Chart of top influencers aims to raise slavery awareness

14 May 2018

A list of the top 100 individuals influencing the modern slavery agenda within businesses has been drawn up.

The inaugural UK Top 100 Corporate Modern Slavery Influencers will rank individuals on how much they have raised the awareness and led discourse on the issue through social media.

The list has been created by the built environment research group BRE alongside Sustain Worldwide, and it includes influencers from all sectors.

Shamir Ghumra, director of sustainable products at BRE, said he hoped the index would give those on the list “more energy, focus and recognition to go on and do even greater things”.

Speaking to SM, he said: “It’s about increasingly raising the profile of these issues, and we’ve got some great people out there who are really acting as a catalyst for change.”

The index is based on individuals’ Klout score – a proprietary system that measures social media influence by looking at a person’s following and their engagement with others on a subject, in this case modern slavery – combined with other advocacy including policy input, public speaking and media engagements.

Ghumra said Klout was chosen because it was a tested, transparent and consistent measure of influence.

The index will be launched at an event in London on Thursday.

However, to make the index interactive and encourage individuals to do more to raise awareness, Thursday’s list will include names but not rankings. In September BRE plans to update the index and release the rankings at a dinner event.

Ghumra said: “It’s all part of the interactivity to try and generate more interest and activity within those who are already doing these great things and promoting the issue. Hopefully by doing that we’ll accelerate the noise amplification of these issues.”

He said the decision to recognise individuals not businesses was taken because those raising awareness of modern slavery were often “personally driven to do so”.

“We wanted this to become about other people, and the people who are acting as change agents within their organisations,” said Ghumra. “Rather than having a corporate awards thing, actually it probably means more for the individuals and naming them is actually perhaps going to create more momentum, more change.”

Ghumra said the list currently had “quite a spread” of people, including those from organisations with values are already aligned with fight against modern slavery and individuals who are bringing their organisations with them.

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