How are we Enhancing Society Together?

The scale of the sustainability challenges facing society is huge and our aim is always to do more. We make progress on our ambition in projects and operations through the values, knowledge and skills of our people, working together and in partnership with our clients.

During 2023 we continued to embed our 5 themes of Enhancing Society Together – climate change, biodiversity, resources, social value and safety – into our organisational governance, systems and communications. The themes were discussed in management team meetings, client meetings, proposals and corporate communications, increasing awareness inside and outside our organisation. We measured our impact on people and planet from over 1,000 projects across our portfolio and captured that in a dashboard. This means we can compare performance over time, and it shows that in 2023 we strengthened the alignment between our projects and our purpose. Enthusiasm and interest from our people and our clients created a positive feedback loop, and we intend to further improve performance, and to increase the number of projects that are assessed. Within our operations we are ahead of targets on emission reductions.

Aligned with our 5 themes there are 13 selected UN Sustainability Goals that inherently benefitted from our 2023 progress. Examples of these projects can be found in the Markets section.

The 2023 environmental and social information presented in this chapter is not audited except for the 2023 CO2 emissions that have been verified according to ISO 14064-1 by DNV. In 2024 we received their ‘Verification Statement Carbon Footprint 2023'.

Our Purpose Chart 

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This chart shows the areas where we believe we can make the biggest difference in delivering benefits for people and planet. We assess our impact as follows: -1 for negative, 0 for neutral, +1 for positive and +2 for very positive. In 2023, we further aligned our projects with our purpose and performance grew from 2.97 end-April to 3.19 end-December.


Sustainability is fully integrated into our activities, led by senior management from strategy to delivery. Its position as our purpose, Enhancing Society Together, and within our strategy ensures strong support at executive level. Our Purpose Matrix is incorporated within our project delivery, project governance and proposal stage governance systems. It is being used in conversations with clients to promote and encourage further impact and is pushing forward boundaries for change. Our systems and analytics continue to evolve based on feedback and experience. For example, sessions were run in our Global Learning Weeks to identify differences in impact within business lines and explore specific market challenges. Together with feedback from teams and clients, these activities enable us to focus on support and increase impact in the future.

Sustainability in our operations

Sustainable procurement

Sustainability is integrated into our procurement ethos. Everyone is responsible for ensuring we purchase in a uniform and sustainable way. This extends to the life cycle use of products and services and is guided by our global sustainable procurement policy. We challenge our suppliers to deliver sustainable products and services while also demonstrating the sustainability of their own organisation. Procurement decisions for large contracts are based on information from suppliers in respect of all 5 themes of Enhancing Society Together.

Greener offices

We are reducing emissions from our buildings in line with our commitment for our global office network to be Paris Proof by 2035. We received Paris Proof certification for our office in Groningen in the Netherlands following an external validation process. It is one of the first buildings in the Netherlands to receive such a certificate and demonstrates our ambition to lead in this area.

We seek to optimise space and location of all our offices when leases are under review. In the Netherlands, we reduced space in Rotterdam by 20% and are discussing Paris Proof status with landlords in Nijmegen and Eindhoven. Our landlord at Goes will conduct a feasibility study for the office to become Paris Proof. In the United Kingdom, three offices in Birmingham were consolidated into one and we moved out of a highly energy inefficient building in London into a more sustainable office in London. In India, we relocated to a new building in Mumbai. It is twice the size of the existing office but has similar energy usage. In Jakarta, Indonesia, we also moved to a new office that meets the highest sustainability standards in Asia.

Optimisation of electrical installations and Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems is ongoing. We are also increasing the use of renewable energy, stepping away from natural gas and electrifying our offices. Our Liverpool and Edinburgh offices in the United Kingdom have been added to the list of our offices that are free from natural gas. In the Netherlands we are discussing a transfer to district heating in our Amersfoort office. Our Delft office will be Paris Proof when it opens in 2024. All building services in Delft will be demand driven in support of our goal to realise a saving of 80% compared to previous usage.


Our car fleet in the Netherlands is almost 100% electric. The electricity for charging these cars at the office, at home and elsewhere, is 100% from renewable sources certified with Guarantees of Origin, as per our contract with Eneco. These guarantees are established in accordance with the European Directive on the Promotion of the Use of Energy from Renewable Sources. We have adjusted the tax-free commuting allowance provided to our people in the Netherlands based on the transport method they use. The allowance is highest for those who walk or cycle to work. A sliding scale is operated for other methods depending on emissions levels.
In September 2023, we replaced the UK company car scheme with an Electric Vehicle (EV) scheme. Through the process of replacing company vehicles as the leases expire, we will have 100% EV lease cars in the UK by the end of 2029, with an average reduction in emissions of 17% per year.

Reporting on our material topics

Although we continue reporting on the seven material themes that we included in previous reports, in early preparation for the CSRD Regulations we have reviewed these through a double materiality analysis. We expect to have the updated list of our material topics in 2024.

For the 2023 annual report, the material topics we report on are (in alphabetical order):

  • Economic / financial performance

  • Emission reduction

  • Employability

  • Health and safety

  • Integrity and ethical performance

  • Security and privacy

  • Quality and sustainability in our products and services

Materiality matrix

Our sustainability key figures can be found in the Key Figures section.