Year-over-Year Changes in the Material Topics
The list of material topics is based on the topics we identified for the 2015 Sustainability Report. Before conducting the stakeholder survey, we also added a number of overarching issues that were brought to our attention in the context of the last report, and aimed to look more specifically at other existing issues to get a better idea of how our stakeholders evaluate the individual issues:
As far as sustainable management is concerned, we added two new topics: open dialogue with society and adjustments to reflect climate change. What is more, the combined topic of “social and environmental standards in the supply chain” was broken down into two separate issues.
With regard to society and customers, social commitment was added as a new topic. The topic of demographic development is a cross-sectional topic that we address in numerous areas of the company – such as in the senior-friendly conversion of apartments, but also through support for young and old. In terms of content, this is being replaced and focused on here by the subject of “creation of homes”. This area includes all of the measures that we take to counteract the pressure on the housing markets and create new homes in metropolitan areas, in particular.
As far as the environment is concerned, we have reclassified the individual topics, concentrating on where there is an impact in order to define the areas accordingly. This makes our climate and environmental protection processes more focused. Specifically, this means the issues of energy efficiency, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions as well as waste and water management from 2015 have been worded more specifically to create the following topic areas: energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the portfolio, environmental protection in the portfolio, environmental protection in connection with renovation and new construction measures, company environmental protection and the impact of transportation/logistics.
In terms of employees, we have added the topics of diversity and equal opportunities, as well as co-determination. As diversity and equal opportunities play a key role within our company, we had already reported on these issues in the 2015 Sustainability Report although they had not yet been defined as material issues. Given the increased importance of this issue, also as a result of the CSR reporting requirement for major capital market-oriented companies, we have now added it to the list of material issues.