On 25 March 2020, IEMA Fellows and other sustainability professionals gathered online for a Fellows roundtable discussion, ‘Enhancing collaboration for sustainability leadership’, chaired by IEMA policy and engagement lead Marc Jourdan.
Marc introduced the session with a reminder of the poll findings collected at the December Fellows event, ‘What makes a sustainability leader?’; attendees had deemed the three most important attributes to be developing partnerships (19%), authenticity (33%) and personal resilience (21%). He explained that the roundtable would use Fellows’ insight to discuss Greater Manchester’s sustainability aspirations, before identifying the key challenges and opportunities to support best practices in collaboration for sustainability.
Mark Atherton, director of environment at Greater Manchester Combined Authority, then presented Greater Manchester’s 5-Year Environment Plan. He explained that the plan sought to convene stakeholders on a cross-sector “mission-based approach”. He noted that the target-driven and outcome-focused 5-Year Environment Plan Forum, chaired by Tyndall Manchester director Carly McLachlan, FIEMA, helped external stakeholders in the public and the private sectors to support the plan’s progress. A Q&A ensued, with attendees discussing a range of topics – from the replicability of the plan, to the role of futures and climate scenario planning in decision-making. This engagement also prompted input during the roundtable discussion, supported by the IEMA Policy Team.
The roundtable discussion benefitted from the input of a range of professionals working in local government, industry, consultancies and other organisations. Stressing the need for ‘best in class’ corporate sustainability to be on the basis of outcomes, participants emphasised that collaborative approaches should scope out common interest points with the right stakeholders and organisations that can make a big difference, before throwing the net more widely.
The insights will be collated to inform a Fellows insight briefing for release later in the year. Learn more at www.iema.net/policy/corporate-sustainability