Guidance: It seems important to know that ISO 26000 offers guidance, is not a management system standard, and is not for certification, contractual or regulatory use. ISO 26000 offers orientation and recommendations on how to enhance responsible behaviour towards society. The 26k-issue-tool is an inherent part of the 26k-user-guide but can be applied separately, too.

This site explains the use of the 26k-issue-tool a bit more detailed in

English, Spanish, French, Czech, Serbian, and German.

What is the 26k-issue-tool in principle?
It is an Excel sheet that shows in the very left column the ISO 26000 core subjects and issues and offers per issue six crucial questions in the other columns:

  • Relevance: is the core subject and its issues judged relevant for my organisation?
  • Leverage: what leverage does my organisation have on this particular issue?
  • Activities: what kind of activities can my organisation undertake on this issue?
  • Not in conflict with the law: can I be sure that the planned activities are not in conflict with applicable law?
  • Impact: what impact will my activities have?
  • Stakeholder: which stakeholder should I involve on this issue?

If all six questions in a row can be answered positively, an issue has been identified where the organisation can really undertake something to contribute to society.
The questions should be answered from left to right, that means from question 1 to question 6, and as soon as one of the questions did not find a positive answer, the related issue can be considered as not well suited for action.

In this shortened and abstract example YES signals a positive answer to the question, NO a negative one. So, among these issues Issue A3 has been identified as one where the organization could/should contribute to societal development, just to show how easy the 26k-issue-tool works.

The completed tool is a perfect document for demonstrating your thoughts on how to contribute to society and may be particularly useful for your stakeholder dialogue or for any kind of reporting and external communication. See also the

What is the purpose of the copyright clause?
The 26k-issue-tool is devoted to individual and voluntary application, as a self-assessment tool (see also the site on
self-assessment. Therefore, it is copyright protected simply to avoid its non-permitted commercial use or misuse.
The detailed text of the clause is available on the excel sheet itself, in the relevant language.

Key is:
– Individual use by organizations and particularly by SMEs is free of charge
– organizations using the tool commercially for their clients shall first negotiate a license agreement.

Here you can download the 26k-issue-tool and this part of this site in WORD or PDF.

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