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Nielsen Social Impact Strategy Combines Data, Science and People to Make a Difference

2 minute read | March 2018


While volunteering and giving back have long been part of our culture, Nielsen’s formal social impact strategy began in 2010, when an associate shared an idea that grew into our annual day of service, Nielsen Global Impact Day (NGID).

NGID created an opportunity for associates around the world to come together in a shared spirit of service. From this day, our year-round Nielsen Cares employee volunteerism program was born. Nielsen Cares projects and programs leverage our associates’ time and expertise—and even Nielsen data—to make an impact with nonprofits in our priority cause areas of Education, Hunger & Nutrition, Diversity & Inclusion, and Technology. Nielsen associates have 24 hours of dedicated volunteer time each year that they can use to make a difference through volunteer projects.

Recently, Julia Wilson, Director, Global Responsibility & Sustainability, and Andrea Bertels, Director, Global Responsibility & Sustainability, and Director, Grantmaking, Nielsen Foundation, sat down to discuss how this approach has evolved over time.

“All our Nielsen Cares programs really build on and tap into the mission and purpose of our company as a whole. It’s our data, science and people that help our clients understand what’s happening in their market and how to act on this knowledge,” said Andrea. “And it’s this same data, science and people that are deployed in our communities and with nonprofit organizations to make a social impact through Nielsen Cares.”

In addition to sharing the valuable skills-based and hands-on volunteering done by Nielsen employees through Nielsen Cares projects on NGID and throughout the year, Andrea also highlighted the philanthropic grants made by the Nielsen Foundation.

The Nielsen Foundation, a private foundation funded by Nielsen, began grantmaking in 2016. Grants focus on how the social sector can reduce discrimination, ease global hunger, promote effective education, and build strong leadership, particularly through the use of data. One program that the Foundation started in 2017 is Cause Cards, which allow Nielsen associates to direct a grant to an eligible nonprofit when they log 12 or more volunteer hours in a quarter.