senior Executive Vice President

The Walt Disney Company is one of the largest companies to practice corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Corporate social responsibility is a set of practices a business undertakes to make a positive contribution to society.

Disney was identified as a leader in CSR back in 2009 by the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship.

The Walt Disney Company is a global entertainment business operating in five areas, media networks (including broadcast TV networks, TV productions, domestic TV stations, radio networks); parks and experiences (including theme parks, resorts, and cruises, vacation clubs); studio entertainment (including motion picture production as well as distribution, music production, live entertainment events); direct-to-customer (DTC) (including a subscription for different video streaming programmes); and internationals (including international channels producing local programmes). Throughout all of its segments, it pays close attention to and recognises the importance of CSR programmes.

Disney CSR Programmes

Some of Disney's main CSR programmes include the following:

CSR programme for children in need

In 2018, Disney contributed $100 million to help a children's hospital. The company is dedicated to delivering comfort and motivation for severely ill children. Along with that, Disney offers grants to families who need emotional support during trying times.

Investing in the youth programme

Disney provides various opportunities for young generations of innovators and storytellers. Through various different programmes and investments, Disney funds and helps young people develop useful skills for their future careers. In 2019, Disney collaborated with innovative organizations, like Girls Who Code, which is a non-profit organisation that aims to close the gender gap in technology. Through its collaboration with Girls Who Code, The Walt Disney Company gave high school students the opportunity to learn about computer science and explore career opportunities in the tech industry.

Social influence and workforce programmes

Disney is committed to practising ethical distribution standards, fostering a safe and inclusive work environment, and engaging in charity and volunteering. In 2020, Disney donated $333 million to support different social programmes and to help fund non-profit organisations that offer opportunities to communities in need internationally.

In addition, since the beginning of the programme in 1983, Disney's cast members and employees have contributed over 12 million hours of community service via the Disney VoluntEARS programme. The programme includes a broad range of in-person and online volunteering for Disney employees.

Take a look at our Non-Profits explanation to revise how these types of organisations operate.

Supply chain investment programme

The supply chain investment programme was launched in 2012. It offers financial and operational assistance to non-profit and social organisations. The programme includes working on innovative and effective projects that create long-term development in the workplace. Disney also takes initiative and provides substantial resources for organisations worldwide to reform their supply chain and tackle poor working conditions.

Disney CSR strategy

In 2018, Disney created a Direct-To-Customer division in the company. The division's goal was to successfully introduce Disney+ (Disney's streaming service) to the market. At the start of 2020, as a result of the pandemic, streaming services such as Disney+ became very popular. However, despite the success of their direct-to-consumer division, Disney wanted to make sure that it gave back to communities in need and contributed to society in a positive way during the pandemic.

The Covid-19 campaign

Coronavirus had a substantial and long-term effect on companies and communities globally. Whilst working persistently on promoting safety and well-being for its employees, the company also increased its assistance to local communities.

Disney introduced a company-wide campaign called Feed the Love, which raised awareness to and collected donations of approximately $2.8 million for Feeding America, helping those with limited access to food during the pandemic.

In addition, Disney's theatrical group collaborated with Broadway Cares to create a virtual event, 'Disney on Broadway's 25th Anniversary Concert', raising around $615,000 for coronavirus emergency support funds.

Disney also contributed around $27 million towards food and personal protective equipment, provided 150,000 rain ponchos to support and protect the clothing of nurses and donated $1 million to provide people with face masks. Moreover, around 100,000 N95 masks were given to healthcare workers in different cities in the USA. Disney also contributed to Project Mumbai by supplying 150,000 protective kits for healthcare workers in different hospitals in Mumbai.

Improving social equity

Disney is strongly dedicated to Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) and the various social movements of 2020 acted as particularly strong catalysts to bring about change in this area of the company. A company-wide campaign was introduced by CEO Bob Chapek in June 2020, to increase D&I in the company through six key pillars. These pillars are transparency, representation, accountability, community, content, and culture.

