Ethical business culture

What is Ethical business culture at AstraZeneca?

An ethical business culture is an imperative against a background of reputational, legal, regulatory and long-term sustainability risks, and we are committed to increasing public trust in our industry. We drive the highest standards of conduct and accountability beyond compliance, including, but not limited to, anti-bribery and anti-corruption, product safety, use of human tissue and animals for research, human rights, and building supplier capabilities to uphold high social standards.

Our approach

The key elements of our commitment to an ethical business culture are:

  • Our Code of Ethics and Values, which guide everything we do and ensure that we deliver life-changing medicines in a responsible way. Additional requirements at the local and business-unit levels complement our Code
  • Values-based decision making. We know that setting rules is not enough — which is why we emphasise Values-based decision making. We encourage our workforce to adopt a sustainability mindset that embraces our core Values
  • Being visible and transparent about our business. In today's information-seeking society, our actions add more value by being visible. Transparency supports learning and development for our employees, suppliers and partners. It also meets expectations of patients, investors and broader society

Human Rights

As a healthcare company, we believe health is a human right and, therefore, enabling access to our medicines is vital. Beyond our core business of health, it is our responsibility to understand how we are contributing to or protecting human rights due to our operations. This includes taking action on issues such as modern slavery, workforce treatment, labour rights and data privacy. We aim to prevent human rights violations by proactively identifying any risks in our business and responding promptly with appropriate action. As signatories to the UN Global Compact (UNGC) for the past 11 years, we commit to the Guiding Principles to respect human rights by acting with due diligence to avoid infringing on human rights and to address negative impacts. We are also committed to the International Labour Organization (ILO) standards on child labour and minimum working age.

Responsible Supply Chain

We interact with an extensive network of suppliers globally, and this reach gives us the opportunity — and responsibility — to promote practices with our suppliers that are socially and environmentally sustainable. Our business success depends on a resilient, transparent and inclusive supply chain that supports responsible sourcing, development and manufacturing. Embedding sustainability through collaboration with our suppliers increases business value for all. Throughout the lifetime of our relationship with each supplier, we seek to ensure that their conduct matches the expectations outlined in our Global Standard Expectations of Third Parties. We aim to work only with suppliers whose values are consistent with our own and who are committed to developing inclusive, resilient and transparent businesses.

Our key target and progress

See the Sustainability Data Summary for all metrics and methodology

Our stories

Animals in science
The ethical use of AI
Responsible sourcing practices

Learn more about Ethical business culture in our Sustainability Report.