05. Corporate Social Responsibility Guidelines
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a self-regulating operational model that incorporates social and environmental concerns into an organization's planning and operations. The goal is to ensure that all of its activities positively affect society as a whole.
This management concept goes beyond an organization’s legal obligations, and it aims at making an organization to be socially accountable to itself, its stakeholders, and the public.
In recent years, the notion of Corporate Social Responsibility has become increasingly prevalent, also in the field of sports. By definition, sports federations already play a social role, bringing positive effects to society. However, their professionalization and growing commercialism makes it necessary to establish mechanisms of self-regulation from a social perspective, to ensure that they stay loyal to their foundational values.
FIDE’s Mission and Values
Organizing chess competitions is not FIDE’s only mission. As in every other sports association, the competitive aspects are just a means to achieve a higher goal: to improve our society by promoting healthy habits and inspiring self-growth. FIDE works to encourage the regular practice of chess by all people in society, regardless of sex, age, social background or economic status.
Diversity, equality and inclusion are values rooted in our organization, as clearly stated in the point 2.11 of the FIDE Charter.
Similar values are also at the heart of the Olympic Movement, of which FIDE is a proud member:
“Fundamental Principles of Olympism:
1. Olympism is a philosophy of life, exalting and combining in a balanced whole the qualities of body, will and mind. Blending sport with culture and education, Olympism seeks to create a way of life based on the joy of effort, the educational value of good example, social responsibility and respect for universal fundamental ethical principles.
2. The goal of Olympism is to place sport at the service of the harmonious development of humankind, with a view to promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity.”
Following these guidelines, FIDE commits itself to encourage and support the following activities and good practices:
Supporting diversity, equity and inclusion
FIDE supports close international cooperation of chess devotees in all fields of chess activities, thereby also aiming to improve harmony and promote peace among all peoples of the world, as stated in the point 2.6 of the FIDE Charter.
FIDE strives to thoroughly and quickly investigate all examples of discrimination to make chess inclusive of every athlete. Our stand on this matter includes a zero-tolerance policy for any kind of discrimination because of age, ethnicity, origin, political belief, race, religion, sex or gender, sexual orientation, disability, language, or cultural grounds.
FIDE will continue to work for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in chess events, as well as the inclusion of any minority or disadvantaged group, like refugees, or children who lack opportunities like the access to higher education.
Chess has also proven to be a very effective tool that can help to rehabilitate those individuals who have difficulty solving problems in their lives, problems that range from criminality to substance abuse. FIDE will encourage the development of specific programs for these people, to whom chess can provide an opportunity to transform their lives.
Promoting gender equality and equity
FIDE works tirelessly to increase the number of women in all aspects of chess life. This should include not only developing programs to increase their participation in competitions, but also seeking their participation in leading roles. Our goal is to empower all women and girls, creating favorable conditions for their chess development and make them feel welcome and respected.
FIDE encourages its members, and, in particular, the continental associations, to create a dedicated commission (equivalent to FIDE’s WOM Commission) or to designate a person to work specifically on these programs. Member associations may wish to allocate part of their budget to this purpose.
FIDE would continue to engage in programs which encourage women to pursue careers as players, arbiters, coaches, trainers, officers and journalists, as a means towards gender equity. We will also make use of our social media channels to give visibility to women in chess, providing young girls with role models who can inspire them.
Ensuring a future and protecting our seniors
In cooperation with our Member Associations, FIDE will continuously seek support from our partners, sponsors, educational institutions and public authorities, to facilitate that athletes are able to develop dual careers. The goal is to ensure the social and professional future of chess players once they decide to put an end to their competitive career.
FIDE strives to protect those seniors who, after having devoted their lives to chess, find themselves in an unstable financial situation. We will keep working to further enhance our support program, seeking funds through specific activities and campaigns.
Safeguarding the players
FIDE actively encourages and develops measures related to health of athletes, promoting the adoption of healthy habits among them. In liaison with the FIDE Medical Commission, educational programs and specific seminars on topics like the benefits of a healthy diet, regular exercise, and raising awareness about mental health are to be regularly devised. We encourage the members of the chess community to undergo regular medical checks. Our task is to regularly provide guidelines and advice to those who want to quit harmful habits like smoking or drinking.