Disney is also dedicated to improving social justice. It donated around $5 million to non-profit organizations that provide support to minority groups in the USA.

Disney's content group is dedicated to practising inclusive and realistic storytelling throughout its brands, by increasing diversity in creative roles not just in front of but behind the camera as well.

Environment

Since 2009, Disney has worked on its longstanding vision to accomplish net-zero greenhouse gas emissions. Recently, the company has achieved its 2020 target to lower its emissions by 50% in comparison to its 2012 emissions. The company announced its new aspirational goals which include achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions for its operations by 2030.

In order to achieve these objectives, Disney will be focusing on:

  • Using zero-carbon electricity by the year 2030

  • Investing in natural solutions

  • Generating minimal waste through its properties (like parks and resorts)

  • Using recycled plastic in its products and packaging

Disney CSR Ranking

Disney is part of the "World's Most Admired Companies" according to Fortune's annual list. For 19 consecutive years, Disney has also been ranked fifth in media and entertainment globally.

As per Fortune, businesses are ranked not only on the basis of their success, however, also on how and where they have succeeded. Disney was recognized in a considerable number of areas including quality of products/services, global competitiveness, people management, innovation, corporate social responsibility, and its long-term investment value.

Importance of CSR for Disney

Generally, consumers are becoming more aware of the environmental and social impacts of the products, content, and experiences they consume. Hence, demanding more from companies. Consumers may believe that a brand like Disney should function in a moral, ethical, honourable, and responsible way. To address this, Disney uses the influence of the brand, its own content and technologies to create opportunities and influence the environment and society in a positive way.

Boosting employee engagement and retention is also considered a significant part of CSR. This is because employees like to work for organisations that have positive reputations and are in the media for the right reasons. When businesses are committed to improving welfare and working for communities through charitable programmes, they are expected to retain and engage their valuable employees.

In addition, another advantage of CSR programmes is that they may enhance a company's public image. Companies that show dedication towards different causes are identified as philanthropic in comparison to those that do not pursue CSR. As such, CSR projects attract more investors to Disney. Investors who invest money into a company assume that their funds are used efficiently to generate profit and to create positive change, and the CSR programs of Disney demonstrate this idea clearly.

Hence, Disney takes into consideration the demand and desires of its stakeholders and takes responsibility for the impact its products or services have on the environment, as well as society. The company continues to contribute to charitable programs, takes initiatives to improve social welfare and thus contributes to society in a positive way.

Walt Disney CSR Programs - Key takeaways

  • The Walt Disney Company is a global entertainment company.
  • Disney's main segments include media networks, parks and experiences, studio entertainment, direct-to-customer, and international.
  • Disney's CSR programmes include CSR programmes to support children, investment in youth programmes, social influence and workplace programmes, and supply chain investment programmes.
  • Some of Disney's CSR strategies include its various Covid-19 campaigns, improving social equity, and its environmental focus such as net-zero greenhouse emissions.
  • Disney is part of the "World's Most Admired Companies" according to Fortune's annual list. For 19 consecutive years, Disney has also been ranked fifth in media and entertainment globally.
  • The advantages of pursuing CSR for Disney include increasing employee engagement, attracting new investors and enhancing the overall public image of the company.

Source:

The Walt Disney Company, https://thewaltdisneycompany.com/disney-releases-2020-corporate-social-responsibility-report/#:~:text=%E2%80%9COur%20commitment%20to%20corporate%20responsibility,President%20and%20Chief%20Financial%20Officer.

Research Gate, https://www.researchgate.net/publication/338388576_The_Important_of_CSR_for_Walt_Disney

Reuters, https://www.reuters.com/companies/DIS.N

The Walt Disney Company, https://thewaltdisneycompany.com/app/uploads/2020/02/CSR2019Report.pdf

The Walt Disney Company, https://thewaltdisneycompany.com/disney-ranks-high-on-fortunes-2022-list-of-worlds-most-admired-companies/#:~:text=The%20Walt%20Disney%20Company%20has,ranked%20media%20and%20entertainment%20company.

