Glencore Coal Assets Australia – Stakeholder Perception Study 2015-16

ACCSR’s research will help further improve decision-making and discussion related to the communities associated with Glencore’s coal mining operations.


“Business decisions are made on robust data, and this has to include our work with the communities associated with our operations. The rigour in this project gives me confidence that the resulting recommendations will further improve our engagement with stakeholders.”
Craig Strudwick, Community Relations Manager, Coal Assets Australia, Glencore

Our stakeholder research for Glencore Coal Assets Australia entailed interviews with over 900 stakeholders and measured Glencore’s social licence to operate.

The Client Challenge

Glencore Coal Assets Australia (Glencore) is Australia’s largest coal producer. It is a significant employer and a major socio-economic actor in the regions where it operates, in Queensland and New South Wales (NSW). Some mines are close to small towns, and therefore environmental, social, and economic impacts on local communities can be large and visible. Effective stakeholder engagement helps manage social and environmental risks, provides input into strategy and practice, improves reputation, and identifies new opportunities by anticipating community needs and concerns.

Since Glencore acquired Xstrata Coal in 2013, the company has focused on integration and getting a consistent focus across the business including in stakeholder engagement protocols and community investment.

The company aims to make a meaningful contribution to the sustainable development of the communities where it operates. It required a community perception study to provide valuable intelligence to help it strategically evaluate its engagement efforts to date and make effective plans for the future. The research needed to provide actionable insights to drive business improvement in the areas of stakeholder engagement and community investment, and provide an effective basis for future community dialogue and engagement.

Our Approach

Our research focused on understanding stakeholder issues and network dynamics. We used social network analysis to map relationships between stakeholders, relationships between issues, and relationships between issues and stakeholders. The research entailed in-depth interviews with opinion leaders and shorter interviews with landholders and communities. Where data were available, we compared results for previous years.

ACCSR collaborated closely with GCAA over several months to design and implement the research that achieved a response rate of 78 percent.