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Leap’s Sustainable Development Goals | Part 3

What we’re doing next

In the final instalment of our short series about Leap’s Sustainable Development Goals (click here or here to read parts 1 & 2), we’re going to address the actions that we still have to take.

When it comes to the UN SDGs, it’s not enough to pick the low hanging fruit in terms of either targets or the actions required to work towards achieving them, and to tick off targets that had already been met or that required little work to meet.  We must be ambitious and constantly strive to do more.  In this article, we’ll share our remaining actions and stretch targets, highlighting what we can improve on, what we still have yet to achieve, and how we plan to do that.

As a team we chose to work towards the following five Sustainable Development Goals:

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SDG 7 – Using clean energy

The COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing lockdowns in the UK meant that for much of 2020 and into 2021, we were working from home. Having persuaded our landlord to switch to a renewable energy supplier in 2020 as a condition of our tenancy, meaning that not only our studio but those of more than 50 other businesses were running on green energy, all of sudden the focus shifted to our homes. We have incentivised team members to switch to a renewable tariff at home when they next come to renew their energy contracts and our plan is to report on the team’s collective energy consumption over the past year whilst working from our individual homes instead of together in a single workspace. For any team members who aren’t on a renewable energy tariff, we’ll account for the difference in carbon footprint between a “normal year” and their fourteen months of working predominantly from home.
We also have plans to look up our supply chain. We’ll be putting policies in place that ensure that all of the other businesses and suppliers that we work with, from our freelancers and printers to business support, are all either already using renewable energy or are working towards it. We plan to report on this in our next impact report having done an initial survey to our existing supply chain and then ensuring that it’s covered in our new supplier questionnaire.

SDG 8 – Doing good work

We plan to improve on Leap’s existing equality policy by putting in place a diversity policy. Our focus here will be to encourage and support more women to enter the design industry in creative roles, which has traditionally been male dominated. Whilst the Design Council found that since 2010 the percentage of women working in the design economy has grown by 42%, compared to just 17% growth amongst men, men from privileged backgrounds are 4.8 times more likely to secure work in creative occupations than working-class women. The ultimate goal of our overarching people strategy is that Leap will work towards becoming employee owned (as an employee ownership trust) in the near future.

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SDG 12 -Living better

We are continuing our commitment to our founder Matt’s role path-finding within the design industry, working to spread good practice, increasing responsibility and moving the industry as a whole towards designing solutions rather than simply driving consumption.
In an effort to increase understanding of sustainable consumption and production patterns, we intend to take every member of the team through Leap’s next B Corp Business Impact Assessment. We will continue to champion the circular economy, working with and celebrating businesses that fit and promote more sustainable ways, and pledge to question and guide any clients who could make positive changes.

SDG 13 – Acting on climate

We are embarking upon projects, offering our Grant For Good where required, with organisations working on innovative and ground breaking climate solutions in areas such as blue carbon.
As a business we plan to start providing open-source data around our own carbon emissions and how we are working to reduce it along our road to net zero. This will be available for others to use as a template for their own net zero commitments.

SDG 17 – Coming together

A better future is collaborative. We will not only continue to, but increase our collaborative efforts with fellow B Corps and designers to tackle global challenges together. As part of this, we plan to inspire our industry and local businesses through events and workshops (such as with the Cornwall B Local community) as restrictions continue to ease. We will continue to share our knowledge and experiences, showcasing how businesses can align the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to their everyday operations.