Strategic approach

As a globally operating automotive manufaturer, we deal with industry specific challenges in the implementation of our sustainability objectives, which arise from the social and ecological effects of our business activity as well as from the framework conditions under which we operate. Our approach to these challenges gives rise to opportunities for sustainable business success. At the same time, we are called upon to identify and address risks at an early stage:

  • We are committed to legal and ethical standards and must ensure that they are observed — worldwide as well as by our business partners and suppliers.
  • Road traffic contributes to the generation of CO2 and pollutant emissions. As an automotive manufacturer we strive to create sustainable mobility solutions and demonstrate our power of innovation in the areas of environmental protection, conservation of resources, and safety.
  • Our operational processes, particularly in vehicle production, are associated with environmental effects, which we keep as low as possible through a system of consistent environmental management.
  • As an employer, we bear responsibility for ensuring fair and attractive working conditions for almost 280,000 employees worldwide.
  • As a good corporate citizen, we want to contribute to the common good beyond the scope of our business operations and in doing so make use of our special competencies.

To adequately meet these requirements and address our self-designated sustainability objectives on a systematic basis, we have developed a Group-wide sustainability strategy, which is integrated into our corporate strategy based on the fundamental corporate values of passion, discipline, respect, and integrity. Sustainability is anchored in this target system as a basic principle at the implementation level. That means: We can achieve sustainable profitability and social acceptance with a license to operate in our business activity only if we consider the environmental and social effects of all business processes, and tie our economic objectives to ecological and social requirements.

  • Daimler’s target system

    Daimler’s target system

Our sustainability strategy has six main activity areas (“responsibility dimensions”) to which relevant fields of action are assigned. We have linked these with targets and target indicators. All targets taken together constitute our medium- to long-term “Sustainability Program 2020.” The program provides us with a yardstick to measure ourselves and be measured by the public. A key task of the cross-disciplinary dimension of management responsibility is the systematic management of the strategic program and the verifiable implementation of its objectives.

Responsibility dimensions and key fields of action of Daimler's Sustainability Strategy governance at Daimler


In the identification of particularly relevant fields of action, we take into consideration the views of our company and standpoints of our stakeholders, which include employees, customers, shareholders, and suppliers, as well as environmental and human rights organizations and many other stakeholder groups. We prioritize the fields of action at regular intervals with the help of a multi-step materiality analysis. In this respect, as well as in the associated process of updating and possibly correcting our sustainability strategy, continuous dialog with our stakeholders plays an important role.

Materiality matrix 

Stakeholder dialog