Business Week at IUCN headquarters

15 January 2010 | News story

IUCN organized a four day event "Private Sector @ IUCN", bringing together IUCN staff working with the private sector and business representatives. The objective was to create better understanding of relationships and synergies on business and biodiversity issues and processes.

Business Week took place from 19 – 22 October, and was organized by IUCN’s Business and Biodiversity Programme in IUCN Headquarters in Gland. It was the first time such an event took place, and was a land mark for IUCN.

It opened with two days of intensive work with IUCN staff to build capacity and share experiences in working with the private sector, strengthen implementation of the IUCN Operational Guidelines for Private Sector Engagement, and to provide an opportunity for IUCN business and biodiversity focal points to network with each other. The remainder of the week brought in participants from businesses which IUCN is engaging with, to provide an opportunity to exchange views, to feed into key IUCN processes, and to create better understanding of relationships and synergies on business and biodiversity issues and processes.

Over 30 IUCN staff members participated, 10 from the regional offices, and the remainder from the global thematic programmes. 26 participants from the private sector attended, including representatives from CEMEX, Danone, Ecosecurities, EDF, ENI, European Investment Bank, Federation of European Aquaculture Producers (FEAP), GDF-Suez, Global Refund Group, Green & Black’s representing Cadbury, Holcim, IPIECA, Kinnarps, LAFARGE, Nespresso, Rio Tinto, Royal Caribbean International, Royal Philips Electronics, SGS, Shell, Syngenta, WBCSD, and the World Economic Forum.

The sessions covered issues such as linkages between business activities and the IUCN core and thematic programme areas (conserving biodiversity, climate change, energy, livelihoods and markets), perspectives from the private sector on options for a post 2010 target for biodiversity conservation, and inputs on strategic thinking for IUCN’s work with the sectors of agriculture, mining, tourism and small and medium sized enterprises.

As a result of the event, both IUCN and the private sector participants gained a better understanding of relationships and synergies on business and biodiversity issues and processes.