Respondents in the UK report the highest levels of organizational dedication to advancing EDI

10 January 2024 by Acre
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​​Professionals working in the UK’s sustainability space have noted the highest levels of organisational dedication to advancing Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (EDI), according to our newly-launched census.

A total of 2,253 sustainability professionals took part in Acre’s biggest ever Sustainability Census report, which highlighted 70 per cent of UK respondents have affirmed their organisation’s public commitment to advancing EDI.

The census, conducted by Acre and Carnstone, places the UK at the forefront when it comes to diversity of thought, a crucial component for driving solutions to some of the planet’s greatest challenges.

There have been significant commitments to EDI in all four of the regions engaged in the census - United Kingdom, Europe, North America and Asia. However, despite a quarter of respondents in Europe observing their organisations have taken internal steps to advance EDI, Europe is not currently perceived to be demonstrating a robust public commitment compared to its counterparts.

While North America falls almost 10 per cent behind Asia when looking at highly effective EDI efforts, interestingly, 34 per cent of census respondents in Asia view their organisations to be the most effective at promoting EDI. They report a higher perceived level of efficiency with their strategies, compared to the majority of respondents who perceived their organisations’ EDI efforts to be moderately effective.

Jaz Rabadia MBE, Global Head of Responsible Business & Sustainability, JustEatTakeaway.com, contributed to the census and said (pg 58): “Ensuring we have a pipeline of diverse and educated sustainability professionals will be key in helping to address the sustainability challenges that will shape our future.

“Bringing together individuals from all walks of life with varied perspectives, experiences, and insights will help to deliver a positive impact on our planet and communities.”

Jennie Galbraith, ESG Director, Inflexion Private Equity Partners LLP, Chair of the Institute of Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability, said (p48): “Yes, ensuring our profession is diverse is the right thing to do, but it’s more fundamental than that.

“We need diversity of thought if we are going to succeed. We know the same thinking doesn’t accelerate change fast enough.”

Chloë Hunt, Global Senior Director – Advisory, Research & EDI, said: “The census findings are intriguing when you compare the data from UK respondents with that of sustainability professionals in the APAC region.

“The UK has reported the highest levels in organisational dedication to advancing Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, which is increasingly gaining traction across businesses who seek greater transparency.

“The results we see in APAC may reflect specific initiatives they are focusing on through their commitment to EDI initiatives which are making a significant impact.”

For further information about this and other findings from the sustainability survey, including how respondents in the property & real estate sector believe their industry is taking the most proactive approach to sustainability, please click here to download a free copy of the full Acre Census 2023 report.

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