The History of The Sustainability Consortium

The History of The Sustainability Consortium

the original idea for TSC actually
emerged from an earlier center that we created we started working with Walmart
and that supply chain work ended up being what TSC became it was a brokered
marriage of institutions between Arizona State University University of Arkansas
ASU probably has the best sustainability program in the country so we knew we
wanted to partner with them because they just had that tremendous capability was
really remarkable in that had really never been done you know to universities
retail consumer goods companies working together to figure out product
sustainability was really I think groundbreaking at the time there was
less of an awareness of what was happening in supply chains and there
wasn’t any real consideration about the bigger picture of this and we started
because there’s a chance for us to talk about Walmart about our common interests
that is how do we improve the environmental footprint of the products
we provide and the products they sell but the verbal commitment by the CEO
pulling in of fellow CEOs from different brands from around the world that was
the most exciting after our first meeting in 2010 with about 25 members I
realized that we had a powerhouse of people and individuals in the industry
that would help drive leadership forward with TS I think being a co-chair of the
3-band AG working group was a great opportunity to engage with all the
members I think it’s really the collective input of everybody there that
helped to develop the initial KPIs and refined them over time and we were able
to come up with these ways of assessing a product without necessarily having a
lot of information about the specific thing that was sitting in front of us
all the sudden we could pop and see that we have this suite of
toolkits that not only can the retailers use but members could use this has
always been about measurement reporting first trying to get good information and
in the hands of the people who are making business decisions
we don’t want reporting information to be the barrier that’s gonna be a
consistent theme through our work at TSE making those processes more efficient so
that the data complexity is simplified and the thing that TSC did was bring
everything together we didn’t create new sustainability science rather we
shamelessly crowd-sourced all that was out there and turned it into a single
consistent way to understand sustainability and for companies to then
act to drive change in their supply teams we are a global organization so
most of our projects are also globally organized we’re both American and
European staff is participating the sustainability move from being kind of a
corporate social responsibility a quote good thing to do to what it is now
sustainability is a legitimate profit Center it’s a culture we are experts at
taking that big big thinking and make it really really accessible and I’ve never
really come across any other organization that could do that

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