Effective October 1, 2012, QUALCOMM Incorporated completed a corporate reorganization in which the assets of certain of its businesses and groups, as well as the stock of certain of its direct and indirect subsidiaries, were contributed to Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. (QTI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of QUALCOMM Incorporated. Learn more about these changes


Creating a culture of accountability

By leading with our values, we ingrain responsibility in everything we do. From our Board of Directors to our cross-divisional QSR Leadership Committee, our responsibility efforts begin with the people in charge.

Leading By Example

As a publicly held company, we are governed by a Board of Directors, which sets high standards for our executive leadership and all of our employees as it acts in the best interests of our stockholders. Our directors serve as prudent fiduciaries and oversee our Company’s management. Board members are expected at all times to act in accordance with our Code of Ethics.

As of September 30, 2012, twelve directors are independent, meaning they are not employees, have not been employees within the last three years and do not have any business or consulting arrangements with Qualcomm. The Board includes a presiding director who is independent. The presiding director leads at all meetings of the Board at which the chair is not present, including executive sessions of the independent directors.

The Board has four standing committees: Audit, Compensation, Finance and Governance. Members of all committees except Finance are composed of independent directors. The presiding director serves as chair of one of the three independent committees.

The positions of chairman of the board and chief executive officer are combined and are currently held by Dr. Paul E. Jacobs, who has served as chairman of the board since 2009 and as chief executive officer since 2005. The Board elects the chairman of the board and chief executive officer based on the criteria that it deems appropriate and in the best interests of the Company at the time of election.

Detailed information about our governance structure and policies is available on our corporate website.

Social Responsibility at Qualcomm

Governance structure dedicated to social responsibility

Social responsibility efforts at Qualcomm are guided by our cross-divisional QSR Leadership Committee, which reports annually to the Governance Committee of our Board of Directors. The Committee’s leadership and access to the Board ensures social responsibility issues are an essential component of our business strategy. Four QSR Committees oversee our four areas of focus—Company, Workplace, Community and Environment—and implement the QSR Leadership Committee’s directives as companywide practices broadly shared with our stakeholders. In all, our QSR governance structure helps ingrain social responsibility throughout our Company and long-term business goals.

Our QSR commitment, priorities and goals

We’ve established clear QSR commitments, priorities and goals to define and focus our social responsibility efforts. Our commitment is to:

  • Operate with the highest ethical standards
  • Be a great place to work
  • Be good corporate citizens wherever we conduct business
  • Develop technology that positively transforms the world
  • Continue to drive value for our stockholders

In 2012, we formalized our goals for each of our QSR focus areas and priorities so that we can continue to improve our social responsibility efforts, better monitor our progress and report more transparently. We are pleased to share our steady progress on each of these goals.

Additional policies that outline our commitment on specific social responsibilities include:

Our Company

We meet and exceed industry standards for ethical business practices, product responsibility and supplier management.


Regularly review our corporate governance principles and policies to ensure they serve the best interests of our stockholders and other stakeholders

2012 Progress
  • Amended the Company’s Restated Certificate of Incorporation and amended the Company’s Bylaws as a result of a vote by stockholders at the 2012 Annual Meeting to eliminate the plurality voting provision for the election of directors

Develop measurable goals and reporting metrics for each of our QSR priorities

2012 Progress
  • QSR Leadership Committee approved goals to monitor progress of our QSR priorities
  • Commenced materiality assessment to determine and prioritize our social responsibility issues

Ethics and Integrity

Require employees to acknowledge our code of business conduct, review the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and acknowledge our anticorruption policy, as applicable

2012 Progress
  • Nearly 100 percent of active employees reviewed and acknowledged The Qualcomm Way: Our Code of Business Conduct
  • Nearly 100 percent of active employees identified as needing to be aware of our FCPA and anticorruption policies reviewed and acknowledged these policies

Develop and publish Qualcomm's guiding principles on privacy

2012 Progress
  • Qualcomm strives to foster trust in the use of wireless technologies by helping to enable responsible information privacy and data security practices that are informed by the guiding principles published here.

