Sustainability Reference Group of Companies

The Ethos Institute has worked for over 10 years in promoting social responsibility in the country and engaging companies to become partners in building a fair and sustainable society. In order to deepen integration of sustainability into businesses and make significant changes, the Ethos Institute has created the project GRES – Sustainability Reference Group of Companies. The project, divided into three major phases, aims to promote cooperation among companies and stakeholders to generate progress on critical sustainability issues through innovation, collaboration and leadership development.

The GRES is composed of two thematic working groups: one focused on the development of sustainable products and services and the other focused on inclusive local development. The project is now in its second phase and includes 13 major companies, André Maggi Group among them, as well as diverse stakeholders who were invited by companies to join the group. These stakeholders include NGOs, leaders of affected communities affected, government representatives, international organizations, suppliers and business customers. The group is very diverse and has a lot of experience.

The project is based on monthly workshops where representatives meet each other, discuss the challenges and dilemmas concerning the subjects treated and think together about possibilities for changes.

The project has a specific methodology to promote cooperation among participants, inspired by the Theory U, articulated by Otto Scharmer and scholars at MIT. This methodology was developed and is being applied with the support of Reos, an international organization hired by the Ethos Institute to carry out this project.

For this second phase of GRES, it is expected that companies may develop, from this experience, systemic, innovative and collaborative initiatives about the topics discussed. These initiatives will be deployed in the 3rd phase of the project, which begins in mid-2010.

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