Supporting Sustainable Business Solutions through Global Policy

Neither the public nor the private sectors alone can bring about the actions, scale and impact necessary to achieve a sustainable future for both society and the environment.

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) works with a wide range of stakeholders; from international organizations and governments to think-tanks and NGOs, in order to fully leverage the combined sustainability efforts of the public and private sectors.

Such alignment allows the WBCSD members to be true catalysts for change, leveraging the global platforms necessary to support and mobilize an ambitious agenda for private sector action in such areas as climate change and energy, ecosystems, water and food security to name a few.

Close collaboration with policymakers is integral to bringing about significant scale and impact of businesses’ solutions to sustainable development, and the WBCSD is proud to bridge these important change agents.

WBCSD Multistakeholder Dialogues: SLE's

New to the WBCSD are the Sustainable Leader Exchanges (SLE), or high-level off-the-record multistakeholder dialogues between the WBCSD member CEO's / Council Members and senior policymakers. The goal is to discuss sustainability challenges, and solutions, in a peer-to-peer context.

Recent SLE’s:

  • Istanbul, November 2013: "Catching Momentum on Climate Change, Strategic Partnering & Translating Science into Business Strategy."
  • Davos, January 2014: "Action2020 - Collaboration to Reach Scale."
Policy Advisory Council

During a high-level dialogue at the recent World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos, the WBCSD convened member CEOs and key policymakers to launch the its first Policy Advisory Council.

This new Council will guide the WBCSD’s global policy outreach, focused on working with international organizations and the public sector to create the enabling conditions and regulations for businesses to scale up their sustainability efforts.

WBCSD Policy Advisory Council members include:

Felipe Calderón, Former President of Mexico & Chair of the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate

Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC

Rachel Kyte, World Bank Group Vice President and Special Envoy, Climate Change Group, World Bank 

Arun Maira, Member Planning Commission, India

Mark Malloch Brown, Chairman, FTI Consulting

Robert Orr, Assistant Secretary-General, United Nations

Josette Sheeran, President Asia Society

Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP

Dominic Waughray, Senior Director, Head of Environmental Initiatives, World Economic Forum

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Post-2015 Development and Climate Change - Programme
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The Road to Paris and beyond
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New York Climate Week Side-events – September 2014
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WBCSD road to Paris
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The Road to Paris and beyond

The transition to a low-carbon economy is the only way to secure sustainable economic growth and prosperity for all. COP21 is a key moment for all stakeholders to contribute to serious climate action and ensure that business solutions to climate change are implemented. In 2015, the WBCSD will use its Action2020 framework to deliver the Road to Paris and Beyond, which includes:

  • Low Carbon Technology Partnerships Initiative (LCTPi)
  • Business-government dialogues with WBCSD Global Network partners in France, Brazil and India.

Download the report here
WBCSD road to Paris

Building toward the 2015 COP21 in Paris, and beyond, please refer to our interactive pdf for WBCSD Member engagement opportunities.

Download the interactive PDF

Download the New York Climate Week Side-events Calendar

New York Climate Summit 2014 Agenda
International Negotiations

WBCSD & SDG process

Overall, the WBCSD’s Action2020 work is broadly aligned with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

During the consultative phase of the SDG process in 2012-13, WBCSD President Peter Bakker chaired the Working Group on the Role of Business within the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN).

In addition, the WBCSD was able to convey views and channel feedback from its members to the United Nations Secretary General, thanks to the involvement of WBCSD Executive Committee Chairman Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever, in the High-Level Panel on the Post2015 Development Agenda.

The WBCSD is also active in the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council Task Force on the SDGs, as well as the Global Business Alliance (GBA) for Post-2015, which is composed of major international private sector organizations.

The SDG process now rests with governments in Open Working Groups (OWG) and the WBCSD is channeling business inputs, through the aforementioned outlets, into the ongoing negotiations.


Policy Outlets

WBCSD President Peter Bakker

Member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council (GAC) on Governance for Sustainability, which works to develop proposals for governance structures to spur sustainable development worldwide.

Co-chair of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) thematic working group: ‘Redefining the Role of Business for Sustainable Development’. The Network mobilizes scientific and technical experts from academia, civil society and the private sector in support of sustainable development problem solving at local, national and global scales.

Vice-Chairman of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC), a global coalition with a mission to enable integrated reporting in mainstream business practices.

Member of the European Resource Efficiency Platform (EREP), providing high-level guidance to the European Commission on the transition to a more resource-efficient economy.

Advisory Member of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment & Development (CCICED), the leading non-profit advisory group to the Chinese government on environment and sustainability policy.

Steering Committee Member of the International Resource Panel (IRP), providing assessments on the sustainable use of natural resources and the environmental impacts of resource use over the full life cycle.

The WBCSD is the first global, non-profit business organization to become an official member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), since November 2013.

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