The first Sustainability Talks session, organized by the Responsible Business Forum (RBF), took place on August 3rd in Novi Sad with a theme ‘The Pathway to Sustainable Business’. Alongside the presentation of the Elixir Group company that hosted the event, the conclusions from the second edition of the ESG/SDG Barometer were presented, followed by a panel discussion on the topic of ‘Collaboration towards Sustainability.’ 

The Sustainability Talks session, first of a series of planned events, brought together representatives from various sectors to exchange thoughts and experiences in the realm of sustainable development and responsible business. Zorica Popović, the CEO of Elixir Group, welcomed the participants and briefly introduced the company, its strategy, goals, and future. 

Neven Marinović, RBF Director, announced the upcoming second edition of the ESG/SDG Barometer and for the first time introduced the results and conclusions presented in this publication. The Barometer serves as a concise guide primarily aimed at companies, as well as other partners, navigating the dynamic environment and changes spurred by the global sustainability movement. 

Following this, a panel discussion took place on the topic ‘Collaboration towards Sustainability.’ Representatives from the private, public, and civil sectors discussed how to achieve the goals of the 2030 Agenda, emphasizing that a collaborative approach is a key to success. Participants presented projects and initiatives from their companies, as well as the challenges encountered on the path to sustainability. They discussed how ESG, CSR, and SDGs work together for sustainability, the importance of non-financial reporting for transparency and sustainable business, and the connection between key ESG criteria and sustainable development indicators. The discussion was moderated by Margareta Musić, Manager of the Elixir Foundation and Director of Corporate Communications at Elixir Group. The panellists included Branislav Jovanović from A1 Serbia, Marijana Jović from Schneider Electric, Lana Hadži-Niković from CEVES, Marija Radojčić, organizer of the Novi Sad Night Bazaar, and Maja Sokić from the Development Agency of Vojvodina. The event was attended by RBF members, representatives of small and medium-sized enterprises, social enterprises, the civil and public sectors. 

Sustainability Talks are thematic meetings and gatherings organized by RBF for its members, with the aim of sharing knowledge, experiences, challenges, and examples of best practices in the field of sustainable development and responsible business. 

The first Sustainability Talks event was supported by the ‘Sustainable Development for All’ platform, supported by the Governments of Switzerland and Germany, and is implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH as part of the Public Finance Reform Project – Agenda 2030.