Business Sustainability in the Great Lakes Region: Pathways for Forging Greater Collaboration
Meridian led efforts for greater regional business collaboration in the Great Lakes region— an important lever for addressing threats to the long-term sustainability of the area.
Business leaders are deeply invested in the sustainability of the human and environmental resources that underpin the Great Lakes region. Luckily, corporations have unique resources to fight against water pollution, carbon emissions, brain drain, and other threats to the Great Lakes’ long-term vitality. Local foundations called on Meridian and our partner, The Piñero Group, to identify pathways to foster collaboration within the business sector and amplify sustainability efforts in the area.
Key goals emerged in terms of industry action:
- developing access to renewable energy
- working towards a circular economy
- improving water quality
- investing in workforce development
These issues are ripe for collaboration: companies could achieve greater impact with a common voice, shared goals, and pooled resources. However, business sustainability efforts tend to operate in silos governed by company sustainability plans, without engaging other industry leaders or stakeholders.
Meridian’s skills guiding collaboration made it an ideal partner to address these gaps. We joined forces with The Piñero Group—a leader in corporate collaboration—and local business experts. Meridian established a business advisory group and conducted interviews, surveys, and other research to understand the business sustainability landscape in the region, identify key priority issues, and recommend models for collaboration. These recommendations, outlined in a final report, set the stage for companies in the Great Lakes to take collective action on pressing sustainability threats.