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In promoting the Social Innovation Business, Hitachi accurately detects a variety of social issues in each country and region, addressing these issues through co-creation with customers, governments, academic organizations, research institutions and a wide range of other stakeholders.
In response to the recent rise of ESG investing, Hitachi is proactively engaged in dialogue with shareholders and investors on both financial and non-financial information, while also focusing efforts on co-creation to improve disclosure of non-financial information. Going forward, Hitachi will continue to proactively promote dialogues with stakeholders, incorporating the takeaways into operations to realize sustainable management.
At Hitachi Investor Day 2022, held on June 13, 2022, a first-ever dialogue session was conducted by Hitachi independent directors. With Executive Vice President, CFO Yoshihiko Kawamura as moderator, independent directors Harufumi Mochizuki and Helmuth Ludwig exchanged opinions on the formulation of the Mid-term Management Plan, Lumada and Hitachi's vision, among other questions submitted in advance by institutional investors and analysts.
How to address the rapidly changing global trend in ESG disclosure is a major challenge for many corporations and institutional investors in Japan. Hitachi, Ltd. is responding to this issue through co-creation with stakeholders. In June 2020, Hitachi took the lead in establishing the ESG Disclosure Study Group to explore ways of disclosing ESG information that contribute to long-term corporate value enhancement while also keeping an eye on global trends. The study group initially started with 19 companies, and as of June 30, 2022, more than 100 companies, institutional investors, auditing firms and public organizations are participating.
Study group activities are divided into phases according to themes, and in June 2022, the "ESG Disclosure Study Group Report 2022" was published including the results of these activities. This report contains ESG disclosure recommendations for corporations, institutional investors and standard-setting bodies and is disseminated to relevant organizations within and outside Japan. Hitachi, Ltd. serves as the co-chairman and secretariat of this study group, and leads these activities.
One of the key initiatives for the evolution of sustainable management is to quantitatively clarify the financial impact of non-financial values such as environmental and social values created by business activities, as well as intangible asset measures such as human resource policies. This is expected to further advance management and improve engagement with stakeholders.
Since 2021, Hitachi, Ltd. has engaged with these challenges through experimental research conducted in collaboration with Graduate School of Management, Kyoto University. Through academic and other approaches, it was quantitatively confirmed that Hitachi's initiatives toward the environment and human resources could have a positive impact on financial indicators (ROIC and WACC). In the future, we will clarify the causal relationship between non-financial and intangible asset measures and financial indicators, as well as employee survey results, to identify measures with a high degree of causal influence and lead them to measures to improve financial performance through non-financial and intangible asset measures.