Product Responsibility

Develop products taking into account environmental and social impact considerations

2012 Progress
  • Continued to implement and expand companywide and supplier sustainability initiatives
  • Joined the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) as an applicant member and adopted the EICC Code of Conduct in our operations
  • Expanded bromine-free and chlorine-free design strategy beyond integrated circuit products
  • Participated in the EICC-GeSI Extractives Work Group and IPC conflict minerals standard development committees and continued to work with industry to develop conflict-free solutions

Supplier Management

Engage suppliers to advance sustainability efforts, including promoting efficient water uses

2012 Progress
  • Began engaging with our top suppliers by spend on sustainability issues including but not limited to water, energy, hazardous materials usage, conflict minerals and human rights
  • Upon joining EICC and adopting the EICC Code of Conduct internally, began engaging with our major suppliers on their adoption of the Code
  • Completed a water scarcity assessment of top suppliers by spend
  • Developed supplier engagement strategies to encourage efficient water management

Encourage conflict-free sourcing of materials used in products

2012 Progress
  • Required our top suppliers to source from smelters and refiners listed on the Conflict-Free Smelter list, when practicable
  • Continued to participate in EICC-GeSI Extractives Work Group and IPC standards development committees to foster a conflict-free electronics supply chain
  • Continued developing companywide supplier due diligence measures
  • Internal task force engaged to determine impact of final SEC rule on our Company

Stakeholder Engagement

Foster ongoing, transparent communication with our key stakeholders

2012 Progress
  • Held leadership positions on a number of key trade associations and industry partnerships throughout the world
  • Met regularly with policymakers globally to discuss relevant public policy issues
  • Actively engaged with numerous key public policy organizations, including the World Economic Forum, 4G Americas and the United States Council for International Business
  • Worked with investors and research firms to continue enhancing openness, transparency and accountability in a timely manner
  • Improved transparency and disclosure of social responsibility issues
  • Engaged in cross-industry forums to help us identify, adopt and contribute to the development of environmental best practices
  • Participated in discussions about relevant methodologies for tracking, evaluating and reporting environmental performance

Our Workplace

We provide a safe and healthy work environment where diversity is embraced and various opportunities for training, growth and advancement are strongly encouraged for all employees.

Global Workforce Inclusion

Expand diversity and inclusion efforts globally with a focus on the recruitment, retention and development of traditionally underrepresented minorities and women

2012 Progress
  • Expanded our QWISE chapters globally
  • Offered fellowships, scholarships and summer internships to underrepresented graduate students in engineering through our college internship program, Early Identification Program and student sponsorship in the National GEM Consortium
  • Supported professional development programs and networking opportunities targeting women and traditionally underrepresented minorities via our Employee Resource Groups and partnerships with external diversity organizations
  • Provided underrepresented youth an opportunity to experience life in a corporate environment through our Hire a Youth program
  • Invested financial and human resources, including volunteer mentoring by our employees, in nonprofit organizations providing STEM educational opportunities for underrepresented students

Support transition of United States military personnel into corporate workforce

2012 Progress
  • Implemented Qualcomm Corporate Integration Program, which exposes Wounded Warriors to working in a corporate environment
  • Sponsored and supported activities of our Mil-Vets Employee Resource Group, which focuses on recruitment, mentoring and community outreach to military veterans and fosters employee engagement

Expand efforts to support opportunities for the employment of people with disabilities within Qualcomm and the community

2012 Progress
  • Sponsored and supported activities of our disABILITY.resource Employee Resource Group, which supports and educates people with disabilities both within our Company as well as the community as a whole
  • Hosted various internal and external events to raise awareness and support the employment of people with disabilities, such as Jobtoberfest, “Day in a Chair” and Qualcomm mentorship day

Employee Development

Promote global employee wellness and improve overall health and fitness of our employees

2012 Progress
  • Began Global Employee Health Services program
  • Thousands of employees attended over 1,500 QLife fitness classes at our 19 on-site, commercial-grade fitness facilities or at fitness centers nearby
  • Our on-site headquarters’ clinic, Qualcomm Health Center, offered comprehensive health services, pre-travel consultations, on-site physical therapy and visiting medical specialists to all full-time employees
  • Over 4,000 employees bolstered their immune systems through our annual flu shot program

Provide training globally that enables Qualcomm employees to operate at the leading edge of technology and help them to meet our future business needs

2012 Progress
  • Introduction of lynda.com
  • Implemented mobile learning strategy
  • Created and promoted internal social media sites

Ethical Employment

Increase awareness and visibility of human rights principles within our Company, as well as with contracted vendors and key suppliers

2012 Progress
  • Gave global trainings on The Qualcomm Way: Our Code of Business Conduct, a policy that all active employees review and acknowledge
  • 100 percent of our security personnel are trained in human rights policies and procedures
  • Annual assessment of human rights compliance and risks conducted by legal, finance, employee relations and internal audit departments
  • Enhanced our understanding and assessment of human rights issues, including the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
  • Actively participated in BSR’s Human Rights Working Group

Increase awareness of employee recognition programs and promote increased recognition of employee contributions

2012 Progress
  • Rolled out “Appreciate Q” program, a resource for employees to appreciate effort, recognize great work and celebrate excellence at Qualcomm

Provide employees with increased visibility to their total compensation and benefits package

2012 Progress
  • Total Rewards Value Initiative rolled out to all United States, China and India personnel, which comprises over 85 percent of our workforce

Workplace Safety

Maintain injury rates below industry average

2012 Progress
  • Our Total Injury and Incident Rate is 32 percent lower than the industry average

Our Community

We grow strategic relationships with a wide range of local organizations and programs that develop and strengthen communities worldwide.


