Corporate Social Responsibility at Gap: An Interview with Eva Sage-Gavin
Wright, Patrick M.; Sage-Gavin, Eva
Gap Inc. is one of the world's largest specialty retailers, with more than 3,000 stores and fiscal 2005 revenues of $16 billion. They operate four of the most recognized apparel brands in the world — Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Forth & Towne. According to the company website “At Gap Inc., social responsibility isn't just a catchphrase or a feel good initiative. It's a reflection of who we are and how we operate as a company. To us, being socially responsible means striving to embed our values and ethics into everything we do — from how we run our business, to how we treat our employees, to how we impact the communities where we do business." In 2003 Gap Inc. was the first retailer to release a social responsibility report, offering a comprehensive overview of their approach to social responsibility. The report was broadly lauded for its willingness to be open and honest about both the successes and failures in this arena. In fact, this report won Business Ethics magazine's Social Reporting Award for "unprecedented honesty in reporting on factory conditions." Their 2004 Social Responsibility Report continued that discussion and provided new information on their progress, challenges, and new initiatives. Eva Sage-Gavin is Executive Vice President, Human Resources and Corporate Communications, of Gap Inc. In her role as Chief People Officer, she sets the strategy for the company's communications and human resources operations worldwide, including staffing, diversity, rewards, recognition, employee benefits, learning and development, strategic change, and internal and external communications. She set aside time to provide more specifics to how and why Gap Inc. places so much emphasis on corporate social responsibility.
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