UK market research industry action group launches ambitious plan for tackling the climate crisis. The Insight Climate Collective’s landmark report - Net-Zero In Sight - sets out clear goals that insight businesses must take for the industry to pull its weight in the climate emergency.
London, 26 January 2022: The Insight Climate Collective, a UK insight industry action group, has today revealed an ambitious roadmap for harnessing the skills and talents of researchers to help answer the climate emergency. The plan, Net-Zero In Sight, encourages all research businesses to commit to eliminating the emissions generated by the industry by 2026. It also outlines the responsibility of market researchers to use their experience and skills to help define, inspire, support and track the changes that must happen as we move to a sustainable future.
The Insight Climate Collective, which includes representatives from a broad coalition of UK agencies including GfK, was founded in late 2020 in response to a lack of organised voice for climate action in the industry. The Net-Zero In Sight report is the group’s landmark first publication, and is a call to arms to the industry to put the climate at the heart of everything it does.
The report for the first time analyses the carbon emissions across the whole sector, identifying areas where companies can significantly reduce their impact – including air travel and office energy. One of the key recommendations of the report is that MRS partners sign up to the Net-Zero pledge, and that non-members adopt the same timeframe of reducing emissions to true Net-Zero by 2026.
As well as setting out the responsibility the industry has to act, Net-Zero In Sight gives practical guidance and steps market research firms can take to embed climate action as a priority, alongside more typical financial and resourcing considerations, throughout every level of their company. Suggesting actions everyone in the industry can take, the report outlines the “Big Five” priorities for businesses which are getting started on tackling the climate emergency:
Findings from an industry-wide survey conducted for the report also highlight the need to engage employees at all levels of the industry. The study found high engagement with the subject; 95% of insights professionals agree or agree strongly that climate change is an urgent issue. But when it comes to taking action many report that it’s not a priority for their organisation (55%) or is expensive (52%). The report recommends ways employers can address barriers to staff engagement, through clear guidelines and education programmes which give more clarity on when to accept or turn down briefs, and how to challenge clients to consider the climate in their work.
Commenting, Jem Fawcus, Insight Climate Collective founder and CEO of Firefish, said: “We are in an emergency the like of which we haven’t experienced before. And the time left to fix it has all-but run out. The Insight Climate Collective is determined to draw a line in the sand for the UK’s £7bn research sector and enable our industry to pull its weight. There is only so much any of us can do in isolation. Change will happen much faster, and more effectively, through working together. We call upon the industry to get its own house in order, by signing up to eliminate emissions by 2026, while at the same time working to put climate considerations at the heart of all aspects of our work and using our collective experience and skills to influence clients and stakeholders. We have an ambitious timeline to turn this around, but ambition is needed in this era-defining struggle.”
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