A World Without Infectious Disease
Vir’s Statement on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Reporting
Vir aspires to create a world without infectious disease. Guided by science, we relentlessly build on our immunologic expertise and technologies in pursuit of transformative medicines for infectious diseases. Our innovations stem from courage and bold ideas. We approach each day with a sense of optimism and humility, recognizing that our strength resides in the diversity of our journeys and the opportunity to learn from each other.
Our commitment to ESG is deeply embedded in our culture and is based on humanitarian principles and practices. We are acutely aware of our interconnectedness, and we take responsibility for doing our part to reduce our impact on the environment, to fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce, and to upholding the highest legal, economic, and ethical standards.
- Environment: We recognize the emerging trends of climate change and are dedicated to practices that reduce our environmental impact, such as recycling, reducing waste, and saving energy.
- Social: We fiercely value diversity of thought and are passionately committed to maintaining a diverse and inclusive culture that extends to our patients, communities, and collaborators around the world.
- Governance: We adhere to strong governance practices and hold ourselves accountable to our high ethical standards. We uphold responsible business practices.
Under each of the categories above, Vir already has, or is in the process of, implementing key initiatives. Selected examples of these initiatives, ongoing and planned, include:
- Environmental assessment and KPI development. Still early in our ESG journey, in 2022 we plan to conduct an environmental assessment, with a goal of developing key performance indicators to track and measure our environmental footprint.
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I). Vir has taken a proactive approach to promoting DE&I. In 2021, we hired a Senior Director focused on DE&I to champion the adoption, implementation, and ongoing evaluation of our DE&I initiatives. In addition to being an Equal Opportunity Employer, we proactively use artificial intelligence to recommend word choices and develop job postings to improve the demographic diversity of our applicant pool without bias, as well as speed and efficacy of hiring. Every Vir job description uses this third-party software with a goal to reduce bias. We also actively use sourcing tools to search for diverse talent and posts all job vacancies on multiple websites designed to source diverse candidates. In addition, we support formalized employee resource groups (ERGs) and initiatives such as Culture Club events, open forum discussions, ongoing mentoring and networking, and the Women-at-Vir ERG.
- Training and Development. Vir offers ongoing targeted inclusion developmental training for employees and leaders.
- Community Engagement. Our Chief Executive Officer, Dr. George Scangos, chairs the non-profit Life Sciences Cares Bay Area (LSC-BA), which shares Vir’s commitment to understanding community needs and raising awareness on issues of poverty and inequity. LSC-BA is an organization established to provide life science companies and their employees an opportunity to work collectively to make a positive impact through volunteering, donating, and grant-making. In 2021, Vir employees volunteered at LSC-BA’s vaccine equity program in the San Francisco area and donated more than 5,700 coats to those in need across the Bay Area.
- External Mentorship and Education Programs. Vir annually allocates funds in support of and in partnership with community colleges such as San Francisco State University (SFSU) to create external mentorship programs. Since 2020, we have run a mentorship program at SFSU targeting underrepresented groups who are pursuing Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) degrees and who may not be aware of or consider careers in life sciences. Programs include mentoring, lab tours, and career discussions. In 2021, we expanded our mentorship program by launching the Vir Biotechnology STEM Scholars to defray tuition costs.
- Strong Governance. Vir values the diversity of its leaders, with female and minority directors comprising over 45% of the current board and women comprising 50% of Vir’s senior leadership team. We adhere to board refreshment practices, and the board and committees conduct annual self-assessments. In addition, we have stock ownership guidelines for directors and executive management.
We remain committed to our ESG initiatives and will report on our future progress.