Panmore, http://panmore.com/disney-stakeholders-corporate-social-responsibility-csr-strategy-analysis

The Walt Disney Company, https://thewaltdisneycompany.com/girls-who-code-experience-the-magic-at-disneys-third-summer-immersion-program/#:~:text=In%20partnership%20with%20Girls%20Who,explore%20different%20careers%20in%20technology.

Walt Disney CSR Programs

Some of the programs are the CSR program for children, investment in the youth program, social influence and workforce program, and supply chain investment program.


Some of the strategies include the Covid-19 campaign, improving social equity, and net-zero greenhouse emissions.


Disney is part of the "World's Most Admired Companies" according to Fortune's annual list. For 19 consecutive years, Disney has also been ranked fifth in media and entertainment globally.


There are several goals Disney has set out for itself to improve its overall CSR including:


  • Using zero-carbon electricity by the year 2030  

  • Investing in natural solutions

  • Generating minimal waste through its properties (like parks and resorts)

  • Using recycled plastic in its products and packaging

Disney's dedication towards CSR includes protection of the planet, becoming champions of inclusiveness and diversity, human rights, contribution to communities, producing high-quality entertainment, and investing in employees.

Final Walt Disney CSR Programs Quiz

Question

What is corporate social responsibility?


Show answer

Answer

Corporate social responsibility is a set of practices a business undertakes in order to contribute to society in a positive way.

Show question

Question

When did Disney start its CSR program?


Show answer

Answer

2009

Show question

Question

In which segments does Disney operate?


Show answer

Answer

Media networks, parks and experiences, studio entertainment, and direct-to-customer.

Show question

Question

What is Disney’s CSR program for children?


Show answer

Answer

In 2018, Disney contributed $ 100 million to the Children's hospital. Disney is dedicated to delivering comfort and motivation for severely ill children. Along with that Disney offers wish grants to families who need emotional support.

Show question

Question

How helpful is Disney’s youth program?


Show answer

Answer

Disney is willing to provide inspiration as well as an opportunity to the coming generation of innovators and storytellers. With the help of different programs and investments, Disney helps the youth in developing the skills that they will require in the future. 

Show question

Question

How are Disney’s employees involved in its CSR program?


Show answer

Answer

Disney's cast members and employees' contribution of 321,700 hours of service via the Disney VoluntEARS program included a broad range of online volunteering for its employees.

Show question

Question

Does Disney collaborate with other organisations for its CSR?


Show answer

Answer

Yes, in 2019 Disney collaborated with innovative organizations like FIRST and Girls who code to contribute its support in terms of technology, finances, creativity, and transformational opportunities for the youth.

Show question

Question

What is Disney’s supply chain program?


Show answer

Answer

The supply chain investment program was launched in 2012, which offers financial and programmatic assistance to non-profit organizations and social organizations to work on innovative and effective projects that create long-run developments in working environments. Disney also provides substantial resources for initiatives that tackle worldwide labor conditions.

Show question

Question

Did Disney change its CSR strategy?


Show answer

Answer

In 2020, Disney focused on the Direct-To-Customer business model, hence its CSR strategy changed as well in order to be aligned with the present priorities of the company.

Show question

Question

What was Disney’s CSR approach towards Covid-19?


Show answer

Answer

Disney introduced a company-wide campaign called Feed the Love, which provided awareness and raised donations of approximately $ 2.8 million for Feeding America's food security. In addition, Disney's theatrical group collaborated with Broadway Cares to create a virtual event, 'Disney on Broadway's 25th Anniversary Concert', raising $ 615,000 for coronavirus emergency support funds.

Show question

Question

How is Disney working to improve social equity?


Show answer

Answer

Disney was dedicated to improving justice and strengthening relations with the next generation of Black leaders and assured $ 5 million to non-profit organizations that help black communities. Disney's content group is dedicated to inclusive and realistic storytelling throughout its brands with increasing variety in creative roles, not just in front of the camera but behind the camera as well. 

