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Understanding the Materiality Matrix, our roadmap for value creation

Johanna Vermeeren - Profile
written by Johanna Vermeeren
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Sustainable growth

In 2022, WDP created a new Materiality Matrix. Building on the foundation of our previous Materiality Matrix in 2018, the new matrix resets the direction for our corporate sustainability approach and is, in fact, our compass for effective management and value creation.

Wdp annual report 2022 en 1 62 eng 0

While the matrix may look relatively simple, it is the result of a long and careful process to make sure that our priorities are precisely targeted as they can be.

The frequency with which WDP reviews its materiality matrix depends on changes in the immediate environment, on macroeconomic or internal changes and on (natural) evolutions at company level. We aim for an average recurrence between 2 and 4 years.

Stakeholder engagement: the key to relevant action

To create our matrix, we first identified all the sustainability themes that could be relevant for WDP, retaining a longlist of 230 potentially important themes. We then carried out an impact assessment for each of these to hone down our selection to 14 material topics.

The next step was to rank them in relation to their importance. At this stage, we engaged with a wide range of stakeholders to make sure that the topics were considered from every perspective. Our stakeholder panel included clients, investors, financiers, shareholders, third-party benchmarks, analysts, suppliers, policymakers and community representatives as well as WDP employees.

Double materiality

At WDP, we base our analysis on a double materiality’ approach. This means that we not solely consider the financial impact perspective (outside-in impact) or the impact of the 14 materialities on WDP’s business, but also the the social impact perspective (inside-out impact) or the impact of WDP’s business on the 14 material topics. In consultation with our stakeholders, we can thus identify the topics and actions through which WDP can create the most positive impact.

Transparency for everyone

We invite you to watch below video, which explain the purpose and process behind the new matrix.

You can also find in-depth information about the process in our 2022 Annual Report.

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