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Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)

Nature-Positive Hub

The case for nature positive action

Nature underpins the functioning of society and the economy, but our ecosystems and the life they support are in crisis. The crisis is urgent and the rate of species decline is getting worse. Human action is the cause of this crisis. It is also the only solution. We need to scale up and accelerate transformative action. We have to tackle climate and nature together – and do this with the engagement and for the benefit of people and communities.

Nature positive action from business, government and financial institutions is needed to create a new operating model based on regeneration, resilience and circularity not extraction, destruction and pollution. Read our position on nature.


CISL Insights

We offer practical and strategic guidance, grounded in practitioner insights from exceptional people from business, policy and academia, to help leaders and organisations prepare for a nature positive future. 


We created the first industry specific primer to navigate the
new target-setting guidance from the Science Based Targets Network.

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Our Nature-related Finance Risks handbook and use cases explain key concepts linked to nature loss and financial risk and provide guidance for risk identification.

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Our diagnostic tool & sector briefings help companies understand & implement nature-based solutions projects and accelerate their adoption.

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CLG Europe signed a public letter to the European Parliament urging them to support the EU Nature Restoration Law.

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Five ways we work with you on nature


Our Rewiring the Economy framework offers tasks to guide
the changes necessary in the economy to deliver the SDGs & support natures.

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Our nature-based solutions sector case studies outline the challenges and actions needed to implement nature-based solutions projects.

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Collaborations we convened enabled stakeholders to rethink existing business models to eliminate plastic packaging waste.

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Our regenerative nature project models  offer blueprint that support improved biodiversity and water quality.

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We work with companies to help them take practical measures
to enhance the natural environment.

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We are partners in the following initiatives/coalitions

  • Business For Nature  is a global coalition that brings together business and conservation organisations and forward thinking companies.
  • We Mean Business Coalition is a global nonprofit coalition working with the world’s most influential businesses to take action on climate change.  
  • Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures develops and deliver a risk management and disclosure framework for organisations to report and act on evolving nature-related risks.
  • African Natural Capital Alliance is a collaborative forum for mobilising the financial community’s response to the risk of nature loss in Africa.
  • Cambridge Conservation Initiative   is a unique collaboration between the University of Cambridge and nine leading internationally focused biodiversity conservation organisations based in and around Cambridge, UK.


Resources and reports

Mother Nature: sharpening our mind to the challenge ahead

28 March 2022

28 March 2022 - Dr Gemma Cranston, CISL’s Director for Business and Nature, reflects on the crucial role of nature, signals of positive change and the need for businesses, financiers and policy makers to align to deliver a nature-positive future.

Decision-making in a nature positive world: Accelerating the adoption of nature-based solutions

18 March 2022

21 March 2022 - Tom Divney, Business Engagement Consultant for the CISL Centre for Business Transformation, and CISL’s Dr Gemma Cranston, Director, Business & Nature, Centre for Business Transformation, explain how the new diagnostic tool, Decision-making in a nature positive world, accelerates the understanding and adoption of nature-based solutions in organisations.

Decision-making in a nature positive world

23 February 2022

15 March 2022 – CISL has published a diagnostic tool designed to advance organisational understanding of nature-based solutions projects and accelerate their adoption and implementation within companies.

Nature-related financial risks

24 January 2022

What are nature-related financial risks? Leading companies recognise that a prosperous business relies upon nature and the ecosystem services it provides. They also recognise that the ‘E’ in ‘ESG’ is about protecting our biodiversity and natural capital, as well as our climate, and that the two are...

Payments for Net Zero: How the payments industry can contribute to the transition to a net zero economy

28 October 2021

28 October 2021 - This business briefing explores the potential role and opportunities for payments networks in the transition to a net zero economy.

The Nature COP in Kunming opens today – a further step towards nature-positive targets for businesses

7 October 2021

11 October 2021 - Catherine Weller, from CISL’s Business & Nature team, explores expectations as the first part of the Kunming Nature COP gets underway and explains why business should be active in demanding clear and ambitious targets.

Enhancing Biodiversity in Europe’s Oilseed and Cereal Industries

27 July 2021

August 2021 - A new report from University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) and Biodiversify examines what private sector actors in the oilseed and cereal industry can do to conserve biodiversity on arable farmland in Europe to ultimately inspire them to take action towards best practice. The aim of this work funded by an ADM Cares grant to the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability leadership was to examine the question: What can private sector actors in the oilseed and cereal industries do to conserve biodiversity on arable farmland in Europe?

Corporate Leaders Group UK

4 June 2021

Eliot Whittington, Executive Director, Chief Systems Change Officer Eliot leads CISL’s team that bridges between business and policymakers to bring about a more sustainable economy. He is Director of CISL’s Corporate Leaders Groups, leading the team behind both the European and UK Corporate Leaders...

New guidance provides business with a framework to value biodiversity

29 September 2020

29 September 2020 – Biodiversity is increasingly recognised for its role in building resilience against climate change, in supporting communities and livelihoods, and for its essential role in underpinning society and the economy. The Capitals Coalition and Cambridge Conservation Initiative today launched guidance, developed with input from CISL, that will enable businesses and financial institutions to put the value of biodiversity at the heart of decision making.

CISL content hubs

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Nature-based solutions hub

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CISL responds to The Economics of Biodiversity: The Dasgupta Review

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CISL joins leading science and industry bodies to partner with TNFD

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CLG Europe Nature Hub

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COP15 Hub

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CISL Sustainable Food online course

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