Insight from the Insight250: How the insight industry can address climate issues, Jem Fawcus, Owner & Group CEO, Firefish, Co-founder of Insight Climate Collective
The Insight250 spotlights and celebrates 250 of the world’s premier leaders and innovators in market research, consumer insights and data-driven marketing. The inaugural list was revealed this April and created renewed excitement across the industry whilst strengthening the connectivity of the market research community.
With so many exceptional professionals named to the Insight250, it seems fitting to tap into their expertise and unique perspectives across an array of topics. This weekly series does just that, inquiring about the expert perspectives of many of these individuals in a series of short topical features.
This edition features Jem Fawcus, an expert of innovation, brand and communication development from both a qualitative and cultural perspective and the Owner and Group CEO of Firefish. Jem is also a Co-founder of the Insight Climate Collective, which “aims to create an industry action plan to address climate issues.”
I sat down with Jem to learn more about the mission and vision of the Insight Climate Collective, the impact the insight industry can have on climate concerns and how professionals can understand and get involved in these issues.
There’s currently lots of talk about climate change – why’s it important for our profession?
“It is important in every profession. Every business, every sector needs to get their own house in order, which means reducing their emissions, at the very least in line with the targets set out in COP26. But our sector can, and must, do more. We are an industry founded on helping our clients ‘sell more stuff,’ and now we need to use our skills to help our clients define, develop and activate their own climate solutions. That way, we can have far more impact than through our sector’s emissions alone.”
You are a founder of the Insight Climate Collective, which was recently relaunched. What is it, and how can people get involved?
“The Insight Climate Collective is an insight industry action group to help bring together those in the industry who want to use their skills and knowledge to make a difference and to galvanise the wider industry to take action. Join us at linkedin.com/groups/8984800.”
How does it tie in with initiatives like the MRS Sustainability Pledge, and is this a global initiative or focused on the United Kingdom?
“We want to work alongside anyone who is working towards the same goals of answering the climate emergency and building a sustainable economy. We worked closely with the MRS Sustainability Committee to develop the pledge, and we would love to support any country, industry, or organisation that wants to take action.
“We started this initiative in the United Kingdom, as we had to start somewhere, but this is a global issue that needs collaboration across countries, so we hope people will join us – and perhaps set up similar initiatives – from around the world.”
What’s the biggest thing we can all do on a day-to-day basis to make a positive difference?
“Form a group of climate champions within your organisation. Ask your business to switch its energy supply to a renewable tariff. Push for a strategy to reduce air travel across the business. Switch your pension to a sustainable investment fund. And in your work, simply consider the climate in everything you do.”
What would be a top tip you have for individuals to understand this issue and start to get involved?
“Download the report at InsightClimateCollective.org (and read it!). Join us at linkedin.com/groups/8984800 and play an active part in the discussion as we continue to work out how our industry can have the biggest impact in helping to solve the climate crisis.”
Thanks Jem. As you know, this is a subject dear to my heart, and I wish you and the Insight Climate Collective every success. As the issues around climate evolve, it is important for everyone to get a deeper understanding and get involved in the conversations to learn how they can make a difference. A good starting point to achieve this is with initiatives like the Insight Climate Collective, which provides the opportunity for the insight industry to make a substantial impact.
It has been an absolute pleasure to interview such a worthy winner of the Insight250. I hope we see many more people involved in innovation and leadership around sustainability nominated for the 2022 Awards. On nominations, at the judges’ request, as nominations are still pouring in – about 1000 already – we have extended the deadline to 13th March 2022 to ensure everyone who wants to submit a nomination can do so in multiple languages just visit www.insight250.com. Good luck, everyone.