Our responsibility to the environment

Our responsibility to the environment

Introduction

We are currently engaged in a wide-ranging review of our role in relation to the environment.

As a funder of international research and collaboration, we have significant capacity to gather and share ideas and solutions from around the world for today’s key challenges. Churchill Fellows learn from innovative projects and leading practitioners in their field globally in order to benefit their professions and communities in the UK. This is valuable, practical research which they use and share with others to inspire change across a wide range of issues facing society.

One of these issues is the environment and in 2022 we launched two new themes for Fellowships on Climate change and Caring for our natural environment. These will double the number of Fellowships we offer under our environment theme and create a cohort of 60 Fellows with global insights in this field.

At the same time, we are aware that Fellows’ international research has an environmental impact when it involves travel and so we are actively exploring ways to reduce this and keep it to a minimum.

In 2020 we began offering for the first time an option for Fellows to conduct some or all of their global research online from the UK. As part of this, we are encouraging Fellows to consider the environmental impact of their research and to assess whether it needs to be done in person or could be done online. In many cases, practical learning of this kind requires the Fellow to experience a project at first hand, in order to fully understand its methodology and effect. Where travel is necessary for a project, we provide Fellows with information and support on how to minimise their environmental impact.

We know that our impact on the environment extends beyond our Fellowship programme and we have commissioned an independent eco-audit of all areas of our working practices and structures. We are processing the findings and will be exploring ways to act on the recommendations in the coming months. We know that this will take time. We are committed to this work and our environmental responsibilities are a key priority in our next corporate strategy, which we are currently developing.

As a funder of international research and collaboration, we have significant capacity to gather and share ideas and solutions from around the world for today’s key challenges. Churchill Fellows learn from innovative projects and leading practitioners in their field globally in order to benefit their professions and communities in the UK. This is valuable, practical research which they use and share with others to inspire change across a wide range of issues facing society.

One of these issues is the environment and in 2022 we launched two new themes for Fellowships on Climate change and Caring for our natural environment. These will double the number of Fellowships we offer under our environment theme and create a cohort of 60 Fellows with global insights in this field.

At the same time, we are aware that Fellows’ international research has an environmental impact when it involves travel and so we are actively exploring ways to reduce this and keep it to a minimum.

In 2020 we began offering for the first time an option for Fellows to conduct some or all of their global research online from the UK. As part of this, we are encouraging Fellows to consider the environmental impact of their research and to assess whether it needs to be done in person or could be done online. In many cases, practical learning of this kind requires the Fellow to experience a project at first hand, in order to fully understand its methodology and effect. Where travel is necessary for a project, we provide Fellows with information and support on how to minimise their environmental impact.

We know that our impact on the environment extends beyond our Fellowship programme and we have commissioned an independent eco-audit of all areas of our working practices and structures. We are processing the findings and will be exploring ways to act on the recommendations in the coming months. We know that this will take time. We are committed to this work and our environmental responsibilities are a key priority in our next corporate strategy, which we are currently developing.