Principles of Corporate Engagement

ConnectED works across all sectors of industry and society to help advance our mission. We develop strategies to identify which relationships are mission-aligned, and then evaluate these to ensure they meet our Principles of Engagement.  ConnectED will turn down opportunities and gifts that come to us from companies or company foundations that do not meet these key criteria.

Principles of Corporate Engagement

All corporate engagements must meet the Principles of Corporate Engagement or, if not, the engagement either should not be pursued or must be elevated for review by the ConnectED Board of Directors.

ConnectED Benefit First: The proposed engagement must advance a ConnectED priority and have a defined, tangible education benefit that includes places of event or education value, or a strategy that significantly increases public awareness of linked learning, or funding for linked learning, or anticipates influencing changes in workforce development, that will result in increased benefits to linked learning.

No Undue Benefit: The engagement must not result in private benefit to a corporation – whether a financial benefit or publicity – that exceeds the benefits received by the ConnectED and its mission. The level of promotion should be appropriate to the type of engagement.

Aligns with Mission and Values: The engagement must be consistent with ConnectED’s Mission and should respect the sensitivities of our educational partners, community partners, donors and those communities in which it works. Examples of potential compromise include a conflict of interest or an implication that the relationship will influence the ConnectED’s mission or values.

No Endorsement:  ConnectED’s relationship with a corporation is in no way an implied or real endorsement of a corporation or industry. All public communications regarding corporate engagements are subject to prior agreement by ConnectED and the corporation. No third party entity, including a business, may use the ConnectED’s name and/or trademarks without explicit written permission.

Transparent and Independent Role of ConnectED:  ConnectED must always be publicly transparent about its role in and the use of analyses and data that may be produced as a result of a corporate engagement, including complying with the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Standards for Charity Accountability, when applicable.  At the ConnectED’s discretion, peer organizations, governments, the academic community, and other interested parties may be consulted about ConnectED’s work. The engagement must always be on the following terms:

ConnectED and the corporation agree that the primary analysis or work product is not proprietary to the corporation or association, will be freely offered to interested governmental agencies, other companies and stakeholders, and may be published in peer-reviewed scientific literature or other print media; and

ConnectED will seek input on its analysis as appropriate from regulatory agencies and other key stakeholders; and

ConnectED has the option to publicly comment on the merits of any corporation’s activities, development proposals or other matters that affect our conservation priorities.

ConnectED will disclose the identities of companies with whom it engages and the nature and purpose of its corporate engagements.

ConnectED will share general knowledge and expertise gained in corporate engagements to promote better Linked Learning practices and public policies at sectoral, national, and international levels.

ConnectED Right to Terminate: ConnectED will continuously evaluate the educational impact of its work with corporations, and may discontinue concrete corporate engagements if the impacts achieved are not satisfactory. ConnectED  must retain its unilateral right to terminate a corporate engagement for reasons relating to actual or potential reputational harm or legal compliance, breach of an agreement, and misuse of ConnectED intellectual property including the ConnectED name.

Acceptance of Funds: In conjunction with any corporate engagement, ConnectED may accept funds from a corporation to support the development of a particular project or work product when:  It does not compromise, or appear to compromise, the ConnectED independence, objectivity and work, and It does not conflict with an existing engagement with the corporation.Government