Since 2016, ABN AMRO has published a human rights report based on UN guidelines - a move it claims makes it the first bank in the world to have done so.
But to get an initiative like that off the ground would be “impossible” in 2020, says Richard Kooloos, the bank’s Director Group of Sustainability, .
“Our human rights report was literally chaired by a colleague and I,” he says. “We just decided we were going to do it. We didn’t ask approval from anyone.”
“Nowadays, it would be impossible, because we would have to get approval from around 20 people, as now it is deemed to be important within the organisation. It’s become full-grown, but at the same time, it changes the internal dynamics.”
Two years ago, ABN AMRO formalised a sustainability strategy which Kooloos admits comes with pros and cons.
“Everyone from relationship managers, to senior credit officers, to the board itself needs to be learning about what it actually means to their r…