LUMS goes to WBCSD at Montreux

Montreux team at the Eco Hub in Lancaster

23 March 2017

Ten LUMS students are off to support the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Annual meeting in Montreux next week.

The WBCSD’s annual Liaison Delegate meeting brings business leaders together to analyse, discuss and debate all aspects of sustainable development. Around 400 delegates, holding executive and senior management positions in companies such as Santander, Unilever, Apple, PWC, Deloitte, Nestle, Bloomberg, British Telecom and KPMG, are expected to attend.

The students will play an active role at the meeting and be working as session hosts as well as having the opportunity to speak to and hear from industry leaders.

The lucky group, who were selected through a video competition, are; Ryan Casey (BBA International Business Management); Noé Cichy (BBA International Business Management); Kristen Freile (BBA International Business Management); Daniel Jaeck (BBA International Business Management);  Annika Kelsen (BBA International Business Management); Edward Meadowcroft (BBA Management); Pietro Piantanida (BBA Management);  Sammi Ruane (BBA Management); Bethan Thompson (Business Studies) and YuZhong Li (BSc Management and Information Technology).

When researching the topic Bethan Thompson said that she “admired how the WBCSD are helping companies to meet both economic and environmental needs, by setting specific, yet achievable goals for organisations”.

Sammi Ruane has witnessed the lasting effects that an unsustainable world can have and this made her fear for the future. She said: “There are so many places I have yet to explore and fear that they may be destroyed or lost before I get the opportunity to do so!”

When it comes to sustainability, Ryan Casey said that “it represents one of the most fascinating, complex, ongoing social challenges we will ever encounter.  With 7.5 billion stakeholders (and counting!), all have a role to play in ensuring future generations can access the same opportunities, spectacles and resources that we are so lucky to have in our lifetime.”

The WBCSD are striving to address world challenges and Edward Meadowcroft was keen to not only expand his knowledge in these areas, but also “to create a ripple effect by influencing others to act more sustainably.”

Noé Cichy has previously worked in refugee camps, which increased his personal conviction that the business world has a responsibility to pursue social justice. So when he heard about the Liaison Delegate meeting he said: “It was very clear to me that I would do everything possible to be part of it. Hearing first-hand the views of experts from industry, and witnessing how ideas are put into actions will be another life-changing experience.”

Kristen Friele’s passion for sustainability came after she attended a summit for cosmetics firm, LUSH.

“LUSH showcased their partnership with grassroots organisation. This made me realise that it is possible, through collaboration, for companies to achieve not just financial goals but also ones that take care of the natural and social capital,” she said.

The trip has been made possible thanks to Professor Rodney Irwin, the WBCSD Managing Director for Redefining Value and Education, together with Professor Gail Whiteman, Director of the Pentland Centre for Sustainability in Business,  Dr Alison Stowell, Lecturer in the Department of Organisation, Work and Technology, and Dr David Simm, LUMS Associate Dean for International.


Follow the team on Twitter (Hashtag #LUMSatWBCSD) and their blogs where they will share interesting background information about themselves, their preparations for the conference, and their time in Montreux.