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Corporate Political Engagement Index 2015: Assessing the UK’s largest public companies

Transparency International UK’s Corporate Political Engagement Index assesses the public reporting practices of the 40 largest companies in the FTSE 100 Index in relation to their political engagement. Each company is ranked from Band A (highest) to F (lowest) using publicly available information.

The majority of companies performed poorly, demonstrating a lack of transparency that contributes to high levels of public mistrust in this area. To restore public trust, companies need to reassess their policies and procedures, increase their reporting and consult with stakeholders on their political engagement.

Key findings: 

  • The average score in the index was 45 per cent (Band D).
  • Only one company achieved Band A.
  • Board oversight is weak, with only ten out of 40 companies reporting formal oversight by the board or a board committee.
  • Only three companies consult regularly with stakeholders about their political engagement.
  • The lowest scores were for the revolving door, for which the average score was 7 per cent (Band F).
  • Companies performed poorly on reporting their memberships of trade associations, with an average score in this area of 24 per cent (Band E).

The research highlights that: 

  • Greater transparency can be achieved simply by reporting information held internally – in many areas, companies have appropriate policies but don’t publish them.
  • Companies should take a total view of their political engagement activities, providing board oversight, designing consistent principles, policies and procedures, and assigning responsibility for implementation to a senior manager.
  • Companies should consult with stakeholders on their policies, procedures and any activities related to political engagement and report to stakeholders through a dedicated web page or online report.

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  • View by Topic: Private Sector, Lobbying & Revolving Door, Bribery Act
  • View by Document Type: Reports
  • Report published: Dec 2015

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