Welcome to our report on 'Our Business and Society'. In the pages that follow we set out the progress in social responsibility that we have made in the past year. Our record - whether it's on our UN Global Compact commitments, the diversity of our people or our charitable giving including the three relief funds we set up last year - has continued to improve, though we know that we have a lot still to do. We are particularly pleased that we have been able to set up our Pearson Foundation which makes our educational resources available to those who may lack access to them otherwise. Through this, we are already involved in educational projects from Manila to the Bronx.
As a creative business, we are entirely dependent on the minds and imagination of our 33,000 people. We think that what attracts people to work for us, and prompts many of them to stay, is that we feel a strong sense of responsibility for everything we do. It's their commitment to create the most inspiring textbooks, the best educational testing, the most accurate newspapers, the most original fiction, and the most effective services to governments that make Pearson a company to which we are all proud to belong. We think 'responsible' behaviour is inseparable from what we do every day: our greatest social impact arises from the products and services we create.
In the following pages you will see that we have set out our performance against the targets we set last year and also laid down some new goals for 2005. I hope you will not hesitate to contact me with any questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
David Bell, Director for People