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Our materiality matrix

03/28/2018 - 10:00 AM

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Materiality is determining the relevance and significance of an issue to an organisation and its stakeholders.

AA1000 AccountAbility Principles Standard

The materiality matrix is a way of representing topics that have an economic, reputational or environmental impact on our company, plotting them against the level of interest these topics have for our stakeholders.
The materiality matrix we have adopted at TIM has been developed through a methodology that included:
·         an analysis of stakeholders’ perception, in part via social networks and the web
·         an analysis of the press as well as various documentary and information sources using advanced semantic analysis and big data analysis methodologies
·         interviews with managers
·         considerations developed within TIM's Sustainability Reporting, Monitoring and Relationship Department.
The materiality matrix is reviewed and updated annually.

Materiality analysis

In light of the substantial immobility of the material topics that emerged from the multistakeholder forums held in 2015 and 2016, described in the sustainability section of the Group's website, this year TIM thought it appropriate to begin an analysis to check the validity of the material topics. The process therefore complies with the "Guidelines for updating the TIM materiality analysis,” updated in 2017 to align with the Global Reporting Initiative Standards adopted by TIM to prepare the Sustainability Report.

Methodology: new aspects introduced in 2017

1)  We have introduced advanced semantic analysis methodologies to identify the ‘tree’ of material topics
To check the validity of the material topics identified last year, we decided to consider a broader scenario of telecommunications and sustainability topics. We have therefore introduced a semantic analysis methodology (1) that has allowed us to obtain a detailed analysis validated by a large number of national and international information sources, public and private, internal and external to the Group (2), around 100 in all, to intercept and map the material topics and compare them with those TIM identified in 2016.
2) To monitor the relevance of the material topics for stakeholders over time we have introduced advanced semantic analysis and big data analysis methodologies 
The official documents (Sustainability Reports in particular), positions and statements made on the websites of our representative stakeholders were analysed; the TIM Data Room services enabled us to engage in “social listening” to understand what stakeholders’ were saying about the topics. In addition to this, stakeholders were consulted directly.
Identification of the material topics
At the end of the first analysis phase, TIM was able to draw up a list of topics representing the following macro areas:
·         correctness of corporate conduct
·         impact on the region and community in which the company operates
·         strategies and responsible management of the supply chain
·         management of the workforce and development of internal employment
·         management of the health and safety of workers
·         service quality, customer relations, protection of vulnerable categories
·         safeguarding privacy and personal data security and protection
·         environmental protection
·         geographic and social digital inclusion
·         support in the development of inclusive, sustainable education and digital skills
·         development of digital infrastructures with new generation, UBB and LTE networks  
·         management and reduction of negative impact on human rights with dedicated actions
Attribution of priorities
On the basis of this list, TIM started the process of defining the relevance of the material topics for the Company and the stakeholders.
The internal viewpoint was provided by Top Management which, thanks to the involvement of a significant sample of representative contact people from all the company's departments, expressed its opinion on the relevance of each topic to TIM’s strategy (4).
The external viewpoint. As already mentioned, the collection was facilitated through innovative tools such as semantic analyses and big data analysis, based on last year’s findings. Between customers, suppliers, competitors, institutions, the environment and the community, 43 stakeholders were observed and listened to, 23 of them directly through the collaborative platform RE2N.
These advanced analysis tools and the collaborative platform RE2N represent the new methodology TIM has adopted for the materiality analysis to exploit the potential for digital transformation also as part of the sustainability activities. The objectives of this “digital” approach are to expand and systematize listening to a greater number of stakeholders and foster the process of updating the materiality analysis in “real time” using the results of discussions held with stakeholders on the platform.

Weighting of the results and generation of the matrix
Finally, an average score was calculated weighted by the significance attributed to each source according to the different time periods covered in the analysis and the different ways of collecting the positions on the material topics.
The activity resulted in the following materiality matrix: 
TIM-materiality-matrix-2017-eng
TIM’s material topics and the Sustainable Development Goals
The materiality matrix, in addition to highlighting the priority areas of commitment for TIM and its stakeholders, also reflects the SDGs to which the company believes it can make the biggest contribution through its core business.
Specifically, the relevant Goals are:
•       n. 3: Good Health and Well-Being
•       n. 4: Quality Education
•       n. 5: Gender equality
•       n. 7: Affordable and clean energy
•       n. 8: Decent work and economic growth
•       n. 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure
•       n. 10: Reduced inequalities
•       n. 11: Sustainable cities and communities
•       n. 12: Responsible consumption and production
•       n. 13: Climate action
•       n. 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
In particular, we have conducted an analysis comparing TIM’s material topics with the actions, undertakings, activities and results the Group has taken on and achieved in response to them, with the detailed targets of the SDGs. We found several correlations between topics and targets. This shows how much TIM can contribute to the achievement of the sustainable development objectives set for 2030 through its policies, solutions and business activities.
The matrix and table below illustrate these correlations.
TIM-material-topics-eng
Validation
The validation of the topics and of the entire materiality analysis process was carried out by the Sustainability Reporting, Monitoring and Relationship (SRMR) division of the Administration and Financial Reporting Department, with the support of RE2N, a company that develops innovative tools for sustainability and Shared Value, and TIM Data Room. TIM Data Room is the department of the Group that analyses digital data from the Internet through listening, reporting and benchmarking activities. 
Review
The Group updated the "Guidelines for updating the TIM materiality analysis” to align them with the GRI Standard in order to establish a transparent structure for the analysis process. The document provides guidelines for the activities to be carried out, establishing timetables and the roles of the bodies/departments involved in the process. previsto che la fase di review venga svolta come attività preparatoria al prossimo ciclo di rendicontazione, anche con l’obiettivo di sottoporre i risultati delle analisi condotte, aggiornate nell’anno successivo, a specifiche attività di consultazione e di coinvolgimento degli stakeholder engagement.



(1) The techniques involve automatic text analyses designed to extract structural data which codify the semantic component of textual content. The algorithms of the semantic engine that analysed all the sources of information were trained with 'sustainability' and 'digital' components.

(2) For example: The “Piano Nazionale italiano per l’Agenda 2030” (Italian National Plan for the 2030 agenda) of the Italian government, the “Ernst & Young megatrends report 2015”, the “Fair and Sustainable Well-Being in Italy 2016” (BES) report promoted by the National Council for Economy and Labour (CNEL) and the National Institute for Statistics (ISTAT).

(3) UBB= Ultra Broad Band;  LTE=Long Term Evolution

(4) Based on the following scale: 1=barely influential; 2=limited impact; 3=direct influence; 4=significant influence; 5=decisive.