Show question

Question

What are Disney’s pillars to improve diversity and inclusion?


Show answer

Answer

The six pillars are transparency, representation, accountability, community, content, and culture.

Show question

Question

How is Disney contributing to improving the environment?


Show answer

Answer

Since 2009, Disney has worked for its longstanding vision to accomplish net-zero greenhouse gas emissions. Lately, the company has achieved its 2020 target to lower its emissions by 50% in comparison to its 2012 figures. Disney will be focusing on areas such as getting 100% zero-carbon electricity by the year 2030 and investing in natural solutions, zero waste from the properties owned by the company like parks and resorts, as a minimum of 30% of recycled plastic used in its products as well as packaging.

Show question

Question

What is Disney’s CSR ranking?


Show answer

Answer

Disney remains amongst the top world's most well-regarded companies, maintaining the number 4 position on Fortune's annual list for three consecutive years. Walt Disney dominates the entertainment industry for 2021, and for the 18th consecutive year, it was ranked number 1.

Show question

Question

How has the CSR program benefitted Disney?


Show answer

Answer

CSR programs enhance the public image, and companies who show dedication towards different causes are identified as philanthropic in comparison to those who do not pursue CSR. In addition, CSR projects have attracted more investors for Disney. Investors who invest money into the company assume that their funds are used efficiently, and the CSR programs of the company demonstrate that clearly.

Show question

Question

What is DTC?

Show answer

Answer

direct-to-cutsomer

Show question

Question

Disney was identified as a leader in CSR in ____.

Show answer

Answer

2009

Show question

Question

Disney operates in the following areas:

  • media networks
  • _____________
  • _____________
  • direct-to customers
  • ______________ 

Show answer

Answer

  • media networks
  • parks and experiences
  • studio entertainemnt
  • direct-to customers
  • internations

Show question

Question

What are Disney's CSR programmes?

Show answer

Answer

CSR programme for children in need, Investing in the youth programme, Social influence and workforce programmes, and Supply chain investment programme  

Show question

Question

What is Girls Who  Code?

Show answer

Answer

It is a non-profit organisation that aims to close the gender gap in technology.  

Show question

Question

What is Disney's CSR programme for children in need?

Show answer

Answer

This program is dedicated to delivering comfort and motivation for severely ill children and offering grants to families who need emotional support during trying times. 

Show question

Question

What is the Disney VoluntEARS programme?

Show answer

Answer

In 1983, Disney's cast members and employees have contributed over 12 million hours of community service 

Show question

Question

Which program includes working on innovative and effective projects that create long-term development in the workplace 

Show answer

Answer

Supply chain investment programme.

Show question

Question

What was Disney's DTC division's goal?

Show answer

Answer

The division's goal was to successfully introduce Disney+ (Disney's streaming service) to the market. 

Show question

Question

What was the significance of Feed the Love campaign?

Show answer

Answer

It raised awareness to and collected donations of approximately $2.8 million for Feeding America, helping those with limited access to food during the pandemic. 

Show question

Question

Who introduced the D&I campaign?

Show answer

Answer

CEO Bob Chapek in June 2020 

Show question

Question

In 2020, Disney reduced lowered its emissions by 50% in comparison to 2012 emissions.

Show answer

Answer

True

Show question

Question

The six pillars to improve the D&I campaign include 

____________, representation, ___________, _________, content, and culture.


Show answer

Answer

transparency, representation, accountability, community, content, and culture.


Show question

Question

What is Disney's environmental goal by the year 2030?

Show answer

Answer

Achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions for its operations.

Show question

Question

How can Disney achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions for its operations by 2030?

Show answer

Answer

  • Using zero-carbon electricity by the year 2030  

  • Investing in natural solutions

  • Generating minimal waste through its properties (like parks and resorts)

  • Using recycled plastic in its products and packaging

Show question

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