• Project


CDR, short for Corporate Digital Responsibility, is a relatively young term. Internationally, it was applied by Accenture in 2015, in Germany, Dr. Esselmann and Prof. Dr. Dr. Brink are among the first sources. The thesis is clear: In terms of digitization, responsibility issues will develop similarly as they have in the field of classic sustainability. But what does that mean exactly? Digital questions are very specific, despite all the similarities. How can companies deal with growing expectations in a field that is not yet well defined and is perceived very heterogeneously by the public, and how can they deal with such immense significance?

Initial situation

The Center for Digitization in Bavaria (ZD.B) has a platform for consumer concerns, one of the main focuses of which is to promote basic work in the field of Corporate Digital Responsibility. In the course of these activities, ZD.B and concern have jointly set up and conducted the first Germany-wide survey among companies on the subject of CDR.


The content of the survey ranged from a general assessment of the consequences of digitization to questions about the opportunities and risks of CDR involvement and implementation issues. One focus part of the survey was dedicated to the handling of data.


The result can be found in a report and is also incorporated in various publications, including publications by the CSR Magazine (CDR Study 2019, Ethics for the Digital Core Business), the magazine “Ökologisches Wirtschaften” and a publication of the Bertelsmann Foundation.

This initial survey has provided many impulses for the discussion of the topic. The results have been incorporated into research, public dialog, and implementation at companies. Based on these results, our Data Process Modeler project was selected for funding.

Your contact:

Dr. Frank Esselmann
Partner, concern GmbH

Tel +49 (0) 221 630 606 300
Mobil +49 (0) 163 4892844

Prof. Dr. Dr. Alexander Brink
Founding Partner, concern GmbH

Tel +49 (0) 921 554 122
Mobile +49 (0) 170 5100949