Expand our philanthropic support toward areas of need in alignment with Qualcomm’s growth

2012 Progress
  • Broadened our philanthropy to new nonprofit organizations in Canada, Europe, Asia, India and the United States
  • Qualcomm Foundation and Qualcomm Incorporated gave a combined $42 million in grants to support and strengthen communities worldwide


Increase employee volunteerism through innovative programs with local nonprofit organizations globally

2012 Progress
  • Held companywide volunteerism month, QCares Experience, in 23 Qualcomm locations worldwide, enabling more than 1,600 employees to volunteer over 6,500 hours at 52 nonprofit organizations during work hours
  • Hosted online system for nonprofit organizations to promote and encourage board and committee service opportunities directly to our employees
  • 100 percent of our executive leadership is active in the communities where we operate

Wireless Reach

Create sustainable advanced wireless projects that strengthen economic and social development with a focus on education, entrepreneurship, health care, the environment and public safety

2012 Progress
  • Wireless Reach currently has 73 projects in various stages of development in 31 countries, each targeted at empowering people through the use of advanced wireless technologies

Support United Nations Millennium Development Goals and help local governments reach their Information and Communications Technology and universal service goals

2012 Progress

Our Environment

We grow our operations while minimizing our carbon footprint, conserving water and reducing waste.

Air Quality

Identify opportunities to better track and reduce our direct and indirect greenhouse gas and other significant air emissions

2012 Progress
  • Publicly reported greenhouse gas emissions for all of our North American facilities for calendar year 2011
  • Earned SDG&E’s 2012 Clean Transportation Award for our pioneer efforts to implement and promote electric vehicle charging stations
  • Installed 17 electric vehicle charging stations at San Diego sites, in addition to the five Raleigh, NC, sites that were implemented in prior year
  • Encouraged and incentivized energy-efficient and alternative commuting, including Company-organized carpool vans/routes


Seek innovative and practical methods to improve our energy efficiency

2012 Progress
  • Received SDG&E’s 2012 Energy Champion Award for implementing efficiency projects, resulting in significant energy savings
  • Identified equipment efficiency opportunities for additional energy savings

Increase our contribution to the development of the smart energy ecosystem

2012 Progress
  • Engaged in cross-industry forums and dialogue on environmental issues, such as Business Council for Sustainable Energy, International Caucus Conservation Foundation, GridWise Alliance and Industrial Environmental Association
  • Presented at and sponsored the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners annual meetings
  • Conducted various webinars, including “Smart Grid Virtual Summit Webinar: 3G Cellular Technologies for Smart Grid Communications,” “Qualcomm Webinar: Lessons from the Real World — Comparing Cellular with Other Communication Technologies for Smart Grid” and the “GSMA Webinar: Smart Energy for Smart Cities”
  • Participated in various stakeholder working groups on smart grids

Waste Reduction

Identify opportunities to increase recycling and decrease amount of waste sent to landfills, as well as continue to implement best practices in hazardous waste disposal

2012 Progress
  • Earned the 2012 Directors Recycling Award presented by the Mayor of San Diego and the city’s Environmental Services Department
  • Explored ways to increase overall amount of material recycled in our facilities, including construction materials
  • Recycled 100 percent of our hazardous waste in fiscal 2012

Maintain recycling of IT-managed e-waste and provide opportunities for our employees to recycle personal e-waste

2012 Progress
  • Held quarterly e-waste collection events to recycle employees’ personal e-waste
  • Recycled 100 percent IT-managed e-waste generated at headquarters

Water Conservation

Seek additional, practical methods to enhance water conservation and sustainability practices

2012 Progress
  • Advocated with San Diego County Water Authority for expanded reclaimed water access at our headquarter sites to facilitate increased water recycling
  • Identified opportunities for additional water efficiency utilizing water-saving fixtures, drought-resistant landscaping and other best practices
  • Worked closely with the City of San Diego and the Industrial Environmental Association water committee on water practices and policies
  • At our San Jose and Santa Clara operations, we saved approximately a quarter of a million gallons of water per year using a reverse osmosis/deionized water system, which produces more deionized water with less waste water

Facilities and Operations

Consider design factors that enhance energy efficiency and sustainable construction

2012 Progress
  • Earned “LEED India for New Construction Gold” from the Indian Green Building Council for our Bangalore, India, facility
  • Maintained ISO 9001:2008 certification for our San Diego QualClean office cleaning system
  • Began pursuing LEED for two construction projects in San Diego and LEED gold certification for Taiwan factory
  • Maintained Green Restaurant Certification at our corporate cafes in San Diego

Enhance our efforts to utilize energy-efficient IT infrastructure, with a particular focus on our data centers

2012 Progress
  • Implemented second Performance-Optimized Datacenter (POD), resulting in approximately 1 million kWH and $130,000 savings annually
  • 95 percent of all new desktops, laptops and monitors are EnergyStar-rated
  • Expanded number of Telepresence systems by 14, totaling 29

Global Environmental Initiatives

Inspire employees to engage proactively in environmental initiatives in the workplace and beyond

2012 Progress
  • Hosted our annual on-site Earth Day fair focused on employee participation
  • Promoted and encouraged employee involvement in volunteer projects at environmental nonprofit organizations
  • Received award for recording the most bicycle commute trips per employee in our size category during the San Diego Association of Governments’ Bike to Work Month

Reducing risk by acting responsibly

Social responsibility is more than the right thing to do. It is also how we and other forward-thinking companies protect against the risks inherent in our business. Below are some of the ways our responsibility efforts are helping to mitigate risk. For further information about risks to our business, please refer to our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q.


Our revenues are dependent on the commercial deployment of CDMA, OFDMA and other communications technologies and our customers’ and licensees’ sales of communications equipment, products and services based on these technologies.

How our QSR programs help

We work with businesses, governments and nonprofit organizations to demonstrate the advantages of mobile technologies in solving various social and environmental concerns. Among other efforts, we’re involved in the evolution toward a smart energy grid in the United States that utilizes solutions based on our technology. Our Wireless ReachTM program supports efforts that use our technologies to address such issues as poverty, disparities in health care and lack of education around the world. Wherever possible, we’re promoting our technologies as part of the solution to some of society’s greatest challenges.


Global economic conditions that impact the communications industry could negatively affect the demand for our products and our customers’ products, which may negatively affect our revenues.

How our QSR programs help

By investing in the places where we do business through our global social responsibility programs, we’re helping to bolster communities against the effects of economic downturns. By hiring locally, we’re providing jobs and stimulating local economies. Meanwhile, by acting as a prudent fiduciary for our Company and our stockholders, our Board of Directors seeks to protect the Company from adverse economic effects.


Our industry is subject to competition in an environment of rapid technological change that could result in decreased demand and/or declining average selling prices for our products and those of our licensees and/or result in new specifications or requirements placed upon our products, each of which could negatively affect our revenues and operating results.

How our QSR programs help

We must continually innovate to compete successfully. The key to our innovation can be summed up in two words: our people. We help ensure access to the innovators who will define and lead our industry in coming years by recruiting the best minds in the industry; building a workforce characterized by a diversity of perspectives; maintaining a workplace culture that has been recognized as being among the best in the world; and treating employees fairly, rewarding them well and investing in their continued development. Further, by making our products ever more sustainable and safe, we continue to achieve an imperative for any company that hopes to set the agenda for the industry.


We may not be able to attract and retain qualified employees.

How our QSR programs help

As noted previously, our success depends on our ability to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel at all levels of our Company and in all of our locations worldwide. Workplace initiatives designed to increase on-the-job health and safety, promote inclusion, encourage work-life integration and enhance professional development all help make us an employer-of-choice for the world’s top talent.


We are subject to government regulations. Our business may suffer as a result of changes in laws or regulations, our failure or inability to comply with laws or regulations, or adverse rulings in enforcement or other proceedings.

How our QSR programs help

Through The Qualcomm Way: Our Code of Business Conduct, which we require all employees to read and acknowledge, we make ethical and regulatory requirements clear and reduce the risk of noncompliance, corruption or ethical breaches. Similarly, our QCT business’ Supplier Code of Conduct makes explicit our expectations regarding regulatory compliance and ethical behavior among our suppliers. Our ongoing efforts to make our products increasingly safe and sustainable reduce the likelihood that we will violate environmental and safety regulations. Finally, our engagement in developing public policy helps us stay well abreast of any regulations or other policies that could affect our business and, in some cases, enables us to shape policy in ways that are advantageous to our industry.