The Launch of the El-Baz Award

On the 1st of February 2011, the El-Baz Award for Excellence in Organisational Sustainability was launched for the purpose of encouraging Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in organisations and driving excellence in different parts of the world across different operations. The vision for such an award is driven with the intent to create and sustain excellence by instilling the belief that CSR at all levels has a positive impact on the sustained competitiveness and by building a structure from which value can be derived.

CSR has never been more prominent on the corporate agenda than it is today. CSR has become a fundamental business practice and has gained much attention from chief executives, chairmen, boards of directors and executive management teams of larger international companies. Organisations have determined that their impact on the economic, social and environmental landscape directly affects their relationships with stakeholders, in particular investors, employees, customers, business partners, governments and communities. Corporate social responsibility is seen as a major competitive advantage by the excellent organisations. However, organisations which aspire to be, or are, leaders in corporate social responsibility are challenged by rising public expectations, increasing innovation, continuous quality improvement and heightened social and environmental problems.

The El-Baz Award for Excellence in Organisational Sustainability honours the incessant work that Dr Farouk El-Baz has undertaken over many years and to recognise his unique and significant contributions. Dr El-Baz participated in the Apollo Program as Supervisor of Lunar Science Planning at a division of AT&T that conducted systems analysis for NASA. The El-Baz Award will act as an impetus for encouraging organisations to continue and develop more in CSR and support the implementation of CSR that is fit for the 21st Century.

The El-Baz Award is open to SME (Small Medium Enterprises), Public & Not for Profit Organisations and the Private Sector (includes manufacturing, services, etc). The assessment is targeted at two facets of an organisation; one is the prevalent “philosophy and practice” at the organisation and the other one is the performance that it delivers. While the former side looks at the enabling elements – whether there is a suitable and congenial environment present – for driving the sustainable organisation excellence, the latter side looks at the impact and performance on five dimensions which are gauged by economic measures, internal capability measures, external stakeholder measures, competitiveness measures and CSR measures.

“I am humbled by naming this prestigious award for me. In the meantime, I believe that it will encourage numerous organisations to continue on the road of social responsibility and encourage excellence in performance. Nothing is more satisfying to any professional group than a feeling of great benefit of its work to the local society or to humanity at large.” Dr Farouk El Baz