A global presence and cultural diversity shape the EPCOS Group and its business activities. We have employees, customers and partners in many countries of the world. Together, they make up a network characterized by the exchange of goods, services and knowledge, by intercultural cooperation and opportunities for individual advancement. At the same time, this network is engaged in permanent dialog with society. We thus gain new ideas and insight while arousing sympathy for, and creating confidence in, our company and its business policy. We maintain close contact with educational institutions around the world. Our experts cooperate in basic research with more than 50 renowned universities and institutes, such as the Max Planck and Fraunhofer Institutes in Germany, Pennsylvania State University in the United States, or the Institute of Microelectronics in Singapore.
Wherever we do business, we see ourselves as a full member of local society, as a good corporate citizen that actively contributes to the community and its environment. We bear special responsibility toward our employees, whose drive and creativity we promote and whose safety, health and continuing education are matters of prime concern to us. Our regional companies are an integral part of the national economies that they serve. We also see ourselves as a good neighbor in the literal sense, purchasing goods and services locally, providing well-paid jobs by local standards, and paying local taxes. By buying local goods and services, we promote an efficient subcontracting and supply industry. Our local operations thus create extra jobs indirectly.
Our conviction that corporate responsibility involves a commitment to society and permanent protection of the environment is documented in our Corporate Principles. To do justice to the diversity of cultures, values and moral precepts that we encounter, we base our conduct on high ethical standards. Our corporate culture and interpersonal relations within the company, with our customers and business associates are molded by values such as decency, loyalty, tolerance, and respect for local customs and the law. Each and every employee shares responsibility for EPCOS' image and for honoring our commitment to society.
EPCOS is an active participant in the Global Compact initiative launched by the United Nations and also recognizes the Code of Conduct drawn up by ZVEI, the German Electrical and Electronics Manufacturers' Association.