Municipal Institute Of LearningMILE - Municipal Institute Of Learning
Corporate Social Investment: What is the City's Role?
Over the years Corporate Social Investment (CSI) has evolved in South Africa. It is seen as a mechanism to contribute to the real needs of communities. When considering the impact of CSI it is imperative to take into account the social responsibility aspect in order to make a sustainable influence to the development and economic growth of the country.

EThekwini Municipality​ as a sphere of government closest to the community is moving towards creating and implementing a CSI strategy in keeping with the City’s vision. Today senior eThekwini officials gathered for the first time in 15 years, to explore the role of the Local government towards enabling CSI initiatives. 

Sipho Cele, the Deputy City Manager of Governance at eThekwini Municipality officially welcomed participants to the seminar. During his address, Cele mentioned the important role the municipality plays in enriching the lives of the community by maximising on investments. 

“eThekwini Municipality is providing services to over 3.8 million citizens. The City’s CSI initiatives aim to enhance the lives of the community that will directly and indirectly benefit from the City’s socio-economic development initiatives,” said Cele. 

Thought leader Melanie Dass, Corporate Affairs Manager of Mondi Group Limited shared how the company has developed and implemented effective tools to evaluate Corporate Social Responsibility.

 “CSI lies at the heart of Local Government Strategy, It is important when staff have control over CSI, it adds to the domain at work.  But CSI has multiple challenges with limited resources. We need to be more strategic in our approach on how we implement CSI. Furthermore, CSI is about Financial, Environmental and Social return on investment. We need to harness unique resources to create shared value which will have the most impact.”  

According to Dass in order to implement CSI, strategic partnerships need to be forged with all sectors of government, private sectors and NGOs.

City sectors such as eThekwini Municipality Academy (EMA) the former Skills Development Unit, eThekwini Transport Authority (ETA), Community Participation, Parks Recreation and Culture, Community Emergency Services Cluster, Economic Development, Area Based Management (ABM), International and Governance Relations (IGR) and Supply Chain Management (SCM) presented their approach towards implementing CSI within the City.

Presentations were followed by a facilitated discussion session led by the MILE Team.

Knowledge Management tools like the Management Seminars will be utilised to energise and mobilise the implementation of Corporate Social Investment within eThekwini.

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