Involving athletes in the decision-making process is a core component of good governance, establishing peer-to-peer cooperation helps to safeguard the credibility of the sport. Through the Athletes Commission, FIDE enables the players' voices and experiences to be heard and used for the improvement of chess as a sport. FIDE shall oppose any political or commercial abuse of sport and athletes, standing up for them when necessary.
FIDE strives to protect children, young persons and other vulnerable groups from abuse.
Supporting Member Federations
FIDE is committed to helping all member federations in their task to promote chess by providing technical support or, in the case of developing federations, financial assistance via the FIDE Development Fund. Activities and initiatives carried out with the support of the FIDE Development fund shall comply with CSR principles and priorities set out in these guidelines.
FIDE will continue to provide resources for chess federations which allow for the development of chess with the federation’s jurisdiction. These resources include information on chess education, mental health, social activities, chess tournaments, chess federation management and others. FIDE strives to develop a ‘best practices’ area where federations can easily review some useful flagship projects that are being done across the globe.
Member federations are encouraged to participate in any FIDE CSR related initiatives which may be relevant to their local context. Their engagement in their own CSR activities is appreciated, and they are urged to seek partners with similar objectives in the delivery of such programs. FIDE is highly motivated to highlight and disseminate notable CSR activities that our member federations carry out. This information may be delivered via various workshops, seminars, forums as well as via the FIDE or relevant commission’s websites.
Relationships with International Organizations and Institutions
In order to better serve its stakeholders and global community, FIDE is dedicated to expand and establish new relationships with other international organizations which have similar objectives and values to FIDE. These may include other international sporting bodies, NGOs or associations.
FIDE may also engage international institutions for funding or support in an effort for FIDE to successfully fulfil its mandate.
Supporting initiatives that blend chess with culture and education
The mission of FIDE is “the diffusion and development of chess among all nations of the world, as well as the raising of the level of chess culture and knowledge on a sporting, scientific, creative, educational, and cultural basis”, as stated in the point 2.5 of the FIDE Charter.
This is done in many ways, year-round and on all five continents, and we continue to work towards increasing access to chess for all and, in particular, young people. Chess allows children to develop their intellectual skills and reach their full potential. Like every other sport, chess also teaches them discipline and encourages them to strive for self-improvement.
Protecting the environment
FIDE stays focused on adopting environmental solutions that lessens our footprint, while serving as an example to our peers.
Our organization commits to minimize waste generation through efforts that will include recycling, innovation and prevention of pollution, integrating these efforts into our day-to-day operations. In order to minimize atmospheric emissions and noise, we strive to reduce travelling making full use of innovations and technologies and replacing face-to-face meetings as much as possible.
FIDE is dedicated to comply with all applicable environmental laws and regulations. In addition, our organization expecst the same from our suppliers, contractors and partners.
Caring for employees
FIDE is committed to the overall well-being and wellness of its employees, so that they stay motivated and happy to serve our stake-holders. FIDE will continue to provide fair working conditions and guarantee a safe and healthy working environment for all our employees. Our organization shall at all times ensure compliance with or exceed its obligations as set out by the Swiss legislation. We support equal employment opportunities, diversity and inclusion for our employees, ensuring fair working conditions, measures for reconciling working and family life, taking care of employees’ health.
Besides, FIDE strives to provide staff training, encourage appraisals, and support personal growth for our employees. FIDE acknowledges the importance of new skills acquisition and career development among its staff, as well as the role of regular team-building activities.
Our management shall take the leadership in fostering a corporate culture and implementing policies that promote ethical behavior.
FIDE understands that it has a role to play in the development of our communities and societies and thus is dedicated to follow the principle of social responsibility in all its actions. It has demonstrated its commitment to this cause by the establishment of a dedicated team that would foster the organization’s efforts.
There are many benefits to be derived from engaging in a holistic CSR based operational approach, both within FIDE and its wider community. The full success and notable positive impact on society, however, cannot be achieved as a result of FIDE efforts alone but by the participation of all FIDE members, continents and other affiliated associations.