A simple definition of stakeholders relates to persons, groups or organizations that have an interest or concern in an organization. This interest works in two directions: stakeholders are both affected by the way we do business and our business is affected by the way our stakeholders relate and respond to our business. Therefore, we view stakeholders as much more than persons having an interest in Novus. We view and value them as partners. We try to work with our stakeholders to meet their goals as well as our own business goals. This is true of all our primary stakeholder groups, with whom we maintain an ongoing, vibrant dialogue based on mutual trust and respect.
Our Owners wish to enjoy Novus's long-term business success. They require strong, disciplined, value-based leadership and a return which is not only financial, but also contributes to a more sustainable world. Our owners form our Board of Directors and are represented in the Novus Executive Management Team. Dialogue with our owners is ongoing, both formal and informal.
Our Customers want solutions to their animal agriculture challenges and world-class, attentive service. They want us to be part of the solution to their business sustainability and place their needs at the forefront of our business approach. We engage closely with all our customers on an individual basis and through participation in technical conferences, trade shows, road shows, symposiums and training events in many countries around the world. We maintain an informative corporate website and an active presence on social media, publishing news, videos, webcasts and white papers for the benefit of customers.
Our Employees seek a responsible, fair and empowering workplace, with opportunities for personal development and recognition. They want to contribute to our mission. We thrive on a culture of open dialogue and exchange with employees. In addition to bi-annual performance reviews, employees participate in business updates, lectures on different aspects of sustainability and a range of activities which provide opportunities for engagement and action.
Our Suppliers, Distributors and Valued Business Partners form an expansive network all over the world. They all want us to engage with them in a spirit of partnership, fair dealing and long-term relationships. We work hard to embrace their value-adding expertise to create improved service and solutions for our customers.
Our Industry, Our Community and Our Environment includes various stakeholder groups with diverse interests which we address in a range of ways. We support our industry and communities through collaborative relationships with over 170 non-profit organizations and trade and industry associations that advance food security, nutrition, sustainable agriculture and environmental stewardship. We maintain open channels of dialogue with community partners through our charitable giving and employee volunteering programs and we engage with over 30 universities and academic institutions around the world in joint research programs, scholarships to students and participation in academic conferences and events.