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Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)


We assist our clients in achieving step-change innovation across products, process and even fundamental business models. 


To keep pace with the rapid pace of tech innovation and to achieve transformational change, our clients recognise the need for radical innovation across products, process and even fundamental business models. To build a culture of innovation and experimentation across the organisation and move beyond transactional relationships in the value chain, companies need to work in new ways with new collaborators, embracing open and collaborative innovation.

This requires thinking differently about the role of innovation. It requires a new knowledge base for sustainable innovation, and the integration of social and environmental parameters and scenarios into innovation processes. 

Contact us to find out how we can help you.


Identifying new sources of value

We help companies develop innovation tools and models to integrate social and environmental dimensions, including circular economy tools. We lead and facilitate innovation processes to help clients to identify opportunities for sustainable value creation.


Connecting to innovators and entrepreneurs

Drawing on our international network and the extensive Cambridge cluster of innovators and entrepreneurs, we expose our clients to the latest technologies and business models, supporting them to refine their innovation, collaboration and corporate venturing strategies.


Facilitating collaborative innovation projects

By working across functions within an organisation or by bringing together multiple organisations, we support clients to foster a creative yet structured space for innovation.

We provide insight and access to research; diverse stakeholder perspectives to challenge and test thinking; and facilitate the processes of scoping, ideating, roadmapping and piloting innovations.


Sharing innovative practice

We help our clients to distil the lessons from their sustainable innovation work, providing rigour, structure and credibility to create case studies. We enable clients to share their insight widely across our network and beyond, showing their leadership and by providing an evidence base to inspire and de-risk action from others.


Case studies

Eliminating Plastic Packaging Waste Working Group

This industry-led working group brought together member companies from the bottled water and soft drinks value chain to set out an ambitious vision and roadmap towards eliminating plastic packaging waste from the UK bottled water and soft drinks value chain.

Read more.

This closed-loop case study explores the lessons learnt from the REALCAR closed-loop value chain project between Jaguar Land Rover, Novelis, Innovate UK and partners, in the creation of new materials and production systems to introduce closed-loop aluminium into Jaguar Land Rover cars.

Download the full case study.

Unilever Young Entrepreneurs Awards

The Awards, delivered by Unilever and CISL, supported and celebrated inspirational young people from all over the world who have existing initiatives, products or services tackling some of the planet’s biggest sustainability challenges. The Awards have reached over 3,500 inspiring young sustainability entrepreneurs and their organisations, and provided tailored support and funding to 29 winners, helping them achieve scale for impact.

Learn more about the Awards.