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Amid less visibility and regulation, mining companies may have a “false sense of security”

Companies in the global mining, metals and minerals sector may have a “false sense of security” about their reputation, concludes a new report released today by stakeholder intelligence company Caliber.

The 2023 Mining, Metals and Minerals Global Reputation Report is based on a survey of almost 40,000 respondents in seven countries. 

It reveals that 28% of people think the sector should definitely be more regulated, with almost 60% inclined towards more regulation. Only 4% say the sector should definitely be less regulated.

Tellingly, the report reveals widespread unfamiliarity with companies in the sector. Only 15% of respondents were familiar with at least one company referenced in the report – meaning they had some qualified knowledge about it besides knowing its name.

“Given that these companies tend to fly beneath the radar, respondents who are familiar with them are more likely to be industry experts or insiders. In other words, they know what they’re talking about – making their perceptions particularly germane. Their apparent enthusiasm for additional regulation suggests the sector may be facing a deep pool of reputational risk – and that, to mitigate that danger, self-regulation won’t cut it.”

Shahar Silbershatz, CEO & Co-founder of Caliber Tweet

In fact, the report reveals widespread concern about the sector’s environmental impact. 

  • Reducing the harmful effects of extraction is seen as the primary issue to address, with 41% of respondents saying companies should focus on not harming local populations impacted by the creation of a mining site.
  • Similarly, 41% of respondents say the sector should focus on reducing its carbon footprint or improving extraction technology to be more efficient and less environmentally harmful.
  • Two-thirds (67%) say improving the mining sector’s efforts to fight climate change is at least as important as ensuring a steady supply of raw materials.

The report also provides a snapshot of the sector’s reputation. Globally, it has a Trust & Like Score – Caliber’s chief reputational metric – of 66.

This corresponds to an Average reputation – the same as the automotive and chemicals sectors and better than the energy, banking and telecoms sectors.

Companies in the metals, mining and minerals sector are perceived most favorably for their offering, ability to innovate and leadership — and least favorably for their impact on the planet, their relatability and how ethically they conduct business.

“The status quo may give the sector a false sense of security. If we assume our survey respondents understand the sector’s reputational risks, we can also assume they would be amplified if more people knew about them. In other words, by flying under the radar, companies in the mining, metals and minerals sector enjoy less visibility and less scrutiny. If that were to change – in the wake of an environmental scandal, say – some companies could come under the microscope like never before. And for many, the problem is simple: they won’t have the protection of a robust reputation to fall back on.”

Shahar Silbershatz, CEO & Co-founder of Caliber Tweet

About the report

The report is based on insights gathered from stakeholders in the mining, metals and minerals sector. Between 25 September and 15 October 2023, Caliber surveyed 39,468 people in its global index markets (Brazil, China, France, Germany, Japan, the UK and the US). The data also includes 11,359 unique ratings of 49 companies across 13 markets (the global index markets plus Australia, Austria, Finland, the Netherlands, Sweden and Switzerland).

About Caliber

 

Caliber is a stakeholder intelligence company. It provides businesses with actionable intelligence on brand and reputation that helps them understand their audience, communicate more effectively and build trust. To learn more, visit http://www.groupcaliber.com.

 

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James Clasper, Content and Communications Manager

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