HRH The Prince of Wales is the Patron of the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) and is actively involved in a range of our work. CISL is also a member of The Prince’s Charities, a group of not-for-profit organisations of which His Royal Highness is President.
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Involvement in our executive programmes
Twenty years ago, The Prince recognised that there was no effective forum for senior business leaders to come together to explore the impact of sustainability upon business and the role that businesses can play in shaping more sustainable economies. With support from a small group of sector-leading multinationals, he commissioned the University of Cambridge to create a forum to meet this need, and the first senior executives’ seminar was established in Cambridge. Following strong interest from major companies, The Prince of Wales’s Business & Sustainability Programme expanded its seminars to continental Europe, the USA, South Africa and Australia. It provides a strategic forum for senior decision-makers and key executives to explore innovative and pragmatic approaches to reconciling profitability and sustainability.
Our new CFO Leadership Seminar has been jointly developed by CISL with The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S) in association with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. The seminar is specially designed for Chief Financial Officers from influential, multinational and national companies.
Involvement in our business platforms
Our business platforms help groups of like-minded companies tackle problems which are too big to solve by themselves. CISL’s first business platform was established with the direct engagement of our Patron and benefits from HRH's ongoing support. The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) brings together business leaders from major UK, EU, and international companies who represent a cross-section of the economy and believe that there is an urgent need to develop new and longer term policies to tackle climate change. The CLG is now convened in the UK and in a cross-EU group based in Brussels and provides one of the most consistent and outspoken voices in support of strong, pro-business policies on climate change.
The Prince is a long-standing champion of the responsible investment practices at the heart of the Investment Leaders Group mission. HRH recently met with the ILG in conjunction with the Group’s inaugural meeting and encouraged the senior leaders to integrate responsibility fully into all investment strategies.
In 2010, The Prince lent his support to a group of bank Chief Executives who wanted to identify if there was more they could do to direct capital towards sustainable development pathways. The resultant Banking Environment Initiative now sees global banking institutions from Asia, Europe and the Americas working in partnership with groups of companies to deliver this mission, focusing on themes such as clean energy investment and sustainable agricultural commodity supply chains.
ClimateWise was formed in 2007 with the support of The Prince of Wales. HRH engages annually with the initiative, taking a keen interest in how the insurance industry can play a role in encouraging investment into low carbon development and resilient economic growth.
HRH has been involved in many of our other initiatives, including as Patron and host of the St James’s Palace Nobel Laureate Symposium in 2009. The Symposium welcomed Cambridge academics and Nobel Laureates from across the disciplines, together with other world experts in climate change. The participants discussed the connections between global warming and other urgent environmental, economic and development challenges, and proceedings concluded with a Memorandum on climate change signed by sixty Nobel Laureates.