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Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)

Building-change-hub

How does the built environment create value for people, nature and climate as demands on the sector grow?

With a reputation as one of the most environmentally burdensome industries which also has a fundamental opportunity to support healthy and resilient societies, the built environment sector needs to find a way to lead the transition to a sustainable economy.  

The operation, maintenance and construction of our buildings, towns and cities account for typically the largest – or among the largest – share of any country’s, and any individual's, carbon footprint and impact on natural resources; but also provide among our greatest opportunities to strengthen the resilience of our societies, maximise shared social benefit, and create safe, secure and enjoyable futures for all.

Experts agree that the sector's role in exacerbating global challenges and its potential to provide solutions to these challenges is of critical importance today. There is an urgent need to for radical change in the sector, and conversations about this seem louder today than ever.

 

Insights for built environment professionals


Sustainable real estate - a constellation of risks and opportunities

First published in The Lighthouse, this blog by Munish Datta
explores the constellation of risks and opportunities for
sustainable real estate.

Read the blog

Sustainable real estate - reflections and next steps

Building on the blog by Munish on the constellation of risks and opportunities in sustainable real estate, Lucy Bruzzone considers how and why stakeholders must make the transition to sustainable practices and gives recommendations for further reading

Read the blog

 

Collaborative leadership? It’s what a sustainable
future in the built environment sector requires.

Dr Tim Forman describes how 'shared leadership' was central to
the refurbishment of Entopia.

Read the blog

Building Entopia

Discover the story behind the world-leading sustainable retrofit of Entopia, CISL's new home in central Cambridge.

Read the case study

 

 

 

Education on a sustainable built environment


For over three decades, CISL has been at the forefront of sustainability education. We have a deep understanding of the changing global context and access to a wealth of world-leading research into sustainable business. Our programmes draw upon leading academics, practitioners and innovators to help inform business strategy and inspire action. 

Sustainable Real Estate: Creating a Better Built Environment 

For professionals who want to understand
the sustainability challenges facing the real estate sector.

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Postgraduate programme for the
built environment

Explore the importance of building
knowledge and leadership skills to drive
real change through collaboration.

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Executive Education (open application and custom)

Identify innovative and commercially compelling approaches to address sustainability challenges.

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Postgraduate student stories


Hear from postgraduate students on the Sustainability Leadership in the Built Environment courses how have shared their experience of the programme and detailed what an average day looks like for them during a residential workshop in Cambridge, UK.
 

 

"I am invigorated and stimulated by the discussions [...]. I challenge my beliefs and biases, and I am more intentional about actively listening"

Sonia Green-Browne, Principal Engineer, Graphite Engineering Ltd.

Read more

 

 

"I would be lying if I didn’t say that there
is a lot to take in on an average day! I feel like I am learning many new ideas and insights which I can reapply in my field of work."

Neiad Adams-Austin, Traffic Engineer, London Borough of Waltham Forest 

Read more

 

 

"The huge merit of the part-time course structure is the opportunity to apply what we have learnt to the real world immediately after we absorbed the lectures."

Emi Sugiyama, Sustainability Consultant, PwC Japan

Read more

 

 

Sustainable built environment innovation and collaboration opportunities


For over three decades, CISL has built individual and organisational leadership capacity and capabilities and created industry-leading collaborations, to catalyse change and accelerate the path to a sustainable economy. To discuss how we can work with you to support you in your transformation, please get in touch.

Find out more about CISL Canopy and Accelerator opportunities, which foster sustainable innovation and entrepreneurship through our community of founders, startups, corporate intrapreneurs, investors and systems change experts. 

 

Resources and research


A Vision for a Strong, Sustainable UK Economy

26 January 2015

27 January 2015 – These case studies illustrate that members of The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group have found that action to reduce emissions can deliver growth and benefits to consumers.

A Decade of Progress

26 January 2015

27 January 2015 – The first ten years of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group.

Better Growth, Better Climate – Business Briefing on The New Climate Economy Synthesis Report

23 January 2015

January 2015 and September 2014 – This briefing presents the findings of The Global Commission on the Economy and Climate as documented in their New Climate Economy Synthesis Report, ‘Better Growth, Better Climate’ as a short and relevant summary for a business audience.

The Future in Practice: The State of Sustainability Leadership

13 January 2015

December 2012 – The State of Sustainability Leadership is the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)’s annual collection of ideas and research into how business and policy leaders are tackling the challenges of the 21st century.

The Corporate Climate Communiqués since 2007

4 December 2014

Since 2007 The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) has created Communiqués which set out the business case for an ambitious, robust, effective and equitable UN climate framework and offers a progressive global consensus on the shape of an agreement.

BSP London Lecture 2004, delivered by UK Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Tony Blair MP

23 October 2014

September 2004 – The UK Prime Minister at the time, the Rt Hon Tony Blair MP, delivered the London Lecture of The Prince of Wales’s Business & Sustainability Programme (BSP)

BSP London Lecture 2007, delivered by H. Lee Scott Jr

23 October 2014

February 2007 – It is clear that there are no simple answers. And with rapidly rising international concern about issues such as climate change, it is also clear that the hopes and expectations of the role business will play have never been higher. Which is one of the reasons why the Business & Sustainability Programme exists.

The Cancun Communiqué

23 October 2014

November 2010 – This Communiqué is being issued by the business leaders of global companies, including many of the companies that endorsed The Copenhagen Communiqué just over a year ago.

The 2°C Challenge Communiqué

23 October 2014

October 2011 – This Communiqué – the fifth such statement – is being issued to governments by leaders of over 200 companies from around the world. As business leaders, we are committed to action on climate change, sustainable development and the green economy. Green growth offers the potential to create a more prosperous and resilient economy, and deliver innovation, new industries and jobs. We continue to broaden understanding amongst our peers of the economic case for green growth and the urgency of meeting the 2°C challenge.

How do we protect growth in a world of ‘new normals’?

23 October 2014

November 2011 – Last Friday the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) approved a new report on ‘Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters for Climate Change Adaptation’. This is compelling reading both for those interested in climate change science, and for those working everyday to protect future economic and social activity.

Advisory Services

Find out how we help organisations build long-term resilience, gain competitive advantage and identify new opportunities
for value creation aligned with a transition to a sustainable economy.

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Canopy

A community of impact-led startups, entrepreneurs and small businesses accelerating solutions to global sustainability challenges.

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Webinar series - Building natural connections

In 2021, the Future Spaces Foundation (FSF) and the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) collaborated to host three panel discussions on how the interdependence of nature, society and economy can be leveraged to provide solutions for a sustainable built environment. 

Learn more

CISL Conversations

Hear from global professionals tackling real-world sustainability challenges across business, policy and finance.

Listen now