Sustainability at the heart of what we do
OUR SUSTAINABILITY VISION
In the context of environmental challenges, social inequality and economic disruption, sustainability in business is a moral and commercial imperative.
At WFW we have always had a focus on supporting our communities and the environment. Our sustainability strategy pulls together existing activity and sets an ambitious roadmap for further positive change.
Our sustainability vision is rooted in what enables us to be successful as a firm – the sustainable prosperity of our clients and our people, a healthy natural environment and resilience in the communities we operate in.
Our Sustainability Vision: To create shared value through a firm-wide focus on People, Planet and Practices, using our skills and expertise to support sustainable and inclusive prosperity in our sectors and communities.
Across three pillars – People, Planet and Practices – we aim to create shared value on multiple levels by:
- Maintaining responsible practices and behaviours that enable us to run our business sustainably and manage our environmental footprint.
- Empowering our people to deliver pro bono and skilled volunteering projects supporting environmental and social themes relevant to our sectors.
- Working alongside our clients to support them in the net zero transition and developing thought leadership to help enable positive change in our sectors.
‘At WFW we know that sustainability and ESG considerations are hugely important for our people, our clients and the communities and environment in which we operate. We are committed to embedding a firm-wide approach to sustainable practice, supporting our sectors in the net zero transition and harnessing the skills and expertise of our workforce to help drive positive societal change.’
George Paleokrassas, Senior Partner
- In 2021 we received a Silver EcoVadis Medal for sustainable practice, placing WFW in the top 25% of 75,000 assessed companies.
- Our New York, Paris, Hong Kong, Singapore and Frankfurt offices are environmentally certified for sustainable design; London, our largest office, is powered by renewable electricity.
- We are implementing an ISO-accredited Environmental Management System for our London office, complemented by a global Environmental Charter to minimise our impact and enable us to set credible de-carbonisation targets for our firm.
- We are a member of Legal Sustainability Alliance; signatory of the Greener Litigation Pledge and UK Chamber of Shipping’s Single-use Plastic Charter.
Client engagement and thought leadership
- WFW co-developed the Poseidon Principles, a global framework now widely used for assessing and disclosing the climate alignment of shipping portfolios.
- Our ground-breaking thought leadership report ‘The Sustainability Imperative’ drew on in-depth interviews and a global survey of over 500 senior industry leaders to examine the shipping world’s views on sustainability and governance and what actions it is taking as result.
- We advised the Aviation Working Group (AWG) on the implementation and build of the AWG carbon calculator, developed to provide accurate, reliable and consistent aircraft carbon dioxide emissions data to aviation industry participants.
- Our award-winning renewable energy practice has seen the firm ranked #1 legal adviser for renewables deal count by both inspiratia and Inframation for a number of years.
To find out more about how we are supporting our clients in the net zero transition, click here.
Pro bono and volunteering
- Our lawyers have delivered recent pro bono support in Italy, the UK, Singapore, Greece, the USA and Thailand across a range of societal issues including child poverty, immigrant employment rights and access to technology.
- Employees are empowered to support charitable initiatives globally, with c. 350 voluntary hours recorded per year in addition to pro bono matters.
- In line with our Diversity and Inclusion strategy, our volunteering aims to help attract diverse talent to our firm and the sectors we work in. To further enable a diverse pipeline of talent into our own firm our Contextual Recruitment System puts trainees’ grades and achievements in the context of their social and educational background.
Our strategy is guided by four key principles:
Authenticity: Our strategy is rooted in the areas that are relevant to our firm and where we can make the biggest difference.
Collaboration: We work closely with our clients, suppliers and community stakeholders to drive positive change.
Agility: We conduct dynamic materiality assessments in a rapidly changing external landscape to ensure our strategy remains relevant.
Diversity: We purse shared Sustainability goals as a firm while acknowledging cultural differences globally and tailoring our approach accordingly.