Cisco Blogs


Cisco Blog > Corporate Social Responsibility

Cisco Netriders Global Champions Tour Company Headquarters

January 30, 2013 at 2:21 pm PST

This week Cisco is proud to host 17 NetRider Champions from 13 countries around the globe at Cisco headquarters in San Jose, California. These tech wizards are students from the Cisco Networking Academy program who competed against more than 10,000 applicants in 85 countries. They range in age from 20 to 37.

The annual Networking Academy NetRiders competition is an interactive networking skills contest. It utilizes Cisco’s Web 2.0 technologies to challenge students to achieve high standards of competence, enhance classroom learning, and motivate them to further pursue technology education and training.

NetRiders_2013_web_1 Cisco Networking Academy NetRiders winners are visiting the Cisco San Jose, California campus from 13 countries.

Cisco believes in educating people with new skills for life, as well as in providing aid to those in need. Networking Academy is Cisco’s largest and longest-running corporate social responsibility (CSR) program; it was established in 1997 to teach IT based skills to people around the world, helping them get good jobs and encouraging long-term, sustainable economic growth in communities by providing highly skilled network professionals to support local industries. The 10,000 Cisco Academies around the world teach more than 1 million students in over 165 countries each year!

Brian Forward, the NetRider Champion from Canada, was particularly attracted to the interactive element of the competition. “Participating means that I have had the chance to compete with the countries’ and continents’ finest, while showcasing my talents and skills, and enhancing them while representing my home Newfoundland,” he said. “On a forward-looking note, it has created confidence within me that propels my learning.”

The contest is such a good way to motivate students that Tracy Granlund from the Networking Academy Student Advocacy Team says, “We hope to see the competition grow to 50,000 student participants.” The winners are in California to meet with Cisco staff and tour our offices, labs and data center; the Stanford University campus; Intel Museum; coastal Redwoods and beaches at Santa Cruz; and attractions in nearby San Francisco.

We’ll keep you posted about what the NetRiders are up to throughout the week.

Tags: , , ,

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reporting: How Cisco Encourages Suppliers to Take the First Step

Yesterday, I attended the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) annual Supply Chain Members Roundtable. Cisco has hosted this meeting for several years using Cisco TelePresence rooms in our offices, this year in London, New York City, São Paulo, and San Francisco, with AT&T attending from their own Cisco TelePresence room in Denver.

Supply chain GHG emissions is a complex topic, but the biggest challenge is simple… appropriately “encouraging” suppliers to report their corporate emissions to CDP.  I put “encouraging” in quotes because throughout the typical year, we see two views on supplier reporting (or any desired supplier action).

A lot of external stakeholders see reporting as a requirement, something to be demanded, as if failure to report can simply be corrected with larger sticks. If this sounds reasonable, just imagine your boss managing your performance similarly. Not much fun and not the way to sustained high performance.

Read More »

Tags: , ,

The Importance of Broadband Connectivity in Developing Countries

Originally posted on the Huffington Post on 01/23/2013

Stephen Ondieki lives in Africa’s second-largest slum, Kibera in Kenya, where most residents earn less than US$1 a day. However, Stephen owns a computer repair shop that not only enables him to earn US$8 a day, but also to give back to his community by turning his shop into a hang-out spot for youth, whom he mentors and teaches about IT and networking. “They see me overcoming the same challenges they face and they’re motivated to try to make some changes themselves,” he says.

Stephen acquired his IT skills through training with the Cisco Networking Academy, a program that collaborates with organizations around the world to teach hundreds of thousands of students the skills needed to build, design, and maintain networks -- an increasingly crucial skill in an increasingly networked world.

Tae_BB_012313Stephen Ondieki is a graduate of the academy at Raila Education Centre in Kibera.

Stephen’s success and community outreach in Kibera would not have been possible without reliable and affordable access to a broadband connection. For Stephen and for many other individuals in developing countries around the world, broadband connectivity acts as a powerful catalyst as well as an anchor for economic and social advancement.

Read the complete post on Huffington Post Impact X.

Tags: , , ,

Cisco CSR Collaborates for Impact at the World Economic Forum

“We believe economic progress without social development is not sustainable, while social development without economic progress is not feasible.” – Klaus Schwab, Founder and Chairman of the World Economic Forum

World-Economic-Forum-2Historically individuals and institutions have often been limited to the results of their individual efforts to make an impact. With the advent of the Internet and widespread broadband connection, however, it is now possible to efficiently join with others to act collectively -- pooling global resources and talents to solve problems too big to solve alone. This is the power of collective knowledge, creativity, and commitment in a connected age. This is what Cisco believes as we consider, plan, and execute our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities.

One way in which Cisco works collaboratively to make a global impact is by participating in events like this week’s World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. Cisco is one of the strategic partners of the event and our Chairman and CEO, John Chambers, will be speaking as part of a panel addressing Leading through Adversity on Wednesday, January 23 from  9 to 10 a.m. (CET) (midnight to 1 a.m. PST/3 to 4 a.m. EST).

Read More »

Tags: , , , , ,

American Red Cross Still Helping Hurricane Sandy Survivors

January 10, 2013 at 5:08 pm PST

For more than a decade, Cisco and the Cisco Foundation have supported the American Red Cross (ARC) and its efforts to help people displaced by natural disasters around the world.

This support has taken many forms -- from matching employee giving campaigns to corporate donations to product donations, such as Cisco data and voice communications equipment and volunteers that enabled ARC’s Hurricane Katrina response in 2005. Many of our employees volunteer with ARC, and some have been trained to work at relief shelters through the organization’s Ready When the Time Comes program.

Three months ago, the Red Cross faced one of its largest and most geographically dispersed deployments ever when Hurricane Sandy marched through the Caribbean and up the East Coast, sweeping away homes, destroying entire neighborhoods, and uprooting thousands of families.

ARC_deliverAmerican Red Cross volunteers Jessica Elam and Gilbert Abney distribute hot meals in heavily devastated Staten Island, New York on November 6, 2012. Photo: Talia Frenkel/American Red Cross

Within hours of Sandy’s landfall in New Jersey, Cisco committed a corporate contribution of US$1 million to the American Red Cross to be used for direct aid to the affected areas.

In addition, the Cisco Foundation set up the Hurricane Sandy Relief Campaign and pledged to match up to $2 million in Cisco employee contributions to the campaign, matching $2 for each $1 contributed by employees.

As of January 2, the campaign has raised more than $464,000 for the ARC’s U.S. Disaster Relief and International Response Funds through employee contributions and Cisco Foundation matching -- along with an additional $145,000 for 14 other disaster and hunger relief agencies.

Our strategic and ongoing partnership with the American Red Cross is part of Cisco’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) efforts to meet critical human needs -- such as access to food, potable water, shelter, and disaster relief, as well as long-term economic opportunities.

“The American Red Cross is at the forefront of the world’s most devastating disasters,” said Peter Tavernise, executive director of the Cisco Foundation. “Many of us are frustrated and want to help when we see the devastation on television. Our partnership with and support of the Red Cross gives our employees a way to contribute in a meaningful way to people who are affected by these catastrophes.”

ARC_foodFatima Velasquez, a volunteer for the American Red Cross, provides snacks to Jennifer Rivera from a Red Cross mobile feeding unit in the Rockaways, New York, on January 2, 2013. Photo: American Red Cross/Virginia Hart

Three months after Hurricane Sandy, approximately 1,000 Red Cross workers are still on the ground. To date the Red Cross has distributed more than 6.7 million relief and clean-up items and provided more than 9.6 million meals and snacks. ARC is still serving thousands of meals each day in New York and working with partners to distribute thousands of additional food packages every day.

Please read more about the American Red Cross Sandy relief efforts